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Science, Religion, and the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence$
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David Wilkinson

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199680207

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199680207.001.0001

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Be Not so Positive

Be Not so Positive

Chapter:
(p.172) 11 Be Not so Positive
Source:
Science, Religion, and the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence
Author(s):

David Wilkinson

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199680207.003.0012

Taking as its title some advice from John Wesley on the question of the plurality of worlds, this concluding chapter brings together a number of themes from the book. First, it is suggested that SETI shares a great number of common themes with the religious quest—relationship, identity, purpose, fear, and salvation. Second, it is argued that SETI has great value for Christian theology in challenging an inherent anthropocentricty and expanding the religious imagination. Third, it is proposed that Christian theology has value for SETI in affirming its value, examining some of its assumptions, adding an ethical dimension, and making a contribution to a wider perspective.

Keywords:   religious motivation of SETI, cosmic loneliness, cosmic purpose, cosmic identity, cosmic vulnerability, cosmic salvation

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