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Jewish Culture

Our Very Own Extraterrestrial Life

Moshe Unger
Posted 8/12/22

Imagine if in twenty years from now, we discover extraterrestrial intelligent life. The world would be ablaze with curiosity to find out about life on that remote planet.

Imagine that …

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Jewish Culture

Our Very Own Extraterrestrial Life


Imagine if in twenty years from now, we discover extraterrestrial intelligent life. The world would be ablaze with curiosity to find out about life on that remote planet.

Imagine that after many years communication between them and us has been established and we are able to find out about their civilization and it turns out that they are different than us but still quite similar. Their food and body structure are different, their entertainment and culture are vastly different, but they are also pleasure-seeking beings, envious and competitive and at the same time generous and ideological, like us. Above all, we are able to communicate with them and we are able to read their literature and they are able to read ours.

Now, imagine that even after the many communications and interactions, there’s still something about them that we can’t grasp. In every interaction we see our differences. Somehow, they laugh at things we don’t find funny, and they cry at times, and we can’t figure out why. They process information differently and they see things more abstract than we do.

We can communicate and cooperate with them seamlessly but there’s still an element of mystery that we simply can’t figure out.

I believe that this kind of experience happens with each one of us, as I’ll explain.

Each one of us is unique. We all have unique backgrounds, life experiences, and emotional compositions. Two people can agree 100% on a subject but still they view it differently ever so slightly. They can see it in a slightly different context, with different emotional attachment, or with different amounts of knowledge on the subject.

We can have a conversation with a friend, we share thoughts, feelings, and experiences, and we both go away from the conversation viewing the conversation differently. Even as we are having a shared experience, we still experience it slightly different.

For example, the same conversation can be more meaningful to me because I had a difficult day yesterday, or the subject is of special interest because of a past life experience, or this particular person is a bit of a nudge and I had to overcome my negative feelings about them. And on the other side, my friend might have had something on their mind, so his head wasn’t so much into the conversation, or she got embarrassed yesterday by someone and this conversation was a kind of comfort to her, or for him the subject is useful for a project he is working on and for me not.

These are just examples of course. The truth is that this happens with every encounter and with our entire existence. It’s as if each one of us are living in our own universe. We are able to interact with people of other universes, we can even understand each other, but not fully. There’s always some gap that we can’t bridge.

Each human being is an entire world for themselves. Just as we are unique, other people are also unique. We have our unique concerns, goals, our own circle of family and friends, our own pleasures and pains, our own thoughts and ideas, etc. Our friend also has this unique set of experiences and our neighbor also and so on.

You can make an exercise and try to imagine “what it would be like” to be that other person. What would it be like to have that kind of character traits, behaviors, family members, and even what would it be like to have the face of that person!

I’m not saying I’m thinking this way always, but I realized that the more I think about it the more I come to appreciate other people.

That’s why I wanted to share this with you!



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