“Man is definitely insane,” said Michel De Montaigne. He couldn’t make a speck of dust, but he can make gods by the dozen.” The statement means that, no matter how hard man tries to advance in science, reaching God’s level of existence is an impossibility. The planet is currently run by technology to the point that man is almost entirely reliant on it. Technology may be seen as increasingly being hegemonic in the sense that it is taking over man’s activities (Bijker 78). In light of man’s technological advancements, science has sparked many debates about the nature of God. It has made man progress in various aspects such that he perceives himself to be powerful and able to create any object to demonstrate his power. From a theological perspective, God is viewed as the creator of the entire universe, all-powerful, all-knowing and omniscient. In another word, he has authority over all creation. However, science through the advances in technology has made man perceive himself to be god-like such that he believes that he can achieve greater things on his own. Stories like Frankenstein illustrate man’s desperation to exhibit god-like features, and the fact that atheists use science to argue against the existence of God make it more blatant in man’s desperation to be powerful (Bijker 78). By analyzing the philosophical concepts of God, how technology has made man perceive that he is powerful, the concept of artificial intelligence and technology hegemony, it becomes clear that mankind will create a god with technology.
Philosophical concepts of God
Science has always been affiliated with man deviating from the association with God. However, it is important to note that science is a branch that emanates from the theology of God being the creator. What can be argued is that the achievements of man from science have overwhelmed his belief in the supernatural (Kraay 41). Metaphysics highlights the need for comprehending facets associated with God. God is considered to be all-powerful, omniscient, and omnipotent in addition to being a good God (Kraay 41). The questions that arise when it comes to analyzing the relationship between God and man in regards to technology include; what views does man have to God? What views does man have in science and technology? Is technology a hindrance in the relationship between man and God? Will technology become the next god such that the belief in the supreme being or rather God’s divine nature becomes diminished? The fact that man seems to be shifting to technology makes it necessary to evaluate his view when it comes to the existence of God. Several philosophical theories have been used to explain God’s existence. Most of the theories begin with the assumption that if some features that are present were a bit different, then it would be impossible for life to be adequately supported or sustained. The fact that things appear in perfection and well-adjusted in their surroundings implies that there exists a highly skilled and intelligent worker who shapes the universe to be what it is today (Kraay 42).
However, the presence of multiverse theories oppose the above analogies with the view that there are plenty of universes and that if at all there was perfection, then not only one universe could be able to support life. Quite a bit of contemporary logical reasoning of religion puts into perspective questions concerning the presence, nature, and action of God. There are, of course, many models of God (Kraay 42). Amid logicians, one of the most powerful holds is that God is a fundamentally actual being who can’t be outperformed in power, information, and goodness, and who is the maker and sustainer of all that exists in the universe. Scholars of religion frequently utilize the dialect of universes to light up the possibility that God is the creator and sustainer of all factors present in the universe. From this perspective, one can state that the real world is everything that indeed exists, though each conceivable world is a unique way that things may have been. Along these lines, religious philosophers express God as the maker and sustainer by saying that God studies the legitimate space of universes inside his energy to realize, and after that, he chooses precisely one world for completion. It makes one question on how he does the selection. The philosophers perceive that God picks on the premise of the target esteem of the universes at issue (Kraay 43). Theists hold the view that God is the maker and sustainer of all that is present in the universe. Scientific logicians of religion express this thought by asserting that God chooses one world for completion and that he does as such on the premise of its axiological principles. By putting the philosophical concepts of God, it becomes blatant that there exists a supreme being who is responsible or rather in charge of all that there is in the universe. However, man’s desire to have control over all aspects that takes place in his life makes him turn to technology as his god (Kraay 43). The fact that man has and is still attempting cloning through genetic modification shows man’s drive to be the divine being; being able to give life to things that do not yet exist.
How technology has made man perceive that he is powerful
A good modern day example of man trying to exhibit god-like power is illustrated in the report Can Artificial Mountain Change Microclimate? By George Putic. According to the article, the earth is gradually becoming hotter and hotter such that is perceived that establishing an artificial mountain will be a good solution to the problem. The writer states that the Arabian Peninsula is affected by the changes in climate in addition to experiencing many dry seasons because “these regions do not have much rainfall is a lack of so-called updraft — vertical movement of the moist air that occurs when horizontal winds hit a mountainside. So one Persian Gulf nation, the United Arab Emirates, is seriously considering building a mountain to try to change its climate,” (Public 1). The Arabian Peninsula is known for having artificial lakes and hence showing the extent in which man has used technology to illustrate his abilities. The example is a good illustration of the man using technology as his god in improving his life conditions.
