Captain’s Blog Stardate 07092022.3

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I never thought that I would get bored exploring the spiritual realm. The infinite possibilities in the universe used to permeate my mind on a regular basis. Though that journey is ongoing, I’ve deprioritized that mission in order to focus a bit more on taking care of myself and fostering relationships with those around me.

Cadets Shadow, Suki and Chris in their shuttlecraft

I’ve started to go to the gym again. I forgot how much I love swimming…if it can even be called that. What I do in the water would probably be more aptly be described as water gymnastics. I very much enjoy doing flips, twirls and dance moves while in the lane. My unorthodox way in the pool drew the attention of an individual by the name of Captain Leo. Leo engaged me in conversation by noting how he frequently notices me flipping around in the water (it seems to draw a lot of attention). We had a good substantive talk and by the end he asked me out to dinner! I was initially excited as he seems like such a decent guy.

Officers Tino, Eli and Noah

My initial excitement turned to anxiety because I didn’t tell him I was trans. I then debated when I should tell him. I turned to Captain Alex and James (a coworker) to get some advice. Both agreed that I should disclose it sooner than later. I went online and that also seemed to be the consensus. I started to become sad because I was thinking, “He’s sorta traditional and a comment he made during our conversation made me think he was not open to that”. I braced myself for his rejection. I called him up and held my breath as I told him.

Several current and former crewmen from Starbase 321

Leo was totally cool with it! I audibly exhaled and felt excited. It’s funny because I had genuinely given up on trying to date anyone. He had to postpone our date but it seems we’re set to meet up next week. I’m cautiously optimistic about Leo.

Me wearing my Encanto (Mirabelle) outfit!

In other stuff, I’ve tried to reach out a bit more. I’ve tried to stay in regular contact with more people. I wish I could shake how I come off to others…I used to love being someone that was widely regarded as “smart as hell”. It’s a compliment but I’ve learned that it’s not really an endearing trait. I try to be pragmatically caring as well but because I’m slow to warm and not very effusive with my emotions.. it ends up creating distance. It doesn’t help that I’m not a big fan of large groups and I don’t have a bunch of wild anecdotes. Probably not a coincidence my 2 closet friends are online where social conventions and depth of conversation are a bit different than in person.

Captain’s Blog: Stardate 06032022.7

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As I left Starfleet Academy (University), I was eager to explore the universe. At the time, I believed that I had a pretty good understanding of what the universe was and how to navigate it. Subsequently, I’ve come to realize how little I knew back then.

Bella and Noah keeping Gotham safe

Somewhere along the line I’ve gone from trying to have the spiritual realm prove itself to me to trying to prove myself to the universe. I feel like I am constantly falling short. I find myself struggling to describe what it’s like for me. I used to feel so confident, in control, and safe. Nowadays, I feel like there’s a constant struggle in my head. Paradoxically, I feel more connected and alone than ever.

Cross in the sky

I’m also trying to come to terms with what I’ve observed recently. I’ve had a few experiences that have unexpectedly nudged me towards Christianity. The first 2 were things that I could somewhat dismiss as coincidences or over interpretation. And then, when talking in my head I asked for an explicit sign that Christianity was true, such as a cross in the sky, then I looked outside my car and there it was. I took a picture because it seemed absolutely unambiguous.

Tino next to a great white shark jaw

I’m still experiencing a bit of cognitive dissonance because Christianity clashes somewhat with my own theories about the Truth of reality. I’m also not a fan of some things mentioned in the Bible or the dogmas that guide most Christians. At this point, I’m not necessarily going to be constrained by the conclusions others have made but instead try to make life adjustments according to my relationship with God. I think at the end, it really is about that individual relationship you have with God, the universe etc. We can’t look to how others behave or believe but must develop a relationship with the higher power independently.

