Friday, January 13, 2006

Being a Ship's Captain

In last night's episode of Star Trek Voyager called Nightingale, Ensign Harry Kim manages to persuade his captain to let him take command of a Kraylor ship, whose captain has been killed in a battle. The captain suggests Harry should take Seven-of-Nine with him on his mission.

Seven-of-Nine observes that Harry Kim is not delegating responsibility; she reminds Harry that a captain is meant to give out orders and trust that his orders will be carried out. At the end of the episode, Harry realises he has a lot to learn about being in command of a crew.

For Harry to make a good captain he has to, of course, be fully conversant with all aspects of the ship, ship protocol, and its command structure. A captain ensures that he has the right crew; he then trusts in his crews’ capabilities to perform their jobs.

The notion of the captain's role could be applied to understanding how God works.

Imagine a Power and Intelligence that is limitless. Imagine a power that is infinitely greater than the atom bomb. Then imagine this Power and Intelligence occupying all space. This Power and Intelligence is God. The Intelligence doesn't need man's help. The Intelligence that manifests stars, planets and galaxies is doing Its work perfectly without human knowledge or understanding. Man cannot co-create with God in terms of assisting in creation, but man can co-create with God by letting the Intelligence do Its work without interference.

A captain who gives out his orders and trusts in his crew to carry them out is the equivalent of one who is co-creating with God in the latter sense. A co-creator realises that "God is all there is" and then trusts that the Infinite Intelligence, which occupies all space, is doing an excellent job.

I am the captain of my ship.
I trust in the Intelligence of my crew to carry out my orders.