Re: Religion Key To AI?

Anders Sandberg (
Sat, 26 Oct 1996 16:54:19 +0200 (MET DST)

On Tue, 22 Oct 1996, Twirlip of Greymist wrote:

> I've started studying linguistics, and started with Ernst Cassirer's
> _Language and myth_ on the grounds that it was short. I think that he
> was saying linguistic and mythological development were somewhat linked
> in the 'discovery' of concepts and classes. Myth starts with isolated
> events and things that awe the viewer; moves to somewhat generalized
> functional gods (god of first plowing, god of sowing, god of second
> plowing); and thence to more personal and anthromoporphized gods.

You can see this very cleary in the Egyptian myths. Their creation stories
are very confusing and contradictory, while the layer of myths explaining
how the cosmos works are much more obvious. And after the battle of Set
and Horus the gods become downright personal, and gradually merge with
recorded history (The vizier-architect-priest Imhotep even became a god
after his death).

> I wouldn't be shocked if
> something religion-like was a part of breaking up the world into things
> to perceive.

Hmm, maybe we need emotional support or meaning to be build better
cognitive maps of the world?

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