Like Hal, I've long thought that the one might well craft a religion
reasonably consistent with Extropian tenets and well designed to plug the
memetic receptor site for theological belief systems by appealling to the
notion that we exist in a simulation. But I think such a religion (or, as I
would term it, "reliberion") ought to spell out more clearly the hows and
whys of Rapture. Here's one quick take on the matter: The entities running
our simulation do so not merely for entertainment but, more importantly, for
reproduction. As they quite naturally exist themselves in computational
space, they generate new entities via computational means. And just as we
generate our children by the same means that our parents begat us, so too the
god (or gods) hosting our simulation rely on the rough-and-tumble of
self-interested agents (albeit simulated ones) to give birth to new gods.
Our simulation thus functions something like a petri dish, and we sperm and
eggs striving to transcend it.
One practicing the reliberion I'm describing would thus take as his or her
goal growing into and thus joining the god(s) hosting the simulation we, ex
hypothesi, now live in. Note that this by no means ratifies prayer,
self-abasement, or other such humbug. Nor does it necessarily imply outright
rejection of all rituals. One would test such practices for their efficacy
in promoting the goal of achieving godhood. (As a side benefit, it bears
noting, such a reliberion, even if at best harmless, might help to block
infection by more virulent strains of theology.)
>Perhaps a new religion could be built around the concept that we live in
>[a simulation], and that by appealing to the God which runs the simulation
>we can be uploaded from our mortal existence, a technological Rapture.
>Who knows, it might even work.
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