A'ole TMT! Keep out TMT construction from sacred Mauna Kea, Hawaii Island.

 On the summit of Mauna Kea - on the "Big Island" of Hawaii - construction of the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT) was proposed in 2009. Five nations: the US, Canada, India, China(People Republic of China) and Japan are joining participating. TMT will have a 30-meter lens, will be 18 stones(180 ft) tall and its cost will be about 1.4 billion (US dollars).

 For science, observatories are a source of knowledge - knowledge that is ever expanding and ever renewing. For Hawaiian natives or traditionalists, however, the source of knowledge and assurance about the world is different - unchanging, eternal and sacred. So, observatories are - to traditionalists - viewed as a desecration. What we see today is thus a painful cultural collision on the summit of Mauna Kea.

  The TMT Project must move to an alternative location - for example, the Canary Islands.

 As time has passed with TMT news evolving and changing, my understanding of TMT has deepened and my consciousness has sharpened. It is strange to look back when I was supportive of TMT in the beginning and then, slowly losing that support over time and finally arriving at the conclusion to oppose TMT construction.

  I have seen too many and too frequent cases of indiscriminate worship of science. The TMT project is, no doubt an exciting astronomy adventure. But what is in question is the choice of the mountain. Native Hawaiians and traditionalists view the construction as desecration based on their ancient spiritual faith and are desperately opposing the construction.

  Shouldn't our community sincerely respect their wishes: those who have been here in the Hawaiian islands practicing the ancient faith? Science does not teach us morals. My belief is that morality has to lead science and not the other way around. Let's ask ourselves "what is it then that can inspire us to be moral?"

- Source of photo: Big Island Journey

  2009年、ハワイ州ハワイ島にあるマウナケア山の頂上に30メートルレンズを備えた天文台を建設する計画が提案された。 この計画に加わった五か国は、米国、カナダ、中国、インドそして日本である。 地上18階建て、30メートルのレンズ、その建設費用1千4百億円という。

 科学にとって天体観測所は知識-常に進展し、常に更新する知識を獲得するうえで必須である。しかしながらハワイのポリネシア民族の子孫、さらに古典伝統を守る人々にとっての知識はそれと異なる。 この人々の世界観を支える知識は、恒久的にして神聖であるのだ。それゆえに天体観測所なるものは、神聖なマウナケア山を汚す、犯す(けがす)何者でもない。 今日マウナケアの山頂で展開しているのは、相反する二つの世界観の対立に他ならない。


 私はその報道を今日まで追い続けた。 TMTに関する知識が深くなるにつれて、その対立の核心を知るに至る。





『ハワイアン ルネッサンス〜蘇るカナカ・マオリ〜』という小説にしました。

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