So What About ET Life…?

Not a month goes by that
we don’t hear about
someone being kidnapped
by aliens, or, worse, saw
little green men land and
eat a field of corn. There
are always sightings of
UFO’s, and, of course, the
one major controversial;
issue remains “unsolved:
The incident at Roswell,
New Mexico in 1947.
But, from a scientific point
of view, in our solar
system chances of life
seems nearly impossible.
And, we’re not talking
about little green men or
some other living
creatures, but rather, fossil
remains that might be
evidence of life having
once existed. Mars, closest
to Earth, is always a
“suspect.” “The evidence
for life on other planets is
slim to the point of non-
existence. The discovery of
polycyclic aromatic
hydrocarbons in a
meteorite fragment
supposedly from Mars… is
headline-grabbing stuff….
The normally cautious
journal, Science, decided
to… relax its usual news-
embargo rule and allow
the scientists to talk about
their findings on Aug 7,
well before the planned
publication of the report
on Aug 16. But does
probing inside a meteorite
and finding organic
molecules and other
imprints of primitive and
ancient bioactivity prove
that there was once life on
Mars (the planet is now far
too cold)?” While there are
many who say “Of course
not!” final proof is still not
totally confirmed.
What we should consider
is not necessarily that
there is now valid proof
that there is some sort of
life outside the Earth, but
the possibility that there is
some sort of life. “The
expectation that
extraterrestrial
intelligence exists derives
from two facts and one
assumption: (1) the
universe is vast, with
hundreds of billions of
galaxies each containing
hundreds of billions of
stars. NASA alleges there
are zillions of uncountable
stars. This number is so
large that even if the
emergence of intelligence
is improbable, such
intelligence could still
have arisen frequently. (2)
The physics and chemistry
of the universe are
everywhere the same. This
is known from
astronomical observation.
(3) Habitable, Earth-like
planets of the type that
might spawn intelligence,
with thick atmospheres
and liquid water on their
surface, are not
extraordinarily rare. This is
a hypothesis, sometimes
called the principle of
mediocrity. According to
this principle, the Earth is
not extraordinary in any
of its important
properties”
As new, more powerful
search instruments scan
the universe, the
possibility (if not the
probability) that there is
life out there somewhere,
is still a major topic of
discussion: “The Hubble
Space Telescope may have
discovered as many as 100
new planets out beyond
our solar system orbiting
stars in the Milky Way
galaxy, astronomers say….
Astronomers are coming
to believe that almost
every sun-like star in the
galaxy, and probably in
the universe, is
accompanied by one or
more planets like our solar
system, vastly increasing
the chance that some form
of extraterrestrial life
could exist”. NASA is not
the only organization
looking for some sort of
extraterrestrial proof.
“More surprises are almost
certain to follow if
astronomers find more
and more planets circling
other stars. But while
finding new planets of any
sort is terrifically exciting,
says Alan Boss, an
astronomer at the
Carnegie Institution of
Washington, “the Holy
Grail is to find an
extrasolar planet that is
capable of supporting life.”
Most scientists involved in
the search have never said
DEFINITELY NO to the
possibility of
extraterrestrial life. But, so
far there is no positive
proof. The ordinary citizen,
when he hears the term
“Extraterrestrial”
immediately thinks of
some weird human-like
form (i.e., the Martian
“green men), but chances
are when and if life is
discovered elsewhere in
the Universe it may very
well not have a form or
shape anything like
human life on Earth. Last
month a newspaper article
reinforced this “non-
human” fact: “Bad news,
Star Trek fans: If there is
life on other worlds, it
probably doesn’t look like
a swimsuit model. A
scientist at Washington
State University says the
first extraterrestrial life we
find is likely to be single-
celled organisms surviving
in a moon of Saturn, or the
atmosphere of Venus. And
not a Borg Queen in sight.
Dirk Schulze-Makuch
recently co-authored the
book “Life in the
Universe,” in which he and
Louis N. Irwin of the
University of Texas-El Paso
theorize on where
humans should look for
signs of other”.
So, if we continue to look,
what sort of “life” might
we expect? “If
extraterrestrial life exists
in our Solar System, it is
probably no more
advanced than bacteria. In
recent years, biologists
have discovered bacteria
on Earth living in
conditions that were once
thought too hostile for
life, for example in
Antarctic ice, in super-hot
ocean vents, and in rock
deep in the Earth. These
types of bacteria are called
extremophiles, because
they love extreme
conditions like heat or
acidity or saltiness”. Even
here one realizes that the
expectations that “life” is
another humanoid form
would be a mistake.
“What would aliens look
