We are living through a curious historical moment. In the name of space exploration, people consume some of the most ridiculous fictions ever invented as unquestionable realities. Meanwhile, others ignore the implications of the colonial cosmology, and live on as if nothing is happening. We all live in some sort of bubble of our own, but some of us are aware that lies have been used for centuries to shackle our minds. Others, concerned with their own survival in this world, do not have to think or even worry about any of this. 

In a world devoid of true spirituality and connection, relationships with people come and go, they can be forged or dropped in a moment’s notice. Nothing is stable, and we are constantly making our own mistakes as we navigate our own personal dramas and participate in the lives of others. In a materialist universe, everything we do is meaningless, temporary, unstable, and tied to the whims of chance. It is a fantasy in which human science, with all its shortcomings, is perfect and can explain everything. It is the ultimate sign of total naiveté and dependence. 

Yet, here we are, and we have to deal with the state of the world and the people in it. For me, speaking to the very few who can understand and value what I say is better than simply keeping quiet. I was never too quiet about my opinions. That is a kind of burden I carry. Eventually, I learned that the truth is worth everything, and acting in the best way we can regarding others in our lives. It is not always easy to keep a composure when we strive for improvement, for the truth, and for welfare of all beings, while the world around us is so full of lies, deceptions, scams, and various other negative traits that are tied to traditions that predate our current life. Why even write, given how little change we can spark in the world? 

I write simply to express my voice, as an inhabitant of this world, in relation to the information that I have encountered and tested, using the critical tools I have acquired during my long academic trajectory. 

I also believe that, even in isolation, I am not alone, and that much more exists than what we can see around us, limited as we are by our bodies and minds. I have no illusions of grandeur nor do I have any professional ambitions, or the need for prestige and recognition. I have lived enough, and the little value that I have brought to the lives of others is more than enough to me. 

Life will be here, no matter where we eventually end up. And we are all going somewhere. Ultimately, I think and write because that is what I feel is the right thing to do. I also have no alternative, as holding in what I feel I have to express is not an option. 

I have been looking at cosmological and existential materials, the stuff people would call spiritual, since I started developing a taste for reading. It was a long journey around various systems of control and limiting ways of thinking. I ended up finding my own way through anthropology, where the attitude regarding the production of knowledge is far more critical nuanced than in the so-called hard sciences. Yet, despite being grateful to my educational trajectory, I consider academia a kind of prison, and academics, in general and with particular exceptions, to be as far from free, creative, and critical thinkers as it could be. It is simply the consequence of being economic dependent on the system. People who enter academia end up, in regard to the truth and what is right to do and achieve in the world, that is, solving its most obvious problems, captured by their own thirst for knowledge and learning. In any case, it is time to move on, at least for me. 

Along my own journey of cosmological exploration, very much like many others, I realized that there were serious issues with the globular ontology and the colonial globe itself. For believers, the globe is a symbol of science and modernity that erased the validity of all ancient and indigenous cosmologies. For them, the alleged discovery of the globe determined, once and for all, that indigenous peoples were ignorant and naïve, and did not have real science. Moreover, they believe that the colonial state, with all its shortcomings, its genocidal, racist, and ethnocentric backbone, actually spawned real science and revealed the nature of the universe with its space exploration science fiction programming schemes. They fantasize that the colonial state with its tradition of corruption and lies, sustained as it it by fictions, somehow will spew out unquestionable science and truth. 

Having been myself a believer in the past, I find it fascinating how people manage to hold on to such a flimsy narrative, despite one’s academic credentials or lack thereof. They also get so emotionally entangled in a narrative that only provides evidence of its fictional nature, which is fascinating on its own. 

To those unfamiliar with the critique of space exploration tales, it is not an easy task to undo the damages of a lifetime of passive cosmological programming and unwitting consenting to various absurdities. However, for those familiar with the questions and the details involved, and who have analyzed the official evidence along with its accompanying narratives, it becomes painfully obvious that they consist of the same techniques and claims repeated again and again over generations. 

Effectively, space exploration is like a religion of the state, and a way to keep people ignorant and entranced. Thankfully, the productions are so subpar and the stories so poorly crafted that a curious contrast emerges: the unreliable nature of the evidence, the contradictory weaknesses of the space exploration epistemology and discourse, and the dogged insistence of believers in believing.

Take, for instance, the recent alleged landing of an Indian rover on the Moon – the show consisted of the most blatant state promotion, with the crappiest possible computer generated graphics, and people somehow still believe. Pride holds a lot of believers back. Given that they consider the critics of space exploration to be idiots, they must believe anything that any state claims regarding its space exploration tales. In the case of India’s totally ridiculous CGI landing, believers must somehow swallow the alleged evidence and the little news pieces that come out to celebrate it. A country where most people are living under the poverty line but somehow is exploring the cosmos and landing on the Moon. If honesty were to speak, only the dumbest of the dumb should fall for that. Yet, I cannot believe that the people that believe such bullshit are devoid of intelligence. Thus, understanding the ways in which people try to hold on to the mythology becomes a fascinating task. A lot of it is explained by the power of stories, fictions and theatre. No matter how crappy it looks, if there are extras jumping up and down and cheering at key moments, that is all the evidence the true believer needs. That, at least for me, is both puzzling and fascinating. 

However, it is also not that difficult to take apart what is presented as evidence and determining how it was produced. Ultimately, it is not that difficult to prove that governments have always lied about their space exploration tales. The persistence of the believer in the face of the evidence, that takes more to explain and understand. In addition, explaining to believers what they are actually looking at is very challenging, because it contradicts all that their imaginations filled in to patch the holes of the space exploration discourse. 

