Message From the Past
Streaking across the void between the stars a vessel adjusted its course to enter
a rather ordinary star system. The vessel entered an orbit around the third planet from a rather ordinary orange star, a blue
globe. An initial scan indicated that there were several million inhabitants with a rather low level of technology. The scan
also showed a large number of ruins. Standing out amongst a sea of insignificance was an intact building located on a island
in the northern hemisphere. The vessel began to descend through the atmosphere heading for this island. The vessel set down
about a half mile from the unknown structure. Several beings emerged from their craft and began to approach this anomaly.
As they walked, they looked about themselves and noticed that there was no plant life. In fact other than the building and
their vessel, there was nothing to be seen but a vast ocean of barren sand and rock. As they neared the mysterious structure,
an opening simply appeared out of the wall. Compelled by a thirst of curiosity, they entered. Inside the structure, they found
a number of computer terminals. Before they could further explore this new realm, an image of light appeared before them.
The image began to speak. "If you are seeing this message, it means that the corporeal
body which sustained my existence has passed on to whatever lies beyond. Before my death I programmed all of my knowledge
into this hologram as a record for any who came to this place. The computer has analyzed your language, which is why I am
able to speak to you."
One of the visitors asked, "What is the purpose of this message?"
The hologram continued,"This message was recorded to tell the tale of my race, and
to warn others of our mistakes. I do not want my people to be forgotten or lost in the sands of time that bury the past. To
do so would invalidate the lives of all of my people, and all that we endured and accomplished.
For many centuries we fought and struggled amongst ourselves, for land, for resources,
and for power. People were persecuted, tortured, and killed for the supposed "crime" of being different.
For having skin that was a different color, for believing differently than others
do, for just being at the wrong place at the wrong time, because others wanted to release their disgusting, filthy anger at
another unique, living human being. The poor and the weak were forced into lives of destitution and fear to better the lives
of those who were supposedly more deserving of a comfortable life. Many of our scientists dedicated their lives to the expansion
of knowledge, but this wisdom was not used to create a better world. It was used to create new, better ways of wounding, maiming,
and killing one another. In our quest for wealth, we polluted and destroyed much of our own world, our home, with industrial
waste. With this history, it is a miracle that we survived as long as we did, but we endured, and thankfully we were starting
to make improvements. The seeds of peace, freedom, and cooperation had been planted and they were starting to grow.
However, just as we were beginning to make our world, our Earth, our home a better
place to live, everything collapsed. It began in a small country that most people didn't even know the name of. Horrible atrocities
were carried out against a group of people that could not even defend themselves. However, when those in other nations heard
of this, they did not act. They did not want to become involved. It was too much trouble and too far away from home. It had
no impact any on their lives, and besides, they wanted to focus on their own lives. To them, it was more important to focus
on their economy, their wealth, and their own personal happiness. Consequently, when their fellow man cried out for justice,
they did nothing, and while the fighting slowly spread to surrounding countries, they did nothing. During this same time period,
the winds of chaos were beginning to howl elsewhere. A nation that had been at odds with it neighbors for years was finally
entering an era of peace. However, a number of it generals were militant fanatics that did not want peace. They felt that
these treaties gave up too much, and that they had already given more than they should have. They seized control of their
government and launched an attack against their neighbors. These wars were fueled by winds of anger, chaos, fear, and ignorance
that ignited these conflicts into a huge firestorm. Soon every single nation of the world was forced into the conflict, for
the option of doing nothing was taken away. As the war escalated, leaders of several nations began to think of ways to end
the war. Tragically, their desperation led to thermonuclear war. After the initial exchange of destruction, the war was brought
to an armistice as all realized the peril of their folly.
Although not many weapons were launched, there was enough radiation in the air to
bring about a nuclear winter. Within one year, this unnatural winter had brought about the death of all plant life on Earth.
This brought about the death of all herbivores. Petty wars were fought among nations not for land, or for resources, but for
food. In many countries, the people rioted against those who held the food reserves, as these market owners had inflated their
prices heavily. People were murdered to obtain this preserver of life, and our civilization has slowly strangled.
When I saw what was happening, I retreated to this island, where I and a few others
built this complex to keep our memories alive. We had an abundance of composers, painters, writers, thinkers, and scientists
whose accomplishments would be lost if we had not acted. We could not let the work of so many be lost. In the computers here,
you will find complete records of our history, and I ask you to take them and to please keep us alive in your minds. Will
you do this?"
One of the beings immediately replied, "Of course we will, but from our ship, we learned
that there are a number of your people still alive. What will become of them?"
"It is my hope that one day, yes, one day they will begin to rebuild, and that this
time our race will get it right. This building will remain here to teach them of their past when they are ready to confront
it. I pray that one day, they will walk amongst the stars as yourselves, and that they will live in peace with one another."