Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Christian faith vs. Alien life

As a science fiction writer and a Christian, the idea that religious faith can not withstand the discovery of intelligent alien life really gets on my nerves.

Instapundit linked this today.

It's pretty much exactly what I'd expect. The Vatican is hosting some event discussing the intersection of Christian faith and possible alien life. There's quite a bit to talk about.

Father Jose Funes, a Jesuit astronomer at the Vatican Observatory and one of the organisers of the conference, said: "As a multiplicity of creatures exists on Earth, so there could be other beings, also intelligent, created by God.

"This does not conflict with our faith, because we cannot put limits on the creative freedom of God."

And pretty much like I'd expect someone feels the need to assert that it would-so be a problem.

Not everyone agrees. Paul Davies, a theoretical physicist and author of The Goldilocks Enigma, told The Washington Post that the threat to Christianity is "being downplayed" by Church leaders.
There is no *threat* to Christianity in the discovery of intelligent alien life, or alien life at all. There's not even all that much of a theological question or adjustment that would have to be made by believers. It's not being "downplayed". The "threat" is being exaggerated by people extrapolating the reasoning behind their own abandonment of faith onto other people.

And I really think that anyone who hasn't already given up faith for science, who can live well and comfortably with the two in cohabitation... is not going to have a trauma if we find life out there.

There may be people who haven't given it a whole lot of thought, unlike science fiction writers, but very few who will not be flexible enough to adapt.

4 Comments:

Blogger The Gold Digger said...

It's been a while since I read it, but isn't this issue addressed in "The Sparrow?"

10:38 AM  
Blogger Synova said...

Having read the plot summary just now, it seems to have the premise of what happens when faith meets aliens, but it seems more an allegory of New World expansion and a criticism of missionaries.

But I haven't read it, so I certainly couldn't say.

8:03 PM  
Blogger carlos de la parra said...

To this day I don't understand the position of ego that pretends to explain in words how God ticks.
These people will get my undivided attention when they become enabled to create galaxies and solar sytems,species and waterfalls.
To me seeing all that is sufficient proof of divine existence,but all the mumbo jambo that cults have to express,has not yet given me an intelligent and believable explanation.

No disrespect to what anyone chooses to believe,I hope that is still part of our freedoms;and I would love to see people debating that on T.V.in a reasonable sensible way ,without becoming fundamentalistic over anyone doubting their assertions.

7:34 PM  
Anonymous Loretta said...

The bible explains these strange phenomena that haunt mankind: ghosts, false gods, demons and so-called space aliens -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ReYe-MsVl8s

11:56 PM  

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