The Experience of Intercultural Dialogue in the Amazonian University UCSS-Nopoki and Its Implications for SETI

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Paolo Musso


In 2017 two Universities of Lima (Peru), the Universidad Católica Sedes Sapientiae (UCSS) and the Univer-sidad Femenina del Sagrado Corazón (UNIFÉ), presented a project called La Vida en el Universo: Su Origen, Su Natura-leza, Su Sentido (Life in the Universe: Its Origin, Its Nature, Its Meaning), which was awarded one of the six Oxford Templeton Visiting Fellowships to Latin America offered by Oxford University and the John Templeton Foundation. The core of the project was a one-week field research about the experience of intercultural dialogue, which is being developed in the last twelve years in the UCSS Amazonian branch of Atalaya (called UCSS-Nopoki), one of the few cases in the world (maybe uniquely fully successful) of a positive interaction between cultures with very different tech-nological levels, as, on one side, our Western civilizations and, on the other side, the Amazonian original peoples hav-ing their sons studying in Nopoki. In the present paper some significant results of this research will be presented, which question the widespread skepticism about the possibility of intercultural communication, generally based on the currently dominant philosophical relativism. Furthermore, with respect to a future contact with a hypothetical extraterrestrial civilization, this experience of interaction with the “otherness”—seen from both contexts, both from the Western and the Amazonian side—can serve as a model for possible communication. In the same way, this experi-ence of intercultural relationship should demonstrate that the interaction between different civilizations, if managed properly, can have a positive impact on each of them, also helping everyone to understand better our place in the con-text of both our particular history and the “Big History” of the Universe.

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