Master Algorithm & The Theory of Everything:
How Evolution Programmed Death & ReBirth …
Forever Creating New Universes, From Nothing!
Back to the turn of the 19th Century automobiles and airplanes were the ‘Next New thing!’ H.G. Wells’ Time Machine and War of the Worlds were popular science fiction. The first computer, the 20-ton ENIAC, was just a dream, four decades in the future. Nickola Tesla was zapped into a new consciousness by three million volts during an experiment. Albert Einstein wanted “to know the mind of God.” For a theoretical physicist known for Theories of Relativity—who believed “the distinction between past, present and future is only an illusion”—wanting to “know the mind of God” was another way of saying that he was searching for the “Unified Theory of Everything.”
Flash forward from 1905 and Einstein’s E=MC2 into the 21st century and today’s warp speed world of artificial intelligence, learning machines, big data, social media, wikileaks and fake news. Yet, some things never change. Like Einstein, many are still on the same journey, searching, going beyond. We want to know the “mind of God.” That was Einstein’s “God Algorithm,” now ours. That’s what the New God Algorithm War is all about, the endless search to know the mind of God, to help us do the right thing, enjoy the good life, live in peace on a dying planet.
Einsteins vs Zuckerbergs: The Master Algorithms at War
Peace? The fascinating thing about this war of the master algorithms is that it’s actually an accelerating series of fierce battles between opposites, duels, competitions between Einstein’s “God Algorithm” on one hand … versus the overwhelming flood of commercial algorithms developed by neuroscientists, mathematicians, computer geeks and hackers, by Silicon Valley’s entrepreneurs bankrolled by power players working with Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, by Wall Street’s quant traders, by the media and every industry where algorithms are their best assets, the key to their power, economic success, earnings, profits, net worth.
Perspective is essential in understanding this perpetual war of the gods. Our human brain evolved by controlling our behavior with the non-math algorithms programmed in our genes. Today however, more and more commercial algorithm creators are controlling our behavior, manipulating our thinking processes, taking over our brain functions with a relentless barrage of mathematical algorithms, in an Orwellian war that humans are losing. In Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, Yuval Harari hit that nail hard on the head: Humans are “an obsolete algorithm,” we are imploding, self- destructing, by some Grand Design says physicist Stephen Hawking.
In his classic, The Hero With a Thousand Faces Joseph Campbell put it another way; “From the perspective of the source, the world is a majestic harmony of forms pouring into being, exploding, and dissolving. But what the swiftly passing creatures experience is a terrible cacophony of battle cries and pain.” In short, any understanding of the Master Algorithm must be conscious of both the “majestic harmony,” and also aware we’re also living in a virtual, i.e. parallel reality, trapped in a “terrible cacophony of battle cries and pain.”
Philosopher and paleontologist Pierre Tielhard de Chardin captures this duality by refocusing our individual perspectives: “We are not human beings having spiritual experiences, we are spiritual beings having human experiences.” Today, however, we are drifting out of balance, in fact, we are losing both perspectives, as the human side aggressively reaches for more power in today’s wars of the algorithmic gods.
Today, it’s no longer enough to know the God’s mind, now we want to become God. Yet even then, we will be unsatisfied gods, still driven by our human algorithms, the quest for individual wealth, power, fame, where more is never enough where survival is at the core. As Harari put it, “Is there anything more dangerous than dissatisfied and irresponsible gods who don’t know what they want?”
Artificial Intelligence Replacing “God” With Terminators,
Time Travelers and “Buddhas Before The Big Bangs”
Computer scientists come at this war of the algorithms, as champions for humans in search of a new “unified theory of everything.” In The Master Algorithm: How the Quest for the Ultimate Learning Machine Will Remake Our World, Professor Pedro Domingos describes it this way:
“We live in the age of algorithms,” they are in “every nook and cranny of civilization, woven into the fabric of everyday life:” Your car, cellphone, house, appliances, toys, banking. “Algorithms schedule flights and thenfly the airplanes. Algorithms run factories, trade and route goods, cash the proceeds and keep records. If every algorithm suddenly stopped working, it would be the end of the world as we know it.”
In a challenging review, “The Search for the God Algorithm,” Daily Beast’s Nick Romeo warns that Domingos’ Master Algorithm is based on a conviction that “all knowledge—past, present, and future—can be derived from data by a single, universal learning algorithm,” one that will actually “cure cancer, eliminate all jobs” and “Invent everything that can be invented” which he believes is “both possible and imminent.”
This very expectation of the imminent creation of this Master Algorithm, makes it clear that Silicon Valley is not searching to “know the mind of God,” they are “gods,” human beings creating math-driven computer tools to help them evolve, replicate and multiply … and make a nice profit in the process.
Yes, this quest for a Master Algorithm parallels Einstein’s earlier search for the elusive “Unified Theory of Everything.” And yet, Einstein and more recently Hawking ultimately gave that up that search. However, neither academics like Domingos, Wall Street stock traders nor Silicon Valley’s power players in the lucrative technology industry are likely to stop searching for that Master Algorithm any time soon.
Zuckerberg oscillates between these two worlds. When gravitational waves and dark matter hot news last year, he called the waves “one of the biggest discoveries of modern science,” one actually predicted by Einstein, “one of my heroes” a century ago in his Theory of General Relativity. Zuckerberg also understands the narrow limitations of the human mind: “A squirrel dying in your front yard may be more relevant to your interests right now than people dying in Africa.” That’s not just his audience, Facebook’s global market, he’s describing today’s culture, politics, economy, worldview, the Zeitgeist, and it is expanding, a perfect metaphor paralleling gravitational waves in physics.
A Lifetime Searching For Our “Master Algorithm!”
Today there are too few Einsteins searching for the “mind of God.” And too many millions of technology geniuses, hackers, unicorns, entrepreneurs and private equity sources chasing the “next new thing,” consumer products, apps, gadget, game, toy from some brilliant algorithm creator hellbent on becoming America’s next billionaire … unfortunately, as Hawking and many other physicists warn, chasing short-term economic gains will have disastrous long-term consequences, a catastrophic ending with the “future of human civilization in space.”
Yes, here we have two intensely competitive visions of reality, of life, of God—this is the “New God Algorithm Wars,” one narrowly focused on Silicon Valley’s relentless pursuit of the “next new thing,” highly profitable, wealth-building technological innovations.
The other focused on our spiritual nature, aligned with Einstein’s desire to “know the Mind of God.” This war between algorithms highlights the sharp contrast between the God consciousness of Tielhard de Chardin and the out-of-control materialism, the “unbridled consumerism” that Pope Francis says has taken over the world.
