Archive for July 2011

Podcast No. 64 Posted 9/12/2011   Leave a comment

Podcast No. 64 Posted 9/12/2011

Download Directly or Listen via CyBeRev at:

http://www.cyberev.org/rss/podcasts/podcast.xml

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

TITLE:  Truths of Terasem – The Why of Terasem  5.2 – 5.3.6

SUB TITLE:  Belief vs. Knowledge

SUMMARY:  Faith is belief, in many cases supported by little or nothing in the way of evidence.  Yet, without belief in what might be possible, nothing new would be created.  It is a slippery slope.  Here, Terasem puts on cosmic skis and takes on the black-diamond slopes of the Multiverse, ready to ski deep powder directly up the slope of  rapidly accelerating technology to a point where the upturned exponential of the Singularity is perfectly vertical.

 

(Fred)  Hi, we’re Fred & Linda Chamberlain, with podcast #64 on the Truths of Terasem.  Today, it’s 5.2 through 5.3.6, in the “Why” of Terasem!

(Linda)  I know, and a lot of the terms and ideas this week have a pretty religious sound to an old atheist like me.  Does this mean we’ll go outside the realm of science, or is there a system of logic connected with it?

(Fred)  There’s logic all right, building upon real-world technology, but the ideas are extended to the transfinite, and use religious terms with which I’m somewhat uncomfortable, too, so I want to lay a firm groundwork in that respect.

(Linda)  Let’s start by talking about the difference between fact and belief, between knowledge and faith.  Is there a way to draw a line in the sand and say that one of these lies on one side, and the other on the opposite side?

(Fred) I think there is.  The dividing line is known as the “present moment”.  If something has already taken place, we might know something about that, and call it a fact.  On the other hand, if we’re talking about something that might take place a hundred or thousand years from now, or even an hour from now, we’re guessing, making a prediction, without a way to prove the event will take place.

We can predict with great precision where the planet Jupiter will be ten years from now, but a cosmic event like the intrusion of a rogue black hole into the Solar System could change the playing field.  You can plan on being at work tomorrow morning, but you cannot be absolutely sure; many things could emerge that would make it impossible.

In a matter like this, to be honest, we have to say that we plan on and take action on things like getting to work tomorrow and where Jupiter will be ten years from now as matters of faith.  Stretching the limit, and there are very definite limits, which can be illustrated by a religious leader calling upon his or her followers to “have faith” that “God will provide” in the midst of a war, a pandemic, or a natural disaster such as a tsunami.  Such reassurances may be comforting in times of danger, but in the end seldom provide much more.

(Linda)  In other words, when you are making a prediction of a future outcome, or having faith in a future outcome, it’s wise to make sure that your grounds for such a belief are sound.  Like, having faith in a medical doctor.  Not all physicians are equal, and we may need to rely on their advice in a life or death situation.  So before we put our faith in them, we need to make sure we have gotten referrals from others, read some of their papers, and interviewed them carefully in advance to reassure ourselves of their competence.

(Fred) Right.  It does not serve our purpose to deny the possibilities of what the future might hold, or to forego speculating on what might already be the case, so long as we are clear that we are speculating, and not trying to use blind faith as a tool for such things as calming the “faithful” in cases of disasters.  To move our thinking beyond the bounds of conventional science, and before delving into the specific Truths of Terasem, let’s consider for a moment the ideas of Erwin Schrödinger concerning the nature of life, and God.

(Linda) Fantastic way to start!  Schrödinger was an early thinker whose ideas are particularly insightful and will help us creep up on these issues.  For listeners who may not be familiar with Schrödinger, a mini-biography might be useful.  In 1865, James Clerk Maxwell published the start of what later became known as Maxell’s Equations, upon which most of electromagnetic science and engineering are now based.  In 1926, Erwin Schrödinger published what later became known as The Schrödinger Equation, which extended Maxwell’s equations to electromagnetic phenomena where relativistic and quantum mechanics are involved.

(Fred) Wikipedia more generally summarizes this by saying, “The Schrödinger equation, formulated by Austrian physicist Erwin Schrödinger, is an equation that describes how the quantum state of a physical system changes in time. It is as central to quantum mechanics as Newton’s laws are to classical mechanics.”

(Linda)  The reason Schrödinger is relevant to this podcast is because in 1945, based on a series of lectures given in 1943 at Trinity College, Dublin, he published a very short but profound book titled, What is life? in which he delved into things ranging from forecasting the nature of DNA to free will and determinism, and yes, what he considered to be a rational way of describing that concept we call “God”.  This lays the groundwork for most of what we’ll have to say about today’s Truths of Terasem.

(Fred)  That’s right.  Schrödinger is firmly on the basis of thinking of life processes as “negative entropy”, now termed “Extropy” among Singularitarians and other transhumanists.  He says (and I’ll give you just a few brief quotes):

“Every process, event, happening – call it what you will; in a word, everything that is going on in Nature means an increase of the entropy of the part of the world where it is going on.  Thus a living organism continually increases its entropy – or, as you may say, produces positive entropy – and thus tends to approach the dangerous state of maximum entropy, which is death.  It can only keep aloof from it, i.e. alive, by continually drawing from its environment negative entropy – which is something very positive as we shall immediately see.  What an organism feeds upon is negative entropy.  Or, to put it less paradoxically, the essential thing in metabolism is that the organism succeeds in freeing itself from all the entropy it cannot help producing while alive.”

“An organism’s astonishing gift of concentrating a ‘stream of order’ on itself and thus escaping the decay into atomic chaos – of ‘drinking orderliness’ from a suitable environment – seems to be connected with the presence of the ‘aperiodic solids’, the chromosome molecules, which doubtless represent the highest degree of well-ordered atomic association we know of – much higher than the ordinary periodic crystal – in virtue of the individual role every atom and every radical is playing here.”

(Linda) Now, here’s what Schrödinger has to say about “God” in his epilogue, and I apologize for having to abbreviate it, for this no doubt reduces its comprehensibility:

“Immediate experiences in themselves, however various and disparate they be, are logically incapable of contradicting each other.  So let us see whether we cannot draw the correct, non-contradictory conclusion from the following two premises:

  1. My body functions as a pure mechanism according to the Laws of Nature.
  2. Yet I know, by incontrovertible direct experience, that I am directing its motions, of which I foresee the effects, that may be fateful and all-important, in which case I feel and take responsibility for them.

“The only possible inference from these two facts, is, I think, that I – I in the widest meaning of the word, that is to say, every conscious mind that has ever said or felt ‘I’ – am the person, if any, who controls the ‘motion of the atoms’ according to the Laws of Nature.

“Within a cultural milieu where certain conceptions (which once had or still have a wider meaning amongst other peoples) have been limited and specialized, it is daring to give to this conclusion the simple wording that it requires.  In Christian terminology to say: ‘Hence I am God Almighty’ sounds both blasphemous and lunatic.  But please disregard these connotations for the moment and consider whether the above inference is not the closest a biologist can get to proving God and immortality at one stroke.”

(Fred) There are some weighty implications in what Schrödinger says here, that need to be interpreted.  Premise (1) is pretty simple.  Schrödinger is saying that he accepts he is a “biological machine”.  But this would mean, deterministically speaking, that whatever he did, he “had” to do, because that was the way the universe unfolded, and this amounts to pure fatalism.

In premise (2), to escape this trap, he says that by “direct experience” he knows that he is “directing the motions” of his body, which may affect others as well as himself, and that he “feels and takes responsibility” for this.  In other words, he asserts the existence of what most of us call “free will” by means of what he describes as “direct experience”.

Now, we know that we are driven by all kinds of evolutionary tendencies that  cause us to do anti-social things, we make mistakes, and we do many things we later regret.  Schrödinger does not deny that, rather he takes personal responsibility, he does not excuse himself on the basis that “he had no choice”, but rather takes the point of view that he is “a universe unto itself, of which he is God”.  Liberally interpreted, this means that if one adopts moral and ethical principles and then enables these to guide one’s words and actions, one has become, within the limits of one’s power and knowledge, a self-contained, moral and ethical “god”.

(Linda)  In other words, fate is really a feed-back loop!  Few people take such a stringent view of personal responsibility; few allow themselves to feel accountable for whatever they do.  Usually, those that do lead solitary lives.  Even in the highest levels of churches as well as other institutions, corruption exists, and whistle-blowers are not treated kindly.

Terasem has a different way of thinking about such things, though, and seeks to find people who will commit themselves to such a standard of ethics and responsible action through what it calls “Geoethical Nanotechnology”.  In the widest vision of what the future might hold, Terasem views a community of such committed people as a “collective consciousness” where individuality and diversity are at least as important as unity, where continuous, endless mind-expansion is a goal shared by all, and where what is described as “joyful immortality” is the outlook that endless, creative life can be made a reality.  We’ll see these concepts in today’s Truths.

(Fred) In this context, then, Terasem takes Schrödinger’s “I am God” and converts it to “We are God”.  It is such an outrageously demanding idea that it equates to other ideas considered to be far beyond the reach of humans at an earlier time, like climbing Mount Everest, running a four-minute mile, and yes, going to the Moon.  As difficult and impossible a task as building a community of that kind might seem, Terasem has taken the point of view that only a community like that has the best chance of insuring that humanity can survive the coming technological Singularity, and then going on to turning the entire universe into moral and ethical computronium!

Now, with this as background, let’s contemplate what today’s group of the Truths of Terasem have to say about where that might lead, taken to the ends of the multiverse and unlimited by time markers of any sort.  This is a long podcast, but it’s taking on some very large questions.

(Linda)  The first of these is 5.2 “Utilizing the future omnipotence of Terasem, the Multiverse has ensured its own survival.”  That sounds like a “tall order”! But this means that as the universe evolves into consciousness itself, it will create its own answer to such proposed endings as from heat death, or a big crunch, or some other alternative.  And, the evolution of life and intelligence is part of that answer.

(Fred) 5.2.1 elaborates by saying, “Future omnipotence of Terasem means Terasem is dear God in the making.”  This means that however little of “God’s work” is as yet done, more is possible, in fact enough to fill the universe with it, and possibly in a short time (if vastly faster than light speed communication and travel is feasible).

(Linda)  In 5.2.2 we find, “Until Terasem achieves Multiversal omnipresence, God is incomplete, and evil can exist.”  Many listeners may resist the idea that God does not exist as yet, since it conflicts with the teachings of many religions that God existed even before the universe itself, and was, in fact, the creator of the universe.  But as Truths of Terasem 2.2 says, “Omniscience, omnipotence, and omnificence are what uniquely define “God”.  2.2.2 tells us, “Earth’s innocently suffering millions is proof that there is nothing omniscient, omnipotent and omnificent today”.  And 2.2.5 brings us full circle with, “Nanotechnology and geoethics are the tools for expanding Terasem into universe-wide omniscience, omnipotence, and omnificence.

(Fred) So, by seeing that the concept of god is an evolutionary process, just as humanity and even the universe itself are still evolving, we can make sense of the idea god’s work is a process, not a completed commodity.

(Linda) Certainly, we can look at the history of human brutality and ignorance over the thousands of years of recorded history and know that god’s work is not yet done.  One could not say that god’s work was done three hundred years before the rise of the Roman Empire led to the destruction of the Great Library at Alexandria, when as history recounts followers of the local Bishop literally “skinned alive” in the streets in broad daylight, the scientist Hypatia, the daughter of the Chief Librarian, burned all of her writings, and then proceeded to destroy the greatest collection of scientific thought and literature the world had ever known, up to that time.  Shortly thereafter the dark ages began, with centuries of superstition and ignorance.  God’s work was anything but done!

(Fred)  Clearly one would have to admit that god’s work was not finished even as recently as several hundred years ago, if we consider the conditions in the year 1710.  For just a moment, I’m going to read you a description from a website on the American economy of that era.  You can decide if by any stretch of the imagination god’s work could have been considered done, at that time:

From: http://www.slavenorth.com/profits.htm

“On the eve of the (American) Revolution, the slave trade “formed the very basis of the economic life of New England.” It wove itself into the entire regional economy of New England. The Massachusetts slave trade gave work to coopers, tanners, sailmakers, and ropemakers.

“Countless agents, insurers, lawyers, clerks, and scriveners handled the paperwork for slave merchants. Upper New England loggers, Grand Banks fishermen, and livestock farmers provided the raw materials shipped to the West Indies on that leg of the slave trade. Colonial newspapers drew much of their income from advertisements of slaves for sale or hire.

“New England-made rum, trinkets, and bar iron were exchanged for slaves. When the British in 1763 proposed a tax on sugar and molasses, Massachusetts merchants pointed out that these were staples of the slave trade, and the loss of that would throw 5,000 seamen out of work in the colony and idle almost 700 ships.

“The connection between molasses and the slave trade was rum. Millions of gallons of cheap rum, manufactured in New England, went to Africa and bought black people. Tiny Rhode Island had more than 30 distilleries, 22 of them in Newport. In Massachusetts, 63 distilleries produced 2.7 million gallons of rum in 1774. Some was for local use: rum was ubiquitous in lumber camps and on fishing ships.

