Singularities Make Me Nervous March 28, 2008Posted by Administrator in atheism, Creepiness, Cultural Pessimism, Death and Dying, Faith, Liberal self-loathing, Mechanistic Relativism.
Ray Kurzweil wants to live forever, and claims that he will be able to do so after the upcoming “singularity’ occurs. He states that soon, we will be able to replace most if not all of our organs, and then after that, digitally “download” our consciousnesses onto computers, so that in the event we keep ourselves downloaded, we can live forever. Currently, he takes over 180 vitamins a day to prolong his life (so damned many pills, he has to hire help to manage which pills to take when) and sees a Denver-area physician once a week for longevity treatments. This physician charges $6000 per visit.
Somehow, some way, we all yearn for the unreachable, the immortal, the divine. There is that impossible desire within each of us for that level of perfection that cannot be achieved here on earth.
Aquinas taught many. many moons ago that this yearning for a perfection that we cannot know from experience here on earth shows that there must in fact be a God; how else can we explain this inexplicable yearning?
Kurzweil feels this. But as a committed rationalist, he must pursue his arid vision of digital immortality, and he sinks ridiculous sums of money into that pursuit.
What a tragedy it shall be for the man when he finally does die, sees that the old Manichean dualism is but a sham and a freeway to waste and misery.
(The title comes from a Larry Niven novelette of the same label and can be found in his short story collection Tales of Known Space. I recommend it without reservation. A scientist thinks he has the secret to unlimited power by harnessing the potential found in a quantum black hole. Of course, the man loses control of the forces he is manipulating and they destroy him. A timeless tale. Kurzweil is re-living it as we speak.)