» » Are We Alone?: Philosophical Implications Of The Life Of Discovery Of Extraterrestrial Life

eBook Are We Alone?: Philosophical Implications Of The Life Of Discovery Of Extraterrestrial Life epub

by Paul Davies

eBook Are We Alone?: Philosophical Implications Of The Life Of Discovery Of Extraterrestrial Life epub
  • ISBN: 0465004180
  • Author: Paul Davies
  • Genre: Other
  • Subcategory: Science & Mathematics
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Basic Books; First Edition edition (July 14, 1995)
  • Pages: 176 pages
  • ePUB size: 1793 kb
  • FB2 size 1370 kb
  • Formats docx lit lrf txt

Scientists and governments are actively searching for signs of life in the universe. Will their efforts meet with success? Award-winning author Paul Davies, an eminent scientist who writes with the flair of a science fiction writer, explores the ramifications that the discovery of extraterrestrial life would have for our science, our religions, and our worldview in general.
Comments: (7)
This book is a discussion of the search for extraterrestrial life, nothing more, nothing less. This book is based on four lectures Davies gave at Milan University. While this book contains an excellent discussion about the search for extraterrestrial life on other planets, it offers precious little on the real philosophical implications of that search or of the nature of the aliens Earthlings are attempting to make contact.

The underlying philosophical assumption which pervades the discussion is that extraterrestrial life must consist of aliens who look like us and which may or not be more technologically advanced as we are. Despite the historical and scientific overview, the discussion in Davies’ book misses the mark. Granted, taking the underlying philosophical rationale for the existence of life in places other than Earth, Davies fails to address the real questions in this area:

• What IS life?

• What is the definition of “life”?

• Is other life forms limited to the paradigm here on Earth?

• Isn’t is possible that this planet has unwittingly received communications from other worlds because of the limitations on human communication and we simply are not aware these communications have been sent?

• Who is to say that all life is carbon-based as Davies acknowledges?

• If other worlds are philosophically possible, could aliens live and communicate in dimensions other than that in which humans live?

Fine, you might be saying, aren’t these questions simply related to the nature of life, alien or otherwise? Yes, that might be true. But a pertinent issue not discussed by Davies and totally on topic to his book:

• Isn’t the search for extraterrestrial life inherently human-based and any effort to search for extraterrestrial presence doomed to fail?

It would have been good if Davies discussed these issues in the book, and the book would have been a better book had these issues been discussed.

These and other questions are the real philosophical implications of extraterrestrial life. Though barely mentioned, these questions were not raised or discussed by Davies. While these issues were touched upon in the chapter concerning consciousness, but on the whole the discussion was facile and inadequate.
Wonderful book. On a side note, there are authentic photos of Hillary Clinton as first lady clutching "Are We Alone?" to her bosom while strolling down a wooded path with Laurance Rockefeller at his Wyoming ranch in 1995. Oil heir Rockefeller, an aerospace tycoon, also was heavily into UFOs and ETs. Laurance invited Hillary to his ranch for a private meeting on UFOs and government disclosure and that's when he gave her "Are We Alone?" as a gift. The book had just been published. Hillary then carried the UFO/ET book and Rockefeller's message and desires back to President Clinton at the White House. This way, Rockefeller's interest in UFOs was conveyed to the president while the White House was able to maintain public distance and plausible denial. Rockefeller threatened to buy full-page ads in the nation's leading newspapers about UFOs and the need for government disclosure if President Bill Clinton snubbed his overtures, and Rockefeller had the money and connections to carry out the threat. Now in 2016 Hillary synchronistically is a presidential candidate. Her chief of staff Leon Panetta also is very curious about UFOs, but if Hillary becomes president and Panetta goes with her to D.C. (a near certainty) they too will be bound by official oaths and military-intelligence-industrial complex compartmentalization and secrecy. So don't necessarily expect UFO disclosure from Hillary and Panetta. When one becomes the head of the beast, one still is part of the tail of the beast. See pics of Hillary holding "Are We Alone?" during a walky/talky with Laurance at the ranch.
Cherry The Countess
I was expecting a "what if?" scenario of the impact the discovery of extraterrestrial intelligence would have on our society. Too much of this book was either historical or reflective of the 1996 wisdom regarding the existence of extraterrestrial intelligences.

The table of contents provides the best indicator of what this book is really about. Here it is with my observations about each chapter in parentheses.

1. A Brief History of SETI (self-explanatory)

2. Extraterrestrial Microbes (a biology lesson)

3. Alien Message (exploring the probable types of messages we might receive)

4. Against Aliens (exploring the probability of aliens and their similarity to us)

5. The Nature of Consciousness (self-explanatory)

6. Alien Contact and Religious Experience (current and biblical UFO stories)

If you are interested in history, biology, and dated wisdom, then this is a good book for you. For me, I don't think it "explores the ramifications" to the extent that I had hoped it would.
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