[FoRK] Is the singularity now only 13 years distant?

Lion Kimbro <lionkimbro at gmail.com> on Fri Mar 30 14:02:42 PDT 2007

  I have fortunate occasion to talk with a man named Michael Dowd,
  who is indeed betting the proverbial farm, that humanity will transition
  to an evolutionary/cosmic worldview, (spirituality intact,) over the next
  (by his estimates) 30 years, or roughly the time for the generation that
  is 5 right now, to grow up.

  Unfortunately, I don't have the time I'd like to make his case, right now,
  but perhaps we can talk about this in a separate discussion by email,
  or phone, 206.427.2545, or something, if you're still interested.

  Very briefly:
  * Happy Feet, Night at the Museum, etc,., --
    the Evolutionary Story has solid background traction,
    which is the most important traction -- if it's in the foreground,
    that means it's being debated;  but it's not- it's in the background
    of these popular stories
  * Michael Dowd is a preacher, and he preaches evolution, and he
    says that he sees a LOT of interest from conservative opinion
    leaders, who are (silently, privately) puzzling out there approach
    here
  * People are talking about these things online, from all walks of life.
    Exposure to these other ways of thinking, and the discussion,
    and the questions of: "What is science, anyhow," and so on, are,
    I privately/personally perceive, on the ascendant, and, I also
    believe, will receive answers.  I think that the nature of the debate
    is fundamentally changed, and can't go backwards.
  * Islamic evangelists are pointing to Cosmic scenery (you can
   see it on YouTube) as evidence that the Koran is true.  Put to the
   side the question of the truth of the Koran-- note that they are using
   faraway galaxies to carry their point.  They will be very sympathetic
   to evolution, (those who aren't already-- I've heard Islamic arguments
   that the Koran predicts evolution) and long time spans when the time
   comes.  Again, you can see this all on YouTube.  Same with the
   Sikhs, and again:  The cosmic imagery comes back right at you.
   Over and over.  A religion that does NOT use it, is going to have
   problems looking "big."

  I think that the youth are, by and large, won over.  Those who are not
  will have a harder time asking the "beginner" questions, and not
  getting rebuked.  (For example, there won't be people who think
  that evolution literally means that your grandfather's grandfather was
  a monkey.)  The quality of the arguments is getting much more
  finer grained-- "Okay, is it microevolution, or macroevolution?"  This
  too me is a sign that people are getting the core message, (how the
  process works,) and are thus in a much better transition to the "next
  point."

  I think that spirituality has a bright future, and religions that adapt
  have a bright future.  I think it'll be much more liberalized.  I think the
  trend towards self-analysis will continue-- that is, much more of religion
  is now focused on psychology, and self-introspective life patterns, and
  so on-- the practice(s) mix well with just about every creed, and
  preachers are preaching it.

  So, I wouldn't rule out major changes in how people think about God
  and life in the next 30 years.  Athiests may even change, possibly
  becoming less negating / reactionary, and more constructive, in
  clumps.

  Sorry, this is a topic I'm really passionate about, and I'd love to
  point to greater evidence.  Presently, I collect these kinds of ideas
  and observations at:

    http://www.communitywiki.org/en/EvolutionarySpirituality

  It's crude, but grants a gist.

  It may take longer than, say, 30 years, in countries that are just
  now starting to communicate with technology and so on, but plausibly
  not even that:  If we're all on the same communications technology
  platform, it's hard to know what happens-- there is then the question
  of, "who *will* talk with whom?"  I don't have the answer to that.  If it's
  only evangelists pointing outward, ... Who knows how it will happen.

  Incidentally-- if anyone here knows how to get in contact with
  Ray Kurzweil, Michael Dowd is about to publish a book, and would
  REALLY APPRECIATE a quote from Ray Kurzweil for the book.  The book
  is very much in line with recent posts on KurzweilAI.net; For example,
  Ray's forward to The Intelligent Universe.  Michael's book
  is written for an audience that is much more traditionally religiously
  minded, but the message is the same.  (Michael even cites The
  Intelligent Universe, repeatedly.)  Does anyone know how to contact
  Ray, or his estate, or whatever authoritative cybercorporate body floats
  about his person?

  Take care,
    Lion =^_^=





On 3/30/07, Tom Higgins <tomhiggins at gmail.com> wrote:
> On 3/30/07, Stephen D. Williams <sdw at lig.net> wrote:
> > People are irrational however.  It's easily possible now - only held
> > back by intelligence and poor decisions.
>
> Yeah, tell that to Galileo, he can rattle on all to well about the gap
> between what CAN be understood and what WILL be accepted by the mass
> lumpen. Sure it gets better with age but how many years did it take
> for the "Church" to give it up on the Galileo thing? About 100 years
> to begin to agree they might be wrong and 350 years to apologize.
>
> Look around, we teeter on the blunt edges of global beliefs in
> invisible boogey men and holy crusades . We can not even study stem
> cells and their possibilities because Jesus told GW Bush and tons of
> Americans it is ethically wrong. We can not even  move on better fuel
> usage thanks to our tendency to be led by power structures and flashy
> marketing,
>
> Sure we may gain the knowing to control all manner of things even to
> the point of masking the  meat sacks that are behind it, thing is
> without the wisdom what we probably will get are better ways to
> coalesce power into the hands of a few (more so than now) or to be
> very flashy tools for the deists to make a fucking hell of things (
> more so than now)
>
> If you think in the next 13 years the mindset of the globe will change
> from this course I think you too are just a wafer short of a communion
> ritual.
>
> Please please please make it  be that I am wrong, I would like nothing
> better. Im not betting the farm on it though.
>
> -tomhiggins
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