Homo Scaphandricus appeared in my life on Iturup island. We can say, it has landed. This meeting despite its happenstance, it seemed to me as meaningful and filled undeveloped unformulated symbolism
My no less casual companion provided assistance in my attempts to find and define the essence and meaning of of the incident – as it turned out he was a cosmonaut or, at least, an active participant of training program for the astronauts.
It is important: the cosmonauts not only are familiar with space suit physiologically, intimately. By virtue of nature of the profession they turned out to be a step ahead of mankind forcedly; and that the bulk of the population experiences as disturbing and hard intuition, for them it is a habitual reality.
So, according to my neighbor, an air space community, in general, and cosmonauts, in particular have been perceiving the space suit as a natural extension of biological evolution of restless and nervous Homo Sapiens for a long time. In this environment the space suit is not perceived as a kind of intention, but as a kind of of Exo-skeleton, comparable, for example, with tortoise shell and performed the same function - protection of fundamentally hostile landscape.
While a layman familiar with Cosmos on TV “cutting” only still perceiving the space suit as a fancy device with a very limited area of application for people, watching the Earth from orbiting the distance, the space suit is incomparably more ambitious subject. In their opinion, the Earth has passed the irretrievable point and a landscape, that allowed to exist rickety and vulnerable Homo Sapiens, becomes more and more aggressive and unfriendly to the usual biological forms. And this process accelerates, so that in the nearest future the space suit will become as natural and insignificant part of the existence of the average person, such as nose, back, rectum…
Not only, but the very fundamental difference between the space suit and turtle shell – integrity. The turtle is in the lower stages of evolution and, therefore, it is doomed and an owner of full-blown space suit will maintain his existence exclusively by his own exhausts and “eruptions”, thus becoming independent of any environmental “whims and attacks”.
You can keep this testimony of a direct participant of the near future as it is, together with artificial intelligence, big data, molecular engineering and quantum entanglement. And all this might excite your imagination even at the most superficial examination.
But it seems to me the most intriguing is not as much an appearance of the space suit by way of formal marker of humanity transaction into a new evolutionary phase, as primary, latent stages of their development. I mean a mysterious emergence and crystallization od cognitive space suit, that allowed a man to call himself Homo Sapiens and put a beginning to a gradual sealing system of both individual and collective consciousness. That, in turn, gave rise to sense of independence from all external and the most arrogant and arbitrary manipulations with inhabited landscape became possible.
With obvious aggregate difference between material space suit and cognitive one there is one striking similarity – both doom their inhabitants for endless processing and consumption of own waste within sterile, cramped and overwhelming solitary confinement.
In my opinion, the origin and materialization of Homo Scaphandricus is a topic deserving of close attention. And, of course, it would be annoying if all this is idle tale of bored space traveler.
· A name of Iturup island in translation from the Ainu language is “jellyfish”.