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Gene spent his boyhood in Los Angeles, where he later studied three years of policemanship and then transferred his academic interest to aeronautical engineering and qualified for a pilot's license. He volunteered for the U.S. Army Air Corps in the fall of 1941 and was ordered into training as a flying cadet when the United States entered World War II.
He flew nearly a hundred combat missions and sorties and was decorated with both the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Air Medal…Roddenberry later received a Civil Aeronautics commendation
in the South Pacific…Mr. Roddenberry began to write. He sold stories to flying magazines, and later poetry to publications, including The New York Times. He even wrote a song lyric "I Wanna Go Home", which became a popular song during the war.
Roddenberry continued flying until he saw television for the first time. Correctly estimating television's future, he realized that the new medium would need writers and decided that Hollywood's film studios would soon dominate the new industry. He acted immediately, left his flying career behind and went to Hollywood
Roddenberry extensively consulted JPL scientists, Douglas and Lockheed engineers, USAF and RAND experts, and the engineers who worked on NASA’s unmanned space probe program.
The Enterprise bridge design attracted the attention of the US Navy, who dispatched three officers to the Star Trek soundstages. They were given extensive access and design blueprints, as well as the accumulated notes gathered from JPL, NASA, etc.
While making Star Trek, Roddenberry's reputation as a futurist began to grow. His papers and lectures earned him high professional regard as a visionary. He spoke on the subject at NASA meetings, the Smithsonian Institution, Library of Congress gatherings, and top universities.
Roddenberry: I’d like to say a few more things about him…He was advanced far beyond his time. Once he took me out to the front yard of our…house and said, "Gene, some day they’ll rip out whole blocks of the city and put gigantic highways through here." He was talking about the freeways that I later saw being built. He said this to me in the 1930s…
During World War II, while I was visiting home, Dad had shown me a newspaper report on how the Germans had broken through the Russian lines. Dad was looking it over and said, "I’ve spent some time in open country, and I know something about the military. I figure they’ll be stopped about here." He was pointing at Stalingrad…He was a shrewd analyst of world events.
Alexander: You came very close to getting out of television. You were very successful before Star Trek , but you were unhappy. Before Star Trek came along, you were about ready to pack it in if you couldn’t do what you wanted to do because of…?
Roddenberry: Censorship! Because of the fact that writers and producers are more or less expected, on network television, to perpetuate all of the modern myths: the male is vigorous, battle is the true test of a man (that was particularly so in Westerns), and stereotypes about men and women. If you don’t write them, people will stare at you askance and wonder, "What is he writing about?" It is only quite recently that we have had thoughtful writing about reality on television. Twenty-five years ago, and longer, it was next to impossible because first there were Westerns and then there were cop shows… Yes, I was just about to pack it in because there was no way I could write the things that were on my mind.
I remember, for example, saying to my mother one time, "Mom" (I must have been a teenager at the time), "as [sic] times I feel sometimes like I could do things and maybe the ideas I have are worth something to somebody." She turned to me with surprising ferocity and said, "No. You’re just like anybody else. Don’t talk about things like that because it’s foolish and nonsense."
Alexander: Are there any subjects that you haven’t tackled on The Next Generation that you would like to?
Roddenberry: There are subjects, yes, but I will keep them secret, because you have to wait until a certain level of thinking permits these things to be thought about openly and in writing. I have many thoughts which, if I were to voice them now, would turn many people against me.
One New Age channeling cult, above all the rest, has had a huge - very disturbing influence on hundreds of thousands of devotees worldwide. Known as 'The Nine', its disciples include cutting edge scientists, multi-millionaire industrialists and leading politicians.
It's well known that Gene Roddenberry had extensive contacts with the Nine as did Jon Povill, who worked on the show Sliders as well as Synchromystic cult fave Total Recall.
I am the beginning. I am the end. I am the emissary. But the original time I was on the Planet Earth was 34,000 of your years ago. I am the balance. And when I say "I" - I mean because I am an emissary for The Nine. It is not I , but it is the group.We are nine principles of the Universe, yet together we are one.
