PadmaVonSamba wrote:After all, The Buddha explains that so much of what we experience is already a projection of the mind.
It reminds me of this wonderful but rather tired quote:
“Not only is the universe stranger than we imagine - it is stranger than we can imagine.”
― Arthur Stanley Eddington
It is when we attempt to imagine the strange and unimaginable that it becomes banal.
I think there must be a lot of other beings in space besides Earthlings. And, while it is rather unlikely that anyone would ever find our tiny planet in the relatively short time it has existed, much less, during the speck of time that humans have been here, some day some contact may occur. But I think it is much more likely that only some remnants
of our planet will ever be be discovered.
If you can imagine a tiny being (not unlike Horton Hears A Who) living on a grain of sand in the Sahara Desert, sending out a very, very faint radio signal, and that signal is the only indicator that the being is there, so there is barley even a chance that you would ever hear it, and you are on the other side of the world, and you go out on a journey, and completely at random, you happen to discover that particular grain of sand and you happen to see if there is a being living on it. There is a far greater chance of that happening than there is of beings from other planets finding the Earth. Possible/ yes, of course, but not likely. Add to that some kind of recognizable communication or technology, and while still possible, it is so unlikely that it is practically unmeasurable. But, yes, it is still possible. But if you compare that very unlikely possibility with a million other things which are far more likely to be the cause of UFO sightings, the odds are that the other possibilities are more likely.
But, what if, by sheer conjecture, you suggest possibilities that might change those odds?
What if, for example, Earth had already been colonized hundreds of thousands of years ago, so that aliens (assuming there are some) already knew about it, maybe even started life here as an experiment, and are basically just checking in on the results from time to time? Well, then that would certainly change the odds, and it would explain a whole lot of other things as well....Easter Island, Stone henge, etc. and so, this, "well, what if...?" strategy makes for a compelling argument, except for one thing, it's all based on conjecture. There is nothing to back it up. So, this kind of reasoning is useless. It doesn't seem useless at first, because it looks a whole lot like reasoning that is actually based on a known premise. Scientists use conjecture all the time, but they base their "what ifs" on known factors, not on imagined possibilities.
What interests me most, this being a Buddhist forum and all, is how the UFO & Alien phenomena relates to the notion of a 'self'. Why is it that we are uncomfortable when we don't have answers to things?
Why is an unlikely answer better than no answer?
How does this relate to ego?
Those are interesting topics.
An inward outlook develops outward insight.