Chapter 5: Ripples of Understanding
(Six million years before Homo sapiens)
The two stars shone their light down onto the planet with intense ultraviolet particles beating upon all matter—whether carbon, hydrogen, or antimatter, it did not hesitate. Crawling out of an ocean of hydrogen peroxide to look up into the sky, the first inhabitant gazed upon a world of extremes. The two stars were circling each other in a swirl of destruction—a parasitic relationship of resolve whereby a red giant was feeding off a smaller white dwarf, creating a spectacular view of spinning dance steps tens of light-years long and billions of years old.
Because of the position of the planet within the Goldilocks zone of carbon life’s ability to survive, the inhabitants experienced a gravitational pressure that demanded their limbs be short and densely packed with reflexive musculature tone, hence making them, about earth’s inhabitants, powerful and fast. This was the stage the RI chose to place its subjects for study and affirmation of their scientific methodology.
No programming of the chemical synapses was entertained, hence providing for a completely blank canvas of thought, morality, conscience, and intelligence. Given the external stimuli, it was thought the processes of existential growth would evolve over time, giving the beings a sharp clarity of survival due to their environment and degree of self-will.
Over time, the being experienced thinking based on action and reaction stimuli and on its external and internal needs. This played out in the form of various adaptations, including compartmentalization of brain usage and diversification of its location within the being’s structure, thus protecting itself from catastrophic failure if damaged. The synaptic switching between the different areas began to speed up as time went on, allowing for more diverse and voluminous data processing.
Because of the extreme planetary environment, the being drew upon its carbon-based structure to store the hydrogen process of rebalancing within its cardiovascular system. As the creature would pull in the hydrogen, it would combine under hyperbolic pressure to fuse the hydrogen particles together, creating a subatomic nuclear/electrochemical reaction that provided the energy it needed. Helium particles were ejected out of ventricles along the being’s spine, causing an invisible hail of helium gas.
As long as the hydrogen process was in operation, the being continued to live. The method of cellular replacement did not apply, as there was no enzyme switch to put the telomerase-like genes onto a continuous path of destruction. With a super-hardened cellular wall, no pathogen could penetrate. The being was immune to disease; hence, it grew in strength, speed, and intelligence as the planet circled the death spiral of the two stars in a time sequence of decades.
As a result of cause and effect, the being used the experience to determine the appropriate path of consciousness, demonstrating a rationale that incorporated the pleasure/pain cycle of its makeup, thus moving it in a direction that encompassed results desirable to its existence; for it, the end justified the means.
The basic tenet was to determine its position within its surroundings and within its social structure. Soon enough, a society of interlocking groups dependent on one another grew out of the previous actions, hence forming a civilization of highly advanced intellect, wisdom, and laws based on the rights of the group at large. This approach tended to lean toward societal demands over an individual’s, with minority groups holding sway over the majority due to their persistent and sometimes collective manipulation of the whole.
Conscience did not play a part, as it was a process in constant flux due to the very nature of its thinking process. First, the group is taken into account, and society as a whole is involved in determining quantitative value before finally addressing the rights of the individual. There was never a moral ground to guide it, as there was nothing there to begin with. The creature had to form its own basis for morality, conscience, and law; hence, a relatively robust state of action and reaction developed based on the present. The past played a significant role in the education of each successive generation as the past’s mistakes and successes were needed to help grow the species—on an individual level and as a whole. The future, however, did not factor into its thought process or its decisions, hence opening up the proverbial gates of self-interest and potentially destructive behavior.
It was from that point the species grew mighty in its power over its surroundings and over its progeny. It slowly learned the arts of science, mathematics, chemistry, nuclear physics, and subatomic structuring, as well as the manipulation of biology, with astounding adeptness and adroit measuring.