#102 – The Inner Light – How an Iconic Sci-Fi Show can Enlighten Us

Photo by Stefan Cosma on Unsplash

I’m not a Trekie by any stretch of the imagination.

I’ve only watched, Star Trek: The Next Generation.

It’s up for debate, but the Inner Light is arguably one of the best episodes ever created.

Spoiler Alert

In short, Captain Jean-Luc Picard, played by Patrick Stewart, is encountered with a space probe. Upon looking at the probe with his crew, he suddenly faints and is unconscious because the probe sent a powerful energy beam directly to him.

He is transported to the planet of Kataan, where he’s a husband and has a different life where everyone knows him as Kamin but he has absolutely no recollection of this world.

He fights this internal battle as his old life is nowhere to be found, but after years and years on Kataan, he surrenders and starts living for the moment and puts his old life on the Starship Enterprise behind him.

In this new world, they are dealing with global warming, and their most precious resource, water is growing more and more scarce. There has been a perpetual drought for decades. 

During his life on Kaatan, Kamin runs various experiments warning the leaders of the community of what is likely to come. 

He also starts a family, watches them grow, becomes a grandparent, experiences the death and sorrow that comes with the loss of his wife, and becomes a valuable member of Kataan.

While the town has hope that things will get better, the leaders of the community know that their world is doomed, but have kept the news under wraps so the town doesn’t fall into chaos.

They launch a space probe in hopes to contact another planetary civilization as the last cry for help.

Towards the last scenes, and after 40+ years living in this other world, Captain Picard finally learns the truth.

The community and the town gather around him in a show of their embrace and tell him, he’s the someone they chose so their world could never be forgotten.

The people of Kataan have been gone for thousands of years.

The probe was a hologram type of contraption that transported the Captain to their world.

Eventually, the Captain wakes up from when he fainted, and only 25 minutes passed in his true reality.

After he awoke, the probe destroyed itself.

During his life on Kaatan, he learned to play the flute. All that was left from the probe’s explosion was this flute, which commander Riker deliver to Captain Picard.

The episode ends with him playing a beautiful song he learned when on Kataan.

The episode encapsulates love, family, and living for the moment. If you care to watch it, it’s on Netflix. Paramount + has a free week trial, that you can take advantage of as well.

My takeaways from the episode are simple, straightforward, and heartfelt.

We don’t have that much time on this planet. Live with more urgency.

Cultivate strong relationships with good people.

Make today your everything and forget it tomorrow

Forgive others quickly. It frees you from the wrath of those that have hurt you.

Be kind for the sake of being kind. Everyone suffers.

Spend time alone and learn to enjoy your own company.

Know that you are an extension of the world you see. Be the love that you aspire to see in others.

The only way to move forward is to let go of the past, no matter how turbulent or beautiful.

Life is meant to be experienced. Your story is unique. Enjoy every second of it.

With love,
Anand

I write articles, stories, and poetry on well-being. Subscribe below to get on my free newsletter so my work can be delivered directly to your inbox. Thank you for visiting.

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