Re: Islam and extropianism

From: Anders Sandberg (
Date: Wed Feb 21 2001 - 05:54:33 MST

"John Marlow" <> writes:

> **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.

Hmm, I am starting to suspect that you have not read up much about
Islamic countries. Look at the aggressive industrialisation of Turkey,
Egypt and Iraq for example. To a large extent that might be traced to
arab socialism of course and it was actually used as a way for leaders
to *gain* power in opposition to more traditional religious groups,
but there has been a large drive in the arab world at least towards
greater education. You seem to assume that nearly all Islamic
countries are run by religious leaders rather than politicians; this
is not true.

See the Islamabad Declaration on Science and Technology:

While there is definitely inertia in adopting new technology in many
Islamic countries, I doubt it is because they are run by "rabid
antitech nutballs" - that is not a description that would fit the
Saudi family. There are serious problems with civil liberties that
are in my opinion the strongest reasons for technological inertia and
underdevelopment, but they are not primarily of a religious nature.

Given the other stuff you wrote, I get the feeling you are rather
convinced there is no intelligent life outside the Western cultural
sphere? :-)

Anders Sandberg                                      Towards Ascension!                  
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y

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