Just imagine that future humans may be able to travel to distant planets and discover… more humans.
According to one astrobiologist at the University of Cambridge, that possibility may be more realistic than you think.
In a new interview with the BBC’s Science Focus magazine, Simon Conway Morris, an evolutionary palaeobiologist at the institution’s Department of Earth Sciences, stated that scientists can “say with reasonable certainty” that human-like evolution has occurred in other locations throughout the universe.
Morris’ opinion is based on the convergent evolution theory, which asserts that “random effects eventually average out to the point where evolution converges, tending to create similar creatures in any given environment.” The magazine cited flight as an example, noting that it “has evolved independently at least four times on Earth — in birds, bats, insects, and pterosaurs.”
This means that convergent evolution theory asserts that evolution is a natural law — and that, as a logical conclusion, evolution will likely act similarly on other worlds as it does on Earth. In other words, it is theoretically feasible for the blue and green alien humanoids shown in “Star Trek” to exist in the real world.
Morris is hardly the only Cambridge man who thinks extraterrestrial life developed in “human-like” ways.
Arik Kershenbaum, a biologist at the renowned British institution, devoted an entire book to the subject of extraterrestrial evolution.
“Because evolution is the explanatory mechanism for life everywhere,” Kershenbaum told Quanta magazine earlier this year, “then the principles that we uncover on Earth should be applicable in the rest of the universe.”
Kershenbaum claimed that although it is “tempting” to imagine extraterrestrial species lacking the same cultural interests as humans, such as philosophy and literature, we must keep in mind that they did not emerge as highly technological creatures out of thin air. Kershenbaum said that even extraterrestrial lifeforms with higher technology than humans would have “evolved from a pre-technological species.”
“If that pre-technological species went on to develop all the things that we have now, chances are that they were built on building blocks that served that social purpose — things like bonding between group members, transmission of information and useful ideas between group members,” he told Quanta. “A pre-technological alien civilization could be singing and dancing and telling stories just like pre-technological human civilization did, because it serves the same purpose.”
It’s enticing to picture other planets where humanoid lifeforms, in Kershenbaum’s words, “sing and dance and tell stories” exactly as they do on Earth. And if Darwinists like Kershenbaum and Morris think that the rules of evolution are as powerful as they claim, this increases our proclivity for connecting to and talking with aliens — and, sadly, for fighting with them as well.
Reference(s): ScienceFocus, QuantaMagazine