AI and the Quest for Eternal Life
On February 2, Business Insider wrote: “ChatGPT May Be Coming for Our Jobs.” Among the listed jobs are software engineers, journalists, teachers and accountants. Some believe that humans must merge with machines to avoid becoming irrelevant in the days of artificial intelligence. Some fear these developments; others believe it is an opportunity to overcome mortality itself.
Elon Musk is a pioneer in merging human and artificial intelligence. In 2019, he said:
We will not be able to be smarter than a digital supercomputer, so, therefore, if you cannot beat ‘em, join ‘em.
Musk has developed a brain implant through his company Neuralink. The implant, he promises, will make the paralyzed walk, the blind see and eventually turn people into cyborgs—but it is currently held up by regulations. Its long-term goal is a “digital superintelligence layer” that links humans with artificial intelligence.
Living forever? The ability to control robotic limbs with one’s brain is fascinating. Some believe this and other technologies will enable men to extend their lives or even live forever. But Musk says: “It is important for us to die because most of the time people don’t change their mind, they just die. If you live forever, we might become a very ossified society where new ideas cannot succeed.”
Others have a different take. Futurologist Tom Cheesewright told the Daily Star: “I’m very excited as a science-fiction fan by the prospect of living forever, either as a robot or in virtual reality.” Amazon and Blue Origin founder Jeff Bezos reportedly invested in an anti-aging research startup in Silicon Valley.
Experts are exploring ways artificial intelligence might confer a kind of digital immortality, preserving the personalities of the departed in virtual form and then allowing them to evolve.
—Wall Street Journal
A counterfeit: We should closely note these developments because they are a counterfeit to what God is doing. As the late Herbert W. Armstrong explained in What Science Can’t Discover About the Human Mind, there is a nonphysical component already connected to our brain. It is the very source of our intellect. This component is “preserving the personalities” of people, just as modern technology promises to do, and it serves as the bridge between mortality and immortality.
Job 32:8 reveals: “But there is a spirit in man: and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding.” That’s what separates us from animals. It explains our superior intellect and why God is able to resurrect human beings to matter (Ezekiel 37) or to spirit when combined with God’s Holy Spirit (Romans 8; 1 Corinthians 15).
But God has set conditions on receiving the Holy Spirit and eternal life. He warned Adam and Eve that if they ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil “thou shalt surely die” (Genesis 2:17). The first humans rebelled so, as Mr. Armstrong wrote, “God ‘drove out the man’ from the Garden of Eden, and barred reentrance—lest he go back and receive eternal life in sin (Genesis 3:22-24)—God pronounced sentence!” (Mystery of the Ages).
Man can never develop godly character unless he voluntarily submits to God—that’s the condition for receiving eternal life. If you are interested in how God will bridge the gap between mortality and immortality, request a free copy of What Science Can’t Discover About the Human Mind.