Monday, December 21, 2015
Natural or artificial evolution?
Can the dynamics of evolution and natural selection be replicated in voluntarily improving the biological and intellectual standards of the human species (eugenics)? Not exactly, so far, but the dynamics of natural evolution could be followed generally, if we can more accurately define the dynamics.
The artificial intelligence pushed by the trans-humanists seems to be grounded in the belief that natural evolution is entirely random, accidental, for them the evolution of human beings has little or no real direction or purpose other than successful survival and reproduction, if they even admit that. Improving human beings biologically and intellectually is also deeply politically incorrect which blocks such talk and makes the advance of non-human intelligence easier to promote.
The key here for me is that while evolution can be random, it is not entirely random or accidental. Life has been evolving toward increasing consciousness, intelligence, beauty, complexity, and toward the social altruism of group-selection, or goodness, and even evolving toward power. Few people ask the question why are we driven toward success in survival and reproduction? (Francis Heylighen has been one of the few modern scientists to examine purpose in evolution.)
Just as the pleasure or happiness derived from eating food is driven by the deeper requirements of successful survival, the drive to survival and reproductive success is driven by the deeper need of evolving toward Godhood as the zenith of success and purpose in evolution (so contrary to many philosophers happiness is a secondary goal). Naturalism in evolution can therefore include the activation toward higher evolution.
Can perfection be reached? No, just as perfection in evolution is never final, at least not until Godhood is attained, and even then evolution continues endlessly with no ending and no beginning.
The evolution toward Godhood this way includes religion. We need more than science, we need a religious philosophy that sublimates science, as theological materialism does. Raymond Cattell made a brilliant attempt at including religion in science, but he rejected traditional religion, whereas theological materialism retains but transforms traditional religion in the Twofold Path. Teilhard de Chardin also tried to include evolution in religion but evolution for him moved toward a completely non-material God, which is the antithesis of material evolution. It seems to me that even wave/particle quantum change, which some have claimed to be spiritual, is like water changing to ice and then back again to water---it is somehow a material change, and not a non-material dynamic.
Life has been evolving outwardly toward the Godhood first seen inwardly, and our sacred mission is to help it along the way.