“Life In The Academy: Part V”
He thought about the Lieutenant’s question for a few moments… rubbing the back of his head he answers, “Relative to the way it was yes it is a better society, however not all have learned from the past. We still have murderers, violence, war, disease, pain, the list could go on. So I really don’t think we have made much progress societal versus technologically. Sure we as a society are more apt to conform, but those few non-conformists are the ones who hold the society back as a whole.” He answers, itching his scalp.
Tamara's round ears perked up at his words, and she shook her head some, letting out a disapproving mrowl. "A society where everyone would be conformist, would behave the same way, think the same way, be virtually clones of each other, would be boring. Even more so, it would leave no room for improvement, mew, and such a society would be doomed to crumble and die because of it's own immobility, or be wiped off the face of the galaxy by another, more thriving society."
"We need non-conformists people to keep moving forward. Those people are usually the ones who makes the most startling discoveries, the breakthroughs that makes a society leaps forward and keep progressing toward a better future. You cannot qualify Professor Cochrane as a conformist, for example. He kept working on his extravagant, at the time, idea of a faster-than-light starship traveling through subspace, even after his hoemworld nearly self-destructed in a nuclear world war, and mostly everyone on Earth, or, at elast, on his country, have gave up."
She shifted a little. "Same goes for my planet, mrow. If it hadn't been for a group of non-conformists people, who kept pushing my people, we'd never have started our exploration of space, never have discovered that there is a whole universe outside of our nebula, never made contact with that Federation ship, and never became part of the great family that is the United Federation of Planets."
The Hirumarian paused, her whiskers twitching a little. "What I will say may seem odd, mew, but, in fact, I am merely repeating something I heard and I agree with: we need non-conformist people. More so, we need criminals, because that is what allows us to have geniuses. We need to have an imbalance, for the society as a whole, to keep moving forward, to keep progressing. There is an old proverb on my home world, mrow. Roughly translated, it says that 'bumps and bruises on the road of life forces us to keep moving'." She chuckled. "It sounds way better in the original version."
"In my opinion, if we ever achieve a perfect equilibrium, be it a utopian society or not, then it will be the end for us all. There will be nothing to keep us moving, nothing driving us to try and better ourselves, individually and as a whole, and we will eventually wither and die. I wouldn't want to live in a society made of mental clones, people behaving the same way, following the same sets of behavioral patterns, being virtually indistinguishable from each other."
Cyrin chuckled at her view, but not rudely. “I agree that mindless clones are pointless. Yes we need non-conformist to move on, to learn and adapt to our mistakes… to better our society. However, eventually we will only be able to progress so far before we start to regress.” He said contradicting her just slightly. He found her intellect stimulating, it wasn’t often he came across people like that… most of them had been operations students themselves, but he knew that he was taught to think differently than the others, to adapt to any given situation and to do it quickly.
Tamara was also quite enjoying this impromptu conversation with Cyrin. The young Cadet displayed a wisdom and ways of thinking that were uncommon for someone his age. Of course, life may had forced him to mature more rapidly, and to acquire more wisdom and a different view on the universe than his fellow Cadets. She didn't knew anything of his past, and she wasn't going to ask, for it wasn't something that concerned her.
"Regress, mrow?" she asked, more curious than before. "Why should we start to regress at any point? I mean, if we keep on bettering ourselves and our society, we can only keep on progressing, on moving forward. And, we do know that we do still have a long way to go, StarFleet has encountered enough advanced civilizations and deity-like beings, to know that we have a lot of room for improvements. The Organians, for example, evolved from physical beings like you and me to energy lifeform with deity-like powers."
"Or, as a less extreme example, you have the Caretaker, the entity that pulled Voyager to the other side of the galaxy, and who came from another galaxy. And a search through StarFleet's database would give a long list of examples of society and civilizations who never stopped progressing. So, I’m' curious to know why you think we would start to regress at some point?"
“Darwin’s Theory of Evolution, or in our case potential devolution, there is no guarantee that our society will regress or progress. But it is a very real potential on both parts. Those higher states of being, such as the Ocampa, that was an example of a Utopia that progressed as far as it could. The Organians, again a utopian society based off no need for material things.”
The striped feline shook her furry head, making a strand of dark brown hair fall in front of her eyes. She replaced it in place with a hairclip, placing it back behind one of her round ears. "The Organians aren't even material beings, mrow. They are made of energy, and we have very little knowledge of their society, the way they are organized and such. Besides, if my memory is right, Captain Kirk's reports said that they stated that they evolved from material being like you and me. So, it seems that they kept progressing."
