On Not Taking It with Us. The future of technology & economics
They say that we can’t take it with us. We can’t take our money to heaven, or to that other place, unless perhaps the difference between heaven and hell is defined by the presence of plastic in the netherworld.
I am supposing that life after the eschaton and the afterlife are not qualitatively distinct, although we might suppose that the former state is more robust socially, or perhaps one should say communally.
Some time ago I ventured the opinion that the telephones don’t work. This has to do with my notion that electrons have more to do with logic than with physics. The telephone system is an extension of the logic of electrons and so exists mainly in our collective noodle.
Ma Bell does not have a celestial counterpart, nor does Nipper for that matter. Ergo, at some point during the Millennium, Ma Bell will be replaced by your basic, homegrown telepathic grid. The task at hand is to extend this logic to the rest of the millennial transformation. The presumption is that we attempt to front load as much of the afterworld into the Millennium as possible so as to minimize the post-millennial eschatological transition. What else would be the point of the Millennium?
Telephones are easy. Bodies are less so. We don’t take them with us, at least not the ones that we drag to the office every Monday, to use an expression about which I have only the dimmest of memory.
Biotechnology has designs on our flesh. Designer bodies can’t be that big a leap beyond body art, and perhaps we can eliminate the common cold along the way. But speaking of elimination, what is to become of metabolism, which you’ll recall is the foundation of our electronic logic? We don’t usually imagine having to schlep our glorified bodies to the crapper. Reproduction is another consideration.
We might suppose that OBEs would become ‘de rigeur’ as the Millennium comes to a close. Our genetically engineered masterpieces would be gathering dust in some warehouse, and on E-day, we just throw away the key. This would solve one aspect of the population problem. I apologize for the simple-mindedness of this vision. As for the ‘problem’ of making spiritual babies, I remain open for suggestions. I suspect that there will be many spiritual options when it comes to skinning that cat. Strange time loops may be one of the less strange options, but I don’t want to give away the story. You’ll just have to stick around.
- | Contents |