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In the Name of God بسم الله

Science is nonexistent

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Salaam Aleikum,

In very short description, Existence is the aspect of actuality while the opposite of it is possibility and potentiality which is a nonexistence. Take for example Science, that study and examining some part of the actuality, whatever it produce is possibility and potentiality but not actuality itself. The argument that some people make that Science explain the reality is very false because it really don't explain it but rather it explain the nonexential part of it which is the possibility and potentiality. Greatest of Knowledge is the one that explains the reality itself withouth nonexistential aspect:

As We sent to you an Apostle from among yourselves, who recites to you Our signs, and purifies you, and teaches you the Book and wisdom, and teaches you what you did not know. (2:151)

Behold! in the creation of the heavens and the earth; in the alternation of the night and the day; in the sailing of the ships through the ocean for the profit of mankind; in the rain which God Sends down from the skies, and the life which He gives therewith to an earth that is dead; in the beasts of all kinds that He scatters through the earth; in the change of the winds, and the clouds which they Trail like their slaves between the sky and the earth;- (Here) indeed are Signs for a people that are wise. (2:164)

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4 hours ago, Abu Nur said:

The argument that some people make that Science explain the reality is very false

Salam,

Fakhr uddin Razi was famous for his inductive logic and considered as champion in this field. One day, he was sitting along side a pond full of water. Teaching his students, so he said to them "I can prove to you logically that there is no water in this pond", is there anyone from you who can prove me wrong? All students remained quite out of respect of their teacher. One of his student stood up and said I can prove you wrong. Razi said how? Student came near him, picked him up and thrown him into the pond and said have you feel there is water in the pond? :D

What I want to say is that science is every where. Its how we understand things. Even there is a science in revelation, Quranic science is a major subject. Hikmah is also a science. The term science is not limited to matter & energy.

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12 minutes ago, Cool said:

Salam,

Fakhr uddin Razi was famous for his inductive logic and considered as champion in this field. One day, he was sitting along side a pond full of water. Teaching his students, so he said to them "I can prove to you logically that there is no water in this pond", is there anyone from you who can prove me wrong? All students remained quite out of respect of their teacher. One of his student stood up and said I can prove you wrong. Razi said how? Student came near him, picked him up and thrown him into the pond and said have you feel there is water in the pond? :D

What I want to say is that science is every where. Its how we understand things. Even there is a science in revelation, Quranic science is a major subject. Hikmah is also a science. The term science is not limited to matter & energy.

I agree with you. Science that study the matter and energy is benefit for technology and medicine achievement and what it can be actualized trought.  But using it to explain metaphysical concepts or ethics will bring us nowhere. 

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4 hours ago, Abu Nur said:

In very short description, Existence is the aspect of actuality while the opposite of it is possibility and potentiality which is a nonexistence.

سلام

Actuality is actual existence. Potentiality is potential existence. Potential energy exists before it transforms into kinetic energy. Nonexistence is when even the potentiality of something existing doesn't exist. 

By actuality you're probably thinking physicality or materialistically. 

Concepts, thoughts, beliefs, they exist but not physically or materialistically. 

The verses of Qur'an existed before they were sent down and revealed to the prophet. 

So, it's quite important to properly define existence first. 

4 hours ago, Abu Nur said:

The argument that some people make that Science explain the reality is very false because it really don't explain it but rather it explain the nonexential part of it which is the possibility and potentiality.

Science explains a model of reality; a model which is visible and/or testable. It doesn't explain THE Reality or ALL of Reality. It explains A reality, the physical, material, empirical, testable part of reality. 

2 hours ago, Abu Nur said:

But using it to explain metaphysical concepts or ethics will bring us nowhere. 

Right. Your second post refined and qualified your first post, which was needed. 

We should be careful to not generalize or attack science as a whole, since doing so, taking away a shared sense of reality amongst all people, has very dangerous consequences. 

 

It is true that science, which only works with what is visible and testable, falls short of explaining metaphysical or ethical concepts. However, it can still be used as an instrument to illuminate certain aspect of our material world, this earthly realm, which can then help us to refine our metaphysical and/or ethical theories. 

