'' BANALITY OF EVIL '' : Not all !WOW!'s Global Founder Framers and the world's student philosophers who want to learn what it means to be humans in this vast and expanding universe need to experience living in space.

ON !WOW! - all esteemed global founders made, but only an atomised cut, a penchant for philosophy. !WOW! could use many great founder philosophers to develop important insights from the humanities and social sciences.

NASA TOO could consider thinking along the lines of philosophy and use some philosophers up there. I hesitate to tell NASA its business. But this is the obvious and stark truth.

NASA was founded in 1958 '' to provide for research into problems of flight within and outside the earth's atmosphere..'' Who better to solve flight problems than scientists and engineers ? 

What's more, NASA's space missions have long conducted science experiments to learn how plant and animal life behave in the far-flung emptiness between us and the moon.

But the need for STEM in space might be waning - just as the need for humanities and the social sciences waxes.

After all, the ''problems of flight'' that once tethered us to this planet have largely been solved, thanks in so small part to all those scientists and engineer astronauts who blazed the trail to space.

By contrast, the future of our relationship with the cosmos - a colony on the moon? Humans on Mars? Contact with intelligent alien life ? will require thoughtful inquiry from many disciplines.

We will need sociologists and anthropologists to help us imagine new communities, theologians and linguists if we find we are not alone in the universe; and political and legal theorists to sort out the governing principles of interstellar life.

Naturally some scholars can study these topics while still earthbound. But so can many of today's astronauts, who often end up working on projects unrelated to their academic training.

The idea behind sending people with a wider array of academic disciplines into the cosmos is not just to give scholars a taste of outer space but also to put them into fruitful conversation with one another.

My own discipline, philosophy, maybe better suited for this kind of exploration than some might think. To be sure, much philosophy can be done from an armchair.

Descartes arrived at his famous conclusion, ''I think, therefore I am, while warming himself by the fire, and as he noted, ''wearing a winter dressing gown.''

But some of the greatest philosophical breakthroughs occurred only because their authors had firsthand experience with extreme and uncomfortable conditions.

We might not have the Stoic philosophy of Epictetus had he not forced the hardship of slavery in Nero's court. We might not have Thomas Hobbes's ''Leviathan'' [ and his principle of the ''consent of the governed,'' so central to the American experiment], but for his flight from the English Civil War.

And we might not have Hannah Arendt's insights on the '' banality of evil ''' had she not attended the trial of Adolf Eichmann, chief architect of the Holocaust.

This Master Essay Publishing continues. The World Students Society thanks author Joseph O. Chapa, a U.S. Air Force officer and the author of ''Is Remote Warfare Moral? ''


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