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Ep 28: Robert Walden Kurtz & the Zero Sum Game

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Can a Seventh-Day Adventist be a transhumanist? Robert Walden Kurtz, Adventist pastor and Professor of Philosophy, says yes! Join us as we discuss robots stealing your job, mind-mapping Jesus, the hidden threat of washing machines, zero-sum games, hacking the mind, and radical humility.

  • Why Singularitarians are like early Seventh-Day Adventists
    • The origins of Adventism, and what to do when your apocalypse fails
    • The impact of communication on historical cycles in culture, and how this connects the Adventists, Mormons, Ahmadiyya Muslims, and the Bahai
    • What's different about utopian expectations this time around?
  • Ray Kurzweil & the Transcendent Man Documentary
    • Will there always be an economy?
    • Redefining what value means
    • Transhumanism: the prospect of becoming superheroes. But will it also make us super-villains?
    • What happens when you get everything you really want?
    • "Earl Grey, hot!" — Star Trek & the world of 3D printing we're now entering
  • Altruism isn’t popular — especially in modern Christianity
    • Must others fail for you to succeed?
    • Zero-sum games — amplifying competition, what about altruism?
  • Robots stealing your jobs?
    • Washing Machines: the robots already among us!
    • Did the washing machine destroy community? What do you do about it?
  • Mind-mapping Jesus, The Buddha & Mother Teresa
    • Hacking the neural correlates of spiritual experiences, controlling oxytocin, and amping up our pro-sociality
    • Prayer and meditation as the original brain-hacking technology
    • Why brain modification doesn't make zombies, but can help us overcome our zombie addictions, and become more human
    • How Robert became a more effective police officer, and spent 15 years in law enforcement without needing to hurt anyone
  • Aubrey De Grey & Calico Labs
  • “I have never been okay with accepting death and destruction as somehow beautiful and natural”
    • Why Christianity agrees with Ray Kurzweil about the beauty of life, and the ugliness of death
    • John 10:10 “…I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.”
    • Adventists pioneered some of the finest hospitals and medical technologies—desiring to extend life and relieve suffering
  • David Brin’s Bible study
    • David Brin, novelist & futurist, author of The Postman, speaking to atheists about how to communicate with theists
    • The biblical motif of God as parent, and humans as growing children
    • God saying "not yet" to humans
    • But ultimately inviting them into his family business
  • Stephen Pinker and The Better Angels of Our Nature
    • Darwin — a patron saint?
    • Why nature films skew our perception of nature in the direction of conflict
    • Schadenfreude — Why people will destroy their own best interest to spite others
  • Why humility is the gateway to curiosity
    • Does the Big Bang contradict the Second Law of Thermodynamics?
    • Do our theologies amuse God?
  • Why the criticism of "Playing God" is hypocrisy—and why Christianity calls us to "Play God" better
  • For further reading: The Four Gospels!


Ep 28: Robert Walden Kurtz & the Zero Sum Game
Christian Transhumanist Podcast
Micah Redding
2017-05-23
12:30:02



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