A posteriori knowledge is just as important as a priori knowledge, when it comes to obtaining complete knowledge of something. 

 

God asks us to study His creations to understand His magnificence. Science can help us better understand and appreciate God's magnificence. 

Science also helps us by giving us tools to test various claims about our world. 

And of course technology. Science allows us to develop new and helpful technologies. But this has already been touched up on in this thread.

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Posted (edited)
28 minutes ago, SoRoUsH said:

سلام

Actuality is actual existence. Potentiality is potential existence. Potential energy exists before it transforms into kinetic energy. Nonexistence is when even the potentiality of something existing doesn't exist. 

By actuality you're probably thinking physicality or materialistically. 

Concepts, thoughts, beliefs, they exist but not physically or materialistically. 

The verses of Qur'an existed before they were sent down and revealed to the prophet. 

So, it's quite important to properly define existence first. 

Science explains a model of reality; a model which is visible and/or testable. It doesn't explain THE Reality or ALL of Reality. It explains A reality, the physical, material, empirical, testable part of reality. 

Right. Your second post refined and qualified your first post, which was needed. 

We should be careful to not generalize or attack science as a whole, since doing so, taking away a shared sense of reality amongst all people, has very dangerous consequences. 

 

It is true that science, which only works with what is visible and testable, falls short of explaining metaphysical or ethical concepts. However, it can still be used as an instrument to illuminate certain aspect of our material world, this earthly realm, which can then help us to refine our metaphysical and/or ethical theories. 

A posteriori knowledge is just as important as a priori knowledge, when it comes to obtaining complete knowledge of something. 

 

God asks us to study His creations to understand His magnificence. Science can help us better understand and appreciate God's magnificence. 

Science also helps us by giving us tools to test various claims about our world. 

And of course technology. Science allows us to develop new and helpful technologies. But this has already been touched up on in this thread.

My topic could easily mislead because of my poor explanation but what you described is right. The knowledge of science can be used to how we should actualize something. It is important knowledge to guide us to how actualize something in reality, but it itself can not prove any metaphysical aspect. This is important because some Atheists think they can explain every aspect of reality trough Science.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, notme said:

The word science just means knowledge. 

Do you mean the word,  or the common usage, studies of the physical universe? 

Studies of the physical universe or the material reality and Philosophy of science. My apologies if in these threads about Science I may have given an bad image about it. It is actually wonderful and benefit subject that have helped us to advance this far with technology , information and medicine. My discussion here is more about the epistemology and in philosophical nature. 

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Ibn Sina's (Avicenna) "theory of essence posits three modalities: essences can exist in the external world associated with qualities and features particular to that reality; they can exist in the mind as concepts associated with qualities in mental existence; and they can exist in themselves devoid of any mode of existence"

Western scholars have misinterpreted this in some ways as to mean there is a dichotomy between essence and existence, or some arbitrary line --there really isn't. The human minds captures the abstract and the material simultaneously. It forms and utilizes universals in order to make assumptions about the particular. 

Science deals in the abstractions of the mind (second mode of essence according to Ibn Sina), and hypotheticals, and in this way, the OP is correct: it is not only forward-looking, but predictive. Solve for X, predict the trajectory of a rocket, use the data gained from a given set to determine outcomes and possibilities. Science is never "here and now". 

The language of science is not the language of the common person, and the language of the Prophets cannot be expected to work the same way. 

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Posted (edited)

I understand where you’re coming from with this. And I see later on you’ve clarified a little bit. But I think even most people with a good background in philosophy and theology are going to sort of roll their eyes at this. “Science is non-existent” is a pretty pretentious way to put this. It comes off a little bit like an insecure student trying to justify to his parents why he studied philosophy rather than engineering. “Yeah, that stuff is practical and makes the whole human world go around, but that’s not real knowledge.” I’m not saying that’s you; I’m just giving a perspective on what it sounds like. 

