The Truth is Out There. By Jose Jason L. Chancoco

(Transcribed from the Philippine Panorama, January 05, 2003)

The Truth Is Out There.  By Jose Jason L. Chancoco                                                                                                    

On the night of September 3, 2000 at 7:30 p.m., Antonio Israel awoke from his nap in his home in Pamplona, Las Piñas and peeped through his window’s venetian blinds to look at the night sky.  He observed an “unusually bright crescent moon flanked by two red-orange lights that seemed like big stars.” The objects suddenly started moving in a manner not suggestive of shooting stars, comets or aircraft.  He then told his mother about it and took his entire family outside for a clearer view, only to be joined in by their neighbors who also happened to see the bizarre display.

Armed with his 1998 Sony Handycam 220x (magnification 0-lux with night shot), he recorded the spectacle that became even more strange as two other “stars” joined in after flying in formation. One of the disc-like objects even came closer.  He captured 30 minutes of these sightings.

None of the people from PAGASA, who saw the film in Israel’s house, could determine the nature of the balls of fire.  A team from the UN Global Program for the Integration of Public Administration and Science of Disasters looked at the video.

Sightings have been reported around the world since World War II.  Some of these were hoaxes while some were utterly unexplainable.  Witnesses were either in groups or solo.  There were various explanations.  Some said they were caused by reflections of light while others theorized they were merely a collective psychological make up by people in hopeless scenarios such as wars.

In our case, the continuing depreciation of the peso, the maddening traffic and the menacing Abu Sayyaf are maybe causing this.

But then again, are we sure that life as we know it, has no analogy?

It was a British astronomer in the 1950s named Fred Hoyle who said that when Earth was created, its elements were mixed in the right proportions for life to emerge.  So far our probes into space only revealed that it is chaotic and very much inhospitable to life.  But our galaxy alone has 100,000 million stars and other bodies, so we can’t really deduce there is no civilization out there.  Many scientists even believe the possibility of life existing in at least three of them.

Mars for example, can’t even be considered a closed case.  This planet has many different environments and one of them could yield bacteria-like organisms. 

Jupiter’s moon, Europa and Saturn’s largest satellite, Titan may also harbor microscopic life.  Explorations show that underneath Europa’s outer shell, which has neither oxygen nor light, is a body of liquid which may be water.  The same with Titan that may imitate anaerobic places on Earth’s seabed that holds primitive life.

On October 1992, NASA launched the search for extra-terrestrial intelligence (SETI).  This $100-million 10-year program has two parts:  one aims for 1,000 specific stars; the other scans vast regions of the skies.  In the north, the world’s largest radio telescope at Aracibo in Puerto Rico, others at Greenbank, West Virginia and Goldstone in California’s Mojave Desert, explore the skies.  While in the south, we have Australia’s Parkes radio telescope.  A powerful computer that can differentiate signals naturally emitted in outer space from ones coming from possible intelligent civilizations analyzes results.

So far, no luck yet.  This might mean that we are alone so perhaps Mother Earth deserves a better treatment.


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