Re: Extropianism & Theology

J. R. Molloy (
Sun, 28 Feb 1999 08:15:00 -0800

Adrian wrote,
> ...I also believe
>that such a supreme being doesn't want or need to be worshipped by us or
>anyone else. But I do believe that he is good and will bring us back in an
>afterlife a la Frank Tipler (Massive "Holy" computers with data retreived
>the light cone).

Sounds like a cagey kind of supreme being. Anyway, whatever created this "supreme being" seems immensely more deserving of my attention than a paltry deity that can't even provide evidence of its own existence (or even make its name known -- some call it Allah, others call it Jehovah, etc.). The Natural Laws that formed the universe, accordingly appear more interesting than a bank of holy AI dedicated to retrieving ego-laden protoplasmic carbon-based molecules.

As an aside, the so-called Western religions seem somewhat cheap, in that they only supply one supreme being among them. Other religions supply thousands of gods. In fact, I think someone mentioned on another list that cataloguing all the gods mentioned by theists of all persuasions (worldwide) yields a total of around 2,500 gods. But since you only believe in _one_ supreme being, that means that you and I share a disbelief in 2,499 gods. By eliminating belief in that last remaining god, we'd have perfect agreement between us, since we've just now established that we agree except for that tiny percentage of theism.

>I still call him God because this theology is also for non extropians.

Well, if "God" exists for non-extropians as well as for extropians, it would appear that no advantage accrues to connecting oneself with extropy, because the Supreme Being (rather than self-determined responsibility) will decide who has been naughty or nice. So, if the Supreme Being wants the Extropy Institute to prosper, then nothing anyone can do will prevent it. And if the Supreme Being wants the Extropy Institute to fail, nothing anyone can do will save it. So, just pray to your Supreme Being, and let the less spiritually enlightened extropians toil away at their nanotech and neural networks, never knowing about the Supreme Being's grand plan. In addition, if it doesn't matter whether extropians believe in this Supreme Being or not -- "such a supreme being doesn't want or need to be worshipped by us or anyone else" -- then why mention the rascal at all?

--J. R.

PS: If this all seems too off topic, we can resume the discussion privately if you choose.