Six flags Discovery Kingdom off in the distance

I once again think about how my relationships are with my children. I love all of my kids but how that manifests differs based on the kid. My son Noah requires a lot of space to be himself while my daughter Bella needs a lot of attention. My oldest son Santino falls somewhere in the middle. Since there’s 8 billion different people, then that relationship will take 8 billion different shapes. I’m just….a bit surprised at the shape my relationship is taking.

Captain’s Blog: Stardate 05172022.9

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During my travels through the Galaxy, one of the things that I’ve learned is that allegiances can easily shift. A close ally can become an enemy and a former foe can become a friend. In my own life, Captain Eric and former Federation applicant (ex-bf) Admiral Will no longer are on speaking terms with me. Meanwhile, I’ve provided some assistance to former adversary Chancellor Brandi.

Officer Noah undertaking shuttlecraft training

Part of me wants to go into detail about how Eric and Will caused the rift but the better part of me is telling me to just move on. I keep trying to remind myself of what is important; the Federation (my family), myself, and helping others in need. I also hope to continue to learn and improve the person I am. Nonetheless, I will miss those two as I no longer have a go-to to have long conversations with.

RIP Cadet Laser (our hamster)

In other news, Starbase 321(work) has been hemorrhaging officers (employees) including 2 of my favorites. At this point, there’s four other people I’m close to at work and three of them are exploring other possibilities as well.

Officers Noah and Bella sharing an escape pod

I’m also not looking forward to our impending move to Starbase 70 (new work location), known around the office as The DeathStar. The name comes the fact that the office has a dearth of windows. I’m going to miss the beautiful scenery out here by Starbase 321. Starbase 70 is located in a somewhat dangerous commerical sector that receives heavy traffic. I’m not going to be able to go out on walks or sing. I’m not happy with the current trajectory of things but one thing I’ve learned is that things can change quickly. I’m hoping that things will turn out better

A view of the Natoma expanse

Captain’s Blog: Stardate 05082022.3

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At Starfleet Academy (university), I learned the value of looking outside myself in order to form a more objective perspective. Diversity of opinion is important because there are so many unique points of view that I generally think it’s impossible to have a full understanding of a topic unless you take into account how others perceive. In fact, crowdsourcing and taking into account the general consensus on a subject is usually how I determine what’s right. Nonetheless, I think it’s important not to be overly swayed by popular opinion or the current paradigm.

Chomp!

Throughout most of history and still mostly true today, the philosophy of tribalism is the principal that guides many people’s perspective. Most individuals believe that they are correct in their interpretation of religion or that their political party is the one true way. One only has to witness how crowds react when they are assembled to realize how bad mob mentality can be. Online forums have turned into echo chambers filled with vitriol.

Individuals can be just as bad. Otherwise decent, intelligent people can turn vicious whenever their creature comforts are not readily available. The average person tends to judge others far more harshly than they do themselves for the same actions; harsher still when someone does something they haven’t done but have the same capacity to do.

Several parsecs east of the Berkeley sector

Humans tend to forget that we are far more similar than we like to think. We differ when it comes to biology, upbringing, intellectual ability and circumstances. Most of the things that shape us and cause us to be different are mainly out of our control. If you believe that there are spiritual influences also affecting thoughts and feelings, then that also has to be taken into consideration. As I look up to the stars and stare into infinity, I wonder about the existence that is to come. Is there a heaven, hell or purgatory? What sort of judgment awaits me? Who’s the judge? Do others get to see my life and decide what happens? What will they think if they get to see my thoughts, feelings, actions and are able to read everything I’ve ever written? Will they wish to see me burned alive for some of the stuff I’ve done and thought? Will they accept my contriteness and the fact that I changed?

Cool cave formation

How will I react if I got to see the lives of others? What are the limits on forgiveness? Clearly we all want forgiveness and leniency, yet how far does that extend? I think most people think of themselves as pretty forgiving but lurking underneath the surface is the viciousness all humans have that seems to extend even to whatever is on the next plane of existence. It seems to be something that’s innate to all of us. One only has to watch little kids interact to see how overly punitive they act toward someone they perceive that has wronged them or that they believe is inferior.

