Dream of: 17 March 1987 "A Space Odyssey"

While my ex-wife Louise and I were sitting in the House in Patriot (the house in the tiny village of Patriot, Ohio where my maternal grandparents lived when I was a child), I was thinking about space travel and wondering when man planned to make the first space trip to Venus. I had some reading material on the subject and saw that a trip was planned, but that the trip was still several years away. Apparently about 20 astronauts were in training for the mission; but if an astronaut married, he or she would no longer be considered eligible.

When I talked to Louise about the subject, she seemed friendly and almost child-like. I asked her if she would go to Venus if she had a chance; she replied that she would, but that she would only go for the "party" aspect of the trip and not for all the scientific knowledge.

What interested me most was the possibility of encountering intelligent beings living on another planet. I imagined humanoid beings living in a primitive state. I thought it possible that even though alien beings might not be as scientifically advanced as we, they still might be more mentally advanced. I asked, "What if they are more advanced than us?"

I began to imagine what encountering such aliens for the first time would be like. The languages would be different; sign language would have to be used at first. How would one tell the aliens about having come from a planet which the aliens couldn't even see? Perhaps one could point to the moon of the other planet and (with sign motions) indicate the moon had been the place of origin. One could then gradually show that the moon wasn't actually one's place of origin, but someplace similar to the moon.

Language could also gradually be utilized. For instance one could point to the ground and say "this world." Then one could point to the moon and say "that world." Gradually the aliens, if they were intelligent beings, would begin to understand.

While I was thinking, I realized the day had already arrived when man was ready to travel to Venus; I was able to observe some of the preparations. A group of the people involved in the space program met in a house in the country to discuss what they were doing; one of the main men began talking about the reason for going. One question they hoped to answer was whether the area around the equator of Venus rotated at the same rate of speed as the other areas on the surface of Venus. Evidence existed that the surface area around the equator wasn't firmly attached and so tended to float, as a body of water. Therefore that area didn't travel as fast. But the evidence was unclear and someone needed to be on Venus to confirm it.

The man talked of the broader reasons for going to Venus. He said the real reason was to learn more about man's internal nature and origins. He added that those reasons weren't talked about because they weren't the reasons espoused by the government personnel who funded the space program; but the actual people involved in the program knew what the real reasons for space travel were.

The space ship had already been launched and was on its way. It was a small craft which carried two men and one woman. After the space ship had been on its way for several days, a radio transmission was received. The woman on the space ship talked about how they were able to receive radio broadcasts from earth. At the present, every night they were listening to a serial reading of Fyodor Dostoievsky's novel The Brothers Karamazov, an event which they highly looked forward to.

I wondered how much room was available in which to move about on the space ship. I imagined it as being rather small. I recalled the large space ship on the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey and how there had been a circular area in which the astronauts could run. It seemed particularly important that the astronauts have an area large enough in which to exercise. Otherwise they would suffer adversely from lack of movement.

A few days later another message came from the space ship. The woman seemed very tense and nervous. Indeed it appeared that just the type of problem I had envisioned was actually occurring: she felt hemmed in having to sit in the same seat all the time. One of the other astronauts on the space ship began reading something to her to try to calm her. He read about some people who had thought it was possible to develop their mental capacities to the point where they could mentally raise mountains.

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