The Thirty Minute Blogger

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Monday, May 2, 2016

Religion and Intelligent Aliens? Survey Reaction

Yesterday on Facebook, one of those surveys that shows up with regularity appeared asking if religious faith would survive the discovery of intelligent life out in the universe. The assumption was that this would knock the whole idea of the special nature of humanity down, making us no longer the center of the universe, and that would lead many to a collapse of faith.

I find the question silly. The assumption that my faith makes me feel I'm at the center of creation is an antique assumption. For years I've reveled in any discovery that shows how much we have in common with the rest of creation. After watching one of those videos where people are their own worst enemies and do many stupid things on video, I believe the whole big brain and opposable thumb thing is highly overrated.

Looking at the comments (never a good idea or safe for your view of humanity), I found all sorts of folks who were of the "my way or the highway" persuasion, stating that whatever their point of view was all who disagreed with them are stupid and devolved.

I believe the question and premise are wrong (or at least long outdated). I believe the real question should be, Is your worldview inclusive enough to accept the idea of intelligent life elsewhere? From what I saw in the comments, there were plenty of folks of many different persuasions who simply couldn't handle another perspective on the universe. I believe if you can't handle all the different worldview prevalent on this one little planet, this tiny mote in the vastness of creation, you are not ready to handle life elsewhere.

It is long past time we spent our time and energy finding new ways to divide ourselves into ever smaller and more factious groups. We had better spend a lot more time and energy discovering what we have in common, making friends right here on planet earth with each other and all of creation, and then, perhaps, one day we'll be fit enough to face the reality of intelligent life elsewhere in the universe.

Here's a book seeking unity rather than division:

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