Podcast No. 50 Posted 6/09/2011   Leave a comment

Podcast No. 50 Posted 6/09/2011

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TITLE:  Truths of Terasem – The “Where” of Terasem  3.8 – 3.8.6

SUB TITLE:  Ensuring existential survival.

SUMMARY:  In this podcast we’ll look at an ideally delightful and blissful cyberspace reality, an Elysium Fields.  We will see why empowerment and dispersion of this is a fundamental purpose of life within Terasem, as well as ensuring that emulated lives and emulated environments survive even existential catastrophes.

Music  – “Earthseed” fades out, as the voice recording begins.

(Fred)  Hi, we’re Fred & Linda Chamberlain, with podcast 50 on the Truths of Terasem.  Today, we’re going to let our imaginations run wild with thoughts of what “Heaven” might be like!  You know, like no more achy joints, rushing off to work in the morning, or staring into a mirror before your stimulants take hold, trying to recall your name?

(Linda)   Right!  I always think of that story you tell about a person who wakes up in cyberspace, experiences a few moments of true cyberconsciousness, looks at his biological brain there in a tank, ready to be reimplanted if he chose not to go ahead with uploading, and said, “Freeze the damn thing!  I never want to see it again!”

(Fred)  The wonderful thing about imagining heaven is that to begin with, since it’s still waiting to be built, we can pretty much build it to fit any dream we can imagine, and then, we’ll find we lacked the imagination to make it anything like it can really become, once we land there and begin to sort out the possibilities.  It exceeds any kind of heaven-on-earth with biological bodies that the wildest stretch of the imagination could reconcile with physical reality.

(Linda)  We start with 3.8  “Elysium Fields for Terasem is a cyberspace reality, an ideally delightful and blissful place.”  What made me think it could be anywhere else?  After all, in a podcast not so long ago, we were talking about a virtual reality the size of the visible universe where you could teleport anywhere you wanted instantly; no need for worm holes, matter transporters, or any of that other cumbersome stuff that you have to put up with in physical space and time.

In Ray Kurzweil’s, The Singularity is Near, regarding virtual reality, here’s what he has to say:

“The word “virtual” is somewhat unfortunate.  It implies “not real” but the reality will be that a virtual body is just as real as a physical body in all the ways that matter.  Consider that the telephone is auditory virtual reality.  No one feels that his voice in this virtual reality environment is not a “real” voice.  With my physical body today, I don’t directly experience someone’s touch on my arm.  My brain receives processed signals initiated by nerve endings in my arm, which wind their way through the spinal cord, through the brain stem, and up to the insula regions.  If my brain—or an AI’s brain—receives comparable signals of someone’s virtual touch on a virtual arm, there’s no discernible difference.”

And in another chapter:

“By the 2020s, full immersion virtual reality will be a vast playground of compelling environments and experiences.   Initially, VR will have certain benefits in terms of enabling communications with others in engaging ways over long distances and featuring a great variety of environments from which to choose.  Although the environments will not be completely convincing at first, by the late 2020s they will be indistinguishable from real reality and will involve all the senses, as well as neurological correlations of our emotions.  As we enter the 2030s there won’t be clear distinctions between human and machine, between real and virtual reality.”

(Fred)  (laughing)  Sounds great to me.  Where’s the gate?  I’ve got my ticket!  In  3.8.1 we see “Fields creation, empowering and dispersion is a fundamental purpose of life.”  Clearly, we’re not talking about just wheat fields or corn fields here.  And, probably not electromagnetic, electrostatic, or gravitational fields either, so it must be Elysium Fields.  Wikipedia tells us this, “In Greek mythology, Elysium was a section of the Underworld. The Elysian Fields, or the Elysian Plains, were the final resting places of the souls of the heroic and the virtuous.”

Now, in tune with our speculations that caverns, in keeping with the Greek myth of Elysium Field being in the “Underworld”, might be a promising location for Terasem “strong places”, it all adds up.  What would it take to store a huge computer complex underground drawing hydroelectric power from passing water and providing shielded space for storage of enough equipment for a virtual reality the size of the visible universe?  Maybe not as much as we think.