And this was no ragtag bunch of hippie phreaks that Roddenberry was dealing with. According to Picknett and Prince, “the Nine's disciples included multimillionaire businessmen (many hiding behind pseudonyms and including members of Canada's richest family, the Bronfmans), European nobility, scientists from the Stanford Research Institute and at least one prominent political figure who was a personal friend of President Gerald Ford.”
he was approached with an unusual proposition by a wealthy Englishman called Sir John Whitmore.
Whitmore explained that he had sought out Roddenberry on behalf of an organisation calling itself Lab Nine. His proposal was that the TV producer and writer should pen a film screenplay based on the group’s research into the paranormal and its belief that Earth was soon to be visited by extraterrestrial beings traveling in spacecraft; Roddenberry, in other words, was to prepare the ground for the aliens’ arrival by writing a movie script that would prime the human race for first contact.
Roddenberry…even produced the screenplay for a movie about The Nine. How much he was influenced by them is unknown, although it is said that some of their concepts found their way into the early Star Trek movies, and The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine (what a giveaway!) series.
Even in the 1980s/90s, he was documented as working on Trek related projects with the likes of Sean David Morton – of ‘Dulce’/Area 51 fame. The influence of his Lab9 experiences continues to be seen in his latter science fiction creations such as his aborted “Planet Earth” pilot and the series “Earth: Final Conflict”.
Roddenberry: Because what we try to do in fiction is to present people of all ages with many aspects of life. In a way, this trains them and prepares them for the multiple choices and decisions they have to make during their own lives. The more young people see honest shows, the better they’re prepared. I can’t imagine making television for almost any other reason except preparing people for life’s travails and excitements.
He is known to have favoured Science Fiction as a means to comment on the human condition because these hidden messages often escaped the censors.
On a more esoteric level, the original series is littered with (what some refer to as “illuminati”) symbolism.
Matilda O'Donnell MacElroy – who claimed to have interviewed an alien during the Roswell Incident of 1947…has several references to the concept of the “Council of Nine” and mention of a symbol that was ‘shown’ to her by the creature. The symbol is used throughout the design of the book and is eerily identical to the Starfleet insignia.
I have often found it curious that more people haven’t noticed the continued similarity in the logos of the branches of the Department of Defence – in relation to Star Trek. The various branches of NASA, JPL, Aerospace, Space Defence, and so forth, all incorporate the chevron aspect to their logos. This is also true of the space agencies of numerous nations across the world. It is the same chevron that has become synonymous with ‘Trek’. We really should ask the question – why?
In addition to running a foundation for science and clean oceans there are several “projects” that the group produces. One of them is Gene’s Journal…Based on a childhood journal that Gene Roddenberry left behind
Gene’s Journal® is the untold, true story behind the adolescent years of Gene Roddenberry. It was during these years that Gene was continuously abducted by aliens for the extraterrestrial purpose of studying human beings
how many of you remember Scotty introducing transparent aluminum for the first time?...
It may sound impossible, but there is such a thing as transparent aluminum armor or aluminum oxynitride (ALON) as it's more commonly known. ALON is a ceramic material that starts out as a powder before heat and pressure turn it into a crystalline form similar to glass. Once in the crystalline form, the material is strong enough to withstand bullets. Polishing the molded ALON strengthens the material even more. The Air Force has tested the material in hopes of replacing windows and canopies in its aircraft. Transparent aluminum armor is lighter and stronger than bulletproof glass.
Fast forward 30 years and wouldn't you know it, it seems like everyone carries a communicator. We just know them as cell phones.
Hypospray is a form of hypodermic injection of medication. A hypospray injection is forced under the skin (a subcutaneous injection) with high air pressure. The air pressure shoots the liquid vaccine deep enough into the skin that no needle is required. The real-world application is known as a jet injector.
In science fiction, space ships including the Starship Enterprise snatch each other up using tractor beams…
Scientists have harnessed small lasers into beams capable of manipulating molecules and moving them with precision. Optical tweezers use a focused laser to trap and suspend microscopic particles in an optical trap. Scientists can use optical tweezers to trap and remove bacteria and sort cells. Optical tweezers are used primarily in studying the physical properties of DNA. While the beams used in optical tweezers aren't strong enough to dock the space shuttle to the International Space Station, it's a start in that direction.