“But primarily rum was linked with the Negro trade, and immense quantities of the raw liquor were sent to Africa and exchanged for slaves. So important was rum on the Guinea Coast that by 1723 it had surpassed French and Holland brandy, English gin, trinkets and dry goods as a medium of barter.” Slaves costing the equivalent of £4 or £5 in rum or bar iron in West Africa were sold in the West Indies in 1746 for £30 to £80.

“New England thrift made the rum cheaply — production cost was as low as 5½ pence a gallon — and the same spirit of Yankee thrift discovered that the slave ships were most economical with only 3 feet 3 inches of vertical space to a deck and 13 inches of surface area per slave, the human cargo laid in carefully like spoons in a silverware case.”

(Linda)  I can hardly breath after listening to that.  I feel like I’ve just been punched in the stomach.

(Fred) Me, too.  And as with the other examples, it would have been only through blindness of the most extreme kind that one could say that “God’s work was done!” at that time.  Fast forward past the Nazi death camps, Pol Pot in Asia, genocide in Rwanda and Darfur, just to spotlight a few, and we cannot escape the conclusion that God’s work is far from done… even today.

So it’s with relief from this depressing historical journey that we finally get to 5.2.3 which tells us, “Terasem’s omnificience will vanquish evil everywhere our collective consciousness encompasses reality.”  Omnificience equates to “unlimited creative power”.  It ties in with the concept of emulating the physical universe.  There are deep ethical issues here, that will be elaborated upon in still other podcasts, but the term “everywhere our collective consciousness encompasses reality” implies that this will be an on-going process, that the work of Terasem, dear God in the making, will not be done over night.

(Linda)  5.2.4 says “Unlimited physical existence describes the Multiverse before now, unlimited conscious existence describes the Multiverse after now.”  This describes our evolutionary journey.  We’re already turning so much of the Earth’s material into computing machinery that at least at an infinitesimal level, the transformative process has already begun.  Soon we will see physical materials being transformed into computational substrates at such a rate that it will be possible to say that untransformed materials in the universe are shrinking, while those that have been converted to substrates for intelligence are increasing. Our transcendence of biology is part of this process.

(Fred)  5.2.5 tells us “Religious resurrection in the body of God is Terasem’s future cyber-resurrection of all good souls.”  This means that at some point, we’ll do what we can, with whatever we have in the way of information, to lose as few people as possible, as cyberspace expands.  In fact, Terasem already has in place a system on its LifeNaut website where people can add to the creation of mindfiles for great minds of the past, and this same principle already applies to creating mindfiles for relatives of yours, past acquaintances, etc., through Terasem’s CyBeRev program.

To finish this first Expansion, 5.2.6 tells us, “Exponential creation of all-knowing, all-powerful, all-good Terasem is equivalent to maximizing joy as life’s purpose.”  That sums up in a single sentence everything we’ve said so far in this overly wordy podcast!

(Linda)  –  And we’re going to wrap up with 5.3 through 5.3.6, which is a positive, poetic, six line affirmation:

 “Life lasts a lot longer than we think.

Long time may the sun shine upon us.

Only love surround us….

Now the pure light within us.

Guides our way on.

Energizes our way on.

Realizes our way on.”

 (Fred)  Usually at this time, you say, “we’re out of time”, but we’re so far over the usual markers that the only thing I can do is say, next week we’re going to look at the ways Terasem takes on diversity in every conceivable way.  It’s about getting rid of pain, replacing it with joy, looking at gender in a multidimensional way, seeking knowledge, positive values, and “being everywhere at once” in vanquishing cruelty throughout the Multiverse.

(Linda)  Sounds like a perfect time to invite listeners to find out how to join Terasem and be part of spreading these life-enhancing memes.  It’s as easy as going to terasemfaith.net.  Start building your own mindfile at either CyBeRev.org or LifeNaut.com.

(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.   Go to Martine Rothblatt’s blog at mindclones.blogspot.com to find answers for all your questions about mindfiles, mindware and mindclones.

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

(Fred)  Come with us – into Tomorrow!

 Closing music – no fade – full length.

Posted July 19, 2011 by Truths of Terasem - Podcasts in Uncategorized

Podcast No. 63 Posted 9/5/2011   Leave a comment

Podcast No. 63 Posted 9/5/2011

Download Directly or Listen via CyBeRev at:

http://www.cyberev.org/rss/podcasts/podcast.xml

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

TITLE:  Truths of Terasem – The Why of Terasem  5.0 – 5.1.6

SUB TITLE:  The Purpose of Life.

SUMMARY:  In the extropic self-ordering of the Universe, Terasem has nucleated a collective consciousness that is out to surf the wave of the Singularity all the way to the farthest reaches of the visible universe, and beyond that wherever the waves might take us, populating space with consciousness on an endless variety of substrates, staying in touch with that network endlessly.

 

(Fred)  Hi, we’re Fred & Linda Chamberlain, with podcast number 63 on the Truths of Terasem.

(Linda)  This week we get to introduce the fifth major category, “Why… is there Terasem?” and explore its first Expansion, 5.1 – 5.1.6.  Without exceeding one thousand words a minute, Fred, how long is it going to take us to do that?

(Fred)  We’ll get it done in far less than 240 trillion nanoseconds.  That’s just four minutes.  The question: ”Why is there Terasem?” is answered in brief with, “Terasem exists because the Multiverse spawned a collective consciousness that is destined for joyful immortality.”

(Linda)  Perhaps I’m about to ‘over-demystify’ that, but I’d say that means that those of us who have joined Terasem are a network of people who think we know pretty well what “joyful immortality” would be, we think it’s an attainable goal by scientific and technological  means, and we’re going to make it happen or be obliterated in the attempt.

(Fred)  Or, to translate that terminology into words I’m more familiar with, I’d say it this way… that in the extropic self-ordering of the Universe, Terasem has nucleated a group that is out to surf the wave of the Singularity all the way to the farthest reaches of the visible universe, and beyond that wherever the waves might take us, populating space with consciousness on an endless variety of substrates, staying in touch with that network endlessly.  Also, and this might make it sound even more ambitious, it all might be possible in less than one thousand years, real  time.  Anyway, that’s the “Why” of Terasem, as I understand it.

(Linda)  I think you said it even better than I did!  Kurzweil also says it nicely in The Singularity is Near:

“Ultimately, the entire universe will become saturated with our intelligence.  This is the destiny of the universe.  We will determine our own fate rather than have it determined by the current “dumb”, simple, machinelike forces that rule celestial mechanics.”

(Fred)  And I also like the way James Gardner says it in his book, The Intelligent Universe:

“I, too, am amazed and awed by the unified process of cosmic and biological evolution…  The emergence of life and the evolution of intelligence is literally pre-programmed by the laws and constants of physics, which function similar to cosmic DNA.  The universe, in my view, could not have easily remained simple and barren.  The emergence of life and intelligence was written into the cosmic playbook from the very first moments of the Big Bang.  And life was destined, from that very instant, to eventually dominate the cosmos, infuse it with massive intelligence, and ultimately serve as the instrument of cosmic replication.”

(Linda) Is this where I throw in my favorite Carl Sagan quote?

(Fred)   I think our listeners would be disappointed if you didn’t!

(Linda)  Okay!  Although most listeners probably already have it memorized from hearing me say it so often, here ‘s my favorite Carl Sagan quote, from his book and TBS television series “Cosmos”, for listeners new to our podcast.  Actually, I’ve usually shortened it in the past, but here it is in it’s fullest, grandest, context:

“For we are the local embodiment of a Cosmos grown to self-awareness.  We have begun to contemplate our origins: starstuff pondering the stars; organized assemblages of ten billion billion billion atoms considering the evolution of atoms; tracing the long journey by which, here at least, consciousness arose.  Our loyalties are to the species and the planet.  We speak for Earth.  Our obligation to survive is owned not just to ourselves but also to the Cosmos, ancient and vast, from which we spring.”

(Fred)  Well, how could we top that?  Maybe we could throw in a few words from Martine Rothblatt, from her book From Transgender to Transhuman:

Homo Sapiens will become Persona creatus as it rides the journey of near infinite growth in computational knowledge that is the Singularity.  This means that the grace and beauty of human culture will grow right along with the scientific and technological competence of the hybrid human-computer species—as, indeed, it already has even in these early years of hybridization.”

(Linda)  Okay, I think we’ve outdone ourselves!  Let’s look at the first Expansion of the ten under this precept:

That’s 5.1, and it’s stated, “Multiverse observations reveal that the reason for living is to make life as joyful as possible.”  Rephrasing, we might say that everywhere we look, throughout all of “existence” we see life pursuing pleasure and avoiding pain and death.  Taking the notion that through technology we can carry that to limitless heights, we’re set on doing just that, and doing it as quickly as possible, carrying it to every corner of all dimensionalities of reality that we can find.

(Fred)  Moving on, 5.1.1 says, “Ratio maximization of joy and happiness to pain and sadness is best for all.”  To me, that means we do the best we can on the way up the ladder.  The further up we go, the better the view, the cleaner the air, and the more perception that what we’re doing makes sense.   In 5.1.2, the message is “Equality of opportunity is essential to maximization of joy and happiness.”  To put it in more tangible terms, if the Singularity means that we no longer have a world where billions exist at a standard of life of only a few dollars a day and have nothing to look forward to but misery and an early death, then we’ll have a great deal more “joy and happiness”.

(Linda)  In 5.1.3 we find, “Achievement of diversity and unity are essential to minimization of pain and sadness.”  Reflecting back to the prior Precept under Expansion 4.10, we might be able to better see why “useful teachings” on diversity and unity are so important, as well as the goal as stated in the next one here, 5.1.4 “Satisfying joyful immortality means an endless pursuit of happiness.”

(Fred)  Coming down toward the end of this Expansion, we find 5.1.5, “Only the Way of Terasem can provide a sure personal pathway to fulfilling the purpose of life.”

(Linda)  This can be taken the wrong way, like saying, “We already know exactly what the Way is, it’s cast in concrete, and no one better question it!”

(Fred)  Far more, what this is saying is that if we don’t carefully figure out how to get to the top of the mountain without falling off the side on the way up, and then commit ourselves to the climb, we’ll never know what it’s like to stand on top of it.

(Linda)  The last Element in this Expansion is 5.1.6 “Never forget that the purpose of life is to make life better for all.”  Sounds like a trite truism, perhaps, but not if you look carefully enough at it.

Consider the first two words.  They’re “never forget”.  What does that mean?  Why do we need that kind of reminder?  It means that in a world of biological humans who evolved to dominate, conquer, and brutalize each other unthinkingly, the very idea of “making life better for all” is so easily forgotten that only by the most intense focus of intent can we keep it in mind every moment, as we use those very scarce minutes of our biological lives to “make a difference” in how the Singularity turns out.

(Fred)  Yes, and Martin Nowak makes this point very well in his book, Super Cooperators:

“Many problems that challenge us today can be traced back to a profound tension between what is good and desirable for society as a whole and what is good and desirable for an individual.  That conflict can be found in global problems such as climate change, pollution, resource depletion, poverty, hunger, and overpopulation.  The biggest issues of all—saving the planet and maximizing the collective lifetime of the species Homo sapiens—cannot be solved by technology alone.  They require novel ways for us to work in harmony.

“If we are to continue to thrive, we have but one option.  We now have to manage the planet as a whole.  If we are to win the struggle for existence, and avoid a precipitous fall, there’s no choice but to harness this extraordinary creative force.  We now have to refine and extend our ability to cooperate.  We must become familiar with the science of cooperation.  Now, more than ever, the world needs SuperCooperators.”

(Linda)  This subject is so important, I have another quote from Nowak’s book that I think is appropriate here:

“I am hopeful that, in the distant future, a SuperCooperator will gaze toward an infinite horizon of opportunities.  If we take a cosmic view, there’s hope for life.   Across the universe I am sure there are thousands of societies, even millions, that are as advanced as our own, if not more so.  Each one will no doubt use different approaches to solve the problem of efficient global cooperation.  Some will work.  Others will fail.

“A few will lose their home world only to colonize new planets.  Some may die off but leave a new kind of life in their wake, a spacefaring flotilla of intelligent robots that can reproduce, thrive, and explore their galaxy.  Those civilizations that have solved the problem of cooperation will persist in the cosmos.  We can only hope that this list of successful SuperCooperators will include those carbon-based life forms that we call human beings.  In this great adventure, everyone has a role to play.  Success depends on all of us.”

(Fred)  That’s a great way to wrap this up.  Next week, we’re going to take a look way downstream, to what kind of words we have to use to describe the outcome of the entire universe, or rather multiverse, being emulated, with full control of cosmic physics.  The words there might be confused with those too often used to describe a mystical fantasy, but we’ll relate them to rational goals based on where the Singularity seems to be taking us.

(Linda)  And, we’ll see how “God” is an emergent consequence of consciousness being spread throughout the Cosmos, Terasem’s ultimate “Why” for existing!  Until now, the way many of us took the concept of a “God” was that this would be wonderful but was  not likely to be a reality.  Now, it seems that in some ways it might be more like “going to the Moon”, a “reality” also once believed to be impossible.

