In this recording, Archimandrite Athanasios Mytilinaios (1927-2006), answers the question: “is there life on other planets?” “Sometime, they might be discovered. And then what? Are we going to blame the Holy Scripture? I just told you that the Holy Scripture does not exclude such a case. It just does not make any reference about it. The reason it does not make any reference is that it does not concern us.”
Audio source: “Catechism”, no. 41 (in Greek)
“Someone referred to the existence of men on other planets. Is this right since the Holy Scripture only refers to earth?”
Dear ones, pay attention!
Before anything, I will tell you that there are no intelligent beings in the universe. This is our conclusion.
It’s not right, however, from an interpretational standpoint, to say that, “because the Holy Scripture says nothing about it, thus there are no intelligent beings in the universe.” The Holy Scripture is interested in salvation on earth. If we assume—I emphasize—assume that there were other beings and there was no original sin, [meaning no] case of fall and [no] need for salvation… the Scripture says no such thing. Be careful, I am only making an assumption in order to emphasize that the Holy Scripture refers to our earth and everything that concerns our salvation, since this method was conceived during [previous] centuries and especially in European Medieval Times.[It is noteworthy that] we have our own Medieval Times; the Greek Medieval Times is the Byzantine Empire.
It does not mean that something that is not written is impossible to happen, to exist… for the reason I mentioned. This opinion [must be referring to the interpretational method at issue] has given birth to many controversies.
One would say what would be the problem if other beings also existed. All the better. Yet, they do not exist. A parable of Christ says, “And other sheep I have which are not of this fold.” (John 10:16) “I have other sheep” — these sheep are the gentiles. One, however, could say it is not just the gentiles, but it is the other beings on the other stars. Does it make sense? No, it does not. That’s one [such] example where science “collides with” religion.
Sometime, they might be discovered. And then what? Are we going to blame the Holy Scripture? I just told you that the Holy Scripture does not exclude such a case. It just does not make any reference about it.
The reason it does not make any reference is that it does not concern [us].