Friday, January 2, 2015

Would You Baptize an Extraterrestrial?


Religion versus science may be one of the most polarizing topics of our time, and both are addressed with wisdom, wit, and insight in the book Would You Baptize an Extraterrestrial?  

Authors Guy Consolmagno and Paul Mueller are American Jesuit planetary scientists for the Vatican Observatory, the official astronomical research institute of the Catholic Church. In fact, the institute is located at the pope's summer residence in Castel Gandolfo, Italy. With their official duties, scientific knowledge and the right to brag about their neighbor, Consolmagno and Mueller are in a unique niche occupation that provides interesting experiences - and lots of questions from the public.

It's a fascinating read that plays out under the umbrella of a bigger question: "Can Christian faith and science go hand in hand?"  With refreshing common sense, Consolmagno and Mueller make it clear that it is possible to embrace both. 

The book is written in the form of a dialogue between the two authors. Topics vary, but all stem from questions asked "all the time" in their line of work. No question is static or one dimensional and the authors take the time to dig deep and expand the discussions on the various topics in thought provoking discourse. Contradictions between Biblical accounts and scientific data are discussed openly and reasonably. Each well-considered response made this book all the more enjoyable. The reader can't help but deeply ponder their own opinions.

So, would the authors baptize an extraterrestrial? You'll have to investigate that topic yourself; but never fear! Consolmagno and Mueller will easily convince you that research and faith go together nicely.

[I received this book free, from the Blogging for Books program, in exchange for my honest review. And buddy, I always give it. ]

25 comments:

  1. Good morning, dear Cherdo!

    Thank you for bringing this up. One of the most commonly misheard lines of dialogue occurs in a hit movie about an extraterrestrial:

    Michael: [walks in Elliot's room and sees E.T. in a dress; he chuckles] What's all this shit?
    E.T.: E.T. phone home.
    Michael: [astonished] My God, he's talking now.
    E.T.: Home.
    Elliot: E.T. phone home?
    E.T.: [points to window] E.T. phone home.

    What the little dude was actually saying was "Phone ROME!"

    If that book can bridge the gap between science and religion then it must be a great one. Thank you for the review, dear friend, and have a safe and happy weekend!

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    1. Phone. Rome. Who knew? Shady did!

      Seriously, you'd really like this book. It is impressive and I really have a lot of respect for the skillful way these guys handle the topics. They are as reasonable as they are intelligent. I don't see too many books that fuse the topic so adeptly. This is probably my favorite read in a long time (and I read a ton).

      Well, dude - I'm off and running! Company coming in an hour and OH MY GOSH, WHO DIDN'T CLEAN THE KITCHEN?? It must have been aliens messing with my stuff during the night.

      Be well and we'll yak later, pal.

      Delete
    2. << Phone. Rome. Who knew? Shady did! >>

      I think E.T. wanted to get a ruling from the Vatican on cross-dressing.

      << Company coming in an hour >>

      Company? What's that like? :)

      Delete
    3. It's like your house...but tolerable and welcome.

      Delete
    4. Shady would go to the baptism with pool toys, I'm almost sure of it.

      Delete
  2. Never thought about that, but it does make sense if we believe God created the universe. Of course the extraterrestrials are probably already discussing this about doing this for us?

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    1. If you get a chance to read that book, grab it. It was great. I gave a copy to our pastor. It's so sensible. I'll always say if a book is a dud, ha ha.

      Delete
  3. Cherdo, this looks very interesting. I'll have to look it up.

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  4. I am both religious and extremely logical and love science...it's never been a conflict for me. I may have to pick up this book...it sounds interesting!

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    1. That would be a description of me, also, CyborgMom. And I have no conflicts, either. But this was a good read!

      Delete
  5. Sounds like an interesting book.
    Happy New Year.

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  6. I love this. For a long time, the battle between science and faith has made me sad. People who discover I'm religious tend to think I also believe the world is 12 000 years old :P

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    1. It is the human tendency to focus on what divides us instead of what we have in common. My faith and science are not in conflict (I also don't believe the Bible is a "how-to" manual...I don't expect to see complete steps. And I'm okay with Big Bang...because I know who was the catalyst for the Bang!).

      You're good people, MD.

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  7. The world is flat,
    And I learned that
    From 'The Cat In The Hat'

    There ya go! Science and Religion put into bed together.

    Who needs a book with a bunch of pages to read? I did it in one 3-line verse.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

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    Replies
    1. You're the John the Baptist of the blogging world. Prepare ye the way...

      Delete
  8. Sounds like an interesting book.

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  9. Not before I'd found out whether the extraterrestrial in question could stand water. I don't think alien civilisation could be converted to Christianity - I suspect they worship the Black Hole in the centre of our galaxy.

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    Replies
    1. Oh, yeah...I remember the issue with water in "Signs" and you don't want to alienate an alien.

      Delete
  10. Of course E.T, can be baptized, confirmed and all that other stuff. If he/she/it wants to be, who are we to say no?

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Thanks for your personal yada, yada, yada,
Love, Cherdo