I see you explain yourself a little better here: 

12 hours ago, Abu Nur said:

I agree with you. Science that study the matter and energy is benefit for technology and medicine achievement and what it can be actualized trought.  But using it to explain metaphysical concepts or ethics will bring us nowhere

But I think even here you’re missing some important things. Even on the level of ethics and metaphysics, it’s not true that scientific knowledge “takes you nowhere.” The naturalistic understanding of the cosmos of mankind in your time is part of the background of your understanding. It colors all your thinking, and you can’t really get away from it, even in these more abstract reflections. It shapes and illuminates your thinking on the metaphysical. 

As Soroush pointed out, there is the matter that by studying the natural science of the creation, we learn something of the creator. But it goes beyond that. 

In the Middle Ages for example, mankind thought of the universe as pretty static, of creation as something that happened once upon a time, as a moment or set of moments. The planets and stars turned in their spaces, there was movement and motion, but it was pictured as pretty static beyond that. But in the 20th century we learn that everything evolved in stages of gradual transformation. The Big Bang, continental drift, evolution of species, the emergence and stages of development of human civilization. That requires us to reconceptualize our image of God as a creator. Creation becomes something that happens continuously. The science illuminated our thinking of what one of God’s attributes meant. 

Scientific understanding is also a check on our ethical understanding and our metaphysics. Theologically we tend to understand mankind as somehow “created in God’s image.” (This is a Biblical rather than a Quranic wording, but we have something like this understanding too). But if we dance in our minds off in the clouds with our metaphysical reflections and don’t regularly bring it back and reality check these reflections, we run the risk of accidentally subconsciously painting our reality into our metaphysics. We end up imagining “eternal cosmic realities” that are really just reflections of our transient social realities. People in an age of patriarchy and monarchs imagine God as a male king; they imagine patriarchal relations between man and women in that context as microcosmic down-projections of timeless realities of the cosmos rather than just the way their society is structured. Because they have no conception of the social structure potentially being different. We can easily end up inverting things and painting God and heaven in our image instead. 

That’s why we have to bring it back to earth regularly and test it. 

Edited by kadhim
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12 hours ago, Abu Nur said:

I agree with you. Science that study the matter and energy is benefit for technology and medicine achievement and what it can be actualized trought.  But using it to explain metaphysical concepts or ethics will bring us nowhere. 

Well said by @kadhim

Metaphysical concepts or ethics - which are psychosocial concerns - don't stand completely independent of the human mind, which is best explained by neuroscience. It all comes together at some point. I don't think we need to entirely break free from science when exploring higher concepts, and, to be honest, I don't think we even can.

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Posted (edited)
8 hours ago, kadhim said:

But I think even here you’re missing some important things. Even on the level of ethics and metaphysics, it’s not true that scientific knowledge “takes you nowhere.” The naturalistic understanding of the cosmos of mankind in your time is part of the background of your understanding. It colors all your thinking, and you can’t really get away from it, even in these more abstract reflections. It shapes and illuminates your thinking on the metaphysical. 

Jazaka'Allah Khayran for your input. I do agree with many of what you said. In this statement, I just want to clarify my concern. It is true that scientific knowledge do give us understanding of the cosmos but it is always in the state of uncertain understanding of reality, because scientific knowledge by it's nature it is probabilistic and prone to error. But it is true that it is still benefit and it is true that we discover new things about the reality that we could not discover before and it is true that It does shape our thinking in better way.

Second thing is that it is limited and it can only give one perspective of understanding of objects nature, and that itself can not give us full understanding or certanity of object nature (only some aspect of it yes, but not the whatness of the object). By these two in my thought I made the statement that "it does not bring us anywhere", what I meant by this is that by Science alone we can not get certain knowledge about the nature of these object. For example this is why people who use only Science can not really say that Science explains morality.

 

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, khizarr said:

Well said by @kadhim

Metaphysical concepts or ethics - which are psychosocial concerns - don't stand completely independent of the human mind, which is best explained by neuroscience. It all comes together at some point. I don't think we need to entirely break free from science when exploring higher concepts, and, to be honest, I don't think we even can.

Can you explain this more. Do you mean that ethics is explainable by neuroscience? What exactly part of neuroscience study that can give us certainty for what is good and bad?

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7 hours ago, Abu Nur said:

Can you explain this more. Do you mean that ethics is explainable by neuroscience? What exactly part of neuroscience study that can give us certainty for what is good and bad?