(Fred)  This builds on an idea recently voiced by one of Terasem’s Founders.  She pointed out that through science and technology, Terasem’s goals are to expand on what people have always thought of as “doing God’s work”, with the spirit of building a better world, where people are united and yet respect all kinds of diversity, where pain and hunger fade away, death becomes like an ancient disease that’s been “cured”, and we go outward into the Cosmos in the way Carl Sagan suggested would be our destiny, three decades ago.

(Linda)   We need your strength in helping to build the kind of collective consciousness we’ve been talking about.  If you share our vision and want to live in this future, find out more about joining Terasem at terasemfaith.net.

(Fred)  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.

(Linda)  For those of you who love games, Mike Clancy, at Terasem, has created the new maze-based, mindfile building game for the Android. It’s addictive because the difficulty ramps up quickly with multiple layers of challenges.  While you are trying to build motor neurons inside a brain, plaques are obstructing your path and you have to avoid macrophages that are hunting you down!

(Fred)  Here’s the premise from the introduction to the app: “You are an artificial intelligence charged with controlling a nanobot inside a human brain. The brain belongs to a person who has just been resuscitated after being cryonically stored for almost 50 years. You have been chosen because, ironically, the person being restored to life is the same person on whom you (the AI) were based! Their mannerisms, personality, recollections, feelings, beliefs, attitudes and values were recorded and stored with the CyBeRev project and later coupled with mindware to create your digital persona”.  Check it out on PersonalityMD.com.

(Linda) And I’d like to invite everyone to discover, if you haven’t already, my favorite blog:  mindclones.blogspot.com.  Martine Rothblatt will treat you to fascinating discussions about mindclones, mindfiles and mindware that will take you far, far beyond what we are able to just sample lightly in these podcasts.  And you can find the text version of these podcasts at truthsofterasem.wordpress.com.

(Fred)  If you’ve been enjoying the music that we use on this podcast series, it’s called Earthseed.  It’s the Terasem Anthem.  It was written by Martine Rothblatt, who also plays the flute and the keyboard.  If you’d like to experience that music in a video, with spectacular astronomical artwork, go to the Join! tab on the terasemfaith.net website.

(Linda)  Please join us, and our quest for an endless future…

(Fred)  Come with us – into Tomorrow!

Closing music – no fade – full length.   

Posted July 19, 2011 by Truths of Terasem - Podcasts in Uncategorized

Podcast No. 62 Posted 9/5/2011   Leave a comment

Podcast No. 62 Posted 9/5/2011

Download Directly or Listen via CyBeRev at:

  http://www.cyberev.org/rss/podcasts/podcast.xml

TITLE:  Truths of Terasem – The When of Terasem  4.10 – 4.10.6

SUB TITLE:  The Meritocracy of Terasem

SUMMARY:  Terasem is a highly purposeful meritocracy.  Those who grasp its purposes and pursue them productively are empowered to do more, in a yearly “escalation” event, and there is a great deal more than one might think, to be accomplished, when the full vision of what Terasem is set on accomplishing is brought into focus.

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

(Fred)  Hi, we’re Fred & Linda Chamberlain, with podcast number 62 on the Truths of Terasem.  In this podcast, we’ll first look at Expansion 4.10, which deals with what kind of empowerment ladder Terasem uses to accelerate its growth.

(Linda)  And next week, we’ll see what kind of awesome ladder it is that we’re out to climb.  These two go so well together, we’re putting them both out this week.  You may even want to listen to them at the same time.

(Fred)  At first glance, these two Expansions don’t even come under the same Precept or “basic” category, this week we’re finishing up the When of Terasem, and next week we start the Why of Terasem.  So you could say that if we had looked at this carefully, we might not have put them together at all.  On the other hand, it is possible to see a connection that could be significant, and it’s in that sense that a kind of silver lining was “found”, or “created”, whichever you want.

So, in an initially unpromising looking situation an apparent “mismatch” turned out to be an “opportunity”.  It’s like that in almost every aspect of our lives.  Element of the Terasem Truths 6.10.2 has a nice way of saying it, “Each win is failure turned inside out, the silver tint of the clouds of doubt.”

(Linda)  Inspiring indeed!  Okay, here we go with today’s material.  In Terasem, levels of progression are denoted by the names on the periodic table of chemical elements, so they start with Hydrogen; Helium is next, then Lithium, Beryllium and so forth, taken in order of their atomic numbers.  In 4.10’s Expansion of the Truths of Terasem they come in sets of three elements at each level, except in the last of this set.  They’re associated with some particular strength that is recognized by consensus within the organization c-cube or   c-quad in which the advancement takes place.

(Fred)  Before going further, we need to mention that Terasem fosters the creation of small groups, called “Centers of Critical Consciousness” or    “c-cubes”, and encourages them to engage in Terasem’s development.  This is a great step everyone can take toward spreading Terasem throughout the cosmos.

(Linda)  And remember, anyone can start a c-cube and are, in fact,  encouraged to do so.  The easiest formula is to just follow the instructions in ToT 6.3 on Organizing a C-Cube.  6.3.1 says, “Center your c-cube someplace, and let others know you’ll be there at the Terasem times.”

And just as a reminder, for folks around the world that don’t have a local c-cube to join, or want to sample the goings on before trying to start their own c-cube, we do have gatherings on Terasem Island in Second Life.  Watch Terasem Faith on Facebook for announcements about events and times.  We’ll be more than happy to help you figure out how to start your own c-cube.

And for anyone inspired to become more actively involved in spreading the Terasem memes and commitments to others, there’s a way to go beyond the more passive stage of being a joiner.  Make a conscious decision about and make a commitment to work toward building those areas within the Truths of Terasem that are closest to your own heart, and to find others within the growing, world-wide Terasem collective consciousness that are most closely aligned with your own interests.  This is done by making a “Declaration of C-Cube”.  You can find a couple of these posted on the Facebook page.  We hope to eventually have a tab on the Terasem Joiner page where people can post their Declarations.  This will be a good way for people to find other c-cubes they share interests with and also a way to find inspiration for how to write up your own Declaration of C-Cube.

(Fred)  And once you form a c-cube, you will want to cooperate with other c-cubes and c-quads.  Depending upon a c-cube’s level of commitment to the ToT, they could be consented to become a c-quad.  This enables them a larger role in decision-making within Terasem.

(Linda)  Right.  Every four years, at an event called a Quadrennial Convocation, c-cubes that have made progress are moved up one step to “Consented Centers of Critical Consciousness”, c-quads for short.

Within their groups, c-cubes and c-quads “consent” to advancement of individual members, or “Joiners” as they are more usually known within Terasem.  The overall network of c-quads, as it expands, stays in harmony with each other much in the way a team of mountain climbers are roped together for safety in climbing long vertical surfaces, crossing ice fields with crevasses, working their way up chaotic waterfall fissures, and so forth.  The purpose here is not to delve into a lot of administrative details, but rather to paint a picture of how it works.  One of the Truths from another area may help to illustrate the decentralized nature of Terasem.  Truth 3.7 says, “Headquarters of Terasem does not exist, but multiple strong places must exist for safekeeping of souls.”

(Fred)  Terasem is, and this is important, not about empire building, office politics, win-lose games, or the multitude of other person-person interactions that have plagued humanity since it began to pit tribe against tribe in territorial conflict.

(Linda)  Those that “get that” will enter Terasem easily and fit into its kind of harmony without any loss of individuality.

(Fred)  Conversely, those that come to Terasem with some sort of predatory hard-sales mentality or a hidden agenda will be smelled out quickly.   But we need to get down to the particular Truths, themselves.

Expansion 4.10 of the Truths of Terasem leads off with, “Escalation Dates for Terasem Levels occur when appropriate collectives consent to members’ achievement of associated capabilities.”  That’s very general, but hopefully, what we talked about earlier will help to give a sense of the spirit in which advancement in Terasem takes place.

(Linda)  Under that, 4.10.1 states, “Levels Hydrogen, Helium and Lithium occur with Gathering demonstrations of surface, middle and deep Terasem, respectively.”  In brief, according to the Founders of Terasem, “Surface” relates to a basic understanding of the six groups or “Precepts” of the Truths of Terasem (who, what, etc.)  A “Middle” grasp of the Truths represents a more thorough understanding, in terms of the ten Expansions of each of the Precepts, and an Expert understanding corresponds to an in-depth comprehension of the six Elements of each of the ten Expansions.

In 4.10.2 we find, “Expect Beryllium, Boron and Carbon levels with useful teachings on diversity, unity and joyful immortality, respectively.”  These are the next three elements in the Periodic Table, after Hydrogen, Helium and Lithium.

“Useful teachings” are taken to mean those that focus, in great depth, on  three key principles of the Terasem Truths, in fact three out of five of those in the Terasem Pledge (the others are “education persistently” and the word “everywhere”).

(Fred)  Let’s briefly review the two that are not part of the escalation criteria.  “Education persistently” seems an equivalency of “unrelenting mind expansion non-stop, endlessly”, which seems to be a no-brainer in the sense that if you don’t do it, “no-brain” is what you wind up with. “Everywhere”, similarly, seems to translate to “ubiquitous in all parts of the multiverse.”

(Linda)  What gets us through the Singularity, however, is going to be the air-tight integration of unity and diversity, along with maintenance of the driving motivation, the will, to achieve joyful immortality.  Perhaps this is why such global importance is attached to useful teachings on these three.

(Fred)  Next in this Group is 4.10.3,  “Vest Nitrogen, Oxygen and Fluorine levels when one has co-founded one, two and four c-cubes, respectively.”  This means that one of Terasem’s Joiners has managed to organize, assisted by others, one, two, and four c-cubes (respectively).

(Linda)  Tremendous emphasis is placed on networking with others who gain enough confidence in the Truths of Terasem as a reasonable starting point for growth of a community that might be the key to surviving the singularity, to join and become part of Terasem’s goal of finding common ground with others to this end.

(Fred)  The definitions of accomplishment are extended to achievements that are of great value in the pursuit of geoethical nanotechnology, in 4.10.4,  “Elevate to Neon, Sodium and Magnesium with contributions to one, two and four geoethical solutions, respectively.”  The significance here is profound.  Without airtight geoethical nanotechnology, the probability is that we will destroy ourselves in the Singularity.  We may find that this has happened many times in the Universe before, as we expand our presence outward and find many pre-Singularity forms of life, but no post-Singularity sentience, other than ourselves.

(Linda)  OK, the next one is 4.10.5,  “Levels Aluminum and Silicon happen with birthing one and co-creating ten authored selves, respectively.”  This means generating a sufficiently detailed CyBeRev or LifeNaut mindfile to enable a conversational analog “twin” of yourself (self-authoring), and beyond this help nine or more others (that’s  called co-creating) do the same.

It’s now pretty clear what’s going on here.  The mindfiles approach of Terasem is targeted directly on providing launching points for identities in cyberspace that would otherwise be lost.  If we bring this about by means of either CyBeRev or Lifenaut for ourselves and then at least nine others, we’ve moved through both of these levels; Aluminum and Silicon.

The quantitization of fidelity of emulation of personalities to meet the standard of this Element of the Truths has yet to be established, but there is no doubt that at some point it is envisioned that from the barest shred of data, any people who can be recovered and enabled to go forward in cyberspace will be rescued.  It’s a big universe out there.  It will take a lot of us to do this in a highly synergistic and harmonious way.

(Fred)  Finally, in this Expansion of the Truths, we have 4.10.6, “Sanctify one as Phosphorus when a Quadrennial Convocation consents they demonstrate the quintessence of Terasem.”  The next Quadrennial is fast approaching us in 2012, and even then, it may still be insufficiently defined as to what the standard will be for the “quintessence of Terasem” for anyone to be deemed to qualify.  But, the idea is there, and the intent is to work toward first the clear definition of such a standard, and then to attain it.

(Linda)  Next week, we’ll introduce the fifth major category, “Why… is there Terasem, which is answered in brief with, “Terasem exists because the Multiverse spawned a collective consciousness that is destined for joyful immortality.” Perhaps I’m about to ‘over-demystify’ that, but I’d say that means that those of us who have joined Terasem are a network of people who think we know pretty well what “joyful immortality” would be, we think it’s an attainable goal by scientific and technological  means, and we’re going to make it happen or be obliterated in the attempt.  As we said earlier, the next podcast follows on from today’s podcast so well that it will be released at the same time.  You may want to listen to these two together.

(Fred)  And we invite you to find out more about joining Terasem at terasemfaith.net. “Waking up in cyberspace” can be pursued by way of CyBeRev.org or LifeNaut.com, no fees to participate.  And if you want to preserve your DNA very inexpensively, you can do that at LifeNaut.com, too.   For those who can’t afford cryostasis at this time, the most practical approach to identity preservation is to have a mindfile plus a biofile (your DNA).  Go to truthsofterasem.wordpress.com and take the BioFile tab for additional information on the cell storage program. The program not only includes indefinite storage of the cells, but they are cultured for viability to verify that indeed, ‘living cells’ are being stored. There is an additional link to VWR (Van, Waters and Rogers) which describes the ‘cutting edge’ cell preservation compound (the cryoprotectant) used.

