Evidently, they’ve decided that (1) they actually have successfully cloned humans (wrong), (2) that this would be a good thing (wrong), and (3) that it would mean they’ve achieved eternal life (also wrong). According to yesterday’s press release from the Raelians, His Holiness Rael (remember, the guy who saw an alien in 1973 and started the Raelian movement) will “reveal how the latest research on memory transfer technology associated with human cloning is on the verge of changing our society forever by ridding humans of the ultimate disease: death.”
So far we just have everyday, run-of-the-mill pseudoscience, worthy of a few chuckles to the patrons of the Panda’s Thumb. Here’s what brings guffaws:
His Holiness Rael draws the exceptional accuracy of his scientific and humanitarian vision from the Message He received in 1973 from the Elohim, a very advanced race of human beings from a distant planet within our galaxy. The Elohim created all life on Earth scientifically using DNA (including humans in their image) and were mistaken for God, which explains why the name Elohim is present in all original Bibles. The Bible is, in fact, an atheist book describing the scientific creation of life on Earth. The new concept of "Intelligent Design" fits perfectly with this explanation of our origins.
The best part is, the “mainstream” intelligent design advocates really can’t logically object to the Raelian argument, even though you know they want to, deep down. After all, Intelligent Design advocates are always telling us that one cannot discover anything about the designer based on the design, and that aliens are an equally acceptable alternative.
If the aliens are super-advanced humans, so much the better. Just this possibility was pondered by Michael Behe in Darwin’s Black Box, although he added time-travel into the mix:
Perhaps, then, biochemists in the future will send back cells to the early earth that contain the information for the irreducibly complex structures we observe today. In this scenario humans can be their own aliens, their own advanced civilization. Of course, time travel leads to apparent paradoxes (things like grandsons shooting grandfathers before their offspring are born), but at least some physicists are ready to accept them. Most people, like me, will find these scenarios entirely unsatisfactory, but they are vailable [sic] for those who wish to avoid unpleasant theological implications. [Behe, <a href=""http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0684834936/>Darwin's Black Box</a>, pp. 249-250, 1996]
Or, we could just go with the mainstream scientific explanation for biological complexity.