reply to post by Astyanax
So much... :-)
I'm not sure it is possible for anything to be smarter than a human being. The average intelligence of an alien species might be higher
than ours, but how much smarter than a Leonardo or an Einstein or a Gautama Buddha is it possible for any individual entity to be? We are the smartest
things we know of by a very long lead.
Where is that imagination of yours Astyanax? I am smarter than my cat. I say this with some confidence. You might want to argue - but since you don't
know my cat - you'll just have to take my word for it. Is it just my ego or vanity that needs to make me out to be smarter? I have no idea what my cat
thinks - about me, or himself - but I imagine that he's just less smart enough to not be able to comprehend how much less smart he really is
Still - he actually is smarter than me about some things - nature is funny like that. So there you go. How do we compare and rate intelligence?
If necessity is what drives us and also forms us, imagine an environment that required a special kind of intelligence to survive it. Imagine :-)
We're only now beginning to unravel the puzzle of our universe. What if the puzzle solvers down the street figured it out first because they
experienced, then understood it from a different angle?
And anyway, if not smarter, better educated and experienced would (almost) amount to the same thing.
If they're smart enough to get here - factoring in time and distance and all that - then, just sayin' - smarter than us.
About your examples - yes, cream of the crop for sure...but how is it not
possible to be smarter than any one of them? You say you're not sure
that it's possible - but I think you're grinning when you say it
Remember, nature teaches no moral lessons; there is nothing we can learn from her that would make us kinder, more compassionate, gentler or
more truthful. On the contrary, nature teaches us that moral scruples, admirable as they are, have neither meaning nor value in the grand scheme of
How is it we're here discussing morals at all then? :-)
What a useless word - for a non-essential thing. Benevolence is a figment of our imagination?
So - the humans are freaks. We are weird. We have needs and desires that feel real, that we value, that we treat as valuable. We name these things,
examine and work to maintain them - but nature has no need for them. We do - but nature doesn't
I wonder if it's possible that an alien race might possibly place even more importance on these things than we have - because of their unique
circumstances. Even if nature doesn't require them, sometimes survival does. Maybe that's what makes our hypothetical aliens smarter than us. Maybe
that's what makes them (hypothetically) nicer
I have not noticed that intelligent people are, on the whole, morally superior to unintelligent ones. Their ethics may be more advanced or
sophisticated, but that doesn't necessarily translate into better behaviour
True - we're as good as mink to trappers then
I don't see how selective pressure could drive us in such a direction. Biological evolution is the ultimate in selfish processes.
Cultural evolution might do it, but it might just as well push us the other way. There's no telling.
How is cultural evolution separate from biological evolution? If it's all about survival then any way we look at it selection happens one way or
another - all towards surviving. I honestly don't see how we can talk about one without including the other - especially when it comes to people
We would never stand for it. Our alien keepers would get their hands bitten mighty fast.
I didn't mean they would keep us. I meant they might tend us - and we might not ever even know. Just as the elephants (probably) don't know. How can
we bite what we can't see? Alien conservationists - in my fantasy :-)
Nonsense. We would fight them tooth and nail, and since it is our world not theirs, we would stand a very good chance of winning. Short of
complete annihilation, of course; but I imagine that would greatly complicate whatever plans they might have for us or our planet.
We would fight them if we can. But if they're more advanced they might be able to take us out before we understand we're even under attack
Either way, peaceful or not, if they get here first before we can get out to meet them we'll be at a disadvantage. I don't assume they'll be hostile -
but I have to admit - they could be. Like I said - as long as I'm guessing I'm gonna guess nice. We can't work out a defense against something we
don't even understand. We're still trying to work out a defense against the bird flu
Maybe that's them right there :-)
edit on 4/21/2013 by Spiramirabilis because: too many words
edit on 4/21/2013 by
Spiramirabilis because: and still to many