Some are able to suppress their inner vileness to the point where they believe they could be objective and dispassionately judge another. However, EVERYONE has their breaking points. For some it’s smaller scale stuff like lying, cheating or stealing. (Would you want someone who you couldn’t trust in heaven? ). For some, it’s individuals that remind you of your flaws; perceived or real. (who wants someone in heaven that reminds you of your shortcomings) Others still may really think that they are high-minded enough to forgive anything. What about Hitler, what about rapists, murders or pedophiles? What if they were contrite, tried to change their ways and begged for forgiveness? Still willing to forgive?

Looking out towards the Golden Gate (Middle right of the pic if you zoom in)

According to most major spiritual texts, God/the spirits/ancients do forgive all so long as you don’t turn a deaf ear to being guided and that a person genuinely repents. Nonetheless, I do believe that God administers proportional justice/karma in this life or the next. I think when humans think about proportional justice they think about the most extreme things because we tend to be hyperbolic in our feelings that then affect our thoughts. We want to see our perpetrators suffer. Nay, we NEED to see them suffer. I do think God also has a duty to show that there is justice. But one thing I think we forget is that if there is a creator being then that makes them a parent.

Any good parent loves their kid and wants the best for them. An emotionally healthy parent administers punishment to discourage aberrant behavior while hoping to raise a child that is able to get along with others and be independent. Parents also want to foster a loving relationship with their child. Still, all children test thier limits and take for granted all the love they’ve been afforded. As such, the best recourse parents have is to take away privileges.

The left cloud looks like a dragon or a dog with its tongue out and on the right it looks like an angel holding and item. The cross lens flair is also quite cool to me.

For anyone that loses their privileges, it feels like cruelty. Kids usually see how much more difficult the world is without the love of their parent(s). Typically, it’s a lot harder to repair damage already wrought than it would’ve been to be appreciative and obedient in the first place. Though in the long run, a child that misbehaves and understands thier mistakes and changes tends to have an even closer relationship with their parent in the long run.

Using the same analogy, it’s a good thing siblings don’t have a say in what happens to us. As a parent, I try to get my kids to understand the logic I use to come to a decision and try to get them to agree but ultimately I make the final decision. If I let my kids decide how to punish each other, they’d brutalize one another. I’d think it no different in the next realm. And like any decent parent, God etc would give us a chance at absolution. I know I would do anything to bring my kids back into the fold. I think the same applies to God.

Captain’s Blog: Stardate 04302022.5

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During my travels throughout the galaxy, I find myself being enveloped by disillusionment. There’s so much unnecessary suffering. The allocation of resources is heaped on those with plenty while those in need try to make due with their meager portion. I try my best to help alleviate the disparities but I feel like I’ve been given a squirt gun while being expected to put out a fire.

Looks like a skeleton with a cool hairdo

I’ve long been a critic of how the Federation (the U.S and Western civilization) has gone about helping those in need. Until more recently, I placed all the blame squarely on mankind and its innate pursuit of power. Now that I understand that there is a far greater capability out here in the universe..I can’t believe more isn’t being done. Whether you go by spiritual interpretations or societal, most of us are just pawns in a bigger game. Those with power seem to have little regard for the collateral damage.

Magical rock alignment

Sadly, most of us are in Plato’s cave… trying to make a coherent story from the shadows on the wall. Whatever is REALLY going on can’t really be known in this life. Sometimes I think I get it…and other times I question my own thoughts,feelings and senses. I frequently wonder what I should believe and what is misdirection. Some would argue misperceptions stem from media indoctrination or biological/psychological processes while others would say it comes from something happening on a spiritual realm. Whatever the origin..I hate having to be open to the possibility that I have misperceived some things without having a way to be certain.

Love this cave formation. Kinda looks like a queen laying.

At the very least, I feel like I have made a good faith effort in trying to objectively gather all the pieces of the puzzle that is life. Ironically enough, as I’ve tried to look for concrete answers, I’ve come to realize that the Truth is a lot more subjective than I initially thought. I’ve also learned that there’s more puzzle pieces in life than can be gathered and analyzed in one lifetime.