"Set phasers to stun"…
Unlike the phaser, the Taser and other stun guns must come in physical contact with the target in order to have any effect. Tasers take care of this by projecting two electrodes, connected by wires, which attach to the target's skin. Once in contact, the handheld unit transfers electricity to the target, thus having the stun effect.
The characters in "Star Trek" relied on a small device that when spoken into, would translate the words into English. Guess what? The technology exists for us in the real world. There are devices that let you speak phrases in English and it will spit back to you the same rhetoric in a specified language. The only problem is, these devices only work for certain predetermined languages.
A true universal translator like the one on the show may not be a reality, but the technology is available. Voice recognition has advanced considerably since its inception.
In 2005, a team of scientists from Stanford University successfully implanted a small chip behind the retina of blind rats that enabled them to pass a vision recognition test. The science behind the implants, or bionic eyes as they're commonly referred to, works much the way Geordi's VISOR did.
Often times the tricorder gave an initial analysis of the new environment. So, what's the real-world tie-in? NASA employs a handheld device called LOCAD, which measures for unwanted microorganisms such as E. coli, fungi and salmonella onboard the International Space Station [source: Coulter]. Beyond that, two handheld medical devices may soon help doctors examine blood flow and check for cancer, diabetes or bacterial infection.
I’ve never seen any proof, or at least anything I recognise as proof, that other intelligent life forms exist, or are or have been in contact with us. Nor have I ever seen anything I recognise as proof that other laws of physics exist.” 
‘Proof’ was clearly what was required to penetrate Roddenberry’s sceptical defences,
and get him on-message, so Whitmore arranged an expenses-paid tour of a number of parapsychology departments and research facilities across the country to observe scientific investigation of the paranormal at first hand. And Roddenberry was invited to spend time both at Whitmore’s home in England and at Lab Nine itself while he spent the autumn of 1975 working on the draft screenplay.
Perhaps the most disturbing aspect of the history of The Nine is its relationship to the career of Andrija Puharich. Recent research has revealed Puharich to have a distinctly sinister side. As an Army doctor in the 1950s, he was deeply involved with the CIA's notorious MKULTRA mind control project (see panel). He - together with the infamous Dr Sidney Gottlieb - experimented with a variety of techniques to change or induce actual thought processes.
NASA posthumously awarded him the Public Service Medal in 1992. It seems that Star Trek was considered “a job, well done” by those in the military/industrial establishment.
Was he just an insightful chap who hit upon the head of (several) possible future technologies conceived in Star Trek? Or did he know something we didn’t? What about this childhood diary that inspired a tale of alien abductions?
There are so many loose threads to this mystery and it’s ready to fall apart at the slightest tug. Are we simply looking at the embellished myth of an honestly down-to-earth man? Was Gene trying to entertain us, or pass along a message? Was he expressing a creative outlet, or was he advancing an agenda?
something called “The Council of Nine”—a group of paranormalists, channelers, and new-agers
Gene: There's a question that I cannot avoid asking: why do you not give strong and definite signs of your existence or proximity, on top of approaching humanity by indirect means such as these channelings, or other ways? Obviously, you have your reasons, but this question does matter to me.
Tom: It is of great importance for you to understand that your governments of your world of Earth have refused to publicly believe, or convey to the people, our existence. If there were an attempt by civilisations to land upon Planet Earth in a mass situation, which in truth will come to pass in the course of time, the people upon Planet Earth would panic, for they have not the understanding, the knowledge, that we would mean no harm to them.......
"As nearly as I can concentrate on the question today, I believe I am God; certainly you are, I think we intelligent beings on this planet are all a piece of God, are becoming God." Interview with Gene Roddenberry in "Star Trek Creator" by David Alexander, Roc, an imprint of Dutton Signet a division of Penguin Books New York, page 568, par 1
But turning and seeing his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”
Originally posted by TheComte
Excellent thread, I enjoyed reading it.
I too am a fan of Star Trek and it's idealism. I don't have too much to add except:
Star Trek > Star Wars.
