SETI ETI~Exoplanets: Historical Origins of An Idea

Robert Owen (
Fri, 01 Oct 1999 00:43:57 -0400

Another quotation from a series I am presenting to illustrate
that our current scientific SETI research, utilizing the best
electronic and computer technology of our time, is in fact
a pre-technological concept of natural philosophy dating
to antiquity, whose development coincides with the cultural
evolution of human society. [RMO]


           He, who through vast immensity can pierce
           See worlds on worlds compose one universe,
           Observe how system into system runs,
           What other planets circle other suns,
           What varied Being peoples every star,
           May tell why Heaven has made us as we are.

                      -Alexander Pope, "An Essay on Man"


    Pope began contemplating a new work on the relations
    of man, nature, and society in 1733 that would be a
    grand organization of human experience and intuition,
    but he was destined never to complete it. An Essay on
    Man (1733-34) was intended as an introductory book
    discussing basic concepts to be elaborated in a more
    comprehensive work.

Robert M. Owen
The Orion Institute
57 W. Morgan Street
Brevard, NC 28712-3659 USA

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