In searching his “God Algorithm,” Einstein cautioned us about our limitations, warning us “the human mind is not capable of grasping the Universe.” He may be right, yet history tells us humans seem uniquely endowed with intellectual powers, curiosity, boundless energy and an inner roadmap for the journey. Einstein sees our search as a natural process, beginning early:
“We are like a little child entering a huge library. The walls are covered to the ceilings with books in many different tongues. The child knows that someone must have written these books. It does not know who or
how. It does not understand the languages in which they are written. But the child notes a definite plan in the arrangement of the books—a mysterious order which it does not comprehend, only dimly suspects.”
We are all that child, searching for that “mysterious order,” the real Master Algorithm, guided and often manipulated by modern “librarians” who have their own goals and coding agendas.
Algorithms Biased In The Eternal War of Good vs Evil
Like so many journalists, TechCrunch’s Ben Dickson warns against tech’s emerging megalomania. In “Why it’s so hard to create unbiased artificial intelligence?” he warns us that “the same data used to train machine learning algorithms can teach it to become evil or biased. And like every child, machine learning algorithms tend to pick up the tastes and biases of the persons who rear them,” guaranteeing neither benign parenting, ethical leadership, nor a godly algorithm.
Indeed, computer scientists searching for the ultimate ‘Master God Algorithm’ might first share a lesson in humility from the world of another physicist. In Richard Muller’s new, brilliant Now: The Physics of Time, he says: “Physics is arguably that tiny subset of reality that is susceptible to mathematics … if an aspect of existence doesn’t so yield, we give it a different name: history, political science, ethics, philosophy, poetry … What fraction of what you know that Is important is physics? I imagine that even for Einstein that number was tiny.”
In his final analysis, Muller goes way beyond the Big Bang, beyond the limited worlds of mathematics, cybernetics and computer science: “Often the most difficult challenge is in asking the right questions; It is hard to know where the next physics revelations will appear,” but “advance is unlikely to require complex math or arcane philosophy. Whoever cracks open these problems will likely do so with some very simple examples.” In fact, the 33 master codes of today’s Master Algorithm wars reflect a search for the right questions about the future of the human species, of civilization, of our home planet.
Mysterious Koan, The Non-Math Master Algorithm
Gary Zukav, a physicist evolved as a metaphysician, a Green Beret in Vietnam, adds a unique perspective in The Seat of The Soul, each of us begin our search before we arrive in Einstein’s “library,” before we are born …
“Each soul takes upon itself a particular task, it may be the task of raising a family, of communicating ideas through writing, or transforming the consciousness of a community, such as a business community. It may be the task of awakening the awareness of the power of love at the level of nations, or even contributing to the evolution of consciousness at a global level.”
Whatever your task, “all the experiences of your life serve to awaken within you the memory of that contract, and to prepare you to fulfill it.” As consciousness expands the “majestic harmony” reveals the agreement we made.
Mine became crystal clear in an aha moment, a sudden awareness that the ‘task’ had already been revealed quite subtly over time in the 1,643 columns posted over seventeen years at DowJones MarketWatch.com, the Wall Street Journal and earlier in MarketWatch’s joint venture with CBS and the Financial Times. And after several years was their lead online columnist, analyzing global warming and climate change from a behavioral economics point of view.
My “task” became obvious when looking beyond the limited math coding languages commonly used in computer programming and machine learning algorithms. The MasterCoders for a new “God Algorithms” came in the form of complex non-numeric languages that scientists had dismissed, for lack of measurement and testing, but that were familiar to great minds throughout history from Aristotle and Shakespeare, to Michelangelo, Darwin and many others.
The Master Algorithm’s coding integrates many disciplines, the fuzzy logic of quantum mechanics … chaos theory of mathematicians … mysterious Zen koans … earlier technologies first learned as a U.S. Marine Corps radar-computer specialist … and while publishing FNX: Future News Index newsletter for stock traders … in analyzing J.P. Morgan’s use astronomical cycles while a Wall Street investment banker … researching the Myers-Briggs and Carl Jung’s personality types for The Millionaire Code… in comparing the ‘Prologues in Heaven’ in Goethe’s Faust and the Biblical Book of Job for a musical comedy … then analyzing the coincident of the two Prologues in Heaven with Kurzweil’s ‘Singularity’ in 2047, as our planet passes beyond the point-of-no-return into irreversibly overheating … while searching for answers to Enrico Fermi 13.7 billion year-old question: “Where is everybody? Why no intelligent life elsewhere in the universe?”
Turns out, I was a just another curious child in Einstein’s fascinating “library,” actually being mysterious led, as we all are, to rediscover the task I agreed to in an earlier time-space, while searching the “majestic harmony” of our vast universe and negotiating my way through life’s “terrible cacophony of battle cries and pain.”
“Who Is Killing All “Life”on Planet-Earth?”
Bill Gates is the world’s richest man because of his mastery of computer coding, the mathematical kind, Gates comes at his “God Algorithm” from the same human perspective dominating Domingos’ The Master Algorithm. In a recent annual report of his charitable foundation’, Gates reiterated his ongoing search for an “energy miracle” to solve our global warming problems—new energy cheaper than coal with no pollution—to reverse the trajectory of climate change, to save the planet from the ‘catastrophic ending’ predicted by Hawking and many other scientists.
Gates’ goal is clear: “Zero carbon emissions globally by 2050.” His “miracle energy” equation updates one from the earlier work of Japanese energy economist Yoizhi Kaya. Paradoxically, Gates math actually proves that if our civilization doesn’t reach zero emissions soon … our home planet is already dying … that humans are the cause … that we are in denial of the obstacles to survival:
Gates’ equation is simple: CO2 = P x S x E x C. Translation: Carbon emissions are a function of population growth (P) … services and resources consumed per capita (S) … the energy needed to create those services (E) … and carbon emissions (C) … Bottom line: Gates equation guarantees a perpetually overheating planet … that we are in fact already living on a dying planet.
In short, if we really want to save the planet … we need a radical new approach … our old thinking, old economics, old technologies, old philanthropists are making things worse, actually killing our planet … although few of these old-timers will admit they’re wrong, as David Owen documents in The Conundrum: How Scientific Innovation, Increased Efficiency, and Good Intentions Can Make Our Energy and Climate Problems Worse. Denial becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Gate’s “Miracle Energy” Equation: Actually Proves Planet-Earth Is Dying!
