Dawkins: will aliens answer an evolutionary ‘big question’?

For decades, creationists have been challenging evolutionary theorists to explain how sexual reproduction could possibly have arisen through evolution.

Evolutionists have sometimes sought to answer by showing its genetic advantages for populations—but that does not begin to address its alleged evolutionary origin. After all, many creatures do fine by reproducing asexually.


Now notorious antitheist Richard Dawkins has admitted that for an evolutionary biologist like himself, sexual reproduction is indeed "one of the great unanswered questions of evolution".

The topic arose as he was speculating about "what other [i.e. alien] life might be like". Dawkins indicated we have no reason to think that such aliens would necessarily reproduce sexually.

He considers it "likely" that alien life exists, and says studying it could help us understand how the two-gender system on earth evolved. Such aliens might have more than two genders, he thinks, or indeed none at all.

Why does he think aliens probable? If we are indeed alone, he says, then the origin of life on earth was a "staggeringly improbable event"—and scientists looking for a way to explain this (chemicals-to-life) would then be looking for an "exceedingly implausible theory".

Well, yes; just as the evidence has long indicated.

O'Callaghan, J., Do ALIENS hold the key...?,, 23 September 2014.

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