The boys had a better time than the pic implies

Given that I can’t know what is really going on, I’ve made love my ultimate Truth. I don’t have enough to save the world but that won’t stop me from trying to spread positivity to others. It’s difficult because I tend towards a pessimistic outlook internally.

I think it can be hard to look at the world and it’s trajectory and not think that things are going to get even worse. I think a common outlook from time immemorial is that the past used to be better. Yet, there has been many positive changes both seen and unseen. I keep trying to remind myself of the good to balance out that tendency to be negative. I may not be able to make big structural changes or know everything going on but I can make a positive difference and do what I can to be relatively informed. Time and again I’ve learned that humans aren’t very good at predicting the future. I may not know what is to come but I’m going to try to choose to remain hopeful that there are better things in store for everyone even when things seem grim.

Captain’s Blog: Stardate 04042022.8

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One of the few constants in the universe is change. It’s something I’ve brought up before but it’s on my mind once more. So much of life is a transitory experience. In childhood, the way that you think about things, how you feel, the people you meet change as you get older. Into adulthood, relationships wax and wane, priorities shift, and even your view of the world and your self changes. As I’ve stated previously, the prospect that things do change is both something that can be a reason for hope and fear.

This unidentified sentient lifeform seemed friendly

Personally, I hold out hope that I’ll have a better place to live, a life partner and that society provides better options for those struggling financially and emotionally. Some of the changes that I fear include a decline in health, increased scarcity of resources and regressive policies.

The officers at Yamca 4

*Star Trek Picard season 2 spoiler ahead*

Another thing on my mind is the seductive allure of assimilation. On Star Trek season 2, one of the main characters is assimilated by the Borg. For those unaware, assimilation by the Borg involves the process by which an interlinked cyborg captures an individual and forces them to be apart of their collective. In this particular instance, one of the scientists is seduced into being assimilated by the (disconnected) Borg queen. The Borg queen preys on the loneliness of the scientist by saying “by being assimilated, you will never be alone. Every thought treasured and heard. To be apart of a bigger purpose.”

Officer Bella making some improv clothing

I frequently feel alone, unheard and wishing to be apart of something bigger than myself. Being apart of the collective, one wouldn’t have to directly worry about how responsibilities would be taken care of, one’s biology could be carefully balanced and there’d never be want for social interaction. Of course one of the main drawbacks would be the lose of autonomy, the cacophony of voices could be overwhelming and the collective may decide on a course of action you personally don’t believe in. Though in life, everything had pros and cons.

A moon near starbase 321

As I navigate around space, I’m also thinking about how this could parallel what it could be like in the spiritual world. Disconnected from your physical body and connecting to the collective consciousness of the universe may ultimately be very similar to being apart of the Borg collective. Perhaps God would be like the Borg queen; functioning like the collective voice of the spirits. Like in the Borg collective, the Queen doesn’t necessarily interact with individuals within the collective unless deemed necessary. To extend that analogy a bit more, families and other smaller groups within the collective would be subdivided into various unimatrixes. Like the Borg, each cube (or group) can run semi-autonomously; pursuing various goals within this dimension. Perhaps the whole point of us being down here on this dimension is to show us that we do better working together and what happens when we go against what’s best for the collective. In the next realm, it’s possible that your rank will be based on karma and ability to handle various forms of responsibility.

Captain’s Blog: Stardate 03222022.7

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As I sit at my console inputting the coordinates to my next mission, I find myself thinking about the nature of the universe once again. Currently, there are two complementary theories of physics. Relativity (theory) describes how physics works on a large scale. Quantum mechanics describes physics at the atomic and subatomic scale. Though physicists use both theories to understand the universe, a grand unifying theory that ties both theories together remains elusive.