Yes, the world needs more than a new “miracle energy,” we do need a new way of thinking, even a new kind of savior. At a recent World Economic Forum, founder Klaus Schwab offered a vision of what’s needed, what must emerge, soon. In his new book, The Fourth Industrial Revolution, Schwab urges us to “lift humanity into a new collective and moral consciousness based on a shared sense of destiny,” to rise above today’s materialistic culture.
Schwab gets it: Our world needs a new “consciousness” reversing our struggle, to avoid sinking deeper into myopic political ideologies, economic chaos and cultural conflicts, avoid aligning ourselves with powerful, mysterious dark forces that seems hell-bent on destroying life on Earth, abandoning us as a dying planet.
And yet, “it may already be too late,” warns environmental activist Bill McKibben. Still, many pray the “energy miracle” we need will come not as innovative new technologies … not as fossil fuel alternatives … not as more investment capital … nor as increased consumerism … nor even enlightened politicians … but in what Schwab identifies as the new “collective and moral consciousness.
Endtimes Hoax? Or Did The Evangelicals Get it Right!
Paradoxically, conservative evangelicals already know who’s in control. In his Greatest Hoax: How the Global Warming Conspiracy Threatens Your Future, Big Oil-backed GOP Chairman of the Senate Environment Committee Senator Jim Inhofe apparently “got it,” warning us to trust, don’t even question:
“God’s up there. Humans are arrogant to think we can change what He’s doing to the climate.” And humans. While scientists analyze natural cycles, conservative evangelicals ‘get it’ at a gut level, a profound blend of spiritual awareness and material madness that recognizes we are neither cause nor cure.
Moreover, the good senator is not alone; a recent Public Religion Research Institute survey tells us almost half of Americans believe climate disasters are warnings of a biblical “End Times.” Similar studies by Gallup and other pollsters tell us that as important as global warming may be, a majority of Americans also believe climate change is not a top-20 national priority.
And while public opinion polls won’t prove God is to blame for turning Earth into a dying planet, polling results do suggest a lot of Americans are either lulled into inaction or as the recent election clearly proves, they openly oppose climate change policies such as EPA regulations and the U.N. Climate Change Accord.
Americans Love Passing The Buck … But Blame “God?”
If evangelicals like Senator Inhofe are right … if God really has absolute control of climate change … if global warming is killing life on our planet … and if humans are powerless to do anything to reverse climate trends … then a helluva lot of people are in fact “blaming” God for the planet’s climate problems:
- So Why Not Just Blame Big Oil & Fossil Fuels?
For failing to plan ahead for the end of The Oil Age? For totally failing to grab the lead in the alternative energy business back forty years ago when Exxon was way ahead in researching alternatives, would have owned that market to the benefit of shareholders, as well as the public. Today these aging fossil fuel companies are still hiding that massive corporate blunder, and now are even making matters worse, as divesting fossil fuels stocks has become so common even Rockefeller heirs doing it,accusing ExxonMobil of “morally reprehensible conduct.”
- Blame Conservative Politicians? Or Liberal Scientists?
Why not blame our elected science-denying senators and representatives for blocking EPA rules? Or, blame NASA and the 2,500 liberal scientists on the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change? Scientists are not onlyconvinced humans are the cause, they’re also convinced humans actually have the power to stop global warming. In the U.N. Paris Accord 197 nations even agreed to save the planet by working together to control carbon emissions and keep global warming to two degrees. Already many nations are hedging and cheating. Meanwhile, scientists warn that new alternative energy technologies can’t possibly replace fossil fuels fast enough on a planet of non-renewable scarce resources.
- Blame America’s Professional Eonomists?
After all, economists are in bed with their corporate bosses, bankers and the stock market, consistently ignoring the taboo subject of global population growth that is the driver in their perpetual growth myth and our worship of consumerism, the two key forces behind our unsustainable population growth headed for a predicted 10 billion by 2050, steadily depleting scarce, non-renewable resources, accelerating food shortages, creating desert lands, triggering wars, pandemics and natural disasters.
- Blame World’s Religious Leaders?
Yes, even Pope Francis. He has God’s ear. For years he’s been the world’s most vocal climate change advocate, even lectured the U.S. Congress about the need to stop global warming and save the planet. And yet afterwards, when he reaffirmed the Catholic Church’s outdated birth control dogma, he was adding to the planet’s out-of-control population growth. Pollsters now tell us that across the world, he did not change opinions, partisan politics and consumerism trumped pope’s message. Human-caused? Yes, today humans are left holding the bag, we get most of the blame for over-heating the planet, from scientists and the media. That’s really no surprise.
Climate is human-caused? You bet! Today humans are left holding the bag, we get most of the blame for over-heating the planet, from scientists and the media. That’s really no surprise.Way back in 2009, Bill Gates and his billionaires club exposed the problem, agreeing that population was Planet-Earth’s #1 ticking time-bomb, accelerating and amplifying all other risks, the primary fuel creating global warming and over-heating the planet. In short, we can’t stop the inevitable.
The U.N. in Denial, Silent About Out-Of-Control Population
Population growth has quietly become a taboo topic, in spite of its highly predictably negative impact on economic growth. Population growth has also been minimized or ignored on United Nation initiatives, even though their own demographers predict that 10 billion humans by 2050 is unsustainable.
In the next generation, the planet will add three billion more humans, up from 7.3 billion today. Worse, they will be living in emerging countries with ever-increasing demands for more economic services, higher standards of living, more food, more job opportunities, more wealth creation, more resources … more of everything.
In the near future, emerging and developing nations will be pushing for more and more short-term economic growth, each driven by their own version of the now universal “American Dream” that has them consuming more and more resources per capita, dumping more and more wastes, as global warming risks accelerate and these emerging economies rapidly mature into developed nations.
This economic trend is unsustainable: Europe and America already consume 32 times more resources per capita and dump 32 times more waste than consumers in emerging markets. Factor that in your algorithms for the 2047 Singularity.
“Sustainable Bottlenecks” Programmed By God of Evolution
Physicists are already predicting what’s ahead for our planet. Back in 1950 Nobel Physicist Enrico Fermi scanned billions of galaxies and asked: “Where is everybody? Why are there no signs of intelligent life in our universe?” Since then America has spent billions sending out coded messages for other civilizations, scanning galaxies for clues. And still no signs of “intelligent life” anywhere in this vast cosmos of trillions of stars circled by hundreds of millions of potentially habitable planets for the last 13.7 billion years.
