Gazing in the mirror . . .
Not yet having received Mac’s book, nevertheless, I am aware of his basic theory thanks to Nick Redfern’s excellent review (“hat tip” to Nick – a Mac-ism if ever there was one).
Over the years I’ve often wondered if homo sapiens really is at the top of the Earth’s intelligence food chain. The only measure of intelligence we have or are willing to use is . . . us. So we define intelligence as tool making and tool using (i.e., capable of technology), able to adapt to and exploit a wide variety of environments, and able to communicate (although a large portion of the animal kingdom seems to do that very well – from hummingbirds to whales). We also throw in such things as creating art and feeling grief, again traits we share with other creatures. So, given our anthropocentric definition of intelligence, nobody else on the planet quite measures up.
I find this a fundamental flaw in almost all belief systems about extraterrestrials. We’re looking for duplicates of ourselves in everything from SETI to the disclosure movement. We believe ETs must somehow reflect us (our universal gold standard), so we ascribe to them our motivations for behaviors that on the surface seem to match our own (e.g., sample collection, breeding, etc.). However, “alien” means not like us – different; strange.
Putting aside whether or not an ancient cryptoterrestrial race exists, what if at least some UFO encounters represent true extraterrestrial visitations? Which brings up the eternal question, if they come here why don’t they want to meet us? Maybe it’s because they’re already regularly interacting with the intelligent beings on this planet. And what if these beings might not be a hypothetical cryptoterrestrial race, but rather some well-known and familiar species we believe inferior to us? Think about that the next time you step on a bug.