The Need to Shift Our Perspective Beyond Earth’s Borders

How can we be “going into Space” when we are already traveling in Space courtesy of our “Spaceship Earth” by which we arrive at the realization that we are not only inhabitants of the Earth but we are actually citizens of the Universe? For decades, the media and film-making industry, through dramatization and sensationalism has piqued our interest in Space travel, exploration, and colonization; however, as these possibilities continue to morph into realities, the time has arrived for us to investigate these options more realistically by combining the principles of STEM and STEAM. Over time, viewing audiences have become more sophisticated in their expectations regarding the accurate scientific representation of film content, television programs, etc., as evidenced by the 1950’s Flash Gordon television series, 1960’s Star Trek series, and onto the more recent 21st century Avatar record-setting film. Interstellar travel and interplanetary colonization does not just involve the expertise of members of the scientific community, it also involves the creative thinking of members of the arts community which has been indicated by the Pentagon’s recruitment of science fiction writers, ethicists and researchers to collaborate with them on their “100 Year Starship Study” (Hsu, 2011).

It may be suggested that the education and training in the “hard” sciences tends to facilitate more of a “straight line” or linear type of thinking. However, the Universe does not always evolve or progress in a [seemingly] organized fashion, and in such cases, it becomes advantageous to engage in a more creative mindset with perhaps an interjection of imagination to allow theory and praxis to gather STEAM, combine it with STEM which can enable scientists and artists to more effectively conduct their research by assuming a more collaborative mindset between the sciences and the arts.