She wants her food, NOW

Before delving into this a bit more, I think it’s important to know what could be gained by further understanding physics. Understanding the law of motions and gravity led to the industrial revolution. Exploring electromagnetism led to the ability to manipulate electricity and magnets in a way that allows many of our current technologies to function. Learning about the nuclear, weak and strong forces gave us an understanding of how to channel the immense power of atomic energy. A grand unified theory of physics could revolutionize our technology and enable the next era of humanity.

This hidden gem is very deep into the nature area by starbase 321

String theory is one attempt at creating a unifying theory of physics. String theory states that individual points of atoms are connected. It thinks of electrons like rubber bands, tiny vibrating strings, with an infinite number of vibrations… And when you look at subatomic particles they sure do look that way under a microscope. At least thus far, the theory hasn’t been experimentally proven though the math checks out. Different atomic particles can be thought of as different strings.

A game changer would entail being able to manipulate particles to do what we wanted them to do. Right now, controlling subatomic particles seems rather difficult if impossible because the position and momentum of particles are hard to predict because they’re so small and seemingly random. (The uncertainty principle). Additionally, entropy indicates that randomness and heat loss will result when trying to control molecular motion. How then can particles and energy be controlled more orderly and what would that result in?

Officer Bella helping an inbound glider come to a safe landing

One theory to controlling subatomic particles I have would be to try to implement harmonics in a manner that could alter the flow of particles. Electrons vibrating differently turn into different particles. Perhaps magnetism and/or gravity would be used in a rhythmic manner to allow particles to flow and have more predictability. “Music creates order out of chaos: for rhythm imposes unanimity upon the divergent, melody imposes continuity upon the disjointed, and harmony imposes compatibility upon the incongruous.”¹ The result of being able to alter the vibration of particles would lead to programmable matter and possibly even altering matter.

It may not look like much but this is a destination I have always wanted to get to. This is the other side of the large nature area near starbase 321 (work). In the distance you can see it.

Imagine having a bunch of junk and reordering the matter into useful raw materials or even adding it to other matter to create something useful. Modifying matter would require a great deal of energy and could be dangerous as some heat would inevitably dissipate… Possibly an uncontrolled reaction. Ideally, the tech would use that dissipating energy to power the conversion.

I guess the closest science fiction analogy to this would be the Star Trek replicator except it would be able to be pointed at something and change its physical properties so it seems like it would be even better than a replicator. Being able to reorder matter into whatever we needed to be could eliminate scarcity. Once our needs are taken care of, things like original music, writing and art would be highly valued. A new era of creativity could possibly take place or people are doing things that they always wanted to instead of trying to simply sustain, they could thrive.

¹Source: https://quotepark.com/quotes/1863162-yehudi-menuhin-music-creates-order-out-of-chaos-for-rhythm-impos/

Captain’s blog: Stardate 03072022.5

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As a young officer, I used to aspire to become an admiral (manager). To me, working in management seemed to be an indicator that you were successful.. doing what you were supposed to in life. I always felt like I had some good ideas and that if I was in a position of power that I’d be able to enact some awesome changes.

Ladies,Gentlemen and all other gender identities, presenting: Officer Bella!

As I’ve become older, I’ve begun to see management as an unnecessary obstacle to the real changes that need to happen. From my perspective, the higher up one goes in the bureaucratic chain, it seems like it’s less about pragmatic substantive changes and more about presenting an image to those that have real power; those with money and influence.

Officers Bella and Tino gliding along the smooth surface of Rollerink 2

I don’t necessarily think that everyone in management is corrupt or not trying to do their best. I just think that it’s easy to lose sight of the real goal; which is to make life better for the workers in order to make them better at serving thier clients. If I’m going to go based on my own experiences, I would say the way management becomes an obstacle is by not solely being the embodiment of workers opinions… Instead, what seems to happen is that somewhere along the line, it becomes less about what the individuals underneath them want/need and more about what’s in the best interest of the person occupying the position in management. Career wise, it’s not very prudent to be an adversarial voice to what those above you see as important. Same thing happens in politics…

For now, I feel stuck. I’ve come to realize that what’s wanted out of me is my compliance not my opinion. If I keep expressing my thoughts aloud, I’ll probably lose my job. I have to either bite my tongue til it bleeds or stand up for what I believe. Yet, this isn’t a movie. Taking a stand seriously jeopardizes my efforts to move the kids out this shitty apartment and get a decent car and save money for a rainy day. At the end, no one really cares if I take a stand .. I’ll just be a passing mention if that…

As I look out my porthole, I feel a bit resigned. Aside from work stuff, I miss having a relationship where I talk daily with someone. I do have a 2 budding friendships that I’m cautiously optimistic about. I’m also a bit excited that I’ve made some decent gains in my singing ability. I’m far from good, but at least now there’s brief moments where I sound in tune …which is a huge step for me. One of the newest developments is that Bella has started singing with me. I think she sees how much fun I have with it and she started to embrace it herself.

Captain’s Blog: Stardate 02222022.2

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As a cadet in Starfleet Academy, I somehow became obsessed with trying to understand the Truth of reality. At the time, I wanted to know why I couldn’t quite fit in with others and how to fix what was wrong with me in order to better fit in with my peers. I spent a lot of time feeling inadequate and lonely.

Officer Suki has a new hairdo!

As I went into training to become a Starfleet captain at University, I somewhat overcame my internal issues and got a better understanding of how others operate. During that time I felt like I had an adequate understanding of how the universe operated and I went on to help people professionally while indulging personally. Until star date 05252020, I didn’t feel the need to further explore the nature of the universe as I felt that I had a good understanding of how and why things happened. Since then and perhaps a bit sooner, I came to realize that things weren’t quite the way I thought they were.

Tino all dressed up for his speech at the Daystrom Institute (speech competition). He didn’t place but I was proud of the effort he put in

Nowadays, I find myself endlessly obsessed with trying to further understand the nature of reality once again. During this journey I thought I would find answers in spiritual texts or be able to rationalize my experiences via science. I also have come to trust my own analysis and observations instead of deferring to others. Nothing quite covers the fullness of my experiences.

Officers Bella, Noah, Suki, Tino and Elijah (thier cousin) doing some shuttlecraft simulations

As I dig deeper and deeper into metaphysics, I find myself fighting my own disposition to wanting to rationalize the irrational, to limit the infinite of the universe to the point where it doesn’t fully capture the essence. I guess a good analogy would be like trying to logically explain why something is beautiful. Sure, a case could be made for the human preference for symmetry; that certain shapes and compositions are innately provocative because how closely they tie in with things encountered in nature and because a given object may have qualities that we wish to possess. Yet, beauty is a subjective experience. No words can fully capture how you think and feel about something that you’re viewing.

Maybe the very thing that separates us from robots is our ability to have subjectivity. You and I can have the same input and come to very different interpretations. Yet, there is also a baseline objective reality. I guess for me…I’ve been trying to gather all the pieces and angles and make a coherent picture..and still…As I have come closer to having answers to some of my deepest held questions, I almost don’t want to have the journey come to an end.

I wrote some of my entry with this serving as my inspiration

Every new discovery has absolutely reshaped how I’ve seen things and I have had so much fun learning and getting to have new experiences. Just today, me and my daughter laid on the bed together and watched the sun illuminate dust dancing through a partially open curtain. At just the right angle, I was able to show her the brilliant colors that sparkle with a vibrancy that is impossible to describe. She turned to me and said, “That’s like the colors in my dreams”. By comparison, the rest of the color spectrum looks rather dull.

What I find fascinating is that even if we could see the entire spectrum, stars and the higher particles only make up 4.03% of the observable universe (a universe that may be much bigger than we can see.) Dark energy makes up 73% of the universe and dark matter comprises 22% of the universe. We are visible matter and energy. What is the the immense invisible matter and energy? What about that which our brains are not even adapted to see?

William Blake once stated, “If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is, infinite”. What then can be done to further cleanse the doors of perception? How would seeing the infinite of the reality change us?