Recently myself and my old pal Highwayman expressed our difference of opinions concerning mankind and space travel. While HW believes that humans must change literally into angelic, sinless creatures in order to enjoy the company of likewise entities in the Universe, I take the more traditional spaceship route. Since we both liked ‘Star Trek’ in our respective youth, that is often given as an example of what I think the ideal should be.
But what I didn’t take into account was the history of one Gene Roddenberry, and the road of esoterica he followed:
In between the Star Trek TV series and the first Star Trek motion picture, Gene Roddenberry would find himself confronted with a real-world galactic Brotherhood. The ensuing drama would serve to be one of the strangest episodes recorded in the life of major Hollywood figure.
In early 1975, a broke and depressed Roddenberry was approached by a British former race car driver named Sir John Whitmore, who was associated with a strange organization called ‘Lab-9.’ Though unknown to the public, Lab-9 were ostensibly a sort of an independent version of the X-Files, dedicated to the research of paranormal phenomena. However, Lab-9 had another, more complex agenda- they later claimed to be in contact with a group of extraterrestrials called the ‘Council of Nine’ or simply ‘The Nine’, who had been communicating through ‘channelers’ or psychic mediums.
I had heard rumors years ago about Roddenberry possibly encountering UFOs in the late 1950s when he was still a policeman with the LAPD. After some brief research I dismissed that as hocum. But the involvement with the “9” and its influence on his later works, especially ‘Star Trek: The Next Generation’ is quite obvious if one studies it up close. And the number 9 figures prominently in the later ‘Deep Space Nine’ and ‘Voyager’ works.
Did Roddenberry have brushes with creatures beyond our ken that influenced his works? Or is this just fantasy like his ‘Star Trek’ universe?
I recommend going to Chris Knowles’ The Secret Sun to read about the symbology of Star Trek, you won’t be disappointed!