Knapton in her article Humans ‘will become God-like cyborgs within 200 years’ in the Telegraph explains that the unification of man and technology will result in the creation of cyborgs as man gradually amalgamates the use of mobile devices and computers into his life (Knapton 1). She backs up her argument with the statement: “Yuval Noah Harari, a professor at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, said the amalgamation of man and machine would be the ‘biggest evolution in biology’ since the emergence of life four billion years ago,” (Knapton 1). She explains that the professor perceives that with time man with evolving to the extent that he will become like a god who can overcome death such that he will differ from the current man. The comparison concerning how man is different from chimpanzees. In other words, technology will make it possible for people venture into the impossibilities such that they can control life; an aspect that God only possesses. The argument is that man driven by curiosity and dissatisfaction such that it becomes difficult for him not to be tempted when it comes to the need for upgrading. The improvement, in this case, applies technology and concepts in engineering. The man is perceived not to exhibit satisfaction regardless of the achievement, and possibly that is why new inventions keep cropping up on a daily basis (Knapton 1). In other words, he keeps desiring more and more rather than remaining satisfied. Knapton highlights the view that the chances are that two hundred years from now, man would have upgraded himself such that he exhibits qualities that are divine in nature (1). The possible strategies that he may use to achieve this are through genetic engineering or manipulation of the biological spectrum such that cyborgs are created. The cyborgs, in this case, are partially organic and partially inorganic. The evolution to cyborgs is perceived to be one of the greatest achievements that man would have achieved such that he will ultimately differ from the modern man (Knapton 1).
Nonetheless, the assumption will have effects in the social lives of individuals. The presence of cyborg technology will be limited to the wealthy such that the gap between the rich and the have-nots will increase (Knapton 1). In other words, the rich people will have a higher chance of living longer and even forever while the poor perish. From a general perspective, mankind is the dominant species because of his great intellectual skills and the ability to think rationally. The mind of man has enabled him to create fictions that have contributed in organizing the society such that people can tolerate each other. Some of the fictitious elements include money, political structures, faith, respect for human rights, and technology (Knapton 1). The elements are perceived to be fictitious since they do not come from nature. Knapton highlights a statement from Harari that states;
“God is paramount because without religious myth you can’t create society. Religion is the greatest invention of humans. As long as people believed they relied more and more on these gods they were controllable. But what we see in the last few centuries is humans becoming more powerful, and they no longer need the crutches of the Gods. Now we are saying we do not need God just technology,” (Knapton 1).
In other words, man has already put the power of God aside with the view that with technology, he has the authority to achieve anything. Necessity has no longer become a mother of invention but rather man satisfaction by which man sees the need for achieving more and more and becoming more powerful. Silicon Valley has replaced the religious places in the Eastern part of the world through the creation of techno-religion. According to the views of scientists, death can easily be avoided through technology. The man has indulged in the perspective that he can achieve the impossible and is always trying to make the unknown known. The structure of man’s mind prompts imagination such that he focuses on putting the vision into existence (Knapton 1).
The concept of artificial intelligence
Technology advancements in regards to man creating a god with technology put into perspective the issue of artificial intelligence (Larson 105). Question rise on whether artificial intelligence will take the place of a man who is capable of handling complex tasks engage in interpersonal relations in addition to having the ability to solve conflicts. Questions have also risen on whether avatars or robots will be able to express human emotions such that one can relate to them from an interpersonal perspective. It is important to note that artificial intelligence does not necessarily involve robots or avatars but also the software used in facilitating intellectual thought. It consists of both physical parts and the software parts of a device. In other words, a device can function when human control is employed and can also work through intelligence such that no external efforts are used (Larson 105).