Are we really all alone? Astrophysicist Adam Frank offers several possible explanations in a New York Times OpEd. One stands out as statistically plausible given our intensely competitive survival-the-fittest economic system: Do “all planets hit a sustainability bottleneck …none ever make it to the other side?”
Billions of years, billions of galaxies, stars, planets—and yet no civilization has ever become “intelligent” enough to solve their version of the “Master Algorithm,” and make it through their sustainability bottleneck to the other side, save itself, and also leave evidence of their survival. Never?
None ever survive? In 13.7 billion years? Hundreds of millions of intelligent life possibilities … and not one was “intelligent enough” to get to “the other side?” Does every civilization on every planet in every galaxy hit a dead end? Do they all eventually wind up self-destructing when they attempt to break through their unique “sustainability bottleneck?” Is this our fate, repeating a preprogrammed eternal cosmic lifecycle?
Evolution’s Universal “Kill Switch” in All Life-Cycles!
Apparently “intelligence” is not enough, in fact, is actually a liability, the real reason no civilization has ever made it through a “sustainability bottleneck.” Other civilizations and planets may have evolved, mastered intelligence, also developed megalomania, a God Complex, and begun searching for the next new “Master Algorithm” that will save them, help them “invent everything that can be invented” including an essential “energy miracle.” Yet always failing, vanishing, leaving nothing behind.
The sciences already tell us that all life forms are pre-programmed with a ‘kill switch.’ In human life it’s deep in our DNA. All life forms live and die according to their unique cycle, some fast, some slow. But every molecule, every cell, every species has its “cycle of life,” of birth and death. Throughout history, every human, every nation, culture and civilization, all planets, stars, galaxies come and go, each to their pre-programmed life cycle. And eventually, all life forms will terminate, exploding in a new big bang or supernova. Or just go quietly, vanishing without a trace. That’s the natural cycle of all life forms.
Economist Robin Hanson would call this “The Great Filter,” a mysterious “barrier” blocking highly evolved intelligent beings from solving the God Algorithm and making it through their sustainability bottleneck, guaranteeing self-destruction. Then, when a civilization reaches a higher level of intelligence, the kill switch kicks in and they self- destruct leaving no evidence, just a thought transmitted to some future Enrico Fermi on another planet to ask, “Where is everybody?”
“Big Bang Buddhism:” No Beginning, No Ending, Only The Now!
In challenging the Christian cosmological view, Buddhism and eastern thought leaders generally see past the limited intellectual theorizing and restrictive research of modern science, past the paradoxes and filters of western scientific minds, past the Big Bangs, Black Holes and Supernovas, offering alternative solutions to all the god algorithms, the evolution of species intelligence, and the cosmology of all sustainability bottlenecks.
In the Buddhist cosmology “there is no Creator god,” says Brian Schell: “Creation occurs repeatedly throughout time in cycles. In the beginning of each cycle, land forms, in darkness, on the surface of the water. Beings who populated the universe in the previous cycle are reborn.” The Dalai Lama clarifies this In The Universe in a Single Atom, The Convergence of Science and Spirituality:
“Even with all these profound scientific theories of the origin of the universe, I am left with questions, serious ones: What existed before the Big Bang? Where did the Big Bang come from? What caused it? Why has our planet evolved to support life? What is the relationship between the cosmos and the beings that have evolved within it? … I am not subject to the professional or ideological constraints of a radically materialistic worldview. In Buddhism the universe is seen as infinite and beginningless, so I am quite happy to venture beyond the Big Bang and speculate about possible states of affairs before it.”
Moreover, theoretical physics shares much in common with Buddhism. In The Grand Design, while also refuting Newton’s belief that “God” must have created the universe because it could not arise out of chaos, Stephen Hawking tells us: “The universe can and will create itself from nothing … Spontaneous creation is the reason there is something rather than nothing, why the universe exists, why we exist. It is not necessary to invoke God to set the universe going.”
We also have scientific evidence that from the Big Bang to Black Holes and Supernovas, sooner or later all life does die, all molecules, all cells, all species, every individual, everyone, we all die. In fact, ninety-nine percent of all of Earth’s species are already extinct.
History expands on this long view: remember, all civilizations, all planets, all-star systems do eventually die, often in sudden catastrophic supernovas after surviving billions of years. The big difference here is that while many religious fundamentalists, cosmologists, climate activists and even scientists focus on big bang beginnings and catastrophic endings, Buddhists, scientists and mastercoders see an infinite recycling of life forms arising over and over out of chaos in many new worlds.
“Will New Technologies Save Our World? … In Time?”
It is no surprise that physicists like Stephen Hawking and Robert Laughlin agree with Senator Inhofe and other conservative evangelicals. Strange bedfellows indeed, but what they’re all really telling us is to forget about the global warming threat, it doesn’t matter, climate is changing, overheating the planet, it has momentum, is accelerating, and the odds are, we won’t change it.
Why? They all see Planet-Earth clearly headed for a “catastrophic ending.” In fact, many are telling us to plan ahead for the coming apocalypse. Because we can’t stop the inevitable endgame they all see dead ahead.
But is that God’s plan? Is that the real “Master Algorithm” in action, revealed, a dynamic, evolving system that has no mathematical coding? Although they’re not directly blaming God, and even if humans really are ultimately the responsible cause, physicists all arrive at the same bottom line—we are still living on a dying planet.
Yet, although the warnings are getting progressively louder, so is denialism. Combines, they say a catastrophic ending is dead ahead … accept your fate … find a new planet … plan your exit strategy … build rockets … you are living on a dying planet … admit it … get off … Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos’ are already working on it … their SpaceX and Blue Origin rockets are already being tested to do just that, escape … yes,they’re planning a new colony for humans … on Mars.
But is a cold, desolate Mars colony for a few million humans really a serious solution to global warming on Earth? For our over-heating, over-populated planet? Or is it just an unconscious admission that “something,” whether human, divine or just a story, really is “killing” life on our planet? And that it really is time to plan ahead for the inevitable endgame, whatever, whenever.
Searching For Human Civilization, Beyond Mars, In Space!
A quarter century ago, James Hansen, then director of NASA’s Goddard Institute of Space Studies, first warned Congress about the world’s global warming threat. Hansen’s recently updated research doubles down on those warnings. Climate disasters will accelerate. Hansen warns of a 10-foot rise in sea levels in this 21st century. Meanwhile, the news media and public just yawn.
But coming soon, be forewarned … expect more Superstorm Sandys … Manhattan flooding … Miami underwater … Predictable “1,000-year” dustbowls every decade … Not long ago insurers measured risk as 100-year floods … 100-year fires … 100-year droughts. No more. They’re now antiquated seat-of-the-pants benchmarks until recently used by the insurance industry.
