Aug 5, 2013

To Live Forever

Posted by in category: human trajectories

The history of humans, short when considered in the light of all times, if such a consideration can be made, is a web of intricacies and intentions, of acts and non-acts, of silence and sound (internally and externally), of growth and decay. Although we do have records of this history, in the land, air and water, in objects, in ourselves, in text, despite the proliferation of data and information, particularly post-printing press, we still do not know everything and what we do not know outmeasures what we do and will always. So while we have stories and myths, what we have mostly is uncertainty.

Something about the human animal who in the main is attached to petty things (reputation and praise, punishment and fear, egoic notions and material satisfactions) rejects uncertainty, rebels against a blank state. The process of logically manifesting an order in response to uncertainty is tabulated within the brain. But is the brain the seat of Man or is it because over several millennia humanity has organized phenomenal existence primarily through brain activity, that we now believe it to be the natural leadership in our lives? Is it possible that although it has lead, it is not the (natural) leader? Does Man, each a vortex of inter-dimensional energy, operate optimally through one lead, anyway?

Does intelligence permeate the entirety of Man’s being and the entirety of the known cosmic habitat? Is that intelligence being? Is that being existence? And is existence what is? And if this is true, and all that is, is, why this idea that the brain is the seat of intelligence? The brain is one known interpreter, receptacle for, perceiver of (and maybe also creator) of intelligence within the human biological cosmology. The brain is also a foe when not well aired, crafting for Man a separateness from phenomena, acting as the chief architect of his differentiation. The brain is more the functionary of the literal and the common, the go-to tool for navigating physical space and for generating concepts, including calculations. But is the brain the lord of Man, even with the pineal gland?

Man in wholeness and complexity should not be particularized piecemeal. One facet of human biology, like the brain, can only be understood through its relationship with the entire biological structure. Hierarchies of organs and functions within the human body can only lead to ultimate ignorance about not only the organ or function in question and the full ecosystem within which it resides, but also that ecosystem’s relationship with the outside, both the known and unknown, seen and unseen.

Today we know the ability of machines to outpace humans in carrying out certain functions that in humans are as far as we know manifested through the brain. There is also an intrigue with human biology’s seeming inability to regenerate and to decay into a state of supposed non-being. And yet we know also that energy cannot be destroyed and that the human body is an energetic species living in an energetic world. And so for the human being does death technically exist? Do we in fact ever have “death” in the universe?

Although a machine’s adroitness at managing many functions of the human brain more efficiently than a human can manage those functions is a stellar feat, it is localized and decontextualized from that function as it occurs in a human being and is therefore not an equivalent comparison to human use of thought. A human to operate in comprehensive intelligence may or may not want or need to perform brain-based functions as a machine performs them. The machine doing what it does does not therefore make it “smarter” or “better” than a human, it is simply able to enact specific functionality in certain instances according to a set standard.

To evoke smarter and better we must introduce measurement and also a set of criteria by which we evaluate. Why do we evaluate? By what measure? By what criteria?

How is it also that we define death? Is our common notion of death not defined from a time when a majority of humanity thought the body inert matter animated by spirit? Does this notion perhaps carry into today’s desire to evade death? Is it a mistaken concept of separateness (maybe spiritual separateness), a concept characterized through the brain’s activity, that is motioning humans toward an exercise spawned for the denial of death? Is this the brain operating in egoic selfishness calling for its own immortality? The immortality of the personality? Is an enduring personality immortality? Is memory immortality? Is accumulated and preserved experience immortality? And is the brain, the generator of Man’s fantasy of independence vis-à-vis the outside world, enhanced in certain functions by rapidly processing machines, the artifact through which humans can become immortal?

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