Sunday, October 23, 2016

Rise of the Posthuman Technocracy

When Seth Lloyd, a professor of Quantum-Mechanical Engineering at MIT first suggested that the Universe was a giant, quantum computer, the notion garnered a few people’s attention. Lloyd believes that everything in the Universe is made up of chunks of information called ‘bits,’ disputable as a seeming extension of the materialistic view of the world where ‘stuff’ is all there is, with no ability for a sentient being to escape the Matrix. Those green, streaming numbers in the opening scene of the film, in fact, would account for everything if it were up to Lloyd, but he is not alone in assuming that we live in a Universe with such a limited description.
Nothing But Bits

There are purportedly a number of billionaires in Silicon Valley and elsewhere who are using Lloyd’s popularized view as a jumping board to develop technologies which would free us from a bit-made actuality – otherwise known as the computer simulation we collectively call the Matrix. Lloyd thinks that even atoms are made of ‘bits.’ If this were the case, then a simple reprogramming of the 1’s and 0’s ought to give us an innumerable number of options, but even a quantum computer has limitations.

Mathematician, Peter Shor was able to show that a quantum computer can solve some of the most impossible problems in nanoseconds, but just like Artificial Intelligence, you can’t fake real experience and sentient reality. More importantly, what are the implications of giving ‘the machines’ power over our lives, even if some of them have made redundant activities less bothersome?

Ray Kurzweil once wrote that the exponential growth of AI will lead to a technological singularity, a point when machine intelligence will overpower human intelligence. Lloyd argues that a great quantum computer has already taken over. Stephen Hawking has also warned that Artificial Intelligence could take over humanity – so if we were to juxtapose these scenarios over one another, even you and I are just ‘bits,’ certain to experience an impending doom.

Other large corporations just took over the Internet, the last bastion of fair information sharing on the planet. Do Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Apple, and others in this technocracy threaten not just the democratic governance of technology, but the absolute sovereignty of ourselves?

Transhumanists have already popularized the notion of cyborgs and ‘super human powers’ augmented with hardware machinery and software computer parts. The game is half played.

Katherine Hayles wrote in her 1999 publication How We Became Posthuman: Virtual Bodies in Cybernetics, Literature, and Informatics,

“In the posthuman, there are no essential differences, or absolute demarcations, between bodily existence and computer simulation, cybernetic mechanism and biological organism, robot technology and human goals…. Humans can either go gently into that good night, joining the dinosaurs as a species that once ruled the earth but is now obsolete, or hang on for a while longer by becoming machines themselves. In either case…the age of the human is drawing to a close.”

In a technocracy, power is given only to those who can make decisions based on technological knowledge. The system of governance which holds technology as God cannot fathom the subtleties of human emotion, nor express compassion, morality, or achieve spiritual ascension.
Ceding Your Power to the Technocracy

As William Henry has put it, “Are you ready to cede your body to the global body and to Transhumanist technology under [the] Transnationalists’s control?” Really this is a world – a Universe – no different than the one imagined by the cabal for thousands of years. An elite few create a ‘One World Government,’ only in this case it expands into solar systems and planets we have yet imagined visiting. The United Nations has even called this “Universal Plan” a way to extend peace, but we should not be fooled.
No Guns, Just Microchips

If you don’t agree with the technocratic agenda, fear not that you’ll be on the other end of a gun. You’ll be micro-chipped instead. Or, you’ll pick out your implantable device, or your retina lens created by Google. In one of the most secretive start-ups ever, Magic Leap, has raised more than billion dollars to create an implantable contact lens that injects computer-generated images or floats virtual objects into your very ‘real’ world view. DARPA has already developed numerous technologies to infiltrate your brain, and even to take control over your peripheral nervous system. You won’t have personal relations with other human beings. Your avatar will do it for you.
Two Choices

Humanity is undergoing a metamorphosis, but there are two directions we could take. Lloyd’s version is only one. Another involves ascending spiritually, instead of relying on technology and artificial intelligence in order to ‘outsmart’ mortality. While Google and Big Pharma, along with the Department of Defense promise an extra 500 years to some among us, those who have obtained true enlightenment, as suggested by Tulku Urgyen Rinpoche, can experience something much greater than a little bit of extended time in a skin suit.