What if IT happens?

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Profile Abraxas
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Message 5718 - Posted: 21 Jul 2006, 23:18:59 UTC

Hello there.

It's all good and well looking for ETI but I ask myself this: what happens if we DO find REAL evidence of ETI? Is the human race ready for it? I must say I have my doubts! Could we really handle the religious fallout such a discovery would generate? Let me know what you think.

Greetings, Abraxas.



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Profile Jim Baize
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Message 5721 - Posted: 22 Jul 2006, 15:02:30 UTC - in response to Message 5718.  

A couple of questions.

What kind of religious fallout do you foresee as a consequence of our hypothetical discovery?

What makes you think that we are NOT ready for First Contact?

and finally, so what if we DO find evidence? That is strictly evidence, but not proof. Knowing todays society, I foresee years of more research, debates, and studies. Our first evidence of another life form does not indicate contact. Just because we overheard their conversation doesn't mean we are communicating with them intelligently.

Just a couple of questions for debate only. Your questions are definitely are ones we will have to answer in the future. Might as well ask and think about them now. :)

Hello there.

It's all good and well looking for ETI but I ask myself this: what happens if we DO find REAL evidence of ETI? Is the human race ready for it? I must say I have my doubts! Could we really handle the religious fallout such a discovery would generate? Let me know what you think.

Greetings, Abraxas.

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Message 5724 - Posted: 23 Jul 2006, 9:36:35 UTC
Last modified: 23 Jul 2006, 9:36:57 UTC

There has been some research on the likely social impact of finding a signal from an ETI.

This might be of interest...

Cultural Aspects of SETI
and
What Are the Possible Societal Effects of a SETI Success?

Personally,I feel, after the initial furore and panic, people will go on with their lives as normal. Generally the public and the media, has a very short-term memory when it comes to breaking news and there is always a new story on the horizon.

As they say, "out of sight is out of mind". Ha!

However, that said, if we were to be visited by ET it would probably be a whole new ballgame.
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Message 5735 - Posted: 25 Jul 2006, 22:17:00 UTC

It's all good and well looking for ETI but I ask myself this: what happens if we DO find REAL evidence of ETI?


Besides the general panic, it would take many years to answer them, but in the mean time, many young people will become physicists and priest.

Tiare Rivera.-
"Life is a journey, your dreams, the path"- From my friend: Skydust
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Message 5751 - Posted: 27 Jul 2006, 13:45:43 UTC - in response to Message 5721.  

Hello there.

Jim Baize said,

A couple of questions.

What kind of religious fallout do you foresee as a consequence of our hypothetical discovery?

What makes you think that we are NOT ready for First Contact?

and finally, so what if we DO find evidence? That is strictly evidence, but not proof. Knowing todays society, I foresee years of more research, debates, and studies. Our first evidence of another life form does not indicate contact. Just because we overheard their conversation doesn't mean we are communicating with them intelligently.

Just a couple of questions for debate only. Your questions are definitely are ones we will have to answer in the future. Might as well ask and think about them now. :)

Hello there.

It's all good and well looking for ETI but I ask myself this: what happens if we DO find REAL evidence of ETI? Is the human race ready for it? I must say I have my doubts! Could we really handle the religious fallout such a discovery would generate? Let me know what you think.

Greetings, Abraxas.




Hello there Jim I hope you are well. I will try to answer your questions as best I can. You should know that I am Dutch and my writing English is probably not what it should be, I apologize for that.

Ok here we go;

1) You know, the people who take the bible literally, wich are 10's of millions in the US alone, are prone to anything from depression to extreme personality disorders when confronted with the existance of intelligent aliens. It would rock the very foundations of their existance.... That's seldomly a good thing right? And don't forget that the most powerfull man in the world is a Born Again Christian!! I mean that's a radical group if I ever saw one! They actually believe to be saved just before the infidels of this world (meaning rest of mankind)are wiped-out at the Armageddon endgame!! If some advanced spacecraft would land in front of the Whitehouse G.W. would probably think he was being saved by angels. It's little things like that, that make me doubtfull!

2) I think the above also anwers this question.

3) Maybe we would not be communicating but never the less it would be the single most important discovery in the history of the human race. I think that many organisations would openly oppose such a discovery and there would certainly be heated debate int the scientific community over the legitemacy of such claims. I am also reasonably shure that the Catholic Church would have it's say in the matter, and I can already hear it now.... the Pope openly opposes the discovery and call's it an abomination!

Greetings, Abraxas (aka Jan Willem Wolters).




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Message 5762 - Posted: 29 Jul 2006, 3:18:11 UTC - in response to Message 5751.  

Your English was wonderful. It is better than a lot of people around here who have grown up with this language being their only language. And, your English is a whole lot better than my Dutch (as I know no Dutch)

The problem I have with your arguments were that they seemed to be very anti-religion, and especially anti-Christian. It seems that you are taking the reaction of a small group and applying it to all Christianity.

