WHAT IF EXTRATERRESTRIALS HAD RELIGION?


The Metamodern. Science. Technology. What if Extraterrestrials Have Religion?

“Would extra-terrestrials have religion? Religion is a very personal thing and should be respected by others, regardless of anyone’s individual belief systems. But scientific process is the only thing we have to go on when we need serious problem solving for our continued survival.”

CHALLENGING THE ALIEN ENIGMA

By Allen Sands
Image (above) by Aram Vardasaryan

The extraterrestrial issue is an old one. It’s been the cause of many debates between science and religion for a long time. Many will tell you that if the existence of extraterrestrials was revealed it would turn the church and religion in general on its head. It would contradict the perfect image of an almighty being or beings that have been presented to mankind for millenniums. It would give powerful credence to scientific theory and bring more questions to religion and the stories from the world’s holiest scriptures that focus on the singular dynamic of man’s sinful and earthbound relationship with God. We have been taught that there is either one true god, or as in some faiths, several and in some faith or belief systems there is no belief in any immortal or infinite being at all. Whether you’ve been taught by a religion that maintains a sense of Dualism, Polytheism or Animism, you either believe, question your belief, or you don’t believe at all.

There is a great misconception that scientists don’t believe in God. Many scientists do, but still adhere to strict scientific protocols in their research. Some scientists believe in a singularity, or an “intelligent design” to the point of assuming that science is purely man’s quest to understand the miracles of a god with some “peer reviewed” method, instead of blind faith alone. Or they have no belief in a god at all, but regardless, still pursue the same course as scientific protocol would dictate. Others refuse to accept any possibility of extraterrestrials because they’re not referred to in the Bible as anything more than Angels and Demons. It is as difficult for some to believe in angels as it is for others to believe in aliens.

Even with such diverse attitudes, most people can still move through their daily lives without the interference of their neighbor’s scientific or religious viewpoints affecting the quality of their own lives. Religion is a very personal thing and should be respected by others, regardless of anyone’s individual belief systems. But scientific process is the only thing we have to go on when we need serious problem solving for our continued survival.

The question of extraterrestrials never came up in Sunday school but if it had, I’m sure the teacher would have told us that Jesus loves extraterrestrials too. That said, in the minds of some people would be the green light for freedom of interpretation. Why couldn’t we believe in God and aliens too? How simple the young can make things. But as we progress, science comes into play with our education and challenges many of our orthodox religious beliefs or quite possibly vice versa. Some would consider a discovery linking the two together to be magnificent; others would be terrified to think of any life beyond the realm of God’s reign over Earth past our solar system and the rest who just wouldn’t believe in any god at all.

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Image from scienceandreligiontoday.com

Many theorists believe that early man’s inability to understand the natural world around him (or her) led to the association and personification of natural phenomena to deities. As we started discovering how things work, more and more of the deities’ “powers” or “methods” were explained away. Whether or not that particular god was abandoned, or still revered as a symbol of faith, the “method” or at least some “clues” about the “mysterious ways” of His or Her actions were revealed.

“Once again we see that the two quarreling siblings, Science and Religion are inseparable, while always keeping a safe distance between one another.”

What if the extraterrestrial comes? All conjecture all goes out the window except for the few scientific theories lingering on innuendo until the arrival finally proves the case. Atheists rejoice; Agnostics get their answer and science settles a few theoretical disagreements. But do they have cause for celebration? If hypothetically their presence were to be disclosed to the public the military industrial complex would insist on the acquisition of new technology for defense whether they were here to conquer us or not. But what if the aliens had religion? And how would religion effect the decisions or orders they were carrying out? Once again; science and religion, inseparable but distant.

Many theorists believe that our religions could have been influenced by ancient astronauts, while others have totally debunked many of the same theories. Is it possible that the Church would fear another god or belief system coming into the picture? How would science react to a highly advanced race who believed in their own version of an omnipotent almighty? Some would say that it is specifically because of their technology that they would have evolved away from looking for answers that at one time only their religion could supply. More theorizing and conjecture. If we accept the advanced alien technology would we have to be practitioners of their faith as well? Could their arrival be the result of some galactic, religious jihad or crusade?

We fantasize about intergalactic travel and the possibilities of new life and new neighbors in the universe all the time. But with the sharing of culture and technology a fair question to ask might be, where does religion or spirituality come into play?

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