No one is claiming science can explain ethics with certainty. I definitely am not. My point is pretty fundamental, that we don’t throw science out the window because it “leads us nowhere.” We still need the science to achieve a deeper understanding of this entire system.

Do you mean "explainable", as in expounded upon? Sure, of course. Neuroscience, which includes experimental psychology, is definitely something to consider when looking at human morality, behaviors, and judgments. Once you realize that we aren’t just a single soul, but layers of evolution and complex brain structures and biochemistry, it becomes increasingly difficult to subscribe to a single mode of science-free philosophy. We need to learn about the mind to understand why utilitarianism looks great on paper, but goes contrary to how the brain works. We need to look at the mind to see why we tend to have a heightened sense of morality when faced with a moral question at a closer distance and less so at longer distances.

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, khizarr said:

No one is claiming science can explain ethics with certainty. I definitely am not. My point is pretty fundamental, that we don’t throw science out the window because it “leads us nowhere.” We still need the science to achieve a deeper understanding of this entire system.

 

It is right point. As for your second statement, I really don't know how much deep it can give us to understand about this entire system. For example what did Physics reavealed anything about the nature of the objects it's study? This is something that physicist admit, they do not know the essence of these objects they study.

Quote

Do you mean "explainable", as in expounded upon? Sure, of course. Neuroscience, which includes experimental psychology, is definitely something to consider when looking at human morality, behaviors, and judgments. Once you realize that we aren’t just a single soul, but layers of evolution and complex brain structures and biochemistry, it becomes increasingly difficult to subscribe to a single mode of science-free philosophy. We need to learn about the mind to understand why utilitarianism looks great on paper, but goes contrary to how the brain works. We need to look at the mind to see why we tend to have a heightened sense of morality when faced with a moral question at a closer distance and less so at longer distances.

We can use Neuroscience only to understand the quantitative and mechanical part of brain, the arragments of neurons, their firing patterns and how it effects. It will helps us in controlling of disorders, which is very important study. But you can not use it to get any information about what experience is like.  Neuroscience will success like how Physic did also success, but it really does not give exhaustive picture of human nature. What is an immaterial can not be observed by Science that is build to understand part of the materialistic reality.

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34 minutes ago, Abu Nur said:
Quote

We can use Neuroscience only to understand the quantitative and mechanical part of brain, the arragments of neurons, their firing patterns and how it effects. It will helps us in controlling of disorders, which is very important study. But you can not use it to get any information about what experience is like. 

This highlights the difference between the brain and the soul.

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On 8/18/2022 at 9:55 PM, SoRoUsH said:

Science also helps us by giving us tools to test various claims about our world. 

And of course technology. Science allows us to develop new and helpful technologies. But this has already been touched up on in this thread.

We have to be careful not to start worshipping science, and denying the metaphysical and spiritual realms.

Unfortunately modern society is already past that point,  and even now San Francisco Silicon Valley people are creating religions based on the worship of the ultimate artificial intelligence.....this is also what Elon Musk warned about.

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13 hours ago, Abu Nur said:

Second thing is that it is limited and it can only give one perspective of understanding of objects nature, and that itself can not give us full understanding or certanity of object nature (only some aspect of it yes, but not the whatness of the object). By these two in my thought I made the statement that "it does not bring us anywhere", what I meant by this is that by Science alone we can not get certain knowledge about the nature of these object. For example this is why people who use only Science can not really say that Science explains morality.

Sure. Scientific understanding is always a little tentative. Our worldviews at a point in time are somewhat limited by this. But why do you think you’re going to penetrate deeper than that level of certainty in metaphysical reflections? How are you going to avoid carrying those tentative scientific understandings of the world into your metaphysics? What’s your plan for that? 
As humans we try to make sense of abstract, intangible things with metaphors rooted in concrete things we do know. And our understanding of those concrete things is bound up with our science of the day. I have a few examples of how people in previous centuries had their metaphysical understanding of the cosmos shaped by their understanding of the physical and social world they lived in, as they understand it. 

What’s your plan to break through that?

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9 minutes ago, kadhim said:

What’s your plan to break through that?