like?…Would we expect
the same (as human form)
on another planet- in
other words millions of
species but only one with
high intelligence?”. What
is of interest here is that
Parker, and others,
consider Man on Earth to
be the only species with
high intelligence, and
therefore, even if some life
forms would be found in
spacer, would they have
intelligence or be, as the
Earth was at its origin,
simple one- or two=-cell
life forms which
eventually developed into
something of a higher
power.
While some scientists look
to other solar systems,
there are those who still
try to determine if any
planets in our solar system
are “habitable.” “Our own
solar system contains four
terrestrial planets within
the inner part of the solar
system. Three of these
planets provide
substantial clues as to
what might determine the
boundaries of the
habitable zone”. He
believes that Venus may
be too hot for water, a
necessity for any sort of
life form. Mars, he
speculates “appears to
have been within (the
habitable zone) during its
early history”. His point, as
it is for many astronomers
and other biological
scientists is that we are
too early in our
understanding of the
universe to see where and
if life exists. “Many, if not
most scientists today
believe that it is very likely
that life exists on planets
other than the Earth”.
It is important in this
discussion to realize that
“life” is a relative term.
And, therefore, it is
important to reiterate that
we may never find any
sort of human-like form,
as Parker considers it- a
higher intelligence life
form. So, Parker makes a
good point: What should
we look for, given the
possibility and even
eventuality that we may
discover some sort of life
form in the universe
outside Earth? No one has
dared to make an
educated guess.
A skeptic may well argue:
“So what? What would it
mean to discover some
sort of life form outside of
Earth?” His reasoning is
that it would neither
improve the quality of our
life nor would it do
anything to reduce famine
and disease, lengthen life-
spans or make oppressed
people free. So, why do
we spend millions to
determine if there is life
out there somewhere?
There is no reasonable
answer except to state
that science is made up of
curiosity, and the desire to
find out for sure that life
exists somewhere else in
the universe drives
hundreds of dedicated
scientists to continue to
search.
There is another aspect to
life elsewhere that needs
to be mentioned: The
supposed sightings of
UFOs, the purported
“visits” of aliens. “Several
astronomers have pointed
out that we may be the
only advanced civilization
in our galaxy…(and) if
other civilizations have
emerged; many of them
would have emerged
millions of years ago,
perhaps billions of years
ago. It is difficult to
imagine what a
civilization millions of
years old could have
accomplished. Considering
what we have
accomplished in only a
few centuries”. Parker
then guesses that if the
Earth did have alien
visitors, it would have
occurred tens of
thousands of years ago,
not in 1947 or more
recently. That does make
him right, only another
one to do guess work.
There are many
experiments and
investigations currently
underway. Some we know
about, others seem to be
top secret. The goal is to
either prove or disprove
once and for all that there
is- or is not-
extraterrestrial life out
there. The only thing we
know for sure is that we
don’t know for sure. But,
we continue to look.
Whether in our life time,
we will ever get a
definitive answer is
doubtful, given the limited
funds and equipment
available. So, we do need
to ask ourselves: “If we
find life elsewhere, how
will it change our lives?”

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About bruceleeeowe
An engineering student and independent researcher. I'm researching and studying quantum physics(field theories). Also searching for alien life.

3 Responses to So What About ET Life…?

  1. Mark Louis says:

    Well, principle of mediocrity was new for me, Bruce! Yeah..? Well what’s idea about intelligent of other creatures excluding human? Ok, skeptics say the ant is not intelligent or sentient. But I think without intelligence these creatures wouldn’t be capable of building such complex tunnels. Right? I think billions of years old civilisation would be a plausible scenario. Perhaps we are ant.

  2. bruceleeeowe says:

    Well
    what ’s idea about intelligent of other
    creatures excluding human? Ok,
    skeptics say the ant is not intelligent
    or sentient. But I think without
    intelligence these creatures wouldn ’t
    be capable of building such complex
    tunnels. Right? I think billions of
    years old civilisation would be a
    plausible scenario. Perhaps we are
    ant.
    Right Mark! I’m agree with your argument but what skeptics argue that such tiny insects are just programmed to do so by nature nothing else! I’m quite disagree with them. Possibly you are right, Mark!

  3. Pingback: The Future’s Ultimate Dilemma « Bruceleeeowe's Blog

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