The Geneva Association for the Study of Insurance Economics members includes ninety of the world’s largest insurers. They have created a new normal. Today the global insurance industry is rapidly shifting to a new business model, using more scientific data and algorithms, now predicting that so-called “100-year disasters” of the past will be hitting the continents every decade or so.
Yes, the insurance industry gets it. No more outdated seat-of-the-pants rules-of- thumb. Nor will they let the self-serving rhetoric of today’s science-denying politicians and energy giants dictate tomorrow’s insurance rates. They’re now using hard climate- science data, not slogans, ideologies and denialism.
After 2047, Big Cities, Hot, Unbearable, Unlivable, Irreversible!
Worse, it turns out that even if humans do hold global warming under the UN-IPCC’s new two degrees goal, natural disasters will continue accelerating, the planet will continue over-heating. Why? Climate change “momentum” will just keep heating the oceans and atmosphere, melting glaciers, making the world’s great cities unbearably hot, for living and working.
A recent University of Hawaii study published in Nature magazine warns that our world is rapidly becoming one massive hothouse. Bloomberg News reviewed the study concluding that not only were “temperatures in New York increasing,” but by 2047 most major cities across the planet will pass a “point-of-no-return” into irreversible overheating, never again returning to historical averages.
Yes, after 2047 Planet-Earth will just keep automatically heating up for “tens of thousands of years” reports Climate News Network’s Tim Radford, which will make living and working in major metropolises—including Beijing, Rome, Mumbai, Cairo, London, Rio, Tokyo, New York City—all unbearably hot.
Silicon Valley’s Narcissistic “God Complex” Rules The Earth!
The New York Times writes that “in Silicon Valley, there is a sense that tech companies are doing God’s work. Software can solve the world’s biggest problems, many tech entrepreneurs believe, if only it is put to the right use.”
Yes, Silicon Valley’s power players are absolutely convinced technology is the solution to saving the world. But will technology’s super-optimistic genius innovators really deliver? True, there seems to me a perpetual production line of geniuses minting a steady arsenal of ‘unicorns,’ start-up tech companies worth over a billion each.
Andrew Leonard of Salon.com warns their megalomania is flawed and dangerous: “The tech industry’s God complex is getting out of control,” quoting Silicon Valley icon Marc Andreessen bragging that “if you live in the San Francisco Bay Area in the early 21st century, it’s hard not to feel a special connection to Renaissance Florence.” In fact, “start-up entrepreneurs in Palo Alto are just like the Medici Grand Dukes. Except, even better, because they’ve got superpowers.”
Yes “superpowers.” Their arrogance and optimism tells them they indeed are the ones who will save the planet with their algorithm-generating powers to “Invent everything that can be invented.” However, the Times quoted one of the Twitter founder, Evan Williams, who “is less quixotic,” admitting that rather than the solution “technology is the direct cause of our biggest problems, global warming, health issues, potentialnuclear annihilation.”
Twitter Brains Can’t Solve The World’s “Big Problems!”
In a provocative MIT Technology Review editorial, “Why We Can’t Solve Big Problems,” editor-in-chief Jason Pontin challenges Silicon Valley’s God Complex: “There is a paucity of real innovations … technologists have diverted us and enriched themselves with trivial toys.”
Silicon Valley recently bragged of more than a hundred “unicorns” in their production pipeline. But their goals are limited, not solutions to the planet’s ‘Big Problems,’ but more focused on making insiders rich solving small problems in social media, consumer gadgets, virtual reality, video games and yet another app. While our planet overheats, slowly pushing America off an economic cliff and into no-growth GDP below one percent predicted by the end of this century.
Unfortunately, if the trajectory continues and Silicon Valley fails to deliver, it’ll be too late for “Plan B” in 2047. James Hansen, former NASA guru explained this risk in an open letter to billionaire Warren Buffett: “Recently my oldest grandson, an 11-year old, made the astute observation about climate change: ‘Unless we can figure out a time machine that actually works, there will be no way to go back in time to fix it’.” Gameover, join the Cosmic Sustainability Bottleneck Club.
“Age of Oil” Is Ending … Killing World’s Future Growth
Economist Robert Gordon’s recent The Rise and Fall of American Growth gives us a troubling glimpse into a next Industrial Revolution. A few years ago, Gordon shook up Klaus Schwab’s annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland by presenting his National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) paper, “Is American Growth Over?” Gordon challenged the prevailing economic mythology that assumes technology will solve the world’s ‘Big Problems,’ thus eventually saving the world from itself:
“There was virtually no growth before 1750, and there is no guarantee that growth will continue indefinitely … the rapid progress made over the past 250 years could well turn out to be a unique episode in humanhistory,” a collection of “one-time-only inventions.” Under that scenario, America’s GDP will continue falling. “Now a weak 1.8% average, predicted to sink much further, down into a no-growth 0.2% GDP … the pre-Industrial Revolution level common across the planet for centuries before 1750.”
But what, you ask, about alternative energies from solar, wind, biomass, hydro, tidal? Aren’t they an “energy miracle” combo? Can’t alternative energies save us?
Unfortunately, by 2050, alternative energies will still be no more than 20% of the world’s energy requirements, said Daniel Yergin in Foreign Policy. Yergin is the world’s leading energy consultant, best-selling author of The Quest: Energy, Security, and the Remaking of the Modern World. A realist, he shares neither Silicon Valley’s megalomania nor Gates quixotic search for an “energy miracle” that will eventuallyappear and save the world.
“10 Billion on Earth in 2047 …
What’s Ahead: Survival? Extinction? Mars?
Someone should tell Bill Gates that energy is not the planet’s “Big Problem.” In an American Scholar cover story, “The Earth Doesn’t Care If You Drive a Hybrid,” Nobel Physicist Robert B. Laughlin warned that “humans have already triggered the sixth great period of species extinction in Earth’s history.” Yes, humans have already triggered” a catastrophic ending. So, you can forget hybrids, recycling, organic food, solar power, forget clean energy. Not enough. They may make you “feel good,” but will never stop the momentum of global warming.
Planet-Earth just doesn’t care what we do, to cause climate damage, or to reverse it, it has a “mind” of its own, a part of the “mind” Einstein wanted to “know.” About the same time McKibben recast his warning that it’s already too late. Now, our last great hope, our best strategy, says McKibben is to keep all the “coal, gas and oil underground.” Naturalist Edward O. Wilson even quantified how much that means in his new Half-Earth: Our Planet’s Fight for Life.
