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TITLE: STAR TREK: GENERATIONS

AUTHOR: Brannon Braga and Ron D Moore.

Overview: New star ship not yet fully equipped answers a distress call. An energy ribbon damages the ship and destroys both ships calling for help. About one third (47) of the people are beamed aboard and rescued from the ribbon. Captain Kirk, however, is lost and presumed dead while doing what enables the ship to be saved from the ribbon.

He, however, ends up in the ribbon, where time, space and external reality have no independent reality but are molded according to the wishes, dreams and desires of the individual. The internal reality according to one description consisted in a joy so perfect and accompanied with a feeling of complete fulfillment that one could only want to stay there forever. The joy was so real it could be described as tangible, so one could be totally wrapped up and absorbed in it.

NAME: DHARMANANDA

TYPE: SCIENCE FICTION

SETTING: The star ship the USS Enterprise B and Enterprise D, a place called the Nexus, a space station, and an uncolonized planet.

DESCRIPTIVE PARAGRAPH ABOUT THE MOST INTERESTING CHARACTER: The most interesting character is Soran, the guest star. The movie centers around his quest to return to the Nexus and Picard’s quest to prevent him from doing so at the expense of others. Soran was a successful and highly respected scientist. After encountering the Nexus he was beamed away from it to the Enterprise B. Having once tasted the Nexus nothing in this reality seemed desirable to him anymore. The only issue in his life then became to return to the Nexus. If he killed millions of people in the process he didn’t care.

Why was he willing to sacrifice anything, even the lives of millions, in order to return to the Nexus? Why was he able to see everything in this "reality" as worthless or unreal? What was it he experienced in the Nexus? This makes him the most interesting character. All the other characters were operating from a common paradigm; one based on their common perception of reality and their adaptation to it within the framework of their socialization.

Soran was operating from an entirely different paradigm. One which was not even based upon what others called reality. It was based on his experience in the Nexus. In the Nexus there was no time as we know it. In this "reality" people exist within time and must flow along with it. In the Nexus the person’s individual reality exists outside of time so that time takes the form and motion desired for it by the entity. It can flow forward, backward, jump, skip, stand still, or perhaps do all at once and then some. Instead of being in time, time is in them. But each person’s experience of the ribbon is unique.

LESSON, LESSONS, OR MORAL: (WHO LEARNED WHAT OR WHAT STATEMENT IS THE STORY TRYING TO MAKE): The whole plot is a struggle between Soran, who is driven by a desire for the Nexus, and the Enterprise crew, who are driven by a desire or dedication to life outside the Nexus. To understand the hidden meaning in this fairy tale it is necessary to understand the word ‘nexus.’

Nexus means connection and is a synonym of union and yoke. Yoke is English for yoga, that which unites. Nexus also means center, and is also called the ribbon. The ribbon at the center of the body that connects the outer world of the senses with the inner spiritual world beyond time, space and causation is the sushumna in the center of the spinal column. This spiritual world is the "timeless paradise" the doorway of the nexus leads to.

The Hebrews wandered in the wilderness for 40 years before entering the paradise of the promised land. Jesus fasted in the wilderness for 40 years before entering the spiritual world where "angels came and mistered to him." Even in the Vedas, the oldest literature in the world, the veda devoted to sacrifice is 40 chapters long. Likewise the nexus, the doorway to paradise, appears every 40 years. This 40 years is included to make it very clear that the paradise the nexus connects to is the true spiritual world.

The nexus is a metaphor for the ribbon like passage to the spiritual world. The most common non scifi metaphor for this passageway is a river because the experience of it is so much like a river, only a river of energy. Hence the aptness of using a ribbon of energy as a metaphor for it in outer space scifi. Only this river of energy flows to inner space.

However, everyone’s experience of the nexus is not the same. If you understand how vastly different rivers can be you can begin to understand why the different people entering the nexus had so widely differing expereinces. Even the same river in the same place can vary widely with time.

When the energy in the nexus flows into an obstacle the energy is diverted. The nature of the diversion depends on the size, nature and location of the obstacle and the quantity and rate of flow of the energy. This accounts for the diversity of experience when encountering the nexus.

When the 40 years of sacrifices are completed the primordial energy begins to move from its sheath of matter made up of the four ideas of solid, liquid, fire and gas. This causes the nexus to appear as it were. It causes such an intense flow of energy in this subtlest river that leads to spirit that the consciousness is automatically absorbed into this inner flow, into the nexus. All the thoughts and impressions of the past leave residues at this subtle level that effect the flow of this energy and determine what the experience will be of the person entering the nexus.

For the pure in heart the energy will take one straight to Spirit, to the Supreme Reality, the Utter Fullness. The heart is the ribbon, the path of the nexus. Pure means free of obstacles. To one who is free of desire and repulsion, of attachment and fear and free of ego or false identity, the experience goes straight to the Highest Abode.

The different areas of life in which an obstacle may appear are called wheels. When the obstacle involves insecurity and possessiveness it is an obstacle in the first area of life or wheel. If the nexus is activated when significant obstacles are lodged in this wheel much energy will be blocked from going further and will be diverted into this area of life. This can result in various neuroses involving fear, panic disorders, and inordinate drives to acquire possessions.

Likewise, obstacles in the second wheel will divert excessive energy into the attachment to and drive for pleasure, often especially sexual pleasure. Each wheel gets more complex than the preceding one until the spiritual world is reached. Striking obstacles in the third wheel diverts energy into the drive for excitement, entertainment, power, and adrenaline rushes. Excessive impurities in the fourth wheel will result in increased drive for love, attention, fame and social activities. And excessive blockage in the fifth wheel can result in an accentuation of prejudice, dogmatic attitudes, fanaticism, and increased drive for and attachment to relative knowledge.

These all deal only with obstacles near the surface of the river where channels to these surface areas of life exist. Deeper impurities can limit the experience of the nexus to an experience only of intense and unfathomable energy. Or lesser impurities on a deep level will allow the experience to go to a deeper level, to the level of subtle pleasure, or on to the level of subtle feelings, to the realization of everything in the form of ideas, or deeper yet where everything is known as the self, or to the deeper level yet beyond the self altogether where everything is known as bliss, as beauty, or finally as the pure, unspeakable fullness.

The puzzle in this movie is to determine what level of the nexus Soran experienced, what his impurities were, and what now he should do before the next 40 sacrifices (years) brings him into the nexus again... that is, when his primordial energy creates another physical body for him again.

WHAT DID YOU NOT LIKE ABOUT THE STORY: Soran gets atomized, ending the most interesting character and thus tempting one to suppose that there is nothing more to think about, that the "problem" is resolved.

WHAT DID YOU LIKE ABOUT THE STORY: It dealt with a very basic and important area of life seldom even known or heard of in this Western materialistic culture.

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Last updated: 01-17-99 00:00 PST