Why I like Science Fiction

    Often when sci-fi comes up in conversations, minds roll flash images of badly costumed extraterrestrials and sound bites of monotone voices talking about some made-up physics phenomena. Our 50’s movies about Mars invasions have forever sealed the genre’s fate in our minds. But for me, what started out as copying my big brother turned out to be gathering stories that change me – not in some weird technology way (if you’re familiar with sci-fi, you would know it is highly detrimental and morally wrong to alter your mind or form for ambitious gain) – but rather in a hope way. Sci-fi is often about some form or risk of oppression, be it under an advanced species or self-inflicted bondage. There is great need for courage, perseverance and vision. And as I watch Firefly or read Dune (by Frank Herbert), I see people bond together to fight for humanness. They fight for family and liberty and vitality. They fight for it so terribly imperfectly, but do so nonetheless. And so as it turns out, sci-fi is about hope. Humans are nothing if not tenacious. Humans (and cockroaches) will out live anything. We survive. And we survive with our humanity intact, at least some of us. In The Road, by Cormac McCarthy, the man’s determination to keep his son safe in an apocalyptic hell is the story of love in a world without. This is what I discover sci-fi to be about. In a genre dancing around technology’s advancement, it is about how all that means nothing next to the person standing next to you. You fight with and for them.
I believe in a omnipotent God outside of time, who lays all of that aside to be human and live next to us on the dusty Earth. He says, “Light shines in the Darkness. Give everything, even if that means your life for the person next to you.” To the point that he did it Himself for us. His relationship with us is paramount. And so He fought for it.
And of course, I like science fiction, because as Walter responds to Peter’s inquiry (Fringe) about a seemingly needless anti-gravity toy, “Because it’s cool, Peter. It’s just cooooolll.”

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One thought on “Why I like Science Fiction

  1. Scifi (like fantasy) provides a forum for examining what it means to be human in a context that strips away familiar things that might distract from the message. Of course, too often the opposite happens and the coolness of a Shardblade or the Second Foundation’s creepy powers might distract from the power of the story and its message. But that’s where Walter’s comment applies. The best stories are the ones that do both. Talking lions AND layers upon layers of truth…

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