Home > Science and Faith, World Views > Pioneer 10 – The Plaque

Pioneer 10 – The Plaque

In 1972 NASA launched Pioneer 10, the first spacecraft to escape our solar system. The spacecraft was equipped with a variety of scientific instruments, communications, and a plaque installed at the behest of Carl Sagan, a popular scientist and strong believer in Darwinian (random) evolution. The purpose of the plaque is to communicate information about the origin of the spacecraft to any distant intelligent life-forms who might just happen to discover the spacecraft.

For all its sophistication, the spacecraft is quite crude when compared to a human being. For example, it was designed and built to have a computing capacity sufficient to retain in its memory only five commands of a grand total of 222 possible commands – only slightly more complex than a primitive calculator and much less sophisticated than a 2 year old human. Compare that to the complexity and sophistication of our brains, which can store innumerable commands, can learn, and even heal.

The spacecraft also was designed and built with several camera-like instruments for measuring different specific physical parameters. In spite of its sophistication, each of these instruments is significantly less sophisticated than comparable human sensors for seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, and feeling.

It is ironic indeed that Carl Sagan would simply assume that any advanced life form encountering the spacecraft would automatically know it was the product of intelligent design and creation, not the result of random evolutionary development in space! After all, Carl Sagan was an extremely intelligent being who believed in humans being the product of random evolutionary development. So why wouldn’t the discoverer of Pioneer 10 also assume the same about the spacecraft?

Given how complex, elegant, and sophisticated the human body is compared to this spacecraft, is it really logical to think that the human body evolved from nothing as a result of purely random events – when one intuitively knows that Pioneer 10 did not and could not have done so? Perhaps the human body is not the result of random Darwinian evolution? Could it be?

All is not as it looks.


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