Yes, there are people who interpret the Bible in a very exact and literal meaning; however, to take the reaction of those people and apply it to all Christianity is wrong. I seriously doubt that 10's of millions of people take the Bible that literal here in the US.

The next thing that I think is wrong attributing mental illnesses to taking the Bible literally. Mental illnesses such as depression, schizophrenia, personality disorders, etc have NOTHING to do with religion. Granted, there are a few extremeist who use religion to get people to follow them to all kinds of ends (Waco, Texas comes to my mind right off hand). There are other extremeist who are equally compelling and charasmatic that use other issues to gather a following. (Please forgive the reference, but Hitler comes to mind in this case. He used the oppression of the German people to gain his power.) Furthermore, mental illnesses don't just suddenly appear when given overwhelming news. The person suffering from the mental illness will more than likely have signs and symptoms of thier problem before being told about an alien discovery. Said signs and symptoms may not have been recognized prior to the news, but hindsight will show that in the majority of cases, the illness was present first. Granted, the news would definitely exacerbate the problem in many mentally ill people, but the news would not cause the mental illness.

If today you took a random sample of Christians and asked them about their views on extra-terrestrial intelligence, you would get a wide range of responses. There are those that will fight you tooth and toe-nail that there are no other inhabitants of this universe, that this planet contains the only life forms! There are those that will say something like, "it doesnt concern me at this point. I will find the answer to that question when I get to Heaven." There will be yet others who will have varying degrees of belief of life beyond this planet. Personally, I think you would get nearly the same responses out of a random sample of people regardless of religon.

Let's examine the possible responses to the news of "evidence" of ET from each of the three groups of Christians.

Group I) Those that are vehemently against life beyond this planet. This is the group that is going to denounce evidence as being wrong, misleading, or plain ole made up. This group will be the ones who refuse to listen to any arguments for the possibility of ET regardless of how strong. One possible explaination they will have is "it is God playing tricks on the scientists. It is God sending those signals." However, this group, as well as the rest of the world would soon forget about the evidence and go on with their lives.

Group II) Those who state that it doesn't matter to them either way. They will still maintain a "hands-off" attitude. As long as it is just evidence, they will go about their lives like normal.

Group III) This last group would be saying something like "God is too big to not have other populated worlds." They will be curious. Some may even take the time to do some studying on the issue, but in the end, they too will go on about their lives.

Now, What would these three groups do if ET LANDED on Earth. This one is much more difficult to imagine, but I am going to try. I am going to restrict my discussion to say, the first hour after ET lands on Earth.

Group I) The world will see an increase in doomsday prophets. More of these people will looking to the eastern sky. They will say that Armaggeddon is upon us. Many of these people will be totally terrified while others will be ready to join the rest of the Christians in the sky.

Group II) Most of these people will be forced to take sides on the issue. They will either say that Christ has come for his followers, OR they will say that the entity that landed is truely ET. I still think there will be a few that will have a laxidasical attitude and say, "either way is fine with me." I still see a lot of fear and anxiety in this group, also.

Group III) The third group would see the visitors as ET, and not necesarily Christ coming for the Christians. This group would be more worried about whether the visitors come in peace or if they come to conquer earth.

I fail to see how the fact that GW Bush is a professing born again Christian makes Christianity a radical group. And I won't even begin to try to figure out what Bush would do if ET landed on the White House lawn.

Overall, I don't think that ET landing on Earth would rock the Christian people as bad as you seem to think. They would view the information through whatever glasses it takes to fit their belief.

To make a short story long, I will try to wrap things up here. Again, I am going to have to disagree with you on a point, at least partially. Would the discovery be the most important of our time? If we were to just get evidence, it would have to be incredibly strong to be rated as the most important. If we were to have First Contact, then I would classify it as one of, if not the most important discovery of our time.

I'm sure I've ranted enough.

Until next time,

Jim




Hello there Jim I hope you are well. I will try to answer your questions as best I can. You should know that I am Dutch and my writing English is probably not what it should be, I apologize for that.

Ok here we go;

1) You know, the people who take the bible literally, wich are 10's of millions in the US alone, are prone to anything from depression to extreme personality disorders when confronted with the existance of intelligent aliens. It would rock the very foundations of their existance.... That's seldomly a good thing right? And don't forget that the most powerfull man in the world is a Born Again Christian!! I mean that's a radical group if I ever saw one! They actually believe to be saved just before the infidels of this world (meaning rest of mankind)are wiped-out at the Armageddon endgame!! If some advanced spacecraft would land in front of the Whitehouse G.W. would probably think he was being saved by angels. It's little things like that, that make me doubtfull!

2) I think the above also anwers this question.

3) Maybe we would not be communicating but never the less it would be the single most important discovery in the history of the human race. I think that many organisations would openly oppose such a discovery and there would certainly be heated debate int the scientific community over the legitemacy of such claims. I am also reasonably shure that the Catholic Church would have it's say in the matter, and I can already hear it now.... the Pope openly opposes the discovery and call's it an abomination!

Greetings, Abraxas (aka Jan Willem Wolters).

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