"As for the Ocampas, I'm not too sure you can call them a utopian society, or even a higher state of beings. Living trapped on a big cave, with nothing much to do than worship a deity and watch pretty images of natural wonders of the past of their world... And, as far as we know it, from Voyager's files, mrow, they lost most of their psychic abilities after being forced to live under the surface of their world, because it was rendered uninhabitable by that sporocystian entity coming from another galaxy."
"I am quite convinced that the Federation will keep progressing. There is such a drive toward the bettering of the whole society, and it has lasted since it's inception, more than 300 years ago. Of course, there have been, and will be bumps in the road, but, I don't see us devolving at any time. Or, even coming to a standing point."
“Well of course it won’t be in our lifetime. However, there is still a very real possibility for it to happen.” He put his arms behind his back and clasped his hands together and stretched. This feline was fun, she was very enlightened.
She watched him stretch, idly thinking that he seemed to have a bit of a feline flexibility. "Well, as one of my professor in mathematics told me: 'Possible is a useless word. Everything is possible, or, rather, probable. Only, some events have a very probability of happening.' " She grinned a little. "So, I would say that you are right, we could start regressing, but that it has a very low probability to happen in the foreseeable future. And, by very low, I meant way inferior to 0.01%."
The anthro-tigress was really enjoying this discussion with Cyrin. The Cadet showed a great maturity and a great intellect. She would make sure to note that on her final reports, at the end of the semester, once the cadets would have gone through their exams, and she'd be through her time as temporary professor at the Academy. She missed Zetari, but also her homeworld, and she idly thought about asking for a shore-leave, to go and visit her family on Hirumaria.
“That is true,” he said agreeing. He sensed her emotions on him and smiled. He looked up at the sky and noticed that the sun had started to make its way down towards the horizon. “I fear, you have so enticed me with our discussion I lost all track of time,” he said with a smile, “Thank you. And yes all impossibilities are in fact probabilities or variables that cannot be taken into account because of their probability factor being below zero point zero one percent.” He said again agreeing with her.
Tamara then just realized that it was getting late. They've both been so involved in their discussion that they didn't saw the time fly. She nodded and stretched herself, letting out a soft mewing sound only felines can produce. "So did I, mew, but, I don't have any appointments this afternoon, and no class to teach. Although, perhaps you'd want to take a bit of time to prepare for your upcoming exams?" she asked.
“I do have upcoming exams – but I don’t want to end our conversation. Unless you have other things you need to do?” He asked rather politely.
"Not at the moment," she replied, "I have the rest of the afternoon free. I have an appointment at dinner time, but, we still have a few hours free." She swatted away a mosquito that came buzzing too close of her ear, making it flick flick on its own. "To continue on the idea that we might end up devolving at one time, I would say that, in a way, we do know that it won't happen before a few centuries, mostly thanks to Voyager's crew and their encounters with Starfleet ships from the future."
"Even though Command classified every temporal encounters, enough information slipped out into public domain, to assure us that the Federation will still be around in the 29th or 30th century, with evolved technology allowing for time travel and the like. So, we have at least 500 years before us, and, I am quite sure that the people of this time will not let their society fall into disarray."
“Oh I quite agree that with that vast information, and us only being in the 24th century, that four hundred to five hundred years from now, we will still be around. But remember with time travel, that isn’t always accurate. One action from perhaps you or I, could change the course of our future, to perhaps irreparable damage.” He added. Shifting slightly on the log he brushed his hair back, a nice breeze began to blow through the area.
The anthro-tigress frowned slightly, her fur bristling some as the breeze began to blow. "Mew, do you always sound so pessimistic, Cadet?" she asked, quite curious now.
Cyrin laughed at her question, “No, in fact I am optimistic. I just like to take opposite stances at times to see how a person or people will react to my responses. But then again, growing up the way I was raised, a diplomat’s son… one would think I would tend to take the more ‘positive’ approach to things, even in conversation.”
Tamara nodded and chuckled a little. "I see. Well, yes, if you'd become a bit more positive, it would be a nice change. You've been mostly pessimistic during our conversation. Without much of a reason, I must say."
Cyrin nodded, “And now you see why.” He answered with a smile. “However, with almost everything you have said, I am in full agreement with you on those subjects. The only part that may differ a bit is our stances on logic and theory. No two people think alike unless you’re Binars which then in their case is a different story.”
Ensign Cyrin Dicari
Chief Operations Officer
Lieutenant Commander Tamara Akasy
Chief Operations Officer