The goal that is affiliated in developing artificial intelligent devices is the devices being able to behave similarly as the man such that they share in man’s intelligence. It is worth noting that both avatars and robots are being used in the medical field to guide the treatment of patients. Also, especially the wealthy people, have avatars in their “smart homes” that control actions such as closing doors, switching lights, controlling the water heaters and washing machines, the supply of water, updating the calendars, keeping watch of the house, keeping records of events and many more (Larson 109). In other words, man has begun developing a dependence on technology such that it is slowly taking over his personal, social and medical life. The creation of avatars and robots revolves the idea of having technologies that perform better than man or rather can give quality results when compared to man. Scientists believe that devices that are artificially intelligent will exceed man’s intelligence. Furthermore, the smart machines will result in the development of more smart devices until the human era diminishes. However, it is perceived that if a man gains control of the computer such that its operations are limited, the human era will not be at risk. Scientists view that collaboration between man and machines might be beneficial when it comes to various facets of life (Larson 110).
Currently, the association between man and robots has been short-term by which man has only collaborated with robots on aspects such as entertainment and shopping. However, research is still being conducted on how the man can engage in a social relationship with an avatar or a robot such that both parties can empathize with each other. Collaboration is perceived to make the presence of robots less threatening when it comes to the existence of man. With such an analogy, it makes one question on whether there is need to develop artificial intelligence if it poses a threat to man’s survival (Larson 110).
Robots are already employed in the various facets of life such that they have already taken up roles that were once operated by the man. Rousseau et.al states, “Mobile robotic technology and its application in various sectors is currently an area of high interest and research in this field promises advanced developments and novelties in many aspects,” (2). The scholars highlight the use of robots in several museums in Europe as tour guides. They explain that the use of robots allow an interactive process in museums in addition to providing alternative options when it comes to presenting a museum experience. (Rousseau et.al 2).
The fact that man perceives that through technology he can achieve the impossible, it is important to analyze the basic facets associated with hegemony. The term hegemony was coined by Antonio Gramsci to refer to a method in which a powerful or dominant class in the society controls the welfares of other groups in the society under the terms of which the minor groups have to abide by the rules set by the dominant groups (Feenberg 31). It is important to note that a hegemonic environment is characterized by leadership and consent such that instead of feeling oppressed, the subordinate group abides by the set conditions by the dominant group. Technology hegemony can be perceived to be the god created by man through science. From the definition of hegemony. Technology hegemony can then be described as the man being controlled by technology such that he makes decisions based on what technology has to offer. A man engages in the relation without being coerced and operates comfortably under the guidance of technology. A man already perceives himself to be powerful because of technology such that the role that God plays in his life is gradually declining (Feenberg 31).
We live in an era where computers have occupied various aspects of our lives. Almost every person employs the use of technology in one way or another on a daily basis. A simple activity such as setting up an alarm to wake us up in the morning shows the dependence that man has on technology. Computers are no longer perceived as tools but rather advancements that guide the activities that we engage in addition to how we plan our lives (Feenberg 35). Despite man being the creator of the computer, the technology exhibits a mind of its own particularly when its users are steered by the information it provides. Most scientists perceive computers to be the modern day Frankenstein’s monster because of challenging the purposes that it was intended for. The computer is perceived to deviate from the intended purpose that it was created for. It is seen to be out of control to the point that man cannot redeem himself from its influence. When equipment does not function as expected or rather become faulty, the blame is put on human error. The design of the machine of the machine is not considered when putting the fault to human error. The economy, social and political constructs all apply several aspects of technology in managing their systems (Feenberg 35).
Technology has played a crucial role in enhancing the communication process. Nowadays people from different locations communicate within seconds and with minimum effort. The levels of interaction have increased because of the presence of social media sites such that people can make friends without personal contact (Feenberg 40). In other words, social lives have been embedded in technology such that people highly dependent on it when it comes to social interactions. A practical example is the presence of dating sites such that instead of the traditional method of individuals meeting their spouses, people have confirmed to online dating; an aspect facilitated by technology through the internet. According to the article by the Strategic Foresight Initiative, the use of mobile devices has become common as people prefer using them for communication in addition to accessing the internet (2). Analysis indicates that by 2020, an approximate number of 7 billion subscribers will be present (Strategic Foresight Initiative 2). The basic assumption is that by 2020, the use of mobile devices as tools for communication and accessing the internet will be primary. The fact that social lives and relationships have intertwined with technology illustrates that technology hegemony is yet to take route in various aspects of our lives (Feenberg 41). In synopsis, technology acts as a link that supports social interaction and possibly interfering with certain aspects regarding interpersonal skills.
