(I’ve got a week filled with almost a dozen meetings, a sermon to write, a boarder moving in, Tom’s 4th birthday party, and a band practice. And I’ve got comments on this blog I’ve not had time to respond to yet. But this post will be short… ;P )
It’s a very real possibility (or a high probability) that at least some kind of life exists (or has existed – or will exist in the future) other than on earth. We’ve found evidence of liquid water in the history of Mars and that’s just H20, and just within our solar system. So it would seem to be hardly a surprise to find some kind of life, plant or animal – or something else? – in other place.
But how likely is intelligent life?
There’s no logical problem with it of course. S.E.T.I. scans space for signs of intelligence, communication, speech from any ‘others’ out there.
I’m hardly the first to say so, but considering a (conceptual) spectrum-of-intelligence, we ought not assume that we are at the highest end of the spectrum. However, there is an assumption that I think is reasonable. It is the assumption that: if we ever do come to know of life that is higher than us on this spectrum-of-intelligence, it would seem less likely that we would discover it (e.g. the movie Prometheus), but that it would discover us (e.g. War of the Worlds or Transformers).
Other possibilities include that it possibly has already discovered us, but would have reason to make itself known to us. Or possibly they are already trying to make themselves known to us, but our technology or techniques are not suited to pick up on their communication.
As an aside, it is also – at least logically – possible (though we rightly think it unlikely) that more-intelligent-than-us life is hiding out deep in the sea, deep underground, or just behind the sun. :)
So then, given that we know of no known, reputable communication from other physical life forms (get ready for spam in the comments!?), the options seem to be:
a1) communication is not possible between them and us due to insufficiency of technology and techniques.
a2) communication is not possible between them and us due to ‘them’ not even existing.
b) communication is not known by us due to our insufficient technology or techniques.
c) communication is not desired by them.