Friday, August 10, 2007

Is There Anybody Out There?

Yesterday, the five-man, two-woman team, including the former elementary school teacher Barbara Morgan, took off aboard the Endeavour from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

Morgan trained 22 years ago as the backup to Challenger crew member Christa McAuliffe, a New Hampshire social studies teacher who died along with six astronauts seconds after the Challenger liftoff on January 28, 1986, when a booster rocket blew up.

Civilian fliers were banned from shuttles after Challenger and Morgan joined the astronaut corps in 1998.

Today, NASA is moving forward with a new focus for the manned space program: to go out beyond Earth orbit for purposes of human exploration and scientific discovery. And the International Space Station is now a stepping stone on the way, rather than being the end of the line.

As a fan of Gene Roddenberry's vision of space exploration in both the Star Trek movies and TV series, I certainly hope that they find more evidence of life beyond Earth. It is less isolating to think that our existence is all that there is in this universe.

Writing a blog about your life and interests can also be isolating. I would love to hear your comments and questions as you continue on your own personal life quest. I know that learning is very stimulating but getting different points of view broadens the discussion. Where or what would you like to explore today?