First, I should say that I have no idea of the answer to this question, no one does, I believe, but it is an interesting one to explore. It allows us to reflect on ourselves and recalibrate our beliefs. It makes us think about our morality, our mortality and if everything around us is infact real and true. So, without further adeiu, is there a god?
What Is The Meaning Of It All?
Religion has been around for a long, long time. The earliest records of any semblance of religion come from over 5000 years ago. However, there were probably ancient religions developed by cave men tens of thousands of years ago. So, why do we do it? What is the meaning of it all? Religion is used to explain where we come from, to help organise societies and to rationalise the world around us. Today we have science to rationalise the world around us, explain where we come from and help in some ways to organise societies. But, maybe we shouldn’t be so quick to throw out religion. Some religions do a very good job of creating systems of morality. American style Christianity, despite its flaws, is the foundation for most Western nations today. And you know what, I think it does a pretty damn good job of it. Different (but similar) religions were developed by different humans, even when they were separated by thousands of miles. This suggests one of two things, either some sort of religion is real or, humans have a genetic predisposition to worship a higher power.
Aliens and the Wider Universe
Evolution creates hierarchies, survival of the fittest. Intelligent technologically advanced aliens would have to work together in groups to create civilisation, just like we humans have. Hierarchies would be created in these groups and a leader or leaders would be produced. They would also have a finite life span. Therefore, it is likely that they to would create religion, to consolidate power into some omnipitant god and to “know” what happens after death. So, did god create aliens as well? Is he and or she one? Or, (in many peoples opinion) did god create the universe with aliens and humans and other things? Or did he not do any of it? Who knows, they might even be here with us (probably not)! Heres a recent, completely unexplained one from an American f-18 fighter plane.
There you go, pretty weird!
Stories of spirits and ghost are ancient and permeate through almost all known religions. Only recently (in the last few hundred years) have people exposed many of these stories as fakes. Almost all encounters have rational explanations. Some include, the placebo effect, freak natural occurrences, our own senses failing us as well as various other causes. However, many remain unexplained! There are so many ghost stories. So maybe they are real, and if they are that would lend credence to many religions, including Christianity, Islam and Judaism. But, perhaps the initial blind faith in early religion thousands of years ago led to ghost stories and they then became interwoven into our culture, leading to more and more ghost stories. Or, ghosts may be real!
Simulations And Artificial Intelligence
The bible famously says, “man is made in the image of god” today, we are making AI’s and robots in the image of ourselves, trying to perfect the artificial brain. A popular theory today is that our universe is a computer simulation created by some higher beings. What are we then? Well, in this scenario, we would be artificial intelligences, and perhaps these creators (or gods) made us in the image of themselves. How the hell would our creators (AKA: our gods) contain us? Well, imagine you grew up chained to a wall in a cave. stuff and people move around outside casting shadows on the wall in-front of you. The sounds behind you and the shadows infront of you are your reality. Now, lets imagine that you break out of your chains one day, you’re 30 at this point. You go outside and everything there, the plants, the people and the animals are totally new and probably frightening to you, someone who doesn’t even know how to speak. So, you make your way back into the comfort of your cave and stay there. We are similar, this is our reality, we are used to it and we can’t get out, we are metaphorically “chained” to our universe. If we did, what we saw would be so weird, wonderful and foreign that you likely wouldn’t even want to be there and you would return to the comfort of your simulation. So, perhaps, our god is really some higher being running a computer simulation! Perhaps the god or gods in different religions are our programmers, just told in a different way. If you think about it, the initial passages of the bible are kind of like that. Or, maybe not.
if you want to find out more, this video explains it well:
Near Death Experiences
You might have heard of near death experiences or events where someone actually does die and is revived. Many report seeing a light, a bright light. Some say that this is them entering heaven. However, we should examine this further. When people almost die, they are taken to the emergency room. You know whats in the ER, a big, bright, light. And if they are outside, there is the sun. And if there is no light, say if it happens at night, then releases of DMT (a hallucinogenic drug) in the brain may trigger the perception of a bright light. Lastly, if the patient is brain dead, they won’t report seeing any lights of any king. So, we can say pretty definitively that near death experiences aren’t a gate way to heaven.
Ok, Thats Great, But Which One is it?
Truth is, I have no idea. Anyone who tells you they do probably lying or wrong. The truth is, we could have been created by some omnipotent being or beings. We could be artificial intelligence in a simulation. We could have some sort of foreign alien gods. Maybe there is no god. Or, maybe something that we never could have imagined is out there. We will probably never know.