Evolution Speeds Up (Part IV)

Oct 24 2010

From a physical point of view, everything that has ever happened, and will happen in the universe, is a part of evolution. It begins long before life appears, with the formation of stars and galaxies. To keep it short, Mr. Kurzweil introduced me to his logarithmic plots. I quickly absorbed the ideas of his book. Accelerating returns of evolution. Technology is a craft and a survival tool for humans. Luddites are groups of people who don’t adapt. The implications of the ideas were more profound on a philosophical point of view. It seems that each step of evolution only fixes the mistakes of the previous step. This is well supported by the book. Biological machinery can only be controlled by nanorobots. Nanorobots can turn the entire planet into a gray goo within hours unless there is artificial intelligence. So each step seems to be a step back, not only in the sense of fixing things, but also a reunion with the intelligence of the universe.

This is the point where I decide that a new philosophy was needed. Gnosticism was good for accepting the world we live in, but it’s not deep enough for a foundation. A much better one came from Nietzche, whose philosophy is particularly relevant to the 20th century. He proposed that we live a nihilistic society where values were non-existent and had a philosophy for it. Human values change with technology, and they do so at an increasing rate. Nietzche, in Thus Spoke Zarathustra, writes about enduring values for humanity, or rather for the superman. The superman is the ideal human, who is fully developed. He has complete free will, and the implications of that are outlined in the book. Of course, free will implies that there are no errors in perception. Thus, part of the subtitle of the book is “for none”. Delusions are the human way of seeing the world. Yet, if humans are to survive at all, or rather evolve, as that is an imperative, they must become supermen. The superman is at the end of the development stage of the mind. Although I’m not certain of the meaning of the eternal recurrence, I like to think of it as a reunion of ourselves with the universe. In this sense, none of us will be left. Thus, the book is “for all”.

On the other hand, even the author of GEB wrote a book on French poet’s poem. There is always the other side. It is perhaps best expressed in Ape and Essence, human race heading towards apes, or already apes?

The singularity book had practical implications, as all changes in perception do. I started using the fastest browser at the time. A funny incident happened many times when IE and Firefox were disabled by the teacher, and I was still able to use a browser. Global warming was a hot topic at the time due to the Gore film. I seemed to be the only one in the class to see the impossibility of such an event as the sea waters rising a few meters, due to the growth of technology. Yet another result was Gothic literature being perceived as backwards, Luddite phenomenon. The stories we read in class all seemed to involve someone going insane. The study of the literature seemed to be an obsession with the craziest illusions. It’s kind of hard to write a Gothic short story when I have trouble taking on the perspective. At some point along the road, I dropped the ape side of the story.

Books read:

  1. 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea
  2. The Singularity is Near
  3. Intuition Book
  4. Second Book on Habits
  5. The Bible Code II
  6. Thus Spoke Zarathustra
  7. A Purposeful Book
  8. Ape and Essence
  9. Quantum Programming the Universe
  10. Accelerando

Next episode: initiation

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