First a definition: (from Oxford)
(in Christianity and other monotheistic religions) the creator and ruler of the universe and source of all moral authority; the supreme being.
(in certain other religions) a superhuman being or spirit worshiped as having power over nature or human fortunes; a deity.
Second, an assumption:
Pace of human innovation, learning and evolution of the human race in most all aspects continue at current accelerating rates for the next 100 years or longer.
Using the above Oxford definition of god, how will we mere humans achieve this? Is there any evidence for this possibility?
So, ruler of the universe, well we probably won't achieve that anytime soon, but I think we can already agree we humans are the ruler of our little planet dominating all other life and even inert non living material to an incredible degree that is only accelerating. We have already obtained the ability to wipe out 99.99 percent of all life on the planet with a push of a button. Sounds an awful lot like a "god" already in terms of power in this little corner of the universe.
Moral authority? Well that is self explanatory, realizing all "current" other god ideas of the major religions are nonsense, it is easy to then take the next step to realize, indeed we humans do create and control all moral authority that we place on ourselves.
Supreme being? Well we are well on our way, especially for the richest among us today. We have defeated most diseases, a careful and wealthy person can almost guarantee they will live into their 80's. And someone born today to a wealthy, educated, careful family could easily see comfortable life spans that exceed 100 years. And 100 years from now at our current accelerating pace of innovation? We might well achieve a form of immortality, shedding our mortal coil, (our bodies) and uploading ourselves to a highly complex computer that keeps our thought patterns, (us,) intact while shedding things such as a finite lifespan, pain, disability, limitations etc.
In the short time span of ~20 years we have gone from relying on libraries to having all of our thoughts and data and so much more, to all this information instantly accessible at any time in our pockets, (smart phone/internet) mostly for free. For much of the world. Even some of the poorest and least educated places in the world has access to smart phones and the accompanying wireless networks to support them. 100 years ago we would of likened what more than 50% of the world today has access to, as power of the gods. What will another 20 years bring?
Speaking of the internet, a poor segue into another likely possibility: we humans create god.
Already the internet has god like knowledge of everything compared to us mere humans. Facebook as an entity knows incredible amount of information on its users. What they like, dislike, their fears, wants etc. etc. Google searches billions of pages every day and makes it all searchable and instantly accessible.
Already computer programs exceed what humans can do, in ever increasingly complex ways. AI can now detect certain forms of cancer better than a career radiologist that spent a decade in school and another few decades staring at medical images. These computers do not get tired, are nearly infinitely networked, backed up, with parts that are easily replaceable and potentially nearly unlimited ability to expand, able to operate a literal light speed, the potential for computer power and intelligence is truly exponential in growth.
Does this "god" have power over human fortune? Absolutely. Do people worship it? Yep. (Small but growing number.) Kind of depends on what your consider to be worship. It can certainly be argued people spend far more time interacting with computers/internet then they do any current god idea. How many young kids/adults do you see utterly glued to their smartphones/screens etc for a majority of their waking hours? What are we doing right now writing and replying on these threads?
So what are we missing in that oxford definition? Well, Creator of the universe, I think the rest are already achieved or close to being achieved at current rates of innovation.
If we take off the requirement of "creator of the universe" we humans + our machines may already fulfilled the definition of god especially if we continue to innovate human/computer interface and use the strengths of both to cover the weaknesses each has separately. Additionally the creator of the universe part of the defintion of god is mostly meaningless because there not a single situation where we could actually verify that to be true for any uses for the word "god" so far.
Final question: If we do achieve a sort of "god hood" that we humans are a part of and/or created will we finally shed the nonsense of 2000+ year old bronze age religious ideas?
▮I am an atheist that always likes a good debate
▮Please include @LogicFTW for responses to me
▮Tips on forum use. ▮ A.R. Member since 2016.
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