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Project SETI, or the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, began life as a government-funded project to eavesdrop on outer space in hopes of hearing encoded messages suggesting the presence of intelligent life.

After concluding it was wasting tens of millions of dollars, the government handed the project over to a privately funded research group.

SETI’s mission was to seek out intelligent life by distinguishing between blind chance patterns and intelligent information on the basis of highly specified selections. Consider that mission carefully. SETI’s assumption is that if it encounters a coded message – say, something like Morse Code – that is evidence of extra-terrestrial intelligent life.

SETI’s entire multimillion dollar mission revolves around that single scientific assumption. If the signal follows a pattern rather than blind chance, it means the signal bears evidence of intelligent design requiring follow-up investigation.

The assumption that random chance is distinguishable from intelligent design is one of those things that needs no further explanation. It is completely observable in our world.

An image of the Virgin Mary appearing in the grill marks of a grilled cheese sandwich is a case of random chance. A painting of the Virgin Mary is evidence of intelligent design.

In scientific jargon, a robot constructed of tiny microcomputers embedded in living tissue is called a cybernetic organism, or cyborg. Scientists have achieved various degrees of success in combining computer technology and biological tissue, but none have achieved by design anything close to the allegedly “random” collection of microcomputers and organic tissue that together make up a common housefly.

Someone smarter than me calculated the odds that amino acids would line up randomly to create the first hemoglobin protein as one in 10 to the 850th power. Moreover, the chance that DNA code could have randomly reached the required specificity for the DNA of a simple microorganism is something on the order of one chance in 10 to the 78,000th power.

In a book titled, “Signs of Life: The Language and Meanings of DNA” (Houghton Mifflin Co. New York NY, 1994), self-proclaimed atheist Robert Pollack writes:

The DNA language of the cell, and the way it is made manifest in protein, find parallels in the Greek, cursive Egyptian, and hieroglyphic Egyptian inscriptions found on the Rosetta Stone …

Once DNAs are read like books, whole new worlds of discourse will open up as we borrow from various disciplines involving textual analysis to interpret nature’s text. How does a cell read its DNA? Certainly with great precision and with greater fastidiousness than we can read and agree on the meaning of our books. Are cells reading, exactly, or are they merely decoding?

Explaining further, Pollack compares DNA with, of all examples, the Bible:

To see how different versions of a gene coexist, we can compare the text of the human genome to another ancient text, the New Testament. First set down in Greek, the NT has been translated and re-translated into English for the past five centuries. Each translation held great meaning for millions of faithful Christians. But though they are all the NT, each version is different …

Pollack concludes by extolling the brilliance of “nature” to have “created a manifest and multifaceted text,” which he terms a “new biology.”

Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them … For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse … Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools …

– Romans 1:19-20,22

Project SETI has its microphones pointed in the wrong direction.

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