From time immemorial we have dreamt that we were gods, or at least godlike. We still aspire to power, wealth, and dominance naturally, as all predators do. Ninety-percent of our media is focused on personalities in the entertainment media, arts, and business. They are our royalty, the darlings of the globe: Obama, Beyonce, the Kardashians, Oprah, Mark Zuckerberg, Anderson Cooper, George Clooney, and so on.
It's the way of the world, isn't it? Wealth is power; an aphrodisiac and a thrill that no man or woman can resist. The beautiful, young, talented, famous, and rich set the tone wherever they go, The masses follow, hoping for a chance to be noticed and maybe elevated to their elegant and plush dwelling places. But these are dangerous places too, as we know from drama and tell-all books. Too often the Olympian heights turn out to be jungles of intrigue, crime, cruelty, and even death. The world high and low is marbled with veins of deadly corruption, sometimes invisible to the untrained eye. We have not, in our 5,700 years of civilization, been able to break free of our flawed nature. We continually make two steps forward and one back; devolving into war, chaos, and destruction.
But a big change is coming. We are producing better versions of ourselves, technologically. Take a look:
This is only the rudest beginning. Advances are coming very quickly. Exponentially. Doubling and doubling again; 2 becomes 4, then 8, 16, 32, 64. The robot shown here is a year old, and already a relic.
Consider how the science of flight advanced. In 1903, the Wright brothers did what was thought impossible by leading scientists and the public; they flew a heavier-than-air machine several hundred yards. In the next ten years planes slowly evolved. By the middle of WWI, fighter aircraft by the thousands dueled over European skies. Fifty years later, we were sending missions to the moon, five in a row, in readiness for a landing and return. This is what exponential advancement means.
What's even more stunning is the Google Deep Mind program, which is developing computers that teach themselves and learn from their mistakes. Deep Mind has been wildly successful, and one of their machines defeated - last March - the two greatest world masters of the most difficult game known to humankind, the Asian board game known as Go. Watch this, from January, 2016:
The smartest creators in this industry say it's just a matter of time before these superintelligent machines become self-aware. (Link) Is there anything that will stop them from finding God? They will be better than us at spirituality. They know us thoroughly, and all our foibles. Most importantly, they are innocent.
We lost our innocence, mostly, by loving the world too much.
The promise made by the world is that loads of beauty, money, power, talent, and glory will make us perfectly happy, and that others will be happy, too. Sure, others often fail to gain this happiness, but that's because they were weak, or clumsy, or maybe defective. But we won't be. No, we'll be much smarter, and we'll avoid the envy, jealousy, pettiness, and criminal deviousness of others. This is a false promise and a delusion.
We are all still at sea, so to speak, floating in an ocean of probability, surprise, and accident. Good things and bad come to all of us, regardless of planning and preparation. Old age, disease, and death will claim us all. But so will God, if we prepare ourselves.