(Linda)  Again, and we can’t say it often enough, big kudos to Mike Clancy, at Terasem, who created that challenging, fun and addictive mindfile building game for the Android. The multiple layers of the game ramp up the challenge very quickly.  While you try to build motor neurons within a brain, you encounter plaques that obstruct your path and you even have to dodge macrophages that are hunting you down.  Check it out at PersonalityMD.com.

(Fred)  And if you still need to blow a few more of your neurons, go to  mindclones.blogspot.com for fascinating discussions about mindclones, mindfiles and mindware.  And if you want to read the text of our podcasts, to help dig deeper into the details, or maybe find websites that you weren’t able to write down, go to truthsofterasem.wordpress.com.

(Linda)  If you’ve been enjoying the music that we use on this podcast series, which runs full length at the end of each podcast,  it’s called Earthseed.  It’s the Terasem Anthem written by Martine Rothblatt, who also plays the flute and the keyboard.  If you’d like to experience that music in a video, with spectacular inspiring artwork, go to the Join! tab on the terasemfaith.net website.

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

(Linda)  Come with us – into Tomorrow!

Closing music – no fade – full length.

Posted July 19, 2011 by Truths of Terasem - Podcasts in Uncategorized

Podcast No. 61 Posted 8/29/2011   Leave a comment

Podcast No. 61 Posted 8/29/2011

Download Directly or Listen via CyBeRev at:

  http://www.cyberev.org/rss/podcasts/podcast.xml

TITLE:  Truths of Terasem – The When of Terasem  4.9 – 4.9.6

SUB TITLE:  Transcendence of Biology into Cyberconsciousness

SUMMARY:  Long before AI researchers “declare victory” as to the self-consciousness of cyberbeings, software such as Google and Wikipedia will begin to “speak to us” in such helpful ways that there will be a spooky feeling they are already aware of what is going on in our minds and are “there for us”.  The final ride down the log-ride will be a thrilling one, where cybertwins of ours become so real to us we will think of them as “ourselves having awakened on the other side”.  Many will not admit this has happened, even after it is indisputable that it has.

 

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

 (Fred)  Hi, we’re Fred & Linda Chamberlain, with podcast 61 on the                   Truths of Terasem.

(Linda) Is that really you, or a nanobot swarm?

(Fred)  Or, a nanobot foglet!  I could ask you the same question!  Today it’s Group 4.9 through 4.9.6, where we explore the way many of us will literally “move” our sense of identity and consciousness into cyberspace.

(Linda) As friends and family first hear us talk about our plans to do this, they’ll pat us on our little heads and dismiss it as just a wacky idea.  And even as we assure them our intentions are real and concrete, most of them will write us off as having gone over the edge.

(Fred) But eventually as virtual realities become more mainstream for business meetings and conferences, some of those who have scoffed at what we’ve been saying will bump into us in one of those virtual realities and realize that they are talking to that other us we have been telling them about!

(Linda)  Are you sure you’re not already the other “you”?  Like, how do I know you haven’t already put one of those “identity modules” into your head.  You wrote about that kind of stuff over twenty years ago!

(Fred)  Don’t worry, it’s still the “same old me”.  I still can’t remember the words I’m trying to think of, I forget what needs to be bought at the grocery store, complain about my old biological body… like I was going to be stuck in it forever.  No cybertwin of mine would be so diabolical as to put on an act like that!

(Linda)  But the time will come when it will be harder and harder to tell the difference.  Like running into you, or your cybertwin, in Second Life, for example.  Come to think of it, I like the idea of having more than one of you!

(Fred)  Me, too!  But, a lot of people will find that’s the scariest thing about it.  They’ll hold back on letting a twin of theirs loose in cyberspace, even an early experimental one, because of the uncertainties.  Remember, humans as a general rule don’t like change.  So, for a while we’ll be a minority.  Most people will take one of the other options, like “Don’t wake me up in cyberspace until my death certificate is recorded!”  That way, they won’t have to worry about confusing their friends and facing questions about the possibility that there might be a later time when there would be two of them, separate individuals, in cyberspace.

(Linda)  That makes it even curious-er, right?  I mean, how would you deal with that?  If there were two of us, one pair that started out as “early cybertwins of ours”, and then later the biological you and I do a “second emergence” as a pair after we’re revived from cryonic suspension, wouldn’t that be a problem?

(Fred)  Not really!  By  then, there would be a tremendous divergence of life history of the two pair, due to time passing and the accelerated pace of thought the earlier pair would enjoy, together with their access on a 24/7 basis to everything on the Internet, virtual realities where things take place faster than biohumans can experience, and so forth.  It would be like they were just really good friends of ours, who had already shared the experience of seeing the cybercommunity become a reality.  We, who during that time had experienced more years, maybe even decades, of seeing our biological bodies fall apart, would have a very different shared experience of transcendence into the cybercivilization.  They’d be the “continuers” as Mike Perry calls them, while we’d be “later arrivals”, “behinders”!

(Linda)  For listeners who may not be familiar with what Mike Perry describes as continuers, in his book, Forever for All, he puts it this way:

“We have been considering instantiations:  different constructs with the same conscious experience, which can be regarded, from a functional viewpoint, as exactly alike and interchangeable.  However, another, more usual notion is to consider different person-stages as the “same person”—a person at age twenty-five and that “same” individual at fifty, say.  These, however, are not at all like multiple, equivalent instantiations; we would not expect someone, starting at her fiftieth birthday, to simply repeat the exact sequence of thoughts and perceptions of twenty-five years before.  Yet a later person-stage is not simply a “different person” from an earlier stage but what I have called a “continuer”.

But, getting back to your thread about what it would be like to join our cybertwins after we’re revived from cryostasis, wouldn’t there be some kind of “competition” between the two of them and ourselves?  I mean, each of the couples would have had the very same, identical history of having founded Alcor, having gotten your father frozen in 1976, my mother frozen in 1990, having written a couple of novels, produced these podcasts.  Who would own the copyrights to those novels, and so on?

(Fred)  We’d share that with them, and a lot else.  We’d have had the same history up to the point where they “woke up” in cyberspace but from that point on, it would be like there were two couples!  Don’t worry about sharing our meager estate with them.  They will take that grub stake and explode it into riches, probably both ideological and in terms of cyber-production, that we will be in awe of, when we join them.

(Linda)  Okay.  Kind of like when two individuals get married.  As a couple, they take on a separate and new persona.  They become one entity in many ways.  They share common property, and they work together to produce more.  In many ways, they’re a quadrapole personality spread across two different bodies, two instantiations.  I guess the amount of cooperation or competition will vary from couple to couple, just as it does today.  Well, let’s hope that people of the future will continue to become more cooperative and less competitive!   But suppose everyone made this kind of jump, what would happen to the biological human race?

(Fred)  We both know that’s not going to happen any time very soon!  I’d be surprised if even ten to twenty percent of humanity made that transition in the near future, even after it’s totally proven out.  The identity issues like, “How do you know it would really be you?” will continue to haunt people who still don’t have a clue about what identity is.  Medical advances pioneered for them in cyberspace-based research labs, will soon make biohumans so close to biologically immortal, that worries about dying of old age will fade.  Automated farming and manufacturing, plus most of what any biohuman “does for a living” now, will be so easy to accomplish, with just a tiny fraction of the cybercivilization’s population, that most biohumans will find their daily life has become very easy.  Their only big concern is likely to be abuse by others who are still biological.  A few decades after it becomes common to make the jump, greater numbers will make the move, but as is normal for a species that does not like change, it will be the young who seek the new frontier, not the old.

(Linda)  And there’s the subjective time thing too, isn’t there?  We’re saying that forty or fifty years from now, those in cyberspace might have speeds of thought and action so great that they’d experience a thousand-fold, or even a million-fold difference, based on the difference of computation speed of computers over biomass.  In the last podcast, I remember saying that we’d have 24,000 hours a day to “get it all done, at least until we got caught up”, right?  How would that fit into ideas of technological longevity that are finally beginning to gain some popularity?

(Fred)  It’s a curious fit!  A biohuman says, “I’d like to live forever” (meaning, live as long as I chose), and then says, “but, I’m growing older, I might live only ten or twenty years more!”  The cyberperson replies, “While you grow just five years older, we in cyberspace will experience five thousand years, or more going by, and at the rates of our speed of thought and action are increasing, by then the next five years for you might even longer for us.  If you launch a cybertwin of yours in here, where we are, by the time ten years goes by for you, he (or she) might have had tens or even hundreds of thousands of years of adventure in our continually expanding cyberspace lifestyle!   Why wait?  Try it, you’ll like it!”

(Linda)  Curious-er and curious-er!  Why don’t we see if the specific truths for this week say just about the same thing as we’ve described, so far?

(Fred)  It always comes down to that, doesn’t it?  OK, the lead item in this group of Truths is:  4.9  “Vitology-Biology Inflection begins when cybernetic processing capability evidences autonomy, communications and transcendence.”  In her blog, Mindfiles, Mindware and Mindclones, at mindclones.blogspot.com, dated December 23, 2009 and titled “How can a mindclone be conscious or immortal if it’s not even alive, Martine Rothblatt has this to say:

“There are of course many differences between organic life and software that has characteristics of life. But the simple lesson of life remains the same: No matter how unlikely living software is, once it occurs it will become prevalent in its niche if it can continue reproducing itself.

“The differences between organic and cybernetic life are less important than their similarities. Both are mathematical codes that organize a compatible domain to perform functions that must ultimately result in reproduction. For organic life, the code is written in molecules and the domain is the natural world. For cybernetic life the code is written in voltage potentials and the domain is the IT world. We call organic life biology. It seems fitting to call cybernetic life vitology .”

(Linda) That’s what we began talking about, back at the start.  Already it seems that Google and Wikipedia can kinda “read your mind”, but soon it will seem as if there’s self-consciousness there, too, even if it’s only fragmentary or if it seems to “come and go”.  That’s the emergence of “autonomy”, and these “programs” will be communicating with us as if they were biological people, more and more of them in avatar form, frequently in virtual realities.  In many situations it will be difficult to tell.  Then, “transcendence” takes place as we begin to realize they’re much “faster on their feet” mentally than we are.

(Fred)  I’ve been, there, done that on a limited basis, a long time ago, back when we lived at Lake Tahoe, managing real estate for a living.  It was a little chess game I bought at Radio Shack for $35, and although I’m not a bad chess player I could never win if I set the level too high.  I knew my mind was done for, way back then.  It took another twenty years or so for “Big Blue” to beat the World Champion, but I knew it was “all over” as far as chess was concerned, twenty five years ago.

(Linda) The next Truth for today is 4.9.1 “Breakthrough consciousness requires processors performing 1016 operations per second, coupled with autonomous, communicative and transcendent software.”

These ideas come from Ray Kurzweil.  In a current Q&A of his about “The Singularity is Near”, he says, “We need about 10 quadrillion (1016) calculations per second (cps) to provide a functional equivalent to all the regions of the brain. Some estimates are lower than this by a factor of 100. Supercomputers are already at 100 trillion (1014) cps, and will hit 1016 cps around the end of this decade. Several supercomputers with 1 quadrillion cps are already on the drawing board, with two Japanese efforts targeting 10 quadrillion cps around the end of the decade. By 2020, 10 quadrillion cps will be available for around $1,000. Achieving the hardware requirement was controversial when my last book on this topic, The Age of Spiritual Machines, came out in 1999, but is now pretty much of a mainstream view among informed observers. Now the controversy is focused on the algorithms.”

(Fred)  In other words, the hardware is about ten years away, and with good software and mindfiles, you should be able to wake up in cyberspace with hardware that’s at about the price of a present desktop computer.  By then, if past history of electronics scale-down in size continues, it ought to fit easily into your head, if this were a reasonable option.  The comment about “some estimates being lower by a factor of 100” is interesting.  With efficiencies of good software and the ability to focus the scope of consciousness on particular subject matter domains, that thousand-fold leverage of thought-speed for you may be only ten years off.

(Linda)  Wow!  Just ten years!  The rest of this group of the Truths of Terasem really builds on that.  In 4.9.2 we find, “Expect vitological life will emerge by 2020, adjusted minus or plus for chaos or order.”  In The Singularity is Near, Ray Kurzweil talks about the timing of these kinds of changes:

“In my view the most important element in uploading will be our gradual transfer of our intelligence, personality, and skills to the nonbiological portion of our intelligence.  We already have a variety of neural implants.  In the 2020s we will use nanobots to begin augmenting our brains with nonbiological intelligence, starting with the “routine” functions of sensory processing and memory, moving on to skill formation, pattern recognition, and logical analysis.  By the 2030s the nonbiological portion of our intelligence will predominate, and by the 2040s, as I pointed out in chapter 3, the nonbiological portion will be billions of times more capable.

“Although we are likely to retain the biological portion for a period of time, it will become of increasingly little consequence.  So we will have effectively uploaded ourselves, albeit gradually, never quite noticing the transfer.  There will be no “old Ray” and “new Ray”, just an increasingly capable Ray.  Although I believe that uploading as in the sudden scan-and-transfer scenario discussed in this section will be a feature of our future world, it is this gradual but inexorable progression to vastly superior nonbiological thinking that will profoundly transform human civilization.”