In one case, a huge spring in an accessible part of the United States, with no known cave entrance (as yet), expels 280 million gallons per day from its entrance into a nearby river, carrying enough dissolved limestone to be creating, each year, a mile long passageway thirty feet high and fifty feet wide, and has been doing this for an unknown number of centuries, drawing water from the surface as far as 45 miles away.  Just think about that!

(Linda)  I’m thinking about it, I’m enchanted by thinking about it!  The next Element in this Expansion, 3.8.2, says “Infotechnology enables environmental emulation because processing speed and memory grow at double exponential rates.”  This means that however big a virtual reality we can make this year, we can make bigger and bigger with less and less, faster and faster, year after year, until we’re filling that cave with computronium faster than the water can take limestone out of it.  Are we going to hit a limit in there somewhere?

(Fred)  Not so long as we emulate ourselves in nanobot bat bodies, but we’re too much plagued by our recreational inclinations to explore caves.  The next expansion is 3.8.3, which tells us, “Environmental emulation shelters consciousness like a house shelters a family.”  In slightly less abstract terms, it’s saying that Virtual realities will give us a place to hang out in comfort as cyberpersonalities anytime we’re not in a mood to explore physical reality in nanobot swarms.  I like the part about it sheltering a family.  We’re going to have a lot of families in there, both hereditary and chosen families, with enough space to kick back as much as they like, and enough ways to be right there with each other so loneliness will be a forgotten nightmare of a time where people were more in competition with each other than wrapped up in synergistic, creative cooperation.

(Linda)  Next we come to 3.8.4 where the message is, “Living in an emulated environment beats living raw because suffering will be deleted.” Mike Perry, Forever for All, puts it this way:

“With the help of nanotechnology we could do many things to the world we now inhabit, and the question will always arise of whether we should.  Should we eliminate all sentient, nonhuman life-forms in their natural habitats, for example?  People today find this suggestion absurd and repugnant.  But in the future we may consider it more than humane, since it would also eliminate predation, disease, pain, misery, and the endless, desperate struggles of a brief, mortal existence.  (Long before this, such cruel sports as bull- and cockfighting will hopefully have been abolished.)  We could even go so far as to capture each living thing in informational form, effectively immortalizing it then and there.”

(Fred)  We’ll just “carbon freeze” them all?  Or do we draw the line at the point where Terasem defines “consciousness” is manifested, meaning a combination of empathy and ethical awareness and commitment?  We could carry things too far, for example as to sentient entities, where in one of the Dali Lama’s books he concludes that by one definition of Buddhist consciousness, the characteristic can be extended to include some classes of single-cell organisms, in fact, amoeba.  Dr. Perry’s book is projecting a state where the questions is not if it’s “practical” or “affordable” to do it, but only if it’s the “right” thing to do.  If we could place a family of chimpanzees or a herd of elephants into perfect suspended animation by waving a wand, until we could sort out an Elysium Fields for them, would that be the proper, moral thing to do?

3.8.5 takes us into avoidance of disasters, with, “Dispersion of emulated environments ensures their survival notwithstanding catastrophes.”  If we think the Earth might be devastated by an asteroid storm, should we store mindfiles on Mars?  If we think the Solar System might be destroyed by a black hole, should we spacecast mindfiles toward sufficiently distant stars?  If we think the Milky Way is going to be gobbled up by what we used to refer to, at the Jet Propulsion Lab as a “Great Galactic Ghoul”, do we increase the power level and try to send mindfiles to the Great Galaxy in Andromeda?

(Linda) We’re now at the edge of what all religions have dreamed of, as the ultimate heaven, where everyone who has ever lived and died still lives on, and is awaiting our arrival.   3.8.6 says, “Souls of our ancestors come back to life when we emulate their lives and their environment.”  The key word here is “when”!  It’s up to *us* to make this happen.  There is no evidence, although many would like to believe it, that there is some ‘cosmic’ guardian already ‘saving our souls’ one by one as we die.  This is something that, at least to some extent, we must do, ourselves, or it will not happen.

It doesn’t take much.  A living person can set up a mindfile, check a consent box and enter initials in CyBeRev, and have at least made a start, and any living person can, as a surrogate, do the same for a loved one who has “passed away”, recognizing that future ethical standards will have a lot to do with how such a step might be consented to.  If one wants to emerge in cyberspace at an early time through Terasem’s efforts, then ‘joining’ Terasem is a very fundamental step.  It means expressing agreement with Terasem’s most basic principles, that’s all.