Technology has also become a significant aspect of the political spectrum. Through ICT, leaders can reach their followers with less effort while the followers also easily present their concerns within a short time. The civic duties of the government have also incorporated technology with a good example being the employment of online registration of voters in most countries. The overreliance in technology makes it difficult to control issues such as hacking or intrusion of viruses on data that might lead to fervent damages (Feenberg 54). Also, the internet has become one of the major platforms that politicians nowadays use to reach their supporters. Technology has long since been used as a source of power especially among the developed countries such that it has widened the gap between the developed and underdeveloped countries. The presence of advanced of advanced forms of technology in developed countries gives them an upper hand in demonstrating power over other countries. Technology has made it possible for developed countries to possess highly advanced weapons and continue developing more sophisticated weapons in the name of remaining at the top of their leagues. As stated earlier, necessity has no longer become a mother of invention but rather man’s satisfaction by which man sees the need for achieving more and more and becoming more powerful. Therefore, the obsession makes the developed countries highly dependent on technology as a way of advancing their weapons and maintaining their power (Feenberg 54). From a general perspective, the systems of administrations have been embedded with technology and hence showing the gradual development of technology hegemony in the systems of administration.
The education system is also another area that has been influenced by technology. Online education has become a norm in the instructional spectrum such that students do not have to engage in the traditional form of learning (going to class). An individual can easily take a course in the comfort of his or her home, also, to easily balance between work and study (Feenberg 67). Learning resources can easily be obtained online while students, instead of struggling with carrying hard copy books, they can conveniently move with softcopy books present in their mobile devices. Also, researchers use the internet to gain access to databases that they can use in obtaining the research materials. Technology has become the backbone in facilitating the administration of content to students. From a general perspective, individuals in the education environment have conformed to facets provided by technology such that they highly depend on it. Therefore, through education, technology hegemony is gradually becoming a god in the society of man (Feenberg 67).
Similarly to education, technology has also influenced the medical field. New advancements keep on developing for the purpose of improving the health of individuals. Biotechnology has made it possible for advancements to take place in the treatment of health conditions such that the lifespan of individuals increases. The technological advancements have been used to identify cures for certain terminal diseases in addition to preventing the prevalence of ailments. Genetic engineering and manipulation of genes have made it possible to carry out experiments on cloning of animals and developing of vaccines (Feenberg 69). Technology has also facilitated aspects such as plastic surgery and transfer of body organs and hence impacting the physical health of individuals. It is important to note that the health spectrum is highly dependent on technology especially since technology has resulted in several improvements in human health. It is perceived that with time, technology will make it possible for people not to age quite easily. Telemedicine has become quite a common term in the medical spectrum which refers to using medical details that have been transferred through electronic means; from one site to another for the purpose of improving the health of a patient. Also, medical guidance can be accessed by patients through video conferencing; especially patients were living in areas that cannot be accessed by their doctors (Strategic Foresight Initiative 2). The high dependence on technology in them medical environment enhances the gradual development of technology hegemony to a God in the society of man.
As stated earlier, by analyzing the philosophical concepts of God, how technology has made man perceive that he is powerful, the concept of artificial intelligence and technical hegemony, it becomes clear that mankind will create a god with technology. From a theological perspective, God is viewed as the creator of the entire universe, all-powerful, all-knowing and omniscient. In other words, he has authority over all creation. However, science through the advances in technology has made man perceive himself to be god-like such that he believes that he can achieve greater things on his own. Necessity has no longer become a mother of invention but rather man’s satisfaction by which man sees the need for achieving more and more and becoming more powerful. Question rise on whether artificial intelligence will take the place of the man who is capable of handling complex tasks engage in interpersonal relations in addition to having the ability to solve conflicts. The use of robots and avatars in certain activities such as providing health guidelines and acting as tour guides in museums depict the gradual development of technology hegemony in our lives. Technology hegemony can then be described as a man being controlled by technology such that he makes decisions based on what technology has to offer. The dependence of technology on aspects such as man’s social life, education, administration systems, and health systems illustrate technology hegemony is gradually becoming a god in the society of man. Therefore, from the analysis of the philosophical concepts of God, how technology has made man perceive that he is powerful, the concept of artificial intelligence and technical hegemony, it becomes clear that mankind will create a god with technology.
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