... Here we can find signs of what I think is the inception of a materialist religion (of sorts), replete with charismatic leaders and transcendence of death. The latter perhaps is a driving force - without the 'crutch' of a religious belief in an afterlife, the Singularity becomes the salvation of the materialist facing their own mortality (this certainly seems to be how it is in Kurzweil's case). An interesting bit of speculation might be to consider the (fringe science) possibility that consciousness lies beyond the brain (a la transmission theory), and that it not only survives death, but is in fact set free from the body by the experience. To borrow an analogy from the mystical literature, could 'Singulatarians' in fact be the equivalent of a caterpillar desperately trying not to be become a butterfly?
The religious parallels in the Singularity movement are, however, not going unnoticed. Read more
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