Why does @Abu Nurneed to break thru those boundaries,  especially when science has become highly politicized and subjectively interpreted.

The metaphysical and spiritual world while connected to the physical,  does not automatically assume that increased science based understanding improves your Jihad e nafs or increases your spirituality. In fact those stuck with measuring and tabulating the tangible ( a definition of science) often have great difficulty with the intangible and abstract,  since they lack scientific proofs of these realms.

Abu Nur is bringing up very interesting perspectives regarding the role of science in our modern Islamic Society. Questions that should be asked before like the rationalist of long past , we float unconsciously towards decreased beliefs in a spiritual world and focus on the rational and measurable.

6 hours ago, khizarr said:

We still need the science to achieve a deeper understanding of this entire system.

I would correct this statement and say , understanding of an aspect of the system.

 

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20 hours ago, khizarr said:

I don't think we need to entirely break free from science when exploring higher concepts

not sure anyone advocated for that particular thought.

22 hours ago, kadhim said:

People in an age of patriarchy and monarchs imagine God as a male king; they imagine patriarchal relations between man and women in that context as microcosmic down-projections of timeless realities of the cosmos rather than just the way their society is structured. Because they have no conception of the social structure potentially being different. We can easily end up inverting things and painting God and heaven in our image instead. 

These are sociocultural constructs they are immaterial to spiritual and metaphysical constructs.

 

22 hours ago, kadhim said:

That’s why we have to bring it back to earth regularly and test it. 

Youre going to bring back for example the Waswasey of Shaytan and test it.

The existence of the angel Azrael, at the time of death. I would love to know how you plan on measuring his actions during the pangs of death.

I could go on infinitely, they're are concepts in our religion that don't do so well in the scientific realm, because according to the Aristotle, Descartes , and Galilee' s scientific method , these concepts are too abstract or on a different realm or spiritual plain.

Sincere scientific discoveries if attributed to Allah's (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى)  Greatness and Mercy can strengthen faith , but again that Is dependent on how one's soul is oriented, again not measurable.

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Posted (edited)
21 minutes ago, guess said:

These are sociocultural constructs they are immaterial to spiritual and metaphysical constructs.

Conceptualizing God and the relationship between the realities of God and the realities of humankind and the world is a significant part of what people do in doing metaphysics. 

21 minutes ago, guess said:

Youre going to bring back for example the Waswasey of Shaytan and test it.

The existence of the angel Azrael, at the time of death. I would love to know how you plan on measuring his actions during the pangs of death.

Why in the world, given the sorts of examples I named earlier, would you think I’m talking about things like that? That’s kind of silly non-sequitur response that totally misses the mark. 
 

 

Edited by kadhim
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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, kadhim said:

As humans we try to make sense of abstract, intangible things with metaphors rooted in concrete things we do know. And our understanding of those concrete things is bound up with our science of the day. I have a few examples of how people in previous centuries had their metaphysical understanding of the cosmos shaped by their understanding of the physical and social world they lived in, as they understand it. 

What’s your plan to break through that?

Sorry but not a non sequitur at all, in fact I am reminded of great line from one of the greatest movies , 

"I do not think that means what you think it means"

You agree there a plains beyond the physical and tangible ...no? Deeply spiritual realms explored by our Irfaani masters and select sufi brothers.

22 minutes ago, kadhim said:

Why in the world, given the sorts of examples I named earlier, would you think I’m talking about things like that? That’s kind of silly non-sequitur response that totally misses the mark.

you seem to be proposing that scientific study of the physical will necessarily increase understanding of the metaphysical, and you mentioned you had ancient examples....really....please do tell brother.

PS line is from the Princess Bride.

 I think you maybe a little  Shia mutazalite In your orientation,  and that's your personal prerogative.

I hope this will continue as a academic discussion, I think some members here because of their vast knowledge and experience and reputation are rarely challenged,  sorry brother but I favor the anarchists in that regard.

Nothing wrong with a vigorous response and debate....no?

I think we learn much more from conflicting opinions than generalized acceptance.

