"Hugh had been taught that, according to the sacred writings, the Ship was on a voyage to faraway Centaurus. But he also understood that this was allegory for a voyage to spiritual perfection. Indeed, how could the Ship move, since its miles and miles of metal corridors were all there was of creation. But then he discovered the truth..."
This is a passage from Robert A. Heinlein's "Orphans of the Sky." It is a fascinating and fun to read story about a starship sent from Earth's solar system to colonize the planet of a distant star system. Due to complications encountered along the way, the ship becomes stuck in a perpetual orbit between the two systems. As a result, many generations of humans come and go within the self-sustaining environment of the massive ship, totally isolated from any and all outside contact. During that time, an entirely new social hierarchy gradually develops around a "religion" based on the ship's "history." There is a great deal of action, drama, and even some good humor in this story that draws the reader in and gives one pause to consider how so many religions may have developed within isolated societies throughout the centuries here on our own little planet of Earth. Heinlein is a master story teller, and I have read most all of his books. I can honestly say "Orphans of the Sky" ranks within my top five favorites. If anybody reads it, I would love to hear any feedback you have to offer. Enjoy.
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