But given the political power of fossil fuel climate deniers and Planet-Earth’s out-of- control population, leaving half the planet undeveloped seem highly unlikely, a dangerous “third rail” for politicians facing repeated short-term election campaigns. Especially today with more than a billion cars already above ground moving people around the planet, every day pulling up to the pumps, demanding more and more gas.
Now imagine what happens to all that demand as global population adds another three billion? More people, more cars, more driving, more energy, more pollution, and Planet-Earth keeps getting hotter … and hotter.
ARE HUMANS PLANET-EARTH’S NEWEST “DINOSAURS?”
Humans may well be the next dinosaurs in the crosshairs of destiny, driven by a selfish survival-the-fittest madness gene, in denial and psychologically incapable of truly comprehending our suicidal drive to self-destruct, opting instead for short-term gratifications. This indictment is obvious in the works of many experts:
- In THE RACE FOR WHAT’S LEFT: THE GLOBAL SCRAMBLE FOR THE WORLD’S LAST RESOURCES: Michael Klare put it this way: “No matter how much corporate or government officials wish to deny it, there are not nearly enough nonrenewable resources on this planet to perpetually satisfy the growing needs of a ballooning world population.” This trend echoes Jeremy Grantham’s warnings that it will be “impossible to feed the 10 billion people” that U.N. demographers predict will live on Planet-Earth by 2050, in just one short generation.
- In COUNTDOWN: OUR LAST, BEST HOPE FOR A FUTURE ON EARTH, Alan Weisman warns: “Every species in the history of biology that outgrows its resource base suffers a population crash, a crashsometimes fatal to the entire species.” In short, while reducing population numbers is not popular with most people and politicians, it’s yet another reason even the United Nations is ignoring their own population growth predictions for 2050.
- In REQUIEM FOR A SPECIES, WHY WE RESIST THE TRUTH ABOUT CLIMATE CHANGE, Clive Hamilton is also incredibly blunt: Earth will soon “enter a chaotic era lasting thousands of years. Whether human beings would still be a force on the planet, or even survive, is a moot point. One thing seems certain: there will be far fewer of us.” George Marshall went further in his Don’t Even Think About It: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Ignore Climate Change.
- Can we change in time, think different, save our planet, our species? In HOMO DEUS: A BRIEF HISTORY OF TOMORROW, Yuval Noah Harari says it’s unlikely: “We do not become satisfied by leading a peaceful and prosperous existence. Rather we become satisfied when reality meets our expectations. The bad news is that as conditions improve, expectations balloon.” Our demands are addictive, more is never enough.
- So, what is next? As Michael Tennesen details in THE NEXT SPECIES: THE FUTURE OF EVOLUTION IN THE AFTERMATH OF MAN, any effort to bring down the accelerating population growth would be “asking humans to do something that no other species has ever done; constrain their numbers voluntarily.” Ergo, since population growth is unstoppable, global warming is unstoppable, our sustainability bottleneck is a catastrophic ending.
What if our civilization here on this planet really is the only “intelligent life” left across billions of years, trillions of star systems and hundreds of millions of potentially habitable planets? So far, scientific evidence does suggest that we are in fact all alone. But why us? Are we unique, or merely the latest civilization to hit a universally preprogrammed “sustainability bottleneck,” and just like all the others before us, we also lack the“intelligence” to figure out the codes, solve our problems, save the world, break through to the other side, and survive.
In fact, “intelligence” may be our fatal flaw, the same fatal flaw in all earlier civilizations on habitable planets. Are we all just too smart for our own good? The latest left alone, living on a dying planet, in denial, self-destructing, victims of our own successes, a limited intelligence. The latest stopped short of the end zone as the clock runs out, unable to break through our “sustainability bottleneck” thanks to the kill switch embedded in our genes … not by some enemy “out there” somewhere.
AFTER THE “AGE OF HUMANS,” NEW SPECIES? NEW WORLD?
In her classic, The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History, Elizabeth Kolbert identifies our self-destruct tendency as a “madness gene.” The DNA of all humans is instinctively egocentric, we are all capitalists programmed with a survival instinct, a mutation that paradoxically drives us individually and collectively to sabotage not only our own capitalist economy and ideological successes, but to self-destruct our civilization, planet, even ourselves in a suicidal madness. And yes, even setting the stage for the coming “sustainability bottleneck.”
Destiny? Or free will? Anthropologist Jared Diamond says the choice is still one that humans can make. Must make. And we are making. In his classic Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed, we see a madness gene guiding the collective brains of all species, driving us to risk all, like the mythic Icarus flying too near the Sun, inevitably self-destructing in the relentless pursuit of a dream.
Diamond has warned us so many times that our human brain never learns the lessons of history, that our inbred myopia—short-term survival instinct—makes us perpetually in denial, that we are our own worst enemy in the long-run.
One key example stands out: Centuries ago two million people thrived in the great Mayan civilization. Yet, as with “so many societies, the elite made decisions that were good for themselves in the short run and ruined themselves and societies in the long run.”
As a result, the Mayan civilization collapsed “because of a combination of climate change, drought, water-management problems, soil erosion, deforestation.” The rulers “managed to insulate themselves from the consequences of their actions.” Forests were leveled. Unfortunately, “the kings didn’t recognize they were making a mess until it was too late.” They were in denial. Sounds familiar?
GRAND DESIGN? GOD PARTICLE? NEW ENERGY MIRACLE?
The catastrophic warnings of physicists Fermi, Hawking, Frank, Laughlin and other experts hint to a far bigger plan for our world, a plan filled with mysteries and contradictions. Einstein believed “the human mind is not capable of grasping the Universe,” and yet searching for the “Mind of God” was his greatest priority.
So, what are today’s Master Algorithm wars really about? At best, experience tells us it is the “still small voice” within each of us. And at the same time, something bigger too. In The Grand Design, Stephen Hawking and Leonard Mlodinow hedged their bet, concluding God did not create the Big Bang that triggered our universe, creating life on our planet about 13.7 billion years ago.
More recently, however, when Hawking learned that scientists at Europe’s CERN Hadron Collider had finally discovered the elusive “Higgs boson,” Hawking again warned that this “God Particle” would eventually trigger a doomsday scenario and “wipe out the universe,” echoing his prediction of a “catastrophic ending.”
SCIENTIFIC HYPOTHESIS: IS ‘GOD’ KILLING LIFE ON EARTH?
