Re: Islam and extropianism

From: John Marlow (
Date: Wed Feb 21 2001 - 04:30:50 MST

**See below; portions snipped.

On 21 Feb 2001, at 9:24, Anders Sandberg wrote:

> "John Marlow" <> writes:
> > >From a strictly practical standpoint, I don't think their stance,
> > if any, will be significant because they don't comprise a
> > significant portion of the "tech pool" and lack the influence to
> > affect development and applications.
> Will that situation last?

**Of course--so long as the wretched poverty and consequent refuge in
religion last. Here's your basic problem: The leaders do in fact
realize that technology is a threat to them. They look to the West
and they see that people who enjoy the benefits of science and
technology pay little heed to religious leaders--who have actually
become so completely powerless that banning a book causes the sales
to skyrocket. Said leaders put two and two together--science and tech
enhance the powers of the individual and make religious leaders
irrelevant--and go the other way, becoming rabid antitech nutballs.
Of course, I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt here and assuming
they possess the ability to reason (and to add two and two).

**Either way--tech is death to them, and it ain't in their Book, so
the religious leaders will never embrace it--and they are currently
creating the environment in which the young are raised, so the cycle

 Also, being technologically leading is
> not the only way of being influential in world politics and culture...

**No; but it's the best way.

> oil,

**Push comes to shove, we'll take it because of our tech lead.

being 25% of the population and having a growing cultural
> identity can definitely be significant.

**Without sufficient intelligence/savvy/influence/armaments, you
could be 99.999% of the population and it really wouldn't matter.
Example: China and India declare war on the US. Who wins?

 If 25% of the customers want
> something, there will be a big market of developing it.

**Only if they can pay for it.

> > Violent opposition, on the other hand, could have significant
> > effects.
> Why? Islam is not more likely to be dangerously violent than
> Christianity,

**You're joking, right?

 and beside some fundie-bashing on this list I don't
> think many of us consider the Church to be a major factor in
> influencing the future of humanity?

**Precisely--and so it will (hopefully) be with the folks you're

> Let's keep to the subject: how does Islamic religion and culture
> interpret and deal with transhumanist issues?

**I suspect they are, largely, not even aware of them. The issues are
completely irrelevant to their lifestyle. I'm talking those in their
homelands, of course.

...This could actually turn out to be one of the major
> stumbling blocks for spreading transhumanist ideas.

**I'll have a few thoughts on major stumbling blocks to post later.

Staggering site, btw. A real service.


John Marlow

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