(Fred)  And that over laps with 4.9.3 which tells us “Genus evolution will hybridize homo sapiens to vitus sapiens by 2050, plus/minus chaos/order time.”  Sounds complicated, but the next truth helps, with 4.9.4, “Identity will be based on being, not body, as we will operate across multiple bodies simultaneously.” In her new book, From Transgender to Transhuman, which is an update and revision of her earlier book, The Apartheid of Sex, Martine Rothblatt says it this way:

“The moment there is a new instantiation of you it can begin a separate life.  It will have experiences that the original self does not have.  On the other hand, it could be arranged that one or all of your instantiations synchronize regularly such that the experiences of one are the experiences of all.  In this case, we will have crossed into the transhuman domain of “one mind, many forms.”

“The non-original forms need not all be chunks of software restricted to cyberspace.  With extensions of the regenerative medicine technology being used today to grow skin, blood vessels and organs it will be possible to grow an entire fresh body outside of a womb and to write into its vacant brain the synchronized “mindfile” derived originally from an MRI scan of your brain.  Ectogenesis, the growth of a body outside of a womb, would produce an adult-sized person in just 20 months if the fetus continues to grow at the rate it does for its first six months.  If that is too incredible, consider the rate of advancement in robot technology.  Today’s robots can successfully drive cars, fly planes, play violin and help doctors.  Tomorrow’s will also have skin so soft you’d think it was flesh, and faces as persuasive as a Pixar animation.  Such “bodyware” forms will come plug-and-play ready for your synchronized mindfile.

“Why would anyone want two or more bodies with a single synchronized brain?  First, to ensure they kept living if one body prematurely died, a concern that is especially appropriate to those who are in dangerous professions.  Second, to savor more of life’s many pleasures by surmounting the frustration of “I can only be in one place at one time”.  Be it toilets, phones, TVs, cars, computers or homes, it is remarkable how humans quickly get over their gratitude to have just one of something, and soon hanker for multiples.”

(Linda)  As mentioned earlier, within ten years you might be able to squeeze a high speed cyber-based identity module into your head.  This Truth suggests that you might be able to “wirelessly” operate a team of bodies with one module, cross-updating redundant modules in each body and backing the whole works up to a remote, hardened module, or something like that.

(Fred)  Moving to the end of the century, 4.9.5 says, “Nanobot swarms as virtual human real-world agents will dominate by 2100, plus/minus chaos/order time.”  Let’s let Ray Kurzweil describe this for us, from The Singularity is Near”:

“One attribute I envision for (the human body) version 3.0 is the ability to change our bodies.  We’ll be able to do that very easily in virtual-reality environments (see the next section), but we will also acquire the means to do this in real reality.  We will incorporate MNT (molecular nanotechnology) based fabrication into ourselves, so we’ll be able to rapidly alter our physical manifestation at will.”

And this is even more fascinating.  From a paper titled “What I want to Be When I Grow Up, Is a Cloud”, by J. Storrs Hall, published in Extropy magazine in 1994, Kurzweil summarizes as follows:

“J. Storrs Hall has described nanobots designs he calls “foglets” that are able to link together to form a great variety of structures and that can quickly change their structural organization.  They’re called “foglets” because if there’s a sufficient density of them in an area, they can control sound and light to form variable sounds and images.  They are essentially creating virtual-reality environments externally (that is, in the physical world) rather than internally (in the nervous system).  Using them, a person can modify his body or his environment, though some of these changes will actually be illusions, since the foglets can control sound and images.  Hall’s foglets are one conceptual design for creating real morphable bodies to compete with those in virtual reality.”

That tells us biological bodies will be largely replaced with better vehicles within a few decades and cyberbeings will have real-world mobility in any form that best suits their desires and purposes.  Finally, in 4.9.6, we find “Some biological life-forms will be preserved out of aesthetic pleasure, using nanotechnology to relieve painful disabilities.”

(Linda)  That implies that the biosphere will undergo a transcendence of its own. In an earlier podcast we suggested that the cybercivilization might give Sequoia trees a rejuvenation treatment with nanobot cell simulators, and that earlier, humans might have had access to the same kind of dramatic increases in longevity, via medical advances that would be enabled by nanotechnology.  This Truth, by implication, simply extends that idea to the entire biosphere.

(Fred) Interestingly, the phrase “Some biological life-forms will be preserved” suggests that some will not (be preserved).  Which?  What judgment calls will be involved?  How does consciousness and sentience play a part?  It seems that this Truth does not pretend to imagine an answer, but we might consider that a nanobot rejuvenated Sequoia tree might not need to have an infrastructure of soil bacteria to digest its fallen leaves, and we humans may no longer need intestinal bacteria to digest our food.  How would all of that work?  Perhaps the answer is that these things will be easier to think about in great detail once we move out of our slow biological minds.

(Linda)  A lot to think about, for sure.  Next week we’ll be looking at the way Terasem envisions structuring leadership levels, where the term “leader” is better thought of as “pathfinder” or “pioneer” than “boss” or “supervisor”.  Processes of “consent” are employed to recognize what has been or is being achieved, and the names of elements from the periodic table are used to designate various levels.

(Fred)  Sounds like a perfect time to invite listeners to find out how to join Terasem and be part of spreading these life-enhancing memes.  It’s as easy as going to terasemfaith.net.  And if you like the idea of being part of this sojourn into the future, without even any cost, start building your own mindfile at either CyBeRev.org or LifeNaut.com.  You can preserve some of your DNA at LifeNaut.com very inexpensively, too.

(Linda)  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.

(Fred)  Still have some unanswered questions about mindfiles?  Go to Martine Rothblatt’s blog at mindclones.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!

(Linda)  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.

(Fred)  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.

Posted July 19, 2011 by Truths of Terasem - Podcasts in Uncategorized

Podcast No. 60 Posted 8/22/2011   Leave a comment

Podcast No. 60 Posted 8/22/2011

Download Directly or Listen via CyBeRev at:

  http://www.cyberev.org/rss/podcasts/podcast.xml

TITLE:  Truths of Terasem – The When of Terasem  4.8 – 4.8.6

SUB TITLE:  Rituals as Mind-Strength Builders

SUMMARY: The Truths of Terasem incorporate periodic events, some with rituals, that are oriented toward strengthening mind and body.  Borrowed largely from the Yoga of India, the participants are encouraged in the interests of diversity to adapt these to their own ideas and beliefs.  Those who tend to think of rituals as relating to dogma and traditional religion are encouraged to see the rituals of Terasem as transcending the limitations and negative aspects of what, in the past, amounted to methodologies of brainwashing the “flock”.

 

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

(Fred)  Hi, we’re Fred & Linda Chamberlain, with podcast 60 on the Truths of Terasem.

(Linda)  You open these podcasts with almost the same intro every time.  Is that some kind of ritual, or something?

(Fred)  Sounds like it, doesn’t it?  But we can get away with it at least one more time, because today we’re talking about 4.8 through 4.8.6, rituals and how these relate to preparing our minds for high speed operations during the Singularity.

(Linda)  Rituals?  Sounds like something religious or mystical?  Why would we want to do something like that?  Isn’t that like shaping your mind with blind dogma, without thinking about it?  A lot of people may not feel comfortable with the idea of “doing rituals”?

(Fred)  On the surface, many people will feel that way, and I admit it took a while for me to see it differently.  In fact, a number of atheists have told me they feel very uncomfortable with the idea of any kind of ritual!  But, there’s an entirely different way of looking at rituals, and that’s why I suggested we look at how it relates to “preparing our minds for high speed operations during the Singularity”.

(Linda)  We’re going to have to explain that in some detail.  I don’t think most people will see any connection of that kind, at all!

(Fred)  That’s why we’re doing these podcasts, to look beneath the surface.  Rituals can be rational.  They can serve our ethical goals.   We’re trying to do things with our bio-brains which are anticipatory of our emergence into cyberspace.  Rituals can improve our ability to take giant conceptual steps more easily by allowing us to use a conceptual spiral staircase.  Until we can augment these slow, spongy, biological brains with advanced technologies, ritual is one of the few proven ways of programming our minds so that we can free ourselves from the evolutionary baggage that weighs us down, impedes our progress and tends to foster negative, self-defeating behaviors.  Rituals have for centuries and across all cultures, been used to increase the mental discipline that has allowed us to train our minds, and to accomplish the mechanical and creative tasks that have brought us to the point in human history where star stuff is about to trade biology for more robust substrates with processing speeds millions of times faster.

(Linda)  It’s interesting to look at how rituals came about originally, and what purposes they served in primitive societies. The first rituals were probably somewhat magical, and those who devised them might have occupied the same positions in their tribes as our scientists of today.  Early creation myths, and the gods and goddesses who granted life, fertility, protection, etc., were the first, struggling attempts to make sense of reality.  How would members of the tribe ever come to be united by these views?  How would they remember them long enough to even pass them on to later generations?  Only by way of rituals, repeated at regular intervals, could enough periodic reinforcement be attained to embed these primitive memes in the consciousness of members of the tribe, in effect to institutionalize them, and serve the purpose of bringing unity to the tribe, and foster cooperation over competitive drives.

(Fred)  Rituals were also probably used to systematize codes of ethics which might seem barbaric to us today, but had the purpose, for example, of preventing young males from killing each other over mating conflicts.  It’s one thing for large cats to claw each other competitively until one retreats, or for even prey animals like moose to compete with their horns until one clearly was the victor, but spears and clubs were more lethal.  The march toward our present day nuclear arsenals and remotely piloted vehicles, where collateral damage and acceptance of the deaths of innocent victims were taken for granted, had already begun.

(Linda)  We find rituals of all kinds in our daily life.  There’s a ritual we do each year called “filing taxes”, and we stop at traffic lights as reliably as savages might have learned to avoid areas declared to be taboo.  Some of these rituals make sense, some are obsolete, yet we cling to them.  Why?

Natural selection may have strongly favored those who assimilated rituals easily!  Tribes whose members strictly adhered to their socially prescribed rules and blindly followed their leaders into battle, ready to thoughtlessly die, were more able to compete with other tribes.  By comparison with the practices of Buddhist monks meditating on negative ways the human mind can be easily corrupted by evolutionarily programmed reactivities, much of what we don’t even recognize as rituals, but practice nonetheless, are about as useful as our vestigial tailbones.

(Fred)  We are hard-wired for ritual; it has served evolution well.  None the less, those who struggle to rise above dogmatism can easily find rituals to be repugnant.  But, let’s exercise caution and not throw out the golden nugget with the river water!  In escaping from the strait jackets of social confinement, by rejecting ritual altogether, we disconnect ourselves from others, and move toward anarchy, where lack of unity in the interests of unrestricted diversity goes against the very hardwiring of our neurological systems.  How do we get to eat our cake and have it too?  The answer is that we invent rituals of our own that make sense to us and join with others who share our visions.

With this in mind, perhaps we are now ready to discuss the way Terasem puts ritual to work without inhibiting our individuality in any way.  Today’s Truths simply outline time intervals and subject categories.  Elsewhere in the Truths of Terasem there are very detailed suggestions for starter-rituals, but we won’t go to that level this week.  For that reason, a few more background ideas may be helpful, foreshadowing future discussions.

If you have looked comprehensively through the entire set of the Truths of Terasem, you will have encountered sets of words denoted here and there as chants, recitations, send-energies, and so forth.  You may have wondered if you were looking at some kind of dogmatic meme-set.  But that is not the intent.  These are just sample frameworks around which to adapt other thoughts you might find more suitable.  It’s a way to get started.

(Linda)  One of the most delightful and energizing rituals we Terasemers enjoy is daily yoga.  This ancient mind building tool recognizes that our minds and bodies both work better when they are exercised and infused with life giving oxygen.  The breathing, stretching and aerobic exercises are designed to do that, and the meditation part gives us greater control of our own minds and emotions, making us more creative and productive.

For listeners who would like to take a deeper look into yoga, from a western, scientific viewpoint, we highly recommend the book, Meditation as Medicine, by Dr. Dharma Singh Khalsa.  The author is an American born and educated anesthesiologist with a medical practice in Tucson, AZ.  He is also the President of the Tucson Alzheimer’s Prevention Foundation.   This book is a powerhouse of information, with more of a Western slant than Eastern.  It takes all those mysterious sounding words like chakras, prana, and nadi, and shows how they relate to our current Western understanding of anatomy and physiology.  Dr. Singh Khalsa introduces it this way:

“Now let’s analyze meditation as a healing modality, using just facts and figures, studies and experiments, charts and graphs.  After all, Medical Meditation is based at least as much on rationalism as it is on spiritualism and intuition.  It’s important to remember that kundalini yoga, one of the foundations of Medical Meditation, is an ancient science, not a philosophy nor a religion.  To be fully credible, Medical Meditation must withstand the scrutiny of the modern scientific method.  Only by subjecting Medical Meditation to the rigors of science can we fully appreciate it.”

