A possible solution to The Fermi Paradox
The Fermi paradox
is the apparent contradiction between high estimates of the probability of the existence of extraterrestrial civilizations and the lack of evidence for, or contact with, such civilizations.
For me, anyway, this is a fantastic philosophical question, great for giving the brain a good workout as there are so many different angles you can take it.
Obviously there's no RIGHT answer, but here's my current thinking on this...
- It's reasonable to assume that evolution on our planet is normal, if our planet is an average planet, orbiting an average star, in an average galaxy, we have reason to doubt this.
- So I think it's also reasonable to assume that on other similarly-sized planets that when intelligent life does evolve, it would do so at one particular spot on the planet.
- Those intelligent beings would relatively early on in their evolution develop the ability to travel long distances and then begin to spread out, migrate across the planet.
- This then creates the opportunity for distinct groups to begin to develop independently of one another, and thus in an asynchronous way.
- Some groups will advance quicker than others, whether it be due to weather, availability of natural resources, etc.
- If you fast forward several thousands years, you end up with (a) groups of intelligent beings that have really advanced technologies, potentially including technologies that in the wrong hands could spell existential risks (Nuclear Weapons, Nanotechnology, etc), living alongside (b) groups of intelligent beings that still believe in ancient mythologies, and believe that their worldview is the absolute truth and that anyone who does NOT share their view (including those in group (a)) should be destroyed.
- Once group (b) gets a hold of the technologies created by group (a), in their attempt to follow their beliefs & mythologies they end up wiping out the entire planet, and voila... We see no signs of intelligent life in the cosmos....
I'd love to hear some comments, am I totally offbase or it is reasonable to assume that this is not only a possibility, but perhaps a distinct probability and almost a universal challenge?
Next Question: Is there ANYTHING that can be done to get all of humanity on the same page in terms of what it will take to allow our species to escape this possibility...