Our search for the “New God Algorithm” actually began with a challenging hypothesis: A question nobody’s asking: “Why is God killing all life on Planet Earth?” And if He’s not in charge, who is doing it?
Today, the more accurate way of stating it as a scientific hypothesis would be: Is there a “God Conspiracy” killing life on Planet-Earth? What Carl Jung saw under the Imago Dei, the underlying “collective unconscious,” embedded deep in the DNA driving the brains of all humans, pre-programmed to eventually self-destruct our home planet according to some Grand Plan?
At the time I was working on the script for a musical comedy based on Goethe’s Faust and its prototype, the Biblical The Book of Job. Today everyone’s playing the blame game with global warming, passing the buck. Back then the great wisdom in the Book of Job’s narrative was obvious in the mysterious, destructive power of God’s “Whirlwind” destroying Job’s world. Raising great questions, if God really had absolute control of the climate, that global warming is not “human-caused,” then you couldn’t really “blame” God. Get angry, yes. But then you must also conclude that “God” must have a plan, much like the Dalai Lama’s The Universe in A Single Atom and Hawking’s The Grand Design.
We know there are no scientific or mathematically verifiable solutions, although pollsters could easily troll for short-term public opinions, as they did during the recent political campaigns in America and across the world. Such suspicions were later confirmed in a Washington Post column: “People are seriously wondering whether God is punishing us with the 2016 election.”
So yes, it turns out that that “question no one is asking” really is very much on American minds just below the surface, buried under the climate science denial virus by partisan polls, click-bait bloggers, media hyperbola, political hackers and mean- spirited candidates, all mucking up the collective unconscious.
As Einstein once put it in a moment of self-examination: “The most important question facing humanity—is the universe a friendly place? All people must answer for themselves.” And if not friendly, then we must decide what or who is killing life on the planet. If human-caused, then we are our own worst enemies. But what if God is the cause? New questions, more answers.
“GOOD NEWS! THE SECRET OF LIVING IN PEACE
& PROSPERITY … ON A DYING PLANET!”
Soon Bill Gates will surrender his quixotic search for “energy miracles.” Reality will set in. Then hopefully he will lead the revolution our planet now needs, focusing back on the world’s biggest problem—out-of-control population growth—which his 2009 Billionaires Club agreed was the world’s #1 problem.
And yet, unfortunately, a recent annual foundation editorial suggests he’s not yet ready to refocus: “The world is going to need a lot more energy in the coming decades, an increase of 50% or more between 2010 and 2040. But today our biggest sources of energy are also big sources of carbon dioxide, which is causing climate change.”
Gates also does admit that alternative energies are “not good enough.” While they’re “getting cheaper, many developing countries aren’t waiting for these tools to become affordable.” Instead, “they’re building large numbers of coal plants and other fossil-fuel infrastructure … their people need energy now.” More energy now? Wrong, what they really “need” is less people, not more energy.
Deep down Gates surely must know this kind of old thinking, old technologies, old money, old computer science will never solve our world’s “Big Problems” as we near global warming’s 2047 point-of-no-return. No elusive “energy miracle” will magically appear, stop carbon emissions, save the world from itself, the momentum of temperature will be irreversible. Instead, his outdated algorithm spells disaster. It’s time to wake up, create a new global consciousness.
MASTER ALGORITHM: A REVOLUTION IN CONSCIOUSNESS
Yes, we do need a miracle. And fortunately, the World Economic Forum’s Klaus Schwab has pointed global leaders to a radical path forward in his new book, The Fourth Industrial Revolution. In it Schwab says, “shaping the future” will take more than economics, more than technology—we must “be putting people first and empowering them” lifting “humanity to a new collective and moral consciousness based on a shared sense of destiny.”
Schwab gets it: Our civilization needs a “collective and moral consciousness,” we must evolve to a higher state of consciousness, take our world beyond the dark materialism, denialism and mutant capitalism that’s taken over the Zeitgeist, our global mindset, society’s collective consciousness.
Today our world is controlled by an economic system that has lost its moral compass. Until recently scientists dismissed all research into “consciousness” as not “real science.” Scientists left consciousness to the philosophers, new age gurus, mystics, psychologists, motivational speakers and religious leaders.
CONSCIOUSNESS: CLIMATE ACTIVISTS VS SCIENCE DENIERS
All that changed in 1990 when Nobel Laureate Francis Crick, co-discoverer of DNA, and neuroscientist Christof Koch published “Toward a Neurobiological Theory of Consciousness.” Then in 1994 Crick expanded it into the now ground breaking The Astonishing Hypothesis: The Scientific Search for the Soul,
“This book is about the mystery of consciousness—how to explain it in scientific terms. I do not suggest a crisp solution to the problem. I wish I could, but at the present time this seems far too difficult. Of course, some philosophers are under the delusion they have already solved the mystery, but to me their explanations do not have the ring of scientific truth. What I have tried to do here is to sketch the general nature of consciousness and to make some tentative suggestions about how to study it experimentally. I am proposing a particular research strategy, not a fully developed theory.
Crick’s hypothesis gave instant credibility to consciousness, moral behavior, ethics and free will as valid subjects for scientific investigation. Our work in behavioral science the past couple decades is an extension of Crick’s challenge. Much as Einstein wanted “to know the mind of God,” Crick wanted “to know is exactly what is going on in my brain when I see something … how the rather naive ideas most people have about seeing are largely incorrect,” a theme echoed a decade later when Psychologist Daniel Kahneman became a Nobel Economist for his work in behavioral science challenging the assumption of human rationality in decision-making, investment strategies and modern economic theory.
THE EVOLUTION TO A NEW HUMAN CONSCIOUSNESS
After Crick’s work on the new science of consciousness, the works of Gary Zukav, Eckhart Tolle and other physicists who earlier expanded into metaphysics took on new meaning. More recently Deepak Chopra M.D. coauthored How Consciousness Became the Universe: Quantum Physics, Cosmology, Relativity, Evolution, Neuroscience, Parallel Universes with noted British physicist Sir Roger Penrose. Stephen Hawking and Penrose earlier coauthored The Nature of Space and Time.
Zukav’s Dancing Wu Li Masters was a 1979 work on quantum physics. A decade later he published The Seat of the Soul, crediting physicists like Albert Einstein and other scientists as his inspirations because “they reached for something greater than they were able to express directly in their work … they were mystics.”