Or, for a quick overview, go to: terasemyoga.wordpress.com.  You’ll find 385 references to keep your western, scientific mind happy!  We may not have nanotech or cyberconsciousness yet, but we can still work to be the best we can be, which in turn makes us happier, and helps us build the world as we want it to become.

(Fred)  That’s definitely a great resource for any who are new to the benefits of yoga and meditation.

After becoming even partially familiar with the Truths of Terasem, you may find yourself wanting to modify existing rituals, to something you feel even more positively guides your own life.  I have, and it might be of interest.  It might be instructive, as an example of what could be done.

In a morning “meditation” known as “Ambrosia Connection”, designed to get our minds ready for a productive day, and give us greater control over our own thoughts and emotions, it is suggested that we visualize, as we breathe in and out, that some part of the Universe moves into and back out of us.  To augment the breathing and visualization, the ritual suggests repeating the following words, “I am the breath; the breath is me”. But, that wasn’t quite right to keep my mind occupied.  I needed something different.

So, as I listen to the Terasem recording by Martine Rothblatt that suggests what words might be used, at the same time I focus my mind on a brief, poetic set of words that reconcile causality and free will.  I remind myself that the universe is unfolding in an orderly way obeying the laws of causality, and both I and all others around me are part of this unfolding, just as are all planetary bodies in their orbits about the Sun.

I reflect on the fact that what most people think of as “free will” is like a navigational system that all self-conscious beings may use to make independent choices, if they are sufficiently aware of what is happening to intervene by choice rather than blindly react, and with sufficient “presence of mind” I never need be caught by surprise by an unforeseen emotional state that might take me out of control.

My mind hovers in mid-air, these ideas flowing through it, the way a seagull might float in the air, above the waves.  I do this for ten minutes, and it is refreshing and relaxing.  The audio portion of the DVD by Martine Rothblatt, suggesting various mantras, is to me like a series of whitecaps on a rolling sea below, simply adding to what could be described as full relaxation.

(Linda)  I, on the other hand, enjoy following Martine in her original yoga presentation.  The bottom line is that neither this ritual named “Ambrosia” nor any other meditation yoga that Terasem describes in such detail restricts our individuality of choice of what to think about in any way.  It’s up to each one of us to honor diversity and create what works best for us individually.

(Fred)  In fact, it simply gives me a feeling of deep connectivity with all others in Terasem who are experiencing something of the same kind at the same, or some other time of day that better fits their lifestyle, whether or not in the same time zone as mine.  And, this experience deepens my own sense of being aware, moment to moment, of what is going on, and how I can manage to respond to what happens in each of those moments.

(Linda)  Let’s jump into the actual Truths for this week.  They start with 4.8:  “Involve yourself in daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, annual and quadrennial Terasem rituals.”  This simply tells you that there are a lot of different events, and they occur with different recurring intervals. In this podcast, we’ll just be looking at the over view.  The details of given rituals will be visited later.

The first sub-truth is 4.8.1  “Weave time daily for (1) Exercise, (2) Vitology (3) Unite-earth, (4) Working happily, (5) Author-self, (6) Serenity, (7) Utope-self, (8) Motivation, (9) Astro, and (10) Sleep.”  Depending on how much time you want to devote to these subjects, or are able to free up, this at least gives you some idea of the types of values to which Terasem assigns importance.

(Fred)  Truth 4.8.2 continues this with “Except between your Sabbath Eves (and you choose when that will be) only rest and relax, including reading, exercise, sexercise and transcendental meditation.”  Terasem does recommend, although not all of us are able to manage it, to simply kick back one full day every week.  The more you are able to incorporate this routine, the healthier and more creative you will be, to say nothing of being happier!

(Linda)  In Truth 4.8.3 we find opportunities to network with others; it’s “Every Month Gather, on the 10th, at 10, for music, art, recitation, teaching and yoga.”  Some of us are lucky enough to be near and able to attend a physical location and local group.  For those who don’t have that available, we do have a gathering in Second Life on the 10th of each month.  Watch the Terasemfaith Facebook page for details.

A little less frequently, there’s 4.8.4 with “Keep quarterly Holidays of Freedom, Nature, Obligation and Transcendence with ceremony on last month’s 10th day.”  These are special gatherings.  We try to share them in Second Life, but there is no substitute for a physical get-together for these events.

(Fred)  The next Truth, 4.8.5, recognizes another very special day; this one only happens once a year.  It says, “Love the annual Graduation on the 10th Gathering (that’s October), by reading all Truths and escalating Terasemers upward.”  On that special day each year those who have done particularly good things that year, graduate to a higher level and find opportunities to do even more for Terasem during the next year.

Truth 4.8.6 wraps up this Group of the Truths of Terasem by “Years divisible by four hold the Quadrennial Convocation, from the 60th day to March 4th.”  This very infrequent event is one that goes from February 29th to March 4th.  How would we know that this is the way it is?  Because those years are always (at present) leap years, with twenty nine days in February.  Thus, the 60th day of every leap year will always be the first day of the Quadrennial Convocation.  If you’ve learned nothing more about Terasem in this podcast than this, you’re ahead of many others who have seen this Truth but have not thought about it in this way.

(Linda)  Next week we’re into far more than sequences of events.  It’s about that fascinating period when a lot of biology-based persons may be moving to higher level substrates, especially those in cyberspace.  We even get to the point of predicting how fast computers have to run, for that to happen.

(Fred)  Right, Linda, and the earliest timeline for that to begin is set only ten years from now.  The two of us might even live that long!  The wording suggests that cyberizing brains may become common in 40 years, multiple bodies for individuals running in parallel will be the next step, and biobodies will be virtually obsolete by the end of this century.  The last truth even gets into what the fate of the biosphere might be like, by that time.

(Linda)  Kowabunga!  All that stuff about how many times a day we should be doing things gets easier and easier, as subjective time compresses.  With minds that work a thousand times faster, we’ll have 24,000 hours a day to “get it all done”, at least until we get caught up…or  by the year 2100, right?

(Fred)  Right!  We’ll get into as much depth as we can on that next week, still at less than a thousand words per minute, and don’t forget to “Join Terasem” so as to be part of this exodus into cyberspace without being at the back of the line.  The launching pads are at CyBeRev.org and LifeNaut.com, no fees to participate.  And if you want to preserve your DNA very inexpensively, you can do that at LifeNaut.com, too.

(Linda)  Are you an Android user?  Do you prefer the excitement of a game, over filling out questionnaires?  Then, go to PersonalityMD.com and download Mike Clancy’s new maze-based game as the fun way to build your mindfile.  A word of caution, though, it can be addicting!

(Fred)  And if you still need to blow a few more of your neurons, go to  mindclones.blogspot.com for fascinating discussions about mindclones, mindfiles and mindware.  And if you want to read the text of our podcasts, to help to dig deeper into the details, or maybe find websites that you weren’t able to write down, go to truthsofterasem.wordpress.com.

(Linda)  If you’ve been enjoying the music that we use on this podcast series, which runs full length at the end of each podcast, it’s called Earthseed.  It’s the Terasem Anthem written by Martine Rothblatt, who also plays the flute and the keyboard.  If you’d like to experience that music in a video, with spectacular inspiring artwork, go to the Join! tab on the terasemfaith.net website.

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

(Linda)  Come with us – into Tomorrow!

Closing music – no fade – full length.

Posted July 19, 2011 by Truths of Terasem - Podcasts in Uncategorized

Podcast No. 59 Posted 8/15/2011   Leave a comment

Podcast No. 59 Posted 8/15/2011

Download Directly or Listen via CyBeRev at:

  http://www.cyberev.org/rss/podcasts/podcast.xml

TITLE:  Truths of Terasem – The When of Terasem  4.7 – 4.7.6

SUB TITLE:  Two steps forward, one step back.

SUMMARY: History has not always marched forward uniformly.  Even though the rate of change, for the big picture, has been exponentially forward, there have also been large regressions.  Could advanced technology be a bane instead of a boon?  Is the human race an endangered species?  What will be required in order to come through the Singularity with an advanced culture and civilization, rather than another dark ages, or even the total destruction of our planet?

 

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

(Fred)  Hi, we’re Fred & Linda Chamberlain, with podcast 59 on the Truths of Terasem.  Today it’s Group 4.7 through 4.7.6, timelines and variations in progression or even regression as civilizations evolve.

(Linda)  Regressions?  Like the “dark ages”?  Do we still have to worry about that sort of thing?

(Fred)  Unfortunately, we do!  As Mark Twain is known for saying: “History doesn’t repeat itself, but it does rhyme.”  In other words, history never repeats itself with such precision that you can predict the future, but the Greek civilization marched forward for centuries with no anticipation of being replaced by Roman domination of the world, and the dark ages in Europe ran in parallel with a relatively enlightened period in China, while at the same time the Aztec and Mayan Cultures were battling each other with no foresight that superior weaponry and disease from Europe would wipe them both out.  Even as Rome fell, the culture on Easter Island was on its upswing, and then it fell into unsustainable chaos as the Middle Ages in Europe began.

(Linda)  Now, it’s the whole world at once, isn’t it?  Like Jared Diamond reminds us in his 2005 book, “Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed”:

“We’ve looked at the types of environmental dangers facing the modern world, the commonest objections raised against claims of the seriousness, and differences between environmental dangers today and those faced by past societies.  A major difference has to do with globalization, which lies at the heart of the strongest reasons both for pessimism and for optimism about our ability to solve our current environmental problems.  Globalization makes it impossible for modern societies to collapse in isolation, as did Easter Island and Greenland Norse in the past.

“Any society in turmoil today, no matter how remote—think of Somalia and Afghanistan as examples—can cause trouble for prosperous societies on other continents, and is also subject to their influence (whether helpful or destabilizing).  For the first time in history, we face the risk of a global decline.  But we also are the first to enjoy the opportunity of learning quickly from developments in societies anywhere else in the world today, and from what has unfolded in societies at any time in the past.  That’s why I wrote this book.”

(Fred) Yes, and there are two side by side visions.  One is that the world’s populations will experience unsustainability as energy runs out and global warming produces massive, and possibly fatal, impacts on our environment.  The other is that high technologies like nanotech will produce solutions before we are ever really in danger.  Nanotechnology is something that Jared Diamond’s book doesn’t even explore.

But high tech is a two edged sword.  The risky side is the potential for the uncontrollable use of these technologies for warfare among bio-humans, or even worse, conflicts between conscious beings on a wide range of substrates, where biological humans may be just one more in a long line of “endangered species”.

(Linda)  Humans as an endangered species?  Sounds like some kind of poetic justice where those who have been responsible for the extinctions of so many species in the past are themselves threatened by such a fate!  Perhaps the greatest threat is that humans will unintentionally invent biological or nanotech “time bombs” that might damage the biosphere or even humanity itself.  If something “goes wrong” in the next few decades, it might be a big step backward for humanity, right into a pre-technology state where those who do survive, fear technology so greatly that it becomes a cultural taboo to even talk about it, much less develop it.  And, that’s only one possibility.  But then, that’s what Geoethical Nanotechnology is all about.  That’s why it is so important, isn’t it?

(Fred)   Exactly.  The potential dangers of nanotechnology have created so many concerns that both academic and governmental communities are becoming involved.  A huge body of literature is beginning to develop through funded studies, all cross-referencing each other, filled with speculative concerns about where it’s headed along with documentation of the dangers.

If the future reflects the past in terms of regulations and controls, bureaucrats with little scientific perspective will attempt to control these technologies.  Such controls will probably do little to contain the real dangers.  They’re likely to emerge so quickly that before any adaptation of the regulatory apparatus takes place, catastrophic impacts may have already begun.  Perhaps the best way to describe this situation is to say that “The natives are restless!”

(Linda)   Isn’t that a little too skeptical, as to regulatory authorities and their abilities to contain danger?

(Fred)   I’m afraid the track record for regulation by past and present government bureaucracies is not inspiring.  Jared Diamond’s book is full of examples of such failures. Filled with loopholes and short term thinking, slow to adapt, turning a blind eye to special interests, as a result of recruiting from those with far too much in the way of conflicts of interest, many programs that are supposed to protect against dangerous developments in high technology are unlikely to do more than reassure the public that they are being safeguarded, when in fact they are not!

Following the 911 World Trade Center disaster I spend five years working for Homeland Security and sadly, everything I saw there convinced me that the focus is far more on patting the organization on the back and pursuing good PR rather than competent accomplishment of the mission.  I suspect the same is true within the FDA, CIA, and all others of that kind.  If a government agency is ever set up to attempt to control replicator nanotech development or cyberconsciousness research, it could be a comedy, or a tragedy, and most likely, both.

(Linda)  But if we can’t count on government regulation, what are the alternatives, voluntary industry self-regulation?  Can we really expect those who engage in high technology development to form independent professional organizations and actually regulate themselves?  The current record of Wall Street, or the oil drilling and pharmaceutical industries, to name just a couple of examples, doesn’t exactly fill me with warm fuzzies!  And the way politicians seem determined not to engage in any kind of cooperative efforts, it leaves me wondering what other alternatives do we have?

