Mi Yodeya is a question and answer site for those who base their lives on Jewish law and tradition and anyone interested in learning more. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Is there any reason that we couldn't believe in life on another planet somewhere? Is there any source that indicates to the contrary?

share|improve this question
Highly related:judaism.stackexchange.com/q/9197 – Fred Jul 24 '14 at 23:54
I realize you are asking for proof of negation, but I will just mention that in the book Thinking aloud, Rav Soloveitchik is recorded as saying alien life is definitely possible and that there may even be an Am Hanivchor for that planet! – user6591 Jul 25 '14 at 1:58
@Fred My question could really be taken as a subset of that question. But I don't think it's a dupe. – Y ez Jul 25 '14 at 3:09
Why doesn't the reference to the Sefer HaIkkarim stated there satisfy this question? – Yishai Jul 25 '14 at 13:21
I believe the Lubovitcher Rebbe said that bieng that Torah does not say otherwise it is certainly possible. But that there definatly is no Am Hanivchor for that planet. – mroll Jul 25 '14 at 13:55
up vote 3 down vote accepted

In the linked article, Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan sources and discusses opinions on both sides of the argument, bringing various proofs and questions.

Chasdai Crescas says aliens can exist, Yosef Albo said there cannot be any other beings with free will, apparently the only objection with believing in aliens centers around this issue of free will. Rabbi Kaplan also quotes the Seffer HaBris who took the middle road saying they exist, but do not have free will. Rabbi Kaplan goes on to say that the Zohar seems to support belief in extra terrestrial life.


share|improve this answer

The Sefer Hikrim brings his rebbe which held that there are no aliens. However the Sefer Hikrim himself argues and holds that there are aliens. He brings a proof from the possuk in Shoftim which says "oro mroz", which the gamera in Moed Katan (Rashi brings this) says roz is a star, and the passuk concludes "arur yoshveha" cursed are its inhabitants, clearly there is some form of life in space.

share|improve this answer
Do you know where in Sefer HaIkkrim this is said? – Yishai Aug 12 '14 at 23:31
Do we have any reason to think י.ש.ב. must apply to live things? – Double AA Aug 13 '14 at 0:07
More important (to me as the OP) is did his Rebbe have any source or indication? – Y ez Aug 13 '14 at 0:38
how is this a reason that we couldn't believe in aliens. – ray Aug 31 '15 at 16:05
@ray It's not. It's saying that there is no reason why we couldn't believe in aliens. – Daniel Aug 31 '15 at 17:29

To say that there cannot be other creations or life existing elsewhere in the universe would be placing a limitation on Hashem, which would be kefira (heresy).

share|improve this answer
The question isn't about whether there could be aliens. It's about whether we can believe that there are aliens. Of course God could create aliens just like he could create saber-tooth chickens – Daniel Sep 22 '14 at 22:43
are you suggesting if the possibility of life existing elsewhere became a reality there might be a prohibition against believing they exist? your comment makes no sense at all – Dude Sep 24 '14 at 0:03
The question is about believing that aliens exist right now. Not that they could exist at some unknown time in the future. – Daniel Sep 24 '14 at 0:06
my answer remains the same and is relevant. it will be more apparent when you stop getting hung up on using the word "belief" – Dude Sep 29 '14 at 2:22
No, it's not relevant. It's a question of what could be vs. what is. You say that God can create aliens. I agree. But maybe he didn't create aliens even though he could – Daniel Sep 29 '14 at 19:29

protected by Shmuel Brin Aug 20 '14 at 1:40

Thank you for your interest in this question. Because it has attracted low-quality or spam answers that had to be removed, posting an answer now requires 10 reputation on this site (the association bonus does not count).

Would you like to answer one of these unanswered questions instead?

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.