• The new captain was intentionally designed as Roddenberry’s fantasy version of himself. The Star Trek creator wrote that Jean Luc Picard “is an older man, thoughtful, compassionate, hard but fair - and very irresistible to women.” Picard would be played by Patrick Stewart, no stranger to ritual drama himself, having already played in two separate Sun King films, Dune and Excalibur. Jean-Luc Picard would be the father-god Osiris, Zeus, Odin, Yahweh, or what have you.
• Picard’s Isis would be Dr. Beverly Crusher (Gates McFadden), a flame-haired Magdalene-type and the unrequited object of Picard’s affections. Like Isis, Beverly is also a widow and has a young son.
• Joining Picard would be hotheaded first mate Commander William Ryker (Jonathan Frakes), playing the part of Ra-Horus. Ryker would take over the fight-and-fornicate Captain Kirk role.
• Ryker’s Hathor would be Deanna Troi (Mirina Sirtis), the clairvoyant ships counselor. Deanna Troi’s name identifies her with the Moon goddess. Diana, goddess of the hunt, was identified with the Moon, and Troy was the city of Apollo, brother of Selene, the Moon goddess. In his original treatment, Roddenberry wrote that Troi’s alien race, the Betazoids, were said to “engage in almost constant sexual activity.”
• Acting as their Harpocrates would be young Wesley Crusher (Will Wheaton), who would often be the Enterprise’s savior, much to the consternation of many a Trekker. He even physically resembled a younger version of the “Horus the Elder” figure of Ryker.
• The guardian role of the dog-headed god Anubis would be played by the Klingon strongman Lt. Worf (Michael Dorn). Roddenberry was even kind enough to name him after a dog’s bark.
• Acting as the Thoth/Hermes messenger-cum-scribe of the Enterprise is the aptly-named android Data (Brent Spiner).
• And acting as the ship’s protective Sekhmet, or Athena, would be the security chief Natasha Yar (Denise Crosby).
• Rounding out ST:TNG’s starring cast was Geordie La Forge, the Enterprise’s Ptah. Or Hephaestus, in the Greek. Or Vulcan in the Roman, if you like. He is the craftsman, the engineer, the maker, the builder.
That’s nine major characters introduced in the first episode of ST:TNG, a “Council of Nine” if you will. And exactly like the fabled Council of Nine, the cast of ST:TNG all have corresponding deities in the Egyptian pantheon .
“Secularization does not mean a decline in the need for religion, but only a loss of power by traditional denominations. Studies of the geography of religion show that where the churches become weak, cults and occultism explode to fill the spiritual vacuum.” —
“Humanism is not new. It is, in fact, man’s second oldest faith. Its promise was whispered in the first days of Creation under the Tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil: ‘Ye shall be as gods.’“ (Qutd. in Baker 206)
Simply stated, humanism is the religion of self-deification. Its god is Man, spelled with a capital M to denote the purported divinity intrinsic to humanity. Of course, this was also the religion of Freemasonry. In fact, humanism and Masonry have shared a long historical relationship.The new Mason was no longer an architect of freestone. Instead, he was an architect of the technocratic Utopia mandated by Bacon’s New Atlantis. His god was Man himself, an emergent deity sculpted by the Kabbalistic golem of nature through the occult process of “becoming.” Of course, this concept would later be disseminated on the popular level as Darwinism and the world would call it “evolution.”
These humanist-Masonic concepts remain firmly embedded within the science fiction genre. In an interview with humanist David Alexander, Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry commented:
“As nearly as I can concentrate on the question today, I believe I am God; certainly you are, I think we intelligent beings on this planet are all a piece of God, are becoming God.” (568)
“Science fiction has given the images, ‘evolution,’ has produced the philosophy, and the technology of the ‘space age’ has supplied the plausibility for such encounters.” (Rose 91)
Originally posted by kiwitina948
Am wondering now about the character "Seven of Nine" the ex-human assimilated by the Borg!!
Originally posted by BlueMule
How many Prophets are there in the wormhole, btw?
Originally posted by Aleister
reply to post by NarcolepticBuddha
I can hear Bones now telling Kirk about NarcolepticBuddha: "He's good, Jim!"
Thanks for this great thread, which I must read closely (personal disclosure, I once checked myself out of a hospital emergency room with double pneumonia to attend a Star Trek convention).
Am wondering now about the character "Seven of Nine" the ex-human assimilated by the Borg!!