"Destiny" is a word greatly misunderstood and misused. Even good dictionaries describe it as something that is going to happen which you cannot do anything about. However, "destiny" and "destination" both come from the same Latin word meaning "the intending of something for a particular purpose." In other words, destiny is based on intention. When the missionaries tried to translate this word into Hawaiian, the only equivalents they could find were hope (meaning "purpose") and hopena (meaning "consequence").
All destiny, even that of species and whole worlds, is fan-shaped. That is, the future at any instant is a series of probabilities or possibilities of which only certain ones will be physically expressed. One broad probable trend is pointing now to an adventure of epic proportions. Sometime in the not-too-distant future humankind is going to have the capability of leaving this planet for other worlds within and beyond this solar system. Many billions of dollars are being spent right now to ensure that this will happen.
Everyone will not want to go, of course. Some out of fear, some because of limiting beliefs, and others simply because this is still a big and beautiful planet and much good remains to be accomplished here. But many will take up the challenge, much as did emigrating pioneers of past centuries. We are going to have the opportunity of going back to the stars.
Yes, I said back. A great many cultures around the world have legends--or histories--indicating that human beings originated from one or more places beyond this planet, or intermarried with extraterrestrial visitors. Every day archeologists are pushing back the period of our sojourn on earth to the point where it is clear that, as a race, we are far, far older than anyone would have believed possible. It is indeed a feasible theory that we have been to the stars and back many times. And coming up is another such move, at least for some of us--those who choose to go.
There are groups today who believe and claim that gigantic spaceships will land in the near future to carry off the "elect," or those who belong to that particular group and have paid up their dues. These hopefuls are in for a disappointment. We will explore and populate the stars, to be sure, but by our own efforts. No "elder brother" spaceman is going to do it for us.
Many are also waiting for superior beings to land in great spacecraft and take over the administration of the earth for us poor insignificant mortals. Well, I say to you that we are not insignificant and that God's design for us is to stand on our own two feet and work out our problems for ourselves. It is possible that spaceships may land from some other planet (I speak here of public landings), and that they may carry technologically superior beings. But to expect them to take away all of our responsibilities is immature escapism of the worst sort. There is no such thing as a being superior to you, except in gross and temporary physical terms. There is no being closer to God than you, if you would realize it. Any distance is of our own making. No, even though we may subject ourselves to one another from time to time through our own folly or for our own experience, it is not part of the natural order for us to be subject to anyone but our God within.
Now is the time for planning the kinds of societies we will establish on new worlds, and for preparing ourselves and our children for the venture. Our preparation must include physical, psychical, and spiritual refinement. Physical, so that our bodies can withstand whatever stresses we may encounter; psychical, because all our psychic abilities such as telepathy, clairvoyance, healing, etc., will be called into play to assure success; and spiritual, in order to avoid as much as possible the sad results of human greed and exploitation. This adventure belongs to all of us living now, whether or not we shall all be around to witness the actual event. Our own development and experience at this point will aid all the others.
In closing, I ask you to pick some clear night and look deeply at the stars. Open your heart and see if you do not feel a sense, however slight, of longing. And think on the fact that the Hawaiian phrase, holo i Kahiki can mean either "sail to Tahiti" or "travel to outer space."