Captain's Blog: Akio Tsukino


A Caelo Usque Ad Centrum [Latin] - From The Sky To The Center

The Greeks had Epimenides of Knossos who fell asleep in a cave and woke up to a different world 57 years later. Rip Van Winkle fell asleep on a mountain and woke up 20 years later - after the American Revolution. The legend of the Seven Sleepers of Ephesus told the story of a group of youths who fled the Roman persecution of Christians and woke up 300 years later to find the Roman empire to be predominantly Christian.

Sleep doesn't come easy for me in space. I miss Earth.
- Christian Lehrer

After a month into the first mission of the space station Laurasia the crew and I are in excellent spirits for the most part. Many of us are experiencing what is known in space travel as the overview effect. This comes from seeing the planet Earth from outer space for the first time. It can be overwhelming or awe inspiring. Whether it is a product of self-schema involving the emotional, spiritual, naturalistic, religious or sociopolitical influence an individual has been indoctrinated with, the effects are nevertheless real.

The phenomenon seems to vary in several possible ways. The potential effect, the type of response, and interpretation varies. With some a sense of unity or community and purpose transpires, while with others a desire for isolation often accompanied by a feeling of defeat and grief manifests itself. The degree to which the religious are affected seems more subtle than with others, if at all. Christians and Zen Buddhists, for example, seem to have, in some cases, a sort of immunity or higher tolerance for the overview effect. As if they were accustomed to some attenuated form which lessens the response.

We were thrilled to have relocated the International Cometary Explorer (ICE) International Sun-Earth Explorer-3 (ISEE-3), and have successfully refueled, repaired, updated and rebooted it.

Akio Tsukino, Thursday, February 5, 2034




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