About the same time, another Cambridge physicist Eckhart Tolle published The Power of Now: A Guide to Spiritual Enlightenment, and more recently A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose. In New Earth Tolle specifically focused on the link between consciousness, global warming and climate change. In an interview Tolle discussed that link: Every human has the power to tap into their own unique “energy miracle” for the survival of the planet:
“Yes, it’s true that we need to save the planet. But let’s not fall into the erroneous thinking that all the solutions are out there somewhere. Because most of the problems—violence, pollution, war, terrorism—all have their origin in human consciousness or unconsciousness. So your primary responsibility is not doing anything outside you; your primary responsibility is your own state of consciousness. And once that is achieved, then whatever you do and whomever you come into contact with get affected by your state of consciousness.”
Tolle’s New Earth Tolle is clear about consciousness as the prime force in the future of our civilization and planet: “The new earth arises as more and more people discover their main purpose in life is to bring the light of consciousness into this world and so use whatever they do as a vehicle for consciousness.”
His message is simple and powerful—step outside the box, stop trying to save the planet with new technologies, new investment strategies, with external solutions. Stop, look within. Endless searching for clean energy alternatives, wishfully thinking about energy miracles “out there,” is not productive. Neither is climate science denialism, nor opposition to the UN’s Climate Accord. Extremes waste scarce resources, time and money that we can ill-afford to lose if we’re serious about breaking through the “bottleneck” and creating a sustainable planet.
SUSTAINABLE CONSCIOUSNESS VS UNSUSTAINABLE PLANET?
Yes, our planet needs a whole new way of thinking, a new kind of energy, new economic ideology, and new kinds of leaders. Most of all we must shift our focus to a “new collective and moral consciousness based on a shared sense of destiny.” We must go deep into our souls, fast. Our civilization must shift our paradigm before it’s too late, before we pass the point-of-no-return and become what so many already fear is happening—an irreversibly overheating planet.
In the final analysis, a behavioral science solution for the New God Algorithm boils down to a couple of very simple questions: First, will a “new collective and moral consciousness” work as survival strategy, getting us past our sustainability bottleneck, save our planet, our civilization, our global culture?
And secondly, if we cannot save the planet collectively, can a new “sustainable consciousness” help each us individually live in peace on a dying planet?
The answers to both questions require a personal commitment to living in a new state of consciousness and a lot of work, a tough job in today’s deeply troubled, endlessly conflicted world populated and governed by so many who are myopic and narcissistic, in denial of the threat of global warming, and often openly hostile and aggressively profiting from climate change problems, as Naomi Klein detailed in her classic, The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism.
Moreover, anyone who is already a science-denier, diehard conservatives, or employed in the fossil fuel industry is likely to reject out-of-hand the idea of raising global consciousness, even though the very real consequences of global warming are accelerating and certain to force even rigid deniers to eventually change, if too late.
In short, getting through our ‘sustainability bottleneck’ is unlikely to happen voluntarily. We will likely need a massive wakeup call now, a catastrophic event triggering the rapid emergence of a renew personal and collective consciousness, a call that is certain to come but most likely will not be ignited until climate problems get far worse, when it’s too late to reverse the increasing temperature momentum.
“POPULATION BOMB” VS A NEW MASTER ALGORITHM
Together, the MasterCoders of Hot Earth Hell: The Master Algorithm offer a clear warning: the odds are stacked against anyone hoping to save the planet from a catastrophic ending. Technology is driven more by their universal god complex than hard science. The warnings have been screaming at us for decades, louder and louder, beginning with the work of pioneers like Rachel Carson and Bill McKibben, culminating in the 2015 U.N. Paris Agreement on Climate Change. And of course, science denialism has exploded into a counter-balance.
Moreover, this conclusion is not simply drawn from all the research cited in the master codes, it’s also due to the widespread science denialism imbedded in our genes … to our ever-increasing consumer demand for more energy, more jobs, more personal wealth, steady economic growth … to the world’s out-of-control, accelerating population growth … and to our human tendency to delay decisions on Big Problems until it’s too late to plan ahead to take action and change course.
Ultimately, getting past our ‘sustainability bottleneck’ now depends on creating what Klaus Schwab calls a “new collective and moral consciousness” across the “shared destiny” of seven billion people in the United Nation’s 197 member nations. Unfortunately, the Master Codes tell us that it’s unlikely we will act in time to reverse the accelerating momentum of global warming temperatures.
Why? Here we see scientists, scholars and thought leaders in so many disciplines all warning us the planet’s global warming momentum is accelerating so fast that climate changes are locked-in and unstoppable. And if not yet, we are nearing critical mass, will pass the point-of-no-return in the next generation. Why? By 2047 Earth’s average temperatures will become a megatrend that will continue on a natural cycle, in an upward trajectory that is irreversible.
GOOD NEWS: THE SECRET TO LIVING ON A DYING PLANET
And secondly, even if no new broad-based collective consciousness emerges in time to save our civilization and planet, there’s still good news for individuals. Each of us has the power can make a personal decision and commitment to live in a higher state of consciousness.
Yes, each one of us can live in peace on a dying planet. Seriously, even if global population continues on to ten billion in 2047, the one saving grace might be that so many more individual humans will have the opportunity of choosing to reach for a new consciousness.
Physicist-metaphysician Eckhart Tolle saw this sense of inner peace in Stephen Hawking himself, wrote about it in A New Earth: “Although Hawking’s body was totally paralyzed and facing what one of his students said was “the most dreadful fate that can befall a human being,” still, with the aid of his voice synthesizer, the immobile Hawking still giving thanks for the gift of his life … “Who could have wished for more.”
So no matter what happens as our civilization confronts our planet’s sustainability bottleneck … as global warming gains momentum … as our temperatures accelerate … our cities over-heat … all of us can still live in peace … in our own personal awareness within a new “collective and moral consciousness,” thankful for whatever time we have remaining on the planet, living our lives fully.
We’ll probably never see signs of intelligent life anywhere out there in the universe, except in movies. And yet, we can leave signs of our presence, markers that we were here, aware, conscious, alive. We know that “intelligence” is not who we really are, at best it is a beautiful and predictably irrational algorithm created for our brains, so we can function during a relatively short lifetime on the planet.
The truth is, you are a “soul” that never really dies … that existed before you were born … that will live on long after your body’s journey here is complete … after you accomplish the task you agreed to perform and committed to another. You are a transcendent soul living in a timeless universe, a spiritual being having human experiences … aware that past, present and future all exist at once in an eternal now, and like Einstein, you now “know the mind of God,” a sustainable consciousness on an unsustainable planet, alive in a new reality, living in peace on a dying planet.