by C Michael PattonMarch 23rd, 2009 85 Comments
I spend a lot of my time reading books that are very difficult to read. In my library I have dozens of books from atheistic authors, most of them former Christians who left the faith. Their leaving is tagged with a variety of reasons, but they primarily have to do with some sort of “awakening” from the “intellectual slumber” as they describe it.
I also spend much time going through atheistic websites and blogs, reading people’s thoughts. I rarely interact. I simply go there to learn.
What I see is a lot of bitterness and anger. This evidences itself in much ridicule. I find the ridicule very interesting and typical of the way people think when they get into this box. (Yes, for the most part, it is a box.) They are upset because, according to them, they spent much of their life believing a lie parallel to that of Santa Clause. Now they have been set free from irrationality and now have the freedom to think (that is why they refer to themselves as “free thinkers”). They seek to help others to become free thinkers.
The other day I read a thread on one of these atheistic/Christian recovery websites which had about sixty or seventy posts which simply poked fun at Christian beliefs. Topping the list was the creation of Eve from the rib of Adam, a snake talking, Jonah’s adventure in the belly of a whale, Balaam’s donkey speaking, and the whole story of special creation.
After continuing this mockery for quite some time one atheist made an astonishingly wise and unexpected observation which turned the conversation in a very interesting way. It is this turn that caused me to write this short blog.
He said (paraphrase): “Guys, I certainly concur that God is not real and that the stories of the Bible are mythology. I also concur that Christians are naive to believe in such nonsense. But I do often ask myself where did everything come from? What started it all? How is it that we are all here?”
Bypassing the simplicity of the question dealing with ultimate ontological origins (i.e. the origin of the “stuff” of the universe), the commentators acknowledge the difficulty of the question and went straight to a discussion of human origins.
However, they were first quick to point out that the difficulty of the question does not justify or legitimize the insertion of an “ultimate creator” which explains all things (often referred to as the “God of the Gaps” approach).
“What is your best guess then?” the other asked.
At this point people became more timid and reserved. It almost seemed to quiet the bashing party down. Yet there were some brave souls who took a shot. Can you hear throats clearing on a blog? Well you could here as they prepared to respond.
What was their answer to the origin of all things? What was their non-naive, rational, scientific, this-does-not-look-anything-like-Santa-and-you-can-teach-your-children answer? Aliens. Yes, aliens seeded our planet five million years ago.
Let us just set aside the fact that this does not solve anything since we have to answer where the aliens came from. Let us also set aside the presumption that these people may not be atheists but alien worshipers (alitheists?). Let us also not refer to this as the “Alien of the Gaps” answer (at least not right now). There is something more fundamental that I would like to ask:
Is the belief that aliens seeded our planet five billion years ago more rational, scientific, and believable than the answer that a self-existent God created all that there out of nothing (ex nihilo)?
Folks, I am not making this up. The idea that aliens seeded the earth is becoming a valid option among atheists and free-thinkers. It is also starting to find its way into Hollywood.
Not only was this option perfectly acceptable to all the atheists on this blog (remember, the ones who were making fun of the story of Adam and Eve), but Richard Dawkins has publicly stated that believes that Alien implantation is an “intriguing possibility.”
Listen to this. I just finished the last episode of Battlestar Galactica (sniff, sniff). This series was filled with the God question which it never really answered. Except . . . that at the very end, the voyagers of the Battlestar fleet made earth their new home (their home planet that was destroyed). These voyagers are shown to be the explanation of where the human race came from—an implantation of the union between robotic Cylons and humans who were both alien.
Another interesting example was the new Nicolas Cage movie, Knowing, that was released this weekend. (Warning: Spoiler). Filled with much suspense, we find out in the end that aliens saved humanity by seeding another planet with a male and a female human (not to mention the animals).
My question for you is this: Can one legitimately belittle any detail of the biblical creation story on the grounds of intellectual integrity and replace it with a belief that aliens seeded our planet and remain in good standing rationally? How much worse is a snake talking than a creature from another planet talking?
How does “I don’t believe that a snake talked but I do believe that aliens seeded our planet sit with you?”
- Why doesn’t God heal amputees?
- Atheism: The Godless Revolution That Never Happened
- Is the New Atheism Really Affecting People’s Belief in God?
- The Moral Indignation of Richard Dawkins
- From "There Is No God" to "There Is a God" : Tracking Antony Flew’s Conversion