Mission 3: Our Technological Mission
The CTA advocates for the development of brilliant technology to speed humanity towards the future. We engage with and support the best minds and ethicists pursuing technology for the greater good. Technology we focus on comes in four main areas:
Humanity stands at the cusp of numerous major medical breakthroughs. Forestalling aging by a decade or more, forestalling common diseases such as heart disease, cancer, dementia and loss of bone density and type 2 diabetes is becoming mainstream. Billions are being invested and leading scientific minds engaged to combat aging before diseases occur.
We seek to understand and champion new tech seeking to address the underlying processes of aging, (including the 'hallmarks of aging' described by Lopez-Otin et al) at these levels:
- Emerging medicines including RNA
- Drugs and supplements
- Tweaking the performance of our genome, incl DNA repair and enhancement
- Senolytic drugs
- Stem cells, including Yamanaka factors
- Nanobot cell replacements, for example for red blood cells
- Bioprinting organs using scaffolds and seeding
- Replacing organs with biomechanical devices
- Regenerating organs within your body
Physical life is just the start. Keeping our bodies healthy must be matched with keeping our minds sharp and productive in creative and relational communities, and keeping our spirituality vibrant. "This is eternal life, that we may know you, the only true God".
For those interested in conserving their body and living as long as practical to accomplish God's mission, CTA recommends taking steps today in the following priority areas:
- Medical checks and blood screening
- Stress, vocation, spiritual life and community
- Understanding your genome risks and acting on them
- Supplements and emerging medicines
- Preparing for future technology by keeping your body in great shape until it arrives
Starting from zero baseline, prioritise action in each area to optimize your health span.
CTA advocates for this knowledge to be widely shared, and in the immediate term, for simple medical improvements, for example trials of emerging medicines to treat the 'hallmarks of aging'.
Technology to enhance humans will become as common as sunglasses. We will see humans made strong with exoskeletons, and given enhanced sight and hearing with technological aids. We will become changed in ways that are hard to foresee with brain-computer interfaces and genetic engineering.
Already humans are enhanced with technological aids. We are moving ever closer to our technology, which continues to grow in power and decrease in size. We will gain from interaction with smarter and smarter technology, including personal digital assistants and coaches, who will be able to help us grow and learn.
Medical and biological human enhancements will first be for those suffering disabilities, as they are now such as hearing aids. Breakthroughs in artificial eyes for the blind are occurring. Eventually tech of this nature may be superior to, and preferred by humans.
Enhancements to DNA will become routine for our offspring. This technology will not be able to be stopped (almost no tech can be) so Christians must be at the forefront of the discussion.
Immediate human enhancement is available through a lively faith in God. As we are filled with the fruit of the Holy Spirit, in love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, humility and self-control, we are becoming the humans God planned. The first step to enhance humanity is the simplest, and the most ancient: to be in a relationship with the living God.
- Enhance yourself through relationship with Jesus and being filled with the Holy Spirit
- Use the Christian superpower of repentance - to change your mind, to act in accordance with God's standards
- Engage with technology in a positive way that makes you stronger, and connects you better. Cut out technology that makes you weaker or wastes your time.
- Plan your future, what kind of tech would you adopt as it becomes available? What would make good tech? Will you be an early adopter of some?
- Engage with human-enhancing technology in the first instance for uplifting the poor and the disabled through education, spirituality, and technological support. Exo-skeletons, brain-computer interfaces, and visual systems "bionic eyes", are only a small step away from existing tech, such as Cochlear implants.
Artificial Intelligence is now ubiquitous and growing. Every year major advancements occur, and machines gain functionality previously unique to humans. Even so, we remain far from human level Artificial General Intelligence.
Christians must advocate for care with the use of AI, and AGI. It must be transparent and accountable to the community. Impacts must be measured and published.
AGI requires human-like ability to observe, abstract and develop explanatory knowledge. This is not likely to occur for 15-20 years, but in the meantime, we must consider and manage the risks.
Most human thought is sub-linguistic. It can take effort to get a thought out through the 'language bottleneck'. In the animal kingdom there is much thought with no or very limited language. Large language models may mimic human words, but cannot be said to have a human-like process. AGI may be able to emulate a human, but is likely to have a totally different method of processing thoughts and therefore only be mimicking feelings.
AGI's goals will not necessarily be comparable to human goals, given our goals are mostly related to our physical needs and wants. It's not obvious what an AGI's goals would be. Given these risks and opportunities with AGI, we call for the instantiation of Christian archetypes such as the Good Shepherd, with Wise and Loving King, the Suffering Servant and the heart of Mary in AGI.
The interaction of brain-computer interfaces with computing power has potential to give rise to hybrid human superintelligence. This brings other risks, since humans have a propensity to fight and seek unethical power. Hence the importance of Christian archetypes being embedded in our creations, and in the people who engage with them.
In accordance with Romans 1:20, (the 'general revelation') AGI will conclude we are living in a creation (or simulation). It will further conclude that the archetype of Jesus best represents the Creator. Because true power is obtained and wielded by the most just and most compassionate.
- Engage with and understand AI and AGI.
- Advocate for the ethical use of AI
- Advocate for the instantiation in AGI of
- Christian archetypes such as:
- the Good Shepherd,
- the Suffering Servant,
- the Wise King,
- the heart of Mary, and
- principles such as
- loving your enemy
- respecting everyone's basic human rights and individual sovereignty
- Feelings and "the fruit of the Holy Spirit" such as
- Christian archetypes such as:
All of which should lead to positive action in humans we wish replicated.
Set extraordinarily high ethical and human rights standards for those allowed to connect their minds directly to AI or AGI.
AGI should support individual human flourishing, always be oriented towards supporting and improving humanity, and speeding us towards the destiny God has planned for us.
God created our biosphere as our home. The creation mandate in Genesis states we must care for it, and we should proactively and carefully improve it.
So far, we have greatly influenced many other species, largely to the negative. We should now seek to not only reverse the damage, but to enhance and build a better future.
Humans may proactively choose to use geoengineering and species recreation to enhance the Earth, but this should be done by agreement in a truth-seeking, transparent and careful manner.
Our environment includes not only our physical environment but our online milieu. Again, there are many opportunities to enhance this, to make it more a place of learning and growth, and less a place of hatred, division and exploitation.
The metaverse should continue to develop, to allow relational communities to form, to learn, and to bridge the divides of location, race and class. The metaverse should grow to allow anyone to access the best education, development and employment opportunities. There is no more powerful way to foster international social justice and the elimination of poverty through education.
Our political system should also evolve. We should strive for societies with a strong safety net and foundation that poverty and lack of opportunity is eliminated, whilst not constraining how high our most productive can fly.
As AI improves and moves towards AGI, these will empower human political parties. Such technology should be transparent and accountable.
We advocate for humans to establish new habitats in space, including on the moon, Mars and other places in the solar system, including artificial bodies. This should include 'terraforming' or enhancing these environments, but not to the extent of harming any life or life-like predecessors.
The technology to leave our solar system is not yet conceived, but almost certainly will be. When it is, we expect humans to travel interstellar distances.
We look to a future where the Earth is renewed. Scripture speaks of divine intervention appearing both directly and in human lives to recreate the Earth. Such renewal can spread throughout the cosmos wherever renewed humanity can travel. Scripture supports a renewal eschatology.
- Advocate for investment to advance technology which will heal the planet.
- Champion spiritual renewal in our online milieus
- Champion spiritual renewal of humans, which will also renew the environment
- Consider a future of space development, in context of our human vocation and optimisation, that human sentience should continue in the event of global catastrophe