Have We Discovered Extraterrestrial Intelligence?

Preliminary evidence suggests that, indeed, we have.

I was first alerted to this by a friend who shared a Youtube video. I groaned in displeasure when I saw it–very rarely does an ET-related Youtube video have anything of substance to talk about, and, when they do, it’s usually clear cases of pareidolia. When I checked the description, I found zero news articles; instead, it just cited other Youtube videos. But we’re talking about extraterrestrials. We’re talking about the discovery of intelligent life in other parts of the galaxy and universe. There is nothing more important to our species than that, as it will deliver us a reality check of epic proportions, firmly reminding us of how small and insignificant we are. We need that. So I googled it.

And… Holy shit. It’s legit.

Not only have we probably found E.T.–based on the evidence thus far, though there is no definitive conclusion–but it seems that the aliens we found have a remarkable civilization spanning 234 stars, and that the signal originates with an alien civilization trying to alert us, and anyone else who may be out there, of its existence. This is pure speculation. If this is the case, then this would suggest to me that they are not only highly advanced–to the point that they can colonize at least 234 star systems–but have discovered no intelligent life in their travels, and are extremely lonely. We do the same thing here on Earth: desperately sending out and receiving signals from every corner of the universe, hoping each passing minute that we hear a whisper in the cold darkness of the universe. It should be no surprise that other civilizations would do the same, and that they span 234 star systems is discouraging, awe-inspiring, and depressing. However lonely we are as we whisper into the vast stretches of space whether anyone is out there, a civilization doing it from 234 planets is exponentially more lonely.

Doctors Ermanno F. Borra and Eric Trottier of the Physics Department at Laval University in Quebec recently published this paper explaining their findings and their hypothesis. It has been published in a peer-reviewed journal. We are, of course, being urged not to jump the gun here, because it’s certainly not final, but… it’s so hard not to jump the gun. Actual scientists–actual physicists–are suggesting that the only explanation for phenomena they’ve found is extraterrestrial intelligence, and the signal they found fits perfectly with what they predicted an alien civilization would use. That’s a shocking prediction, and it strikes me as the most solid piece of evidence–considering I’m not advanced enough in physics to fully process the rest of it (I changed my major from Physics after only a few semesters).

Hell, only yesterday I took a joke online quiz where I was tasked with choosing which of two titles was a real physics paper and which was made-up gobbledygook, and I did only slightly better than a monkey would have. Physics has gotten extremely obscure, and extraordinarily complicated, as we peeled back from our perceptions and peered into the underlying elements of the universe. Things got weird and confusing very quickly, with particles being waves and waves being particles, with massless particles, with particles managing to be in two places simultaneously… It’s all very strange.

When we sent our first rovers to Mars, we had a clear list of things we were looking for, and we said, “If it has this, this, and this, then we’ll have found life on Mars.” Then we collected samples, the rover tested them, and NASA said, “It’s inconclusive.” The reality, though, was that every single item on our checklist had been checked off–the book We Are Not Alone goes into the topic in substantial detail. It was not a cover-up; don’t get me wrong. NASA isn’t hiding anything.

In fact, I find the idea that NASA is hiding extraterrestrials from us to be laughable, and it’s increasingly stupid in the age of Wikileaks and widespread hacks. Plus, I’m expecting to believe that the incompetent ass government that lost $6.5 trillion has successfully hidden proof of alien life from us for decades? While I’d certainly admit that some portions of the government would be capable of it–just look at 9/11, and how they hid the truth from us there by selectively omitting things from the 9/11 Commission Report… like the fact that Building 7 went down that day, too…–I find it impossible to believe that an entire government agency and multiple people could be in on the lie.

But what if they were?

You know? If we are to keep an open mind, we have to ask questions like that.

If NASA was hiding evidence of extraterrestrial life from us, what might that look like? Well, we would expect there to be whispers of the truth and evidence here and there that slipped through the cracks. We would expect the ISS livefeed to cut out when a UFO appeared on camera. We would expect them to go from “normal conversation” to suddenly using very strange jargon during radio broadcasts. We would expect that some former astronauts and NASA administrators would come forward publicly and speak the truth. Indeed, if NASA was hiding evidence of extraterrestrial life from us, it would look exactly like what the current NASA situation looks like. However, if they weren’t and there were simply former astronauts lying to make a quick buck, and if there were people who wanted to believe, then it would also look exactly like what the current situation looks like.

I would say… The results are “inconclusive” whether NASA is covering anything up, but I lean toward “NASA is not covering anything up.”

The point of all that was actually to point out that “inconclusive” is a big word in the scientific community, and one that is used often because no one wants to say anything “conclusively” and then be proven wrong. Reluctance, caution, and skepticism are critical to science; there is no other group in the world as single-mindedly dedicated to skepticism as scientific communities. They are conservative, hesitant, and often incredulous.

When the Higgs Boson was predicted to exist in tandem with the Higgs Field that interacted with energy and gave matter mass, the underlying math and science were solid, but we had no evidence that the particle existed. CERN went into action and began collecting data. The average person probably can’t appreciate it, but CERN did not declare that they had found the Higgs Boson with the very first piece of evidence; they compiled overwhelming amounts of evidence, and then made the announcement. When LIGO detected gravity waves, the same thing happened; scientists did not proclaim victory at the first piece of evidence. They waited, verified, checked, and rechecked, and then they made the announcement.

Now people who are part of that very same reluctant, skeptical, and cautious community are saying that we have found something that they cannot explain in any other way than “it came from an extraterrestrial intelligence.” That is not a claim to be made lightly, and it speaks to our scientific ignorance. There is every possibility that it’s simply some astronomical phenomenon we have never observed before. It was, after all, only recently that we discovered gravity waves–an astronomical phenomenon that we had never observed before. So there is every chance that this isn’t extraterrestrial intelligence.

But there’s also every chance that it is.


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