What I call ‘filling in’ is a fascinating phenomenon. When we are learning creative writing, we sometimes hear that what is left out is sometimes even more important than what goes in. People may mention Ernest Hemingway’s style, with very short sentences, as being an effective way of instigating the reader’s imaginations. Another writer that had this down was Kahlil Gibran, who tells stories that are simple and effective. The point is that what is left out becomes very important because the reader will fill it in. Space exploration tales are so full of logical holes that filling them in becomes imperative for every believer, despite how unaware they are that they are doing it. 

Let us give some examples. Believers are told that in order to ‘train’ to do ‘space walks,’ which allegedly take place in the vacuum of space, moving at various directions at the same time, astronauts should be in static pool full of water. The vacuum is supposed to have nothing in it, no pressure, and planets are said to float around in it, propelled by gravity, and leave a trail of gases that is pulled off by the vacuum – this is the doctrine of so-called atmospheric escape, another piece of total nonsense. 

Water, on the other hand, exerts pressure and is static. Thus, the  International Space Station astronaut should train in a static swimming pool, moving at zero miles per hour. The International Space Station allegedly falls around the Earth at a speed of 23 times the speed of sound, while it also follows the Earth around the Sun at 67,000 miles per hour, while the Sun also moves at a blistering 535,000 miles per hour around the galaxy. Thus, The ISS does not simply ‘orbit’ the Earth, as it must also move along with the Sun around the galaxy and the Earth. Despite the fact that nobody has ever felt nor provided a verifiable measure of any of these speeds and motions, in the whole history of the world, so there is zero evidence that they exist, the believer must find a way to fill that in. At a first stage, they would dismiss the critical problems to allow their belief to flourish. They imagine that space exploration science should be as legitimate and certain as the electricity that powers their lightbulbs at home, which they admit not to know much about. Thus, if lightbulbs light up, and if televisions and radios work, therefore, space exploration must be true. Obviously, this is just a non-sequitur, and this is basically how ‘filling in’ works. 

There are countless examples that show that the lack of knowledge and critical thinking must be filled in with mythological lore and the imagination in order to sustain a fiction that is dear to the believer. Another example linked to the myth of the International Space Station is the notion that it is not only constantly leaking against the vacuum of space, but that an astronaut can plug the hole with his fingers. The idea itself is beyond ridiculous. If they believe that closing a leak at an object moving at various supersonic speeds at the same time if their finger is possible, then they should believe it is even easier for someone to closing a leak in an airplane at cruising speed with their finger. The true believer would probably think that even if they could not close that leak with their finger, a properly trained astronaut could. Astronauts, after all, can do anything, even make the impossible possible. Another analog would be closing a leak in a submarine with your finger. Most people know that is absolutely ridiculous and impossible. 

I worked in a manuscript that deals with many more details pertaining the cosmological fictions of the colonial state. Yet, since I work alone and without much support from the masses, it takes a while to bring it all out. There are many details that are part of this story. The fact that people have been ‘filling in’ these logical holes for their whole lives, in the name of fiction, makes explaining the situation quite a challenge. 

The relief from cosmological programming is also very effective, due to the fact that hard evidence for the colonial globe is simply inexistent. The materials presented as alleged evidence are appalling, and prove that the state has been deceiving its populations for hundreds of years, which is nothing new. 

For people like you and I, who are aware of the fictions of the colonial cosmology, there are different ways to proceed. We can simply ignore these cosmic tales. This alone can provide a lot of relief, with the elimination of a major source of distraction. Among other things, we can also become fascinated with the way that the culture, and the mind works; and what drives people to believe and stop asking questions, not just about cosmological questions, but in general.


Something else also happens when you become deeply familiar with the details that surround these tales — you realize that there are clear patterns that keep repeating themselves alongside these stories, over decades and even generations. This situation also makes the subject more challenging to explain. Only immersion in the details and a comprehensive examination of the evidence allows for the eventual appreciation of such patterns and the lines that connect them. 

The chess grandmaster knows so many patterns from his extended experience playing the game that a beginner has no chance to win a single match. The master musician and composer understands harmony so well that when she hears a chord and a melody anywhere, she will be able to reproduce it and describe it. Someone with no basis in music practice and theory would have no idea how to do that. The same is true with the patterns of the colonial cosmology, and its web of interconnected tales. Whereas the believer accepts the tales in their broader, general outlines, assumes the details make sense, and fills in the missing details with an imagination inflamed by love for authority, the skeptic, having investigated the details, determined that those details fail to support the general claims. The skeptic can subsequently find a path to become detached emotionally from the question altogether. Emotions of attachment linger for believers, inspiring them to grasp for straws and hold on to the fantasies of the colonial cosmology. 

There are so many modern cosmological stories that seem to support the colonial cosmology. Yet, they can all be categorized and understood as fictions. The way these storylines are recycled and re-arranged, and the same elements reinstated, reveal their fictional nature, alongside with the the unreliable evidence or lack thereof that comes along with each tale. Next time, I will start dealing with these elements, starting with the subject of space telescopes, something bittersweet, comic and a tad tragic, given how dumb the idea is, and how poor is the evidence that has been produced since people were told that such contraptions are possible and make sense. 

Rodrigo Ferrari Nunes

Rodrigo Ferrari-Nunes, Ph.D, is a social and cultural anthropologist, independent consultant, music producer, composer, multi-instrumentalist, artist, public intellectual and communicator.

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