Friday, December 9, 2011

Science Discovers Super Earth - Will Christians Be Upset?

There's been the discovery of an earth-like rocky planet orbiting a star around 600 light years from us and appears it may have a lot of water, which is essential to life, at least as we know it.

When I was growing up in the evangelical churches, my Christian friends and leaders would often point out that there was no life anywhere else in the universe, that God in the form of Christ had come here because this is where God's attention was focused. The rest of the Cosmos was window dressing, for all intents and purposes, and beyond our comprehension. In fact, in 1969, many Christians thought that going to the moon was demon-inspired and that America would suffer greatly for the offense. But here we are, on the verge of some of the most amazing discoveries of this or any age.

So, as we get closer to discovering life in other parts of the galaxy, I'm wondering if Christians still think that we are the center of it all, if other planets are bound by the same inflexible religious beliefs of earth's millions of fundamentalists, or if we will ultimately be overrun by nasty, devilish aliens, out to prove that we are the inferior, sinful creature who brought all of the universe under God's condemnation. I'm sure they will let us know in due time.

I no longer follow that particular spiritual path, so I am personally very excited about the possibility of what awaits our prying eyes and brains 'out there' in the vast array of lights, gases, dust, rocks, and whatever else is flying through space at speeds almost incomprehensible. May I live to see the day when we finally meet up with 'the little green men' of Alpha Centauri. I jest, of course, but I really am giddy about the whole thing.

Each day we get closer to the real possibility that we are not alone in this vast universe. We don't know their forms, their ways of living and dealing with their worlds, or even if we can communicate with them. And we especially do not know their truths. We must be ready enough, hence, mature enough, to walk out onto the platform, raise our hands, say, "Hail," and pray they come in peace.

Either way, knowing that I don't know the consequences, I fervently welcome whatever is to come from these discoveries. The universe is my home. It would be nice to meet the neighbors.

Here's an excerpt from the recent post at Science Daily. You can click on the title to link to the whole story:

ScienceDaily (Dec. 5, 2011) — NASA's Kepler Mission has discovered the first super-Earth orbiting in the habitable zone of a star similar to the Sun. A team of researchers, including Carnegie's Alan Boss, has discovered what could be a large, rocky planet with a surface temperature of about 22 degrees Celsius (72 degrees Fahrenheit), comparable to a comfortable spring day on Earth.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments that disagree with my views are welcome. However, please refrain from vulgar, racist, sexist, homophobic and other types of language that are disrespectful to other readers. Many thanks.