The alarming significance of culture.
During a recent conversation with a close Jewish friend I asked him what he thought separated Jews from most other ethnic groups. I was expecting him to talk about how a shared history of oppression had strengthened Jews and brought them closer together. But his answer was both surprising and controversial. “Unlike gentiles, especially Christians,” he said, “Jews do not believe in an after life as such. There is no God up there dictating your lot in life. We don’t believe the meek shall inherit the earth. We truly believe in the power of an individual’s free will, guided of course by right principles.” [emphasis mine]
From the press release: From the moment he is handed a possibility of making the first alien contact, Saunders Maxwell decides he will do it, even if doing so takes him through hell and back.
Unfortunately, that is exactly where that journey takes him.
The vision that Zimmerman paints of vibrant human colonies on the Moon, Mars, the asteroids, and beyond, indomitably fighting the harsh lifeless environment of space to build new societies, captures perfectly the emerging space race we see today.
He also captures in Pioneer the heart of the human spirit, willing to push forward no matter the odds, no matter the cost. It is that spirit that will make the exploration of the heavens possible, forever, into the never-ending future.
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