C.S. Lewis on ETs and theology

From: Ted Davis (TDavis@messiah.edu)
Date: Mon Sep 22 2003 - 14:42:48 EDT

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    Several recent posts have dealt with the question of ETs in relation to
    Christian doctrine. Someone not on our list called attention to the
    following passage from C.S. Lewis, in just this connection. I offer it here
    with no further comment.


    C.S. Lewis, "Dogma and the Universe," in The Grand Miracle and Other
    Essays on Theology and Ethics from 'God in the Dock,' ed. by W. Hooper
    (New York: Ballantine Books, 1990), p. 14:

    "If we discover other bodies, they must be habitable or uninhabitable: and
    the odd thing is that both these hypotheses are used as grounds for
    rejecting Christianity. If the universe is teeming with life, this, we are
    told, reduces to absurdity the Christian claim--or what is thought to be
    Christian claim--that man is unique, and the Christian doctrine that to
    one planet God came down and was incarnate for us men and our salvation.
    If, on the other hand, the earth is really unique, then that proves that
    life is only an accidental by-product in the universe, and so again
    disproves our religion. Really, we are hard to please."

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