“…Just to have gathered a few laurel leaves…”

In the previous post we reflected on Mount Parnassus and its association with Apollo.  Zeus seduced the beautiful Leto.  From this union Apollo and his twin Artemis were born.

In Star Trek: The Original Series, the crew of the USS Enterprise encounters Apollo who had waited for earth children to free themselves from the bounds of earth and come sailing for the unknowns of space.  Apollo is shocked by the lack of reverence and arrogance of these humans after he offered them paradise.

Apollo’s final words to the landing crew are poignant and reflective of how the children of earth have evolved over the millennia:

APOLLO: I would have cherished you, cared for you. I would have loved you as a father loves his children. Did I ask so much?

KIRK: We’ve outgrown you. You asked for something we could no longer give.

APOLLO: Carolyn, I loved you. I would have made a goddess of you. I’ve shown you my open heart. See what you’ve done to me.
(He becomes a giant.)

APOLLO: Zeus, Hermes, Hera, Aphrodite. You were right. Athena, you were right. The time has passed. There is no room for gods. Forgive me, my old friends. Take me. Take me.
(And he disappears one last time. Carolyn cries.)

MCCOY: I wish we hadn’t had to do this.

KIRK: So do I. They gave us so much. The Greek civilization, much of our culture and philosophy came from a worship of those beings. In a way, they began the Golden Age. Would it have hurt us, I wonder, just to have gathered a few laurel leaves?

At one time on this planet traversing the cosmos men and women honored and worshipped beings who possessed powers beyond the comprehension of humans.  Ancient texts speak of these beings producing offspring with both men and women of earth.

In the Star Trek episode above Apollo referred to the Olympians as travelers from the stars.  Could earth have been a place where interstellar travelers paused and left their mark on our ancient history of myths and legends?

If you met one of the ancients gods or star travellers what would be your reaction?  If someone was transported from Greece who lived four thousand years, would he or she conclude that we were “gods”? How would we convince them that we were just human?

If we ever get off this planet traversing the cosmos and encounter life out there, what would their reactions and conclusions be about us?  What would our conclusions be about them?

Hopefully, human history would not repeat itself like it did when Europeans came to the Americas.  The Native Americans fell victim to an advanced civilization which showed little mercy or appreciation for the vast civilizations and cultures covering two continents which were decimated by disease, plague and war.

G. D. Williams       © 2013

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