In the spring of 1993, NASA started a $100,000,000 program to scan every minute portion of the sky with radio telescopes. The goal was to locate any signals coming to earth from extraterrestrial life forms. Although congress killed the public funding for this effort, private funds are still being solicited in an effort to continue the search. How would we identify a signal as coming from an intelligent source? It would have to consist of a complex pattern with occasionally repeated segments which could not be generated by a formula or a natural cause. An example of a repeated complex pattern is any human language. The carrier of the sequence can be as varied as ink on paper, electro-magnetic signals in space, sound through air, or smoke signals in the sky. Whenever and wherever such a pattern is found it is proof of an intelligent originator. This is why a pilot flying over a deserted beach could immediately recognize a message for help spelled out in the alignment of rocks on the beach; even if he did not know the language in which the message was formed.The pattern itself would be immediately recognizable as having an intelligent source.
The series of simple repeated patterns emitted by rapidly rotating stars (quasars) are not evidence of intelligence because the sequence is too regular and contains no information. Random non-repeating patterns are merely noise and are also not evidence of intelligent origin. It is only when there is a complex pattern with occasionally repeated segments that an intelligent originator must have been involved. If such a pattern coming from outer space were discovered, it would be proof that we are not alone in our universe.
The primary motivation for the effort to find this pattern coming from a source outside of our solar system is philosophic, not scientific. If evidence of other life forms were found, it would be heralded as proof that life had developed elsewhere. In other words, given the right conditions… life could pop up anywhere. Yet there is not a shred of evidence that life exists anywhere else in the physical universe. Since the effort is philosophically rather than scientifically motivated, negative results are unlikely to change the opinion of the experimenters.
The same individuals who are willing to spend millions of taxpayer dollars in an effort to find such a pattern in electromagnetic signals from space are unwilling to acknowledge that the pattern, which is found in all living cells, came from an intelligent source. In our search for intelligent extraterrestrial life, why don’t we take our eyes off of the telescope and put them on the microscope? Inside of every living organism is a marvelous blueprint for life known as the DNA molecule. Guess what this organic molecule contains? A complex pattern with occasionally repeated segments which could not be easily generated by a formula or a natural cause!This isthe same evidence which scientists would immediately accept as proof of intelligent origin if found coming from outer space!
Why isn’t the coded sequence of the DNA molecule heralded as evidence of intelligent origin? Could it be that many scientists are blind to the evidence for supernatural design because they are presupposed to believe that an intelligent, creator God does not exist? Does peer pressure from the scientific community stop the open acknowledgment of this evidence for the divine origin of biological life? As the knowledge of our universe increases, do we have more or less reason to believe in it’s supernatural origin?