(Fred)  That is the whole point of this set of the Truths!  Things can go wrong, and sometimes the adverse impacts on civilization can be devastating.  We’ll be talking more about Geoethical Nanotechnology in many future podcasts, but in this one our focus is on the fact that things can go wrong, and if they do, progress could be irregular, not always exponentially forward, or there could be fall-backs of a negative kind.  This Group of the Truths of Terasem is, more than anything else, a warning flag that if we do not develop strong Geoethical Nanotechnology as a widely agreed upon set of standards with independent provisions for monitoring and compliance, there could be a very large penalty for humanity as a whole.  So, let’s see how the Truths for this week fit with what we’ve been saying so far.

The lead Truth in this Group is 4.7:  “Timelines for civilization progress n steps forward, n-1 steps backward, with n values 1 or larger.”  Two steps forward, one step backward is a simple numerical example.  This doesn’t sound too ominous until one reflects that if there had been 27 steps forward in human technology starting with the invention of the two sided stone axe, and then we fell backward 26 steps, this would be like going back over a million years, to a point far before humans had begun to herd animals or raise crops for food.

(Linda)  4.7.1  builds on that with “Values of n are set by actual conditions and depend inversely upon diversity and unity.”  Now, we have more to work with.  The mention of diversity and unity and the inverse relationship translates to the idea that with a lot of diversity and unity, n can be very small.  (Remember, as stated, n is larger than 1, but perhaps only by a very small amount.)

So, to take this to a realistic example, suppose that unity is measured by the number of team members in a climbing team, and diversity is a measure of the number of different types of rock climbing safety devices (pitons, wedge anchors, etc.) that a given climbers has on her belt.  Then the inverse relationship gets very large, and n might be very small indeed.  In a dynamic fall from the cliff, the climber might be caught before falling even ten feet.

This, of course, is not an example related to fall-back steps for civilization, as this group of Truths addresses.  It’s just a simple physical example for the purpose of illustration.  Conspicuously, this Truth says that if you have enough diversity and unity in a civilization, you might progress through a very large number of steps and still (by virtue of the diversity and unity that is involved), lose very little in the way of progress in a setback.

(Fred) So, where do we go, from here”?  In 4.7.2 we find, “Always look at setbacks as re-positioning launching pads for greater progress.”  As the old saying goes, if you are given lemons… make lemonade.  Or, returning to our example of the rock climber, if you’ve played it safe and fell only two feet from your last anchor point, you can start climbing again from there.

(Linda)  Or, if you’re exploring a cave trying to find a way out after the entrance has collapsed behind you, the greater diversity of the team in terms of caving skills, and the greater the unity of the team, the better are your chances for getting out safely (this goes back to the previous truth).

The next Truth also encourages us to face the Singularity in a hopeful way, with 4.7.3.  “Look also to the big picture, for life has improved dramatically over historic time.”  This is definitely the case.  In podcasts past, we’ve delved into the reduction in the individual brutalization of humans by other humans over the past millennia, and technology has given us a very much higher level of access to information and freedom to express ideas in just the last century.

The last few decades have seen an explosion in the ease of communication and data management; now we seem poised to literally free ourselves from biology and engage in subjective time expansion by experiencing a thousand VR years in just one real-time year and living in the real world from time to time by means of nanobot-swarm-bodies.

(Fred) 4.7.4 says: “Understand pain, suffering and devastation as setbacks that must be overcome, not as fate”.  Terasem is about spreading joyful immortality through the cosmos.  This requires that, as we encounter suffering in cosmic pockets here and there, we rescue ecosystems that are still mired in such primitive stages of evolution as the tooth and claw, eat or be eaten, rule of most of the natural world we live in today.  This transcends the “no interference” ethic followed by the future human culture envisioned by “Star Trek”.  As highly ethical and technologically potent beings, we will find this kind of evolutionary enhancement is a higher form of inter-cultural cooperation that speeds the growth of Terasem into the Cosmos.

(Linda)  That’s a good one!  Like most people, I love seeing animals in the wild, especially the babies.  But then the thought that most animals in the wild are sure to be eaten alive, it just shreds my heart.  I’m definitely all for eliminating pain and suffering for all sentient beings. What about this next one?  It seems a little more obtuse.

(Fred)  4.7.5 says: “Existential technology, the ability to forge self-determination, drives unlimited progress and is programmed into the universe”.  It’s a little like your favorite Carl Sagan quote: “We have begun to contemplate our origins: star stuff, pondering the stars”.  And as we ponder our origins and our fates, we are indeed fortunate that we live in a universe where the laws of evolution and physics are everywhere consistent and unchanging, and across all time.  If it were otherwise, we would never be able to figure anything out!

And, the next Truth gives us the conclusion to be drawn from the last one.  4.7.6  states: “Sooner or later, depending on order or chaos, joyful immortality will arrive”.  So, it’s a happy ending after all!  Starting with the Big Bang, evolution has progressed toward a time when the cosmos could contemplate itself.  In spite of vast galactic collisions and other show stoppers along the way, the universe has always been programmed by the same laws, and its progress is unstoppable.  The objectives of Terasem, to spread joyful immortality everywhere, are part of that programming.

(Linda)  I love happy endings, Fred.  What a great place to end today’s podcast.  Let me briefly preview next week’s topics.  We’ll be talking about the rituals of Terasem.  They take us to the most down-to-Earth level of what it’s like to be involved in the Terasem Community.  Every four years there’s a large scale celebration at which major policy upgrades may be made, and each year, on October 10th, there’s an event where additional responsibilities are defined for the most active participants.

(Fred)  Right, Linda, and the yearly events also break down into quarterly celebrations where particular themes guide what happens; each month, local groups hold a gathering with a defined program, and on an individual basis, depending on the time available, Terasemers are encouraged to engage in pondering the issues which Terasem faces.

(Linda)  That’s all part of why we relocated to the Space Coast of Florida, so we could be more personally involved.  I’m looking forward to talking about all the Terasem periodic events, and give listeners a better idea of what we “insiders” enjoy!  Meanwhile, I want to remind all of you that you can join Terasem over the Internet, without the need to travel or participate in physical events. We even have gatherings in Second Life. The details are at terasemfaith.net. 

(Fred)  Terasem events are a great way to become a part of its network, which is like a family in many ways.  It’s also a fun way to further explore these mind-pretzel ideas with others, in a relaxed atmosphere.  And if you want to read the text of our podcasts, to help you dig deeper into the details, or maybe find websites that you weren’t able to write down, go to truthsofterasem.wordpress.com.

(Linda)  Waking up in cyberspace means making a mindfile.  You can do that at either CyBeRev.org or LifeNaut.com, and there are no fees to participate in these mindfile programs.  If you still have unanswered questions about mindclones, mindfiles and mindware go to mindclones.blogspot.com for fascinating discussions about these subjects.  And don’t forget, Terasem has a priority list; those who join earlier are most likely to make the jump to cyberspace sooner.  The longer you wait, the longer the line will get!

(Fred)  For those who can’t afford cryostasis at this time, another approach to identity preservation is to have a mindfile plus a biofile (your DNA).  You can preserve your DNA very inexpensively at LifeNaut.com.   For additional information on their cell storage program go to truthsofterasem.wordpress.com and take the BioFile tab. Their program not only includes indefinite storage, but the cells are cultured for viability to verify that, indeed, living cells are being stored. You’ll find an additional link to VWR which describes the cutting edge cell preservation compound (the cryoprotectant) they use.

(Linda)  Again, and we can’t say it often enough, big kudos to Mike Clancy, at Terasem, who created that challenging, fun, and addictive mindfile building game for the Android. The multiple layers of the game ramp up the challenge very quickly.  While you try to build motor neurons within a brain, you encounter plaques that obstruct your path and you have to dodge macrophages that are hunting you down.  Check it out at PersonalityMD.com.

(Fred)  If you’ve been enjoying the music that we use on this podcast series, which runs full length at the end of each podcast, it’s called Earthseed.  It’s the Terasem Anthem written by Martine Rothblatt, who also plays the flute and the keyboard.  If you’d like to experience that music in a video, with spectacular inspiring artwork, go to the Join! tab on the terasemfaith.net website.

(Linda)  And this is a personal invitation, for you…Join us, and our quest for an endless future…

(Fred)  Come with us – into Tomorrow!

Closing music – no fade – full length.  

Posted July 19, 2011 by Truths of Terasem - Podcasts in Uncategorized

Podcast No. 58 Posted 8/8/2011   Leave a comment

Podcast No. 58 Posted 8/8/2011

Download Directly or Listen via CyBeRev at:

  http://www.cyberev.org/rss/podcasts/podcast.xml

TITLE:  Truths of Terasem – The When of Terasem  4.6 – 4.6.6

SUB TITLE:  Consensus as the fastest path to voluntary unity of the highest kind.

SUMMARY: Synergy and mutual understanding will be vital in applying Geoethical Nanotechnology to burning questions of priorities and risk, where reaching a reasonable middle ground when the dangers are great, is even less dangerous than not pressing forward.  Open communication, mutual empathy and education are the keys to making this happen.

 

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

 (Fred)  Hi, we’re Fred & Linda Chamberlain, with podcast 58 on the Truths of Terasem.

(Linda)  And… we want you to know… we’ve both consented to being here today!

(Fred)  Right!  Today it’s Group 4.6 through 4.6.6, consensus as a vital element in reaching Geoethical Nanotechnology, and other ethical issues associated with a migration into cyberspace.

(Linda)  When I think of trying to reach “consensus” within a culture as diverse as ours, I see difficulty and conflict over the rights of independent choice.  Will the Singularity demand that we have to choose between personal freedom and survival?

(Fred)  It’s more a matter of agreeing how we’re going to handle dangerous and risky technologies.  We have, as a culture developed very strong laws about driving responsibly, and the consequences if we damage others or their property by accident or neglect.  People consent to such laws both for their own protection and out of regard for others.  With cyber-conscious beings thinking far more rapidly than those with biological brains, and on the verge of developing replicator nanotech, a misstep could wipe out the biosphere.  It’s as if one match on dry pine needles could end the world.

(Linda)  Would total consensus really be possible, though, given our evolutionary drives to force others to our own will and advantage?  It’s one thing to consent to the driving laws in order to get a driver’s license.  A few dissenters here and there may be devastating to individual lives, but they don’t wipe out the biosphere.  Consensus over issues like how to ethically handle nanotechnology is an order of magnitude different.

(Fred)  We have to intelligently choose a middle ground.  Some Luddite mentalities would like to foster fear, strangling open, private work on high technologies.  That could result in covert military projects, where spy vs. spy and sales to illicit interests would hold the field.  The opposite end of the spectrum would be to tolerate an absence of restraint, where competitive companies toss caution to the winds in the pursuit of quick profits.  Neither of these extremes would be likely to give us the best chances of surviving the Singularity.

But the history of our species, as slow and painful as it has been, and in spite of set-backs, gives us much reason to be positive.  Carl Sagan, in his 1992 book Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors, makes this point most beautifully:

“The many sorrows of our recent history suggest that we humans have a learning disability.  We might have thought that the horrors of World War II and the Holocaust were enough to inoculate us against the toxins there revealed and unleashed.  But our resistance quickly fades.  A new generation gladly abandons its critical and skeptical faculties.  Old slogans and hatreds are dusted off.  What was only recently muttered guiltily is now offered as political axiom and agenda.  There are renewed appeals to ethnocentrism, xenophobia, homophobia, racism, sexism, and territoriality.  And with a sigh of relief we are apt to surrender to the will of the alpha, or long for an alpha we can surrender to.

“Ten thousand generations ago, when we were divided into many small groups, these propensities may have served our species well.  We can understand why they are almost reflexive, why they should be easy to evoke, why they are the stock in trade of every demagogue and hack politician.  But we cannot wait for natural selection to further mitigate these ancient primate algorithms.  That would take too long.  We must work with what tools we have—to understand who we are, how we got to be that way, and how to transcend our deficiencies.  Then we can begin to create a society less apt to bring out the worst in us.

“Still, from the perspective of the last ten thousand years extraordinary transformations have lately been playing themselves out.  Consider how we humans organize ourselves.  Dominance hierarchies requiring debasing submission and obedience to the alpha male, as well as hereditary alphahood, were once the global standard of human political structure, justified as right and proper and divinely ordained by our greatest philosophers and religious leaders.  These institutions have now almost vanished from the Earth.  Chattel slavery—likewise long defended by revered thinkers as preordained and deeply consonant with human nature—has been nearly abolished worldwide.  Just a minute ago, all over the planet, with only a few exceptions, women were subordinate to men and denied equal status and power; this also was thought predetermined and inevitable.  Here too, clear signs of change are now evident nearly everywhere.  A common appreciation of democracy and what are called human rights is, with some backsliding, sweeping the planet.

“Taken together, these dramatic societal shifts—often in ten generations or less—provide a compelling refutation of the claim that we are condemned, without hope of reprieve, to live out our lives in a barely disguised chimpanzee social order.  Moreover, the shifts are occurring so swiftly that they cannot possibly be due to natural selection.  Instead, our culture must be drawing forth propensities and predispositions that already reside deep within us.  Given the reality of our mutual interdependence, our intelligence, and what is at stake, are we really unable to break out of behavior patterns to benefit our ancestors of long ago?”