(Fred) This is an important point.  Terasem envisions establishing an ever growing network dedicated to pursuit of a cybercommunity in which you can expect to be treated fairly and be respected, irrespective of any kind of diversity or personal history that might have been be a barrier for you in the past.  There is the outlook that creativity and joy are to be treasured, and life is anticipated to be an endless adventure, in which understanding of the universe and everything within it are fascinating pursuits that will never lack something new to experience.  If you believe this is a rational and wholesome view of life, you will be welcomed warmly as a ‘joiner’, and be far ahead of others in the priorities given to your emergence as part of the initial group that will combine their efforts in cyberspace to welcome others and share their experiences with those who are still biological.

This, in plainest essence, is what the Terasem Pledge is all about.  It’s about sharing these ideals with others, and working hand in hand with them to make it a reality, over the fast moving decades ahead.  It’s way beyond something like, “I don’t want to die” or “I’d like to come back from the grave” and especially it’s nothing like, “I’ve been a mean SOB all my life and I want to stay that way, forever!”  That’s going in the opposite direction.  But, if you’re looking for an endless future that’s more like a heaven than a hell, join Terasem and help build it.

(Linda)  All of that’s very much on target, Fred, but there’s so much more that lies beyond it.  Let’s don’t stop just with the essentials.  In Mike Perry’s Forever for All, he says:

“I would like to think that anybody—even someone who perished in the distant past has a prospect of eventual resurrection; otherwise I have to allow that the world contains major, unrightable wrongs, or that eternal death is acceptable—neither of which I am prepared to do.

“It is perhaps only during this time, billions of years hence or more, that we will turn serious thoughts to the sort of resurrections of past individuals we have considered, those who could not be preserved.  By then I think the earth as we know it will be only a memory—resurrectees will be information constructs in places also part of virtual reality.  Those who did not participate directly in the transition to more-then-human, who died too soon, will have missed something valuable but can still pick up the pieces and go on.  Or such a project could happen much sooner, but still a person returning life in this way, after a death interval, will face a void that must be filled over time.

(Fred)  Thanks for moving us into the long range view to finish up on that, Linda.  Next week, we’ll look at Terasem’s first awakening places of critical consciousness.  These are real world places where Terasemers can meet.  We will also find that any Terasem Center of Critical Consciousness (called a c-cube) or Terasem Home is also a place to meet.

(Linda)  If you want to emerge in cyberspace at an early time through Terasem’s efforts, then, as we said earlier, ‘joining’ Terasem is a very fundamental step.  It simply means expressing agreement with Terasem’s most basic principles.  Find out more about joining Terasem at terasemfaith.net.  Be part of this exciting future, start building your mindfile at either CyBeRev.org or LifeNaut.com.  Remember, there are no fees for building or storing your mindfile.  And if you want to create a BioFile by preserving your DNA, you can do that at LifeNaut.com, very inexpensively, too.

(Fred)  Or, if you prefer to make a game of building your mindfile, Terasem’s powerful new Android app, described at PersonalityMD.com will make it all the more fun for you.   It results in personality profiles that are truly unique to you, and you also see how you compare to others’ geographically near you, with mindsets like yours.

(Linda)  Still have some unanswered questions about mindfiles?  Go to Martine Rothblatt’s blog at mindfiles.blogspot.com.  But don’t read this blog before going to bed… your mind will be so fired up, you won’t  get to sleep all night!

(Fred)  If you like the music we use on these podcasts, it’s the Terasem Anthem, called Earthseed, written by Martine Rothblatt.  She also plays flute and keyboard.  For a video version of Earthseed, go to the Join! tab on the terasemfaith.net website.

(Linda)  Don’t forget that these podcasts are available in text form at our site, truthsofterasem.wordpress.com.  You’ll find a lot of good stuff there, like tabs relating to storing DNA with LifeNaut, information about a “city of the future” in Second Life named after the great innovator Paolo Soleri, and you can download a free copy of Dr. Perry’s book, Forever for All, that we quote so often on our podcasts.

(Fred)  Join us, and our quest for an endless future…

(Linda)  Come with us – into Tomorrow!

Closing music – no fade – full length.

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Posted April 24, 2011 by Truths of Terasem - Podcasts in Uncategorized

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