Adjunct Professor of Systematic Theology at Holy Apostles College and Seminary, CT, Dr. Joel L. Parkyn, has had a lifelong interest in UFOs. He joined host Ian Punnett (Twitter) to address how Christianity would contend with a future reality of alien intelligence. According to Parkyn, there's a presumption that our sacraments would be applicable to extraterrestrials. "The purpose of baptism in the Christian tradition is to remove what we call original sin... there's an assumption that would be applicable to them because they're also under the effects of original sin, and that's not necessarily the case," he explained. We do not know if we share the same economy of salvation with ETs and so our concepts of God and theology are merely projections (for extraterrestrials), Parkyn added.
"We shouldn't presume that they would have these things whatsoever — they may have a religion, they could have theologies within that religion, but not necessarily any of the structure that we're familiar with in our own earthly religious systems, including the sacraments," he continued. Also, the superiority of an alien religion or theology, or even their social advancements, does not negate human faith traditions, Parkyn suggested. "You can have a supernatural religion which is earthbound which is for humans, and you can have an equally valid supernatural religion for ETs," he said, pointing out in no way does this create a problem for Christians or delegitimize their religion. Parkyn commented on disclosure which he does not think will come in the form of a public UFO landing. He theorized there would be a powerful effect on theology if we merely found evidence of animal or plant life on another planet. It would allow humanity to adjust to the idea of a second Genesis of other intelligent life forms in the universe, he noted.
In the first hour, author and music historian Harvey Kubernik discussed the remarkable life of the late singer, Meat Loaf. Kubernik recalled receiving a phone call from a record executive at Cleveland International Records (the label which released "Bat Out of Hell" in 1977) asking if he'd prepare an artist package for Meat Loaf. He agreed to do the work in exchange for a gold record should the album ever receive one (it did and went on to sell over 43 million copies worldwide). Kubernik described first hearing "Bat Out of Hell," which he thought sounded colossal, bombastic, and operatic, noting in particular the unique Broadway-trained sound of the singer and remarkable compositions of Jim Steinman.
"Meat Loaf was a football player that had some common touch with people... there was something different going on here," he suggested, adding Meat Loaf worked so hard during his live performances that there were banks of oxygen tanks on the sides of the stage for him. Kubernik also commented on how atypical Meat Loaf's image was compared to other pop and rock stars of the day, especially given that he emerged from the corporate music world. "People like Meat Loaf owned their physicality," he said.
During the show, Ian referenced a YouTube clip of Meat Loaf discussing being hijacked by the secret service and standing in the parking lot of Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas, on November 22, 1963, right after President Kennedy had been shot.