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Are Aliens Real? Debunking the Myths and Misconceptions

Are Aliens Real?
Are aliens real? Do they really exist? Or are they just a fragment of our imagination? Let us ponder upon this debatable question, which has intrigued human beings for a long time.
Batul Nafisa Baxamusa
Last Updated: Jan 29, 2018
Unidentified flying object
After watching a rerun of 'The X-Files', Kelly and her friends started discussing whether aliens are real or not. Stacy was adamant that they are real and living right among us. They wear human skin and behave like humans. Hence they remain undetected, she thought. According to her, they want to take over our planet and carry out mass extermination of the human race. Alicia said that the government knows all about aliens and is keeping mum. "How can one forget about the 'Area 51' aliens?", she said. They are here to abduct humans and do experiments to find a cure for cancer and help end global warming! "My god girls," said Kelly, "I see that your imagination surely runs wild and there is no end to your juicy speculations." She further added, "There are no aliens and whatever you read about them in the newspapers is just a gimmick to make people buy the newspapers. Besides that, the government cannot risk the lives of a billion people." "X-files and Independence Day are just fragments of imagination of some wise geek to cash in on the rumor about the existence of aliens", was Kelly's closing statement as she went to the washroom.

Kelly locked the washroom door behind her and walked to the wash basin. She looked at herself in the mirror and thought they should never know her true identity. "I am on a mission and cannot blow the lid off from my alias as a human. The High Controller will banish me to the inhospitable and dangerous terrain of Zork-Ibla," she said to herself. Kelly removed her powder case from her purse and below the powder pack, was a tiny gadget with little lights. It was her transmitter to the mother ship with which she sent all the information collected, about the weak and selfish human race.

What are Aliens? The piece you just read, was a fragment of imagination that revolves around aliens and ponders over their existence. Let me ask you a question. When you think of aliens, what comes to your mind? Do you think of them as little blue creatures with extra limbs and little antennas over their heads, or some giant insects who could suck the breath out of you? Whatever plunge your imagination takes, the topic of the possibility of life outside our planet has intrigued humans since times unknown.

The Oxford dictionary defines aliens as beings from the other world, extraterrestrial. Whatever image we have of aliens in our mind is due to media influence. Life on some other habitable planet could be as varied as on earth. There could be life forms as tiny as some micro-organisms or as large as giant dinosaurs. Without solid evidence, we can only speculate about their appearances.

Historical References
History is full of references about extraterrestrial life. The Ezekiel Wheel in the Bible is seen by many as an indication of life outside our planet. In fact, there have been many instances of the sightings of Unidentified Flying Objects (UFOs), which are supposed to be the vehicles carrying aliens, throughout the world. Many people believe that the painting by Aert De Gelder, called 'The Baptism of Christ', depicts a disk-shaped object in the sky. This object is believed to be a UFO. Ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics are said to have coded alien information. Aliens have been a subject of mystery for several centuries now and have been mentioned in scriptures of many religions. There have been many references of them in civilizations of countries like India, China, Babylon, South America and Arabia.

Scientific Findings Scientists have published many theories regarding the possibility of life on planets far off in the galaxy. They argued that the universe is far too huge and it is very unlikely that only our planet can support life. There must be other planets which support life but are unknown to us. Many believe that we are often visited by aliens and that they are far more advanced than us. But there is no concrete proof or evidence to validate the existence of aliens.

One of the foremost organizations working on extraterrestrial life is SETI or the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence. For a long time it's work was funded by the US government but now it is funded by private foundations. Scientist Carl Sagan was an enthusiastic promoter and believer of the presence of life outside Earth. He propagated the belief that there is existence of microbial life throughout the universe. Frank Drake, founder of SETI, is another scientist who has devoted his life to establish the presence of extra-terrestrial life.

Many other research projects have been and are still being carried out to collect evidence of life outside earth. In fact, Bruno D'Argenio and Giuseppe Geraci have found evidence of microbial life in 4.5 billion-year-old meteorites. When the DNA of those bacteria was analyzed, it was found to be unlike any other DNA found on earth. In another instance, NASA discovered microbial evidence on a meteorite from Mars which proves that at some point microbial life must have existed on Mars.

Some Interesting Facts About Aliens and UFOs
  •  In July 1947, a UFO carrying extraterrestrial beings was reported to have crashed in Roswell, Mexico. Later it was dismissed by the United States Armed Forces as a high-altitude surveillance balloon.
  • Former US President Jimmy Carter has been reported to have come across a UFO sighting. Sometimes, he has also been referred to as UFO-President!
  • On an average, 70,000 instances of UFO sightings are reported every year and ironically, none of the UFOs are detected on radar while entering the Earth's atmosphere.
  • Many UFO proponents believe that an actual UFO with aliens was found in Roswell and that, it was covered up by the army. The Roswell UFO incident is one of the most publicized and controversial UFO crash incidents. 
Just as there are people who support the theory of life outside earth, there are others who think of it as a far-fetched idea. They argue, if there is intelligent life outside earth, why have we not been able to get any concrete evidence till date? So, unless and until we have solid evidence about the existence of aliens, we can never be sure if they are real.
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