Personal Journeys with Gramma

Life adventures, inspiration and insight; shared in articles, advice, personal chats and pictures.

“What If”

The television series ANCIENT ALIENS proposes various theories of how aliens (the kind from outer space, not from a neighboring country) might have impacted the origins and development of humankind. (Yes, I admit the series is a guilty pleasure of mine.) Contributors examine various artifacts that may or may not depict ancient air travel, alien guides, or even lost civilizations. One of the phrases iconic to the series is, “What if it were true?”

Creative writers embrace that phrase as they begin their manuscripts, because it opens untrodden pathways for us to explore. With those words, we’re suddenly free to let our imaginations carry us into tales of love, struggle, and woe that don’t have to be science fiction but can easily be based in historically accurate events.

In that spirit, I decided to write a “what if” blog today because I’m weary of the dark side of reality. In fact, my inability to swallow increasingly large doses of lying, selfishness, cold-heartedness, ignorance, and greed as being acceptable made one peculiar YouTube video intrigue me. Max Laughlin is a teenager who is described in the video as being a genius by a person I assume is his father. The father interviews him over what looks like a kitchen counter containing lunch sandwiches as family members wander through the background. I’m not about to weigh in on the boy’s speculations or accomplishments. Whether his theories have any merit is a topic for other writers to explore. But I want to play with one of Max’s ideas—whether or not it’s possible.

Max believes that we have slipped into a neighboring universe due to quantum manipulations conducted by CERN using the HADRON collider. Multiple universes are a likelihood suggested by various physicists. In fact, many contend that every possible outcome exists in one of an infinite number of universes crowded into sheets around us. The universe into which we supposedly slipped is, in Max’s view, not that different from the one in which we had previously been living. Yet there are subtle changes that reveal the shift.

What if this past year (one I chose because I would fervently love to redesign what happened) reflects our introduction to this strange alternate universe? Wouldn’t that explain the bizarre presidential election and subsequent flurry of executive orders and nominations of people blatantly ill suited to their positions? Of COURSE the most powerful country in the world is being run by rank incompetents who view all previous achievements and the needs of their constituents with scorn. Of COURSE it’s okay for us to be flirting with nuclear war with an erratic dictator. Our world feels foreign and ugly to many of us because it’s really not our world!

In my personal universe, death and disease in the past months could have been artifacts of the altered reality. When we say none of it should have happened, we’re right. In our own previous universe, it wouldn’t have. Surely.

The only problem is, if this idea of our being in an alternate universe really were true, what could we do about it? Theoretically, nothing. I suppose if this were STAR TREK there would be a way for CERN to alter some other basic force and we’d be propelled into yet another universe. But who’s to say that reality wouldn’t be worse? (In STAR TREK, there would be a way to go back.)

Sigh. “What if it were true?” What if it’s not? As much as I’d like to think that hate, ignorance, and selfishness don’t belong in our universe, they do. Our assignment is to deal with them with as much kindness, awareness, and truth as we can muster. With love, the people can become a unity with the power to impact unpleasant strangeness. Change is inevitable. Why not make it positive?

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