Exossiologist Michael Schetsche predicts a civilization crisis if contact with extraterrestrials is made. In an interview with the news portal ntv.de, Schetsche explains what could happen if you first came into contact with such aliens on our planet.
First, he warns that if the contact were made, the response on Earth would depend on the distance the signal would reach our planet. “If it comes from a star system 10,000 light years away, that obviously also means that the signal has traveled 10,000 years. So he was sent at a time when there was no high human civilization. Or maybe the civilization that sent him doesn’t exist anymore. “
You also can’t talk over that distance. After all, a dialogue that takes 20,000 years to answer would be very slow. “So it would be in the case of maximum irrelevance,” says Schetsche.
New religious cults would arise
It would be different if the signal came from a distance of 40 light years. On Earth, we should then ask ourselves two questions: “The first is: can you have a dialogue? From this distance, it would take about 80 years for an answer. But maybe that’s how it works. The second question is: can we go there at all? Or maybe others can come to us? It makes everything more exciting, ”says the sociologist.
Schetche estimates that if such a discovery is made, many people will become more interested in astronomical and philosophical questions. He also believes that the emergence of new religious cults is possible. Otherwise, it would not significantly affect people’s daily life initially.
It was different in science and technology. “That would certainly give a lot of impetus to space travel,” says Schetsche. According to his assessment, there would be competing projects around the world in terms of contact with extraterrestrials. I do not expect a positive “welding” effect.
Foreign footprints found in our solar system “most likely”
The consequences on Earth would be different again if extraterrestrial artifacts were found on Earth that prove that aliens are ready in our solar system. “The artifact scenario is to find something in our solar system, such as the moon or the asteroid belt, that is man-made, not man-made. I think this scenario is the most likely. ”
Schetsche believes that the artifact scenario is problematic for two reasons. “First, the cultural impact is greater because the find means the extraterrestrials have already been here. This would prove that interstellar distances can be bridged and we would have to expect that the aliens would return one day, explains the sociologist.
Such a find would also raise questions as to whether aliens are still watching us, and whether there are other probes that we haven’t found yet. “It can also create a diffuse threat,” concludes the scientist.
Schetsche believes that the actual scenario of an encounter with extraterrestrials would certainly have religious implications. “My prediction is very clear: when that happens, the first thing that will appear will be religious cults. Namely, two kinds of religious cults. Some argue that the extraterrestrials are a divine force that we should worship, and others say that they are the messengers of the devil that we definitely should destroy. And in between, the Catholic Church, which discusses whether extraterrestrials can be baptized. “
The arrival of aliens on Earth would be bad for humanity
According to the scientist, the arrival of aliens to Earth would have negative consequences from the point of view of mass psychology. “With such asymmetric cultural contacts, where some are more advanced than others, there is always a logic of explorers and explorers. Then we would be the exposed ones.
Human history shows that 95 percent of asymmetric cultural contacts in the last 2,000 years have ended badly for those who have been discovered. There is even a thesis that extraterrestrial species that conduct interstellar space travel would always be aggressive, “because they come from predators, or hunters,” says the researcher. Some astrobiologists assume that civilization is always made of hunting animals, never of hunted game.
Schetsche assumes that soon people will become smarter in at least one area. “I think if there are extraterrestrial artifacts in our solar system, we will likely find them in the next 100 or 200 years,” predicts the sociologist. Until retirement, he lectured at the Institute of the Borderlands of Psychology and Mental Hygiene in Freiburg and at the Institute of Sociology of the University of Friborg
Scientists are now looking for extraterrestrial life with new high-performance telescopes such as the James Webb. With about 5,000 known planets outside the Milky Way, it is entirely possible that an intelligent civilization is among them.