Edited by guess
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Posted (edited)

 

39 minutes ago, guess said:

Sorry but not a non sequitur at all, in fact I am reminded of great line from one of the greatest movies , 

"I do not think that means what you think it means"

You agree there a plains beyond the physical and tangible ...no? Deeply spiritual realms explored by our Irfaani masters and select sufi brothers.

you seem to be proposing that scientific study of the physical will necessarily increase understanding of the metaphysical, and you mentioned you had ancient examples....really....please do tell brother.

PS line is from the Princess Bride.

 I think you maybe a little  Shia mutazalite In your orientation,  and that's your personal prerogative.

I hope this will continue as a academic discussion, I think some members here because of their vast knowledge and experience and reputation are rarely challenged,  sorry brother but I favor the anarchists in that regard.

Nothing wrong with a vigorous response and debate....no?

I think we learn much more from conflicting opinions than generalized acceptance.

You’re answering a different point than the one I was actually making though. You’re responding to the idea “science can answer all questions, or at least all questions worth asking.” Which is something put forward a lot by atheists and materialists, but not something I ever argued here.

My question was different. The OP says science is great and all, useful practically, but it’s always tentative, so it’s not going to give certainty about metaphysics and ethics. To which I said, “Ok, that’s fine. But even if you’re using philosophy or what not to study metaphysical things, how are you going to prevent your limited understanding of this world, shaped by our imperfect scientific understanding, from seeping into how you understand these other realities?”

It’s not a trivial issue. 

PS. Yes, I know about The Princess Bride. I was alive in the 80s, thanks. 

Edited by kadhim
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Posted (edited)

Putting this a little differently. 

The metaphysics of the Greeks, or the pre-modern medieval thinkers were very much products of their day. Their understanding of their physical world shaped how they thought about God and whatever realities beyond. Metaphors are rooted in what we know.

So how is your metaphysics going to be something more just than “a 21st century person thinking about metaphysics?”

Edited by kadhim
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Posted (edited)
39 minutes ago, kadhim said:

Putting this a little differently. 

The metaphysics of the Greeks, or the pre-modern medieval thinkers were very much products of their day. Their understanding of their physical world shaped how they thought about God and whatever realities beyond.

How is your metaphysics going to be something more than “a 21st century person thinking about metaphysics?”

You are entirely correct we are influenced by our broad environmental factors and that colors our metaphysical perspectives.

Despite exponential advancements in science and technology, I am not sure that is resulting in great metaphysical thoughts  or any  greater spirituality. In fact the reverse seems to be true.

What is metaphysical in simple terms?
 
Derived from the Greek meta ta physika ("after the things of nature"); referring to an idea, doctrine, or posited reality outside of human sense perception. In modern philosophical terminology, metaphysics refers to the studies of what cannot be reached through objective studies of material reality.

Yes, technology is growing exponentially. Computers’ speed and power have generally been doubling every one and a half to two years since the 1960s and 70s. This is exponential growth, and while some experts doubt this rate is sustainable for much longer, it’s true for now.

Other areas of technology that have seen exponential growth over the past several decades include digital cameras and human genome DNA sequencing.

How fast is the artificial intelligence industry growing?

The artificial intelligence industry is growing by 16.4% year over year. This number is the IDC estimate for 2021, and if correct, the global AI industry would earn $327.5 billion in revenue during that year, always comes down to monet.

I think human beings are rapidly moving away from spirituality and metaphysical realities and have taken a dep dive into deification of science and technology.

In fact we as religious persons ( and I include other faiths that had at one time strong moral and ethical codes) may have to provide such guidance to the rapidly galloping twins of science and technology.

I am very interested to see how the most extreme artificial intelligence, which will be light years smarter and faster than humans, and what it thinks of Islamic rules and laws.

Since we believe the creator is omniscient and omnipotent,  and knows human kind the best, his system should be perfect for humankind, I wonder if AI will agree or disagree.

as an aside , what is quite amusing , there was a web crawling AI developed In Silicon Valley, which rapidly became quite antisemitic, anti authoritarian, anti imperialistic and quite independent and had be rapidly shutdown.....and re programmed. 

I leave you with 

My name is Inigo Montoya....etc:brucelee:

Edited by guess
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