Happy Terra-Centric Day!
I am renaming this somewhat underrated “holiday” in favor of a very interesting article I found on Discovery News. The title, which seems somehow dull considering its probably controversial claim, is “ET Likely Doesn’t Exist, Finds Math Model.” It’s a wishy-washy claim that is dragged into the muddy realm of Boring by the insertion of the words “math model.”
The article itself is nothing mind-blowing. It simply says that, statistically and evolutionarily speaking, there is very little probability of intelligent life coming into being, given the number of suitable planets available (zero actually found so far) and the elimination rounds that must be passed (four). Even if the odds are beat, intelligent life is likely only to happen when a planet is well past its prime, possibly even on the down-slope toward destruction.
In an infinite universe, even the most unlikely of scenarios are bound to be played out innumerable times. Thus, despite the odds, somewhere out there should be intelligent life blooming, as we are, on a dying planet. Alas, but they must be zillions of light-years away, much to far to reach us before their planets go boom. Or ours does.
Personally, I do not hold any stock in evolution, but that doesn’t stop me from hoping that some day I might have a chance to swap big fish stories with an alien or visit other planets. There’s more than one way for intelligent life to come into being, after all, earth-bound or otherwise.
Does that bother people, I wonder? The idea that the God who created us might also some day create some other intelligent beings? Does that insult our sense of importance and centrality the way a non-earth-centric universe insulted people back in the middle ages? It doesn’t bother me, obviously. If He created us first, then there’s no doubt about our importance. Even if we weren’t first, though, he did send his Son to us, and that’s pretty amazing, don’t you think?
Besides, scientists are occasionally right about things, and if they happen to be right about the fact that our planet is in its “twilight years” (gee, only a couple billion years left to realize my world-domination schemes), we’ll be looking to relocate eventually. I bet there are better things in store for us than bubble-domes on Mars. Until we figure out what they are, though, hooray for Earth!
We might be alone, but imagine the potential!