Paragons - Next Gen
The Nature of Power
Throughout history, humanity has told stories of extraordinary people with powers and abilities beyond those of ordinary, everyday men and women. In the distant past, these people were epic heroes, demigods, or saints. In more recent years, they were characters in pulp and speculative fiction, comic books, and television and film. As the stories of such paragons shifted from myth and legend to popular culture and entertainment, it became more and more clear that they were not real, just power-fantasies and archetypes…until now.
Now, paragons walk the Earth: Men and women who can change the course of mighty rivers or bend steel in their bare hands. Are they the demigods and heroes of legend returned to a world where they were almost forgotten or are they something new, a tremendous step forward in the evolution and development of life? No one can say for certain but, whoever or whatever they are, there can be no doubt that paranormals have forever changed the world around them, and “normal” may never truly be normal again.
WHAT IS “PARANORMAL ”?
One of the great difficulties posed by paranormals is where to place the dividing line between “normal” and “paranormal.” So far as anyone has been able to determine, there is no clear, objective difference between a normal person (one without any paranormal abilities) and a paranormal who has broken-out and regularly displays paranormal abilities, other than the paranormal abilities themselves.
Nearly all tests—physical or psychological—thus far show no discernible differences between normal and paranormal apart from the fact that paranormals can apparently do the impossible.This means it is often unclear whether or not someone is a paranormal.
For example, no recorded athlete had run a mile in under four minutes until Roger Bannister came along in 1954 and did it in three minutes and 59.4 seconds. He did something no human being was known to have done before that point: Was he a paranormal? Are all those who have broken his record since paranormal as well? Likewise, are genius-level intellects or people with extraordinary talents in art or mathematics paranormals? It’s difficult to say.
Generally speaking, the term “paranormal” is reserved for abilities clearly beyond normal human capabilities. Some even limit it to abilities or feats that violate scientific laws as we know them, so-called “miracles” or “supernatural” powers. These are clearly paranormal. Other, lesser capabilities may be paranormal or simply peak-level “normal” abilities.
One consequence of the unclear division between normal and paranormal has been the theory that all humans (perhaps even all living or thinking creatures) have at least the potential for paranormal abilities, that is, we are all “paranormal” to one degree or another. Paragons just have an unusual or nascent talent for tapping into this buried potential.
This theory is common among evolutionists who believe paragons are a new stage in the development of intelligence or life, and religions with theology claiming some sort of spiritual “evolution” or personal development can lead to paranormal abilities.
Another effect of the vague nature of paranormals is the so-called “stealth paragon,” someone who has paranormal abilities and either conceals them, appearing normal, or doesn’t even know about them! Such paragons probably had a “quiet” breakout and were able to pass off their experience as the rush of a peak-experience, or a freak one-time stroke of luck, or something similar. Their powers are also presumably subtle enough to go undetected; stealth paragons tend towards enhanced normal abilities and things like unusual inventiveness, or the like, rather than overt miracles.
Given these things, the exact number of paranormals in the world is difficult to determine with any certainty. The assumption is they are relatively rare, approximately one in a million or so, perhaps less, perhaps a bit more. Until there’s a clear means of detecting them beyond lengthy and involved testing, other than the exercise of paranormal powers, there’s no way to know for sure.