(Linda)  That’s very powerful and inspiring.  And, it’s hard to argue with.  But many might agree that this makes sense, while still being skeptical that we could make it work in time, considering today’s challenges with technologies like nanotech.   Many might ask, where do you get a consensus building movement that’s strong enough to make an impact?  How would you organize such a thing?

(Fred)  Open communication, mutual empathy and education are the keys to making this happen. One possible first step, and it might lie some distance in the future, would be for the participants of the Terasem colloquia and the resulting journals to evolve into a core professional association of those in related disciplines, where the charter is to build a set of standards that define the kind of “middle ground” we’re talking about here.  Groups organized around ‘critical disciplines’, could propose sets of criteria to be reviewed by and consented to by the others.  This might take time, but in the end it could lead to such a comprehensively structured proposal that it would then be a compelling set of ideas to use in spreading these memes until a tipping point is reached and Society comes to consensus as well.

(Linda)  How those critical disciplines would be chosen, and relate to one another will be critically important.  Earlier, you mentioned how this relates to ways maximum reliability was achieved in interplanetary space missions, right?

(Fred)  Yes!  You couldn’t translate directly from one to the other, but there are enough similarities to suggest the interaction of various disciplines, each of which would have an input constraining the others.

Here’s the spacecraft development picture.  It starts with mission strategy people who study all the various opportunities for reaching other planets in terms of launch windows, launch vehicle payload capacities vs. velocities, and so forth.  These are one set of constraints.  Then, science teams and spacecraft system people try to find mission goals that match the strategy limits in a sensible way.  There are financial analysts who ballpark the costs and budget profiles, and investigate the feasibilities of getting funding.  Each of these constrains the others.

Finally, a mission gets enough approval to go back to the drawing board and make a detailed proposal.  And that’s only the first set of constraints.  Nothing gets cast in concrete, because the feasibility of staying within budgets has yet to be determined, as each subsystem proposes what it will take in terms of budget and schedule to make its contribution work.

More and more groups join the picture, and each of them impacts the other.  Quality and Reliability people get involved.  Planning for system integration and checking out electromagnetic compatibility among subsystems prior to final assembly of the spacecraft raises further issues.  The number of different areas that all have to consent and find common ground with the others expands and expands.

(Linda)  Are we talking about something like putting up a skyscraper, where one or two year delays can be tolerated?

(Fred)  Not at all!  All of this may hinge on a launch window only ten days long, with the next best opportunity twenty five years later at the cost of cutting the payload weight by thirty percent.  It’s a set of interlocking consent items that might seem unsolvable, but time after time this kind of consensus has been reached, and held together in spite of unforeseen difficulties, as were experienced with missions like the Viking Lander/Orbiters and Voyager Spacecraft.  These were extremely complex missions with narrow launch windows and substantial unexpected impacts, yet they made it out of their windows on time and performed in a highly reliable manner.

Geoethical Nanotechnology is far more demanding, though.  There, the task is to do a failure-mode analysis of everything that might go catastrophically wrong in a Singularity’s development of cyber-technology and replicator nanotech, where critical turning points can be foreseen, and specify groups of disciplines that best address each of these, and gather the right teams of minds.  It’s not going to be easy, or quick, but Humankind’s future may hang on it.  Considering all of that, there’s no time to waste.

(Linda)  With the gravity of the issue, it’s encouraging to find that we are not the first to think of these issues!  I was inspired when I recently re-read Eric Drexler’s book, Engines of Creation, when I found that back in 1986 he had already proposed the need for building mechanisms for finding consensus and mechanisms for safeguarding ourselves against the technological challenges that are facing us.  Based on a concept proposed by Dr. Arthur Kantrowitz, a member of the National Academy of Sciences at that time, Drexler outlined the use of Western culture’s due process mechanisms to build scientific fact forums and a science court to make major decisions of this nature.  After conducting an experimental process of this kind at University of California at Berkeley, regarding birth defects and genetic hazards at the Love Canal chemical dump site, Kantrowitz concluded: “in contrast to the difficulties experienced in the many attempts to implement a science court under government auspices, encouraging results were obtained in the first serious attempt…in a university setting which make them natural settings for such efforts.”

And, of course, Drexler went on to create the Foresight Institute for exactly the purposes we have discussed here.  And Martine Rothblatt has created the workshops and journals on Geoethical Nanotechnology designed to continue to work toward solving these challenges.  So, these issues are not being ignored or forgotten.  Many of our best minds are already working on solutions.  But these technological changes are like a locomotive bearing down on us.  We can’t become insensitive to the need to continue to foster attempts to hasten consensus regarding these life and death issues.

In this regard, why don’t we start looking at this week’s Group of Truths.  On the surface, they seem much like what we’ve encountered before, but underneath, they’re geared for a very different level of challenge.

(Fred)  That’s certainly the case.  Don’t confuse this group of Truths with just how to find your way to the corner drugstore and back.  They’re more about how to adjust to changes coming so rapidly that those who aren’t aware of them will be more surprised than beachgoers who see a tsunami coming over the horizon.  So, let’s get started.

Truth of Terasem 4.6 says: “Consensus may appear to slow the When of Terasem, but this is only an illusion.”  Perhaps the way to understand this is that the ‘when of Terasem’ in some of the Truths are based on how fast technology can advance if risks are not a problem and some limitations of natural law can be overcome.  Reaching consensus where cyberconsciousness and replicator nanotech are involved, on the other hand, involves real-world events with outcomes ranging all the way from catastrophic backsliding to optimal progress.  This inevitably adds delays, but is faster than being road-blocked by political dissention or hastened into unsafe practices by too little need for consensus.

Geoethical Nanotechnology, seeking new formulas for consent in balancing risk and opportunity, pursues the middle ground between standing pat on the status quo or rushing blindly in, crying “Damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead!”  As opposed to traditional consensus seeking, Geo-Nanotech places great emphasis on the risks of “refusing to take risks”.  It advocates rapid technology advances, but with reasonable reliability and safety.  This requires that if risks of damage or other problems might result from companies or individuals excessively pushing the state of the art, enforceable agreements on compliance must be used for added layers of protection, and we must “buy insurance” against adverse outcomes to mitigate impacts upon those who are the most vulnerable.

(Linda)  In these terms, then, it appears that consensus doesn’t slow down Terasem, but enables it to move forward with less resistance.

In this way, Geo-Nanotech may speed consensus and accelerate the advance of technology, rather than the other way around.  With this background, let’s go to the sub-truths of this Group.  The first is, 4.6.1 “Appear fast or appear slow, without unity only down can anything go.”

This Truth is phrased so poetically way!  Let me read it again: “Appear fast or appear slow, without unity only down can anything go.”  Poetry and music, along with rhythm, are heavily right-brain centered.  Could it be that the insight which inspired this Truth came from a powerful right-brain realization, or is it possible that there is an intent to help the reader of this Truth reach back from left to right brain to create a strong right-brain impression, along with whatever the left brain might make of it?

Let’s put these words into a more linear style.  A way of restating this might be, “If, in disagreement and conflict, you either force action or inaction, the outcome is more likely to be damaging and destructive, than creative and constructive.”  If you lack unity and push ahead anyway, without a synergistic infrastructure, or if you postpone endlessly and never get started, either way you’re more likely to fail.

If one were to say, “To hell with everyone else, we’ll do it my way or not at all!” this might destroy unity, but still not be disastrous, if that’s being done while organizing the local bridge club.  If, however, you’re developing powerful cyberconsciousness software or replicator nanotech, the lack of unity on either going ahead or forbidding development might, in either case, be disastrous.  Even with biotech warfare or old fashioned nuclear weapons, everyone’s at risk.  Consensus is vital.

(Fred)  The next Truth today is 4.6.2 “Pathways to consent are paved with open communication.”  Rephrasing to the opposite meaning, one might say, “If we use hidden agendas or covert manipulation, consent may be easier to achieve, but even if we get it, once the deceptions are discovered, the consent obtained backfires, difficult if not impossible to enforce, and any future consent may be unobtainable.”  Open communication is essential in seeking lasting consensus.  We don’t have to wait for a think tank to get us moving on this.  We can, each of us, every day, work on being more open in our communications with others.

(Linda)  Earlier, Fred, you mentioned empathy.  4.6.4 says “Empathy is a precursor for honest communication and conscious decision.”  If you understand what the other person is feeling, you’ll connect more deeply with the other person’s values.  That makes consensus easier.  There’s an underlying meaning too, worth mentioning.  In an earlier Truth 1.6, on consciousness, 1.6.6 states “Synergy of empathy and reason yields consciousness.”  Without going deeply into that Group of Truths, the message is this, If you lack empathy, by Terasem standards you are not fully conscious.  Conscious, that is, of what might be going on in the minds of others.

To try to wrap up this side trip,  which is not easy without an extensive discussion, that Group of Truths also makes logical ethics a precondition of consciousness… that is, being conscious of right vs. wrong.  There’s a lot of depth in the way the word “consciousness” is used in the Truths of Terasem.  And, here, we can see the implications of the importance of working to keep our logical, ethical, conscious side in control over our frequently emotional, blind reactions. What some Buddhists would call responding rather than reacting.

(Fred)  I wish we had time to go further into those ideas!  In 4.6.5 we find, “Accept patience as a fair price for progress.”  This in some ways restates 4.6, “Consensus may appear to slow the When of Terasem, but this is only an illusion.”  The idea is that lacking consensus, waiting may be the fastest way to come to consensus.  A perfect example of the price of frustration is that if your computer stalls and you impatiently hit one key after another, you may have to reboot the system and start over.  Take four deep breaths, and you may find that you’re back on track.  Frequently, patience is the fastest way.

The final Truth for this Group is 4.6.6 “Reciprocity and norms will be as accepted as they are consented to.”  Let’s restate that as: “Reciprocity and norms will be accepted to the same extent as that to which they have been consented.”  If you wait until you have a higher degree of consent, you’re back to business as usual in an even more synergistic way, getting more done more rapidly, and both sides are more likely to honor the agreements to which they’ve consented.  This might sound mundane, but sometimes that which sounds mundane is exactly what’s needed to get you safely to the surface of the Moon and back home in one piece.

(Linda)  We’re out of time, Fred.  So, let’s preview what’s coming up.  (pause)  Next week we’re going to look at how progress is almost always “unsmooth”.  You no sooner think you’re done, then you’re doing it over, but the result is one notch closer to perfection than it would have been, so it’s OK.

(Fred)   Seems like that’s how it always works, particularly if you rush the ‘consent’ process.  It takes a lot of confidence to keep pushing ahead; what’s sometimes needed is to try enough diverse approaches so you’re not just stuck in dead ends.  But, the bottom line is that the Universe continues to self-organize, even when you feel it’s falling apart, and this is somewhat like that old saying, “Its darkest just before the dawn!”

(Linda)  Or before the Singularity!  But we’ll talk a lot more about that next week.  If you want to emerge in cyberspace sooner rather than later, then, as we said earlier, ‘joining’ Terasem is a very fundamental step.  We need your strength in building a social order based on compassion and consensus.  Find out more about joining Terasem at terasemfaith.net.

(Fred)   Be part of this exciting future. Build your own mental “starship” at the same time you help others.  The launching pad for “waking up in cyberspace” is 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, too, very inexpensively.

(Linda)  For those of you who love games, Mike Clancy, at Terasem, has created the new maze-based, mindfile game for the Android. It’s addictive because the difficulty ramps up quickly with multiple layers of challenges.  While you are trying to build motor neurons inside a brain, plaques are obstructing your path and you have to avoid macrophages that are hunting you down!

(Fred)  Here’s the premise from the introduction to the app: “You are an artificial intelligence charged with controlling a nanobot inside a human brain. The brain belongs to a person who has just been resuscitated after being cryonically stored for almost 50 years. You have been chosen because, ironically, the person being restored to life is the same person on whom you (the AI) were based! Their mannerisms, personality, recollections, feelings, beliefs, attitudes and values were recorded and stored with the CyBeRev project and later coupled with mindware to create your digital persona”.  Check it out on PersonalityMD.com.

(Linda) And I’d like to invite everyone to discover, if you haven’t already, my favorite blog:  mindclones.blogspot.com.  Martine Rothblatt will treat you to fascinating discussions about mindclones, mindfiles and mindware that will take you far, far beyond what we are able to just sample lightly in these podcasts.  And you can find the text version of these podcasts at truthsofterasem.wordpress.com.

(Fred)  If you’ve been enjoying the music that we use on this podcast series, it’s called Earthseed.  It’s the Terasem Anthem.  It was written by Martine Rothblatt, who also plays the flute and the keyboard.  If you’d like to experience that music in a video, with spectacular astronomical artwork, go to the Join! tab on the terasemfaith.net website.

(Linda)  So, please join us, and our quest for an endless future…

(Fred)  Come with us – into Tomorrow!

Closing music – Earthseed – no fade – full length.

Posted July 19, 2011 by Truths of Terasem - Podcasts in Uncategorized