What are our rights and duties towards alien life? | Nature Updates

Very interesting article from Aeon covering a topic within my newfound obsession with “exophilosophy” (or exopolitics, or cosmopolitics – describe it how you wish). Save the absolute hubris in the below, the rest of the article at least takes a much needed philosophical approach to the subject, something refreshing in light of the short-sighted hardnosed scientism which prevails in its investigation and which lacks the phenomenological openness toward a “phenomenon” we simply cannot hope to understand without a more capacious sense of reality – nature – guiding the way.

None of this eliminates the possibility that alien life might discover us. But if NASA’s current timeline holds water, another civilisation has only a few more decades to get here before we claim the mantle of ‘discoverer’ rather than ‘discovered’. With every passing day, it grows more likely that ‘first contact’ will not take the form of an intellectual or moral back-and-forth between equals. It will be more like the discovery of a natural resource, and one we might be able to exploit.

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