Apparently NASA is building a new voyager spacecraft that will carry the best of human culture to outer space. I’m reminded of the Noah’s ark, a disturbing analogy considering the fact that Noah’s ark was preparing for the Apocalypse. Here I list a few gems worth taking from India, although I’m not sure exactly how much cultural value they possess, or whether space deserves them.
- Shri Manmohan Singh, the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India : The man is the very symbol of stoicism. Corruption scandals have rocked his already shaky government for the past few years. But here is a man who has managed to weather all criticisms and questions of governance with an unrelenting silence and a stoic presence that would make Marcus Aurelius proud.Methinks: Space would be the ideal surrounding for his silence. Sound does not travel in space, and there at least, his silence would be justified.
- Shri VS Achuthananthan : This nonagenarian communist leader and his party has done a lot to ‘protect’ the small coastal state of Kerala from development for the past several decades. With elections looming ahead and VS not looking to give up the reigns any time soon, he would benefit from a trip to space, seeing as how space-travel slows down the ageing process. At his age however, there is always the risk that he will turn into a black hole. Maybe it’s time for him to ‘suck’ in outer-space.Methinks: Kerala could use some development right now.
- Astrology :
Astrology refers to the astonishing tendency of some people to correlate wrinkles on one’s hand with interstellar planetary movements and make inferences about one’s future. As a science/pseudo-science/hack/magic/divine gift, Astrology has been around in India for centuries. NASA would do good to take this ‘phenomenon’ up to space, to meet its’ maker. Hopefully ‘Astrology’ will get some perspective, once it is actually in space.Methinks: We could use the vacation from all the hocus pocus. There is only so much one can hear about how getting married is a good idea because ‘the moon is favorably locked in your favor’ before getting fed up.Post Script: I don’t think NASA is actually considering the launching of cultural icons to space. That was just a writing prompt. Which is a pity.
If such a thing was, in fact, possible, what cultural symbols do you think could use a trip to space? Feel free to comment below.
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