I think these're the options:
1) No life elsewhere (unlikely, right?)
2) No intelligent life elsewhere (again, seems unlikely)
3) They don't consider contacting us (on an open basis at least) important
4) We haven't met yet because of (unspecified) obstacles preventing it
I think most people go with 4, but this thread is centered on 3.
I usually go with 3, but 4 is possible too. Maybe life is very uncommon and intelligent life even more uncommon, so the nearest intelligent life is
too far away. Maybe there's no potential form of interstellar travel that's fast enough. Maybe what we have on the drawing board, like nuclear
propulsion, is the best there'll ever be. And maybe it's very hard to get it. Maybe civilizations commonly become extinct before they reach that
To me option 4 is depressing, but it doesn't have to be, I guess. Maybe we're one of the first intelligent species to emerge. Maybe there's millions
more to follow and they'll all be near each other. Further, maybe there's a method of propulsion that can allow us to travel between the stars so fast
that we'll be able to travel between the galaxies someday? Option 4 doesn't have to mean the universe is empty of life and/or so challenging we'll
always be struggling to find life elsewhere. And in that regard, option 3 isn't much better if every intelligent lifeform is either too inferior or
Option 3 is weird, though. If every intelligent lifeform is so much more powerful than the next, when will they ever get a chance to meet equals? It'd
be very lonely if you could only either meet ants or gods.
Take Earth, for example. We do at least have monkeys and dolphins and magpies and elephants and other creatures. It's not just ants. But where're the
demi-gods? Either way, there're no EQUALS, but there's overlapping going on. We can see this clearly, especially in monkeys.
edit on 9-6-2014
by jonnywhite because: (no reason given)