I came across an interesting article recently on Gizmono (Link) titled “when superintelligent AI arrives, will religions try to convert it”,
The key question seems to be simple at the first glance. The commonality among all different interviewees suggest that there is some kind of criteria the Strong AI has to pass to be qualify as human to be relevant to the religion.
The complication comes in that different party seems to have different criteria, to summarize:
- If Strong AI has a soul?
- If Strong AI has a soul an spirit?
And for the very fact that it is about AI and religion, let’s refer to Bible for the definition of spirit.
What is the definition of Soul: be subject
What is the definition of Spirit: In the Bible, Psalm 104:29 states: “If you [Jehovah] take away their spirit [ruʹach], they die and return to the dust.” And James 2:26 notes that “the body without spirit [pneuʹma] is dead.” In these verses, then, “spirit” refers to that which gives life to a body. The body needs the spirit in much the same way as a radio needs electricity—in order to function.
The difference between soul and spirit: According to "CompellingTurth”, while the two words are often used interchangeably, the primary distinction between soul and spirit in man is that the soul is the animate life, or the seat of the senses, desires, affections, and appetites. The spirit is that part of us that connects, or refuses to connect, to God.
After figuring out the definition of the answer, the next steps are as simple as: if AI passes, then AI should know god and should walk down the christian or muslim or whatever pass there are; if it fails, then it remains the tools that may or may not be utilized by the religion.
Speaking about the tools, I tested out an interesting product using machine learning to suggest relevant contents and programs to its christian community “BibleApp”.
Bible APP is by far the most popular mobile application for Christians, The theme-based study plans it created smartly tailored all the relevant content in the right frequency so reader enjoy the reading everyday. Its strong reminding mechanism help creates a non-intrusive experience for the followers.
The machine learning piece comes into play when the tool try to show you the relevant products or simply present you what is going on. Or to understand your preference . (Link)
So at least there is one thing we know, which is the fact that AI is doing some good to the religion even as preliminary as it is now. Of course, I probably should not use the word “good” as to many, it indicates that AI is of self-conscious on the definition of good and evil, which is a sensitive word. So let’s say, it has a value as a tool for the moment.
A hidden question that I did not get answered from talking to the christian community in Hong Kong is that, how do you go about utilizing something until one