Does the credibility of our Faith depend on there being no life anywhere other than the planet Earth? See Methane on Mars: does it mean the Curiosity rover has found life? Some of the comments ask this very question, and are fascinating for this reason. I was asked this very question this evening by my singing teacher. My intuitive replay is that what is in the Bible is symbolic of a forgotten or unknown history of our beginnings. The Scriptures of the three monotheistic religions expound the myth of the creation in six days, Adam and Eve, the Fall, etc. Gnosticism has another narrative of Sophia and the emanation called the Demiurge, who would have been parallel with the cruel and bad-tempered Old Testament God Yahweh. I don’t know enough about the Hindu and Buddhist holy books, but I suspect that there are many convergences. The real facts about genesis history are forgotten, or were not passed on otherwise than in the form of symbolic myths. Not very long ago, I wrote a post on Original Sin and similar questions.
If it is proven that there is life on Mars, or there has been in the past, I would imagine that there is nothing to prevent us from speculating that there might be other genesis events on other planets. That doesn’t exclude the possibility of God. There is also the idea of multiverses existing in parallel so that different times can co-exist on the plan of eternity, like different radio frequencies – only one of which can be listened to at a time on a wireless set (now I’m being old-fashioned – perhaps it is the Imperial Home Service). We can’t prove any of this with materialistic science, except – perhaps – quantum physics about which I know just about nothing apart from a few articles, documentaries and fictional films.
If life is discovered somewhere else, perhaps this would debunk Fundamentalist religion, and good riddance! The Bible is obviously a part of Revelation and true in its own way with the right ways of reading it: historical, allegorical, tropological, symbolical, etc. But it isn’t the whole truth. Much of Revelation is also found in Traditions (the plural is deliberate), both inside and outside formal Christian Churches and other ancient world religions.
I don’t think a discovery of life on another planet would debunk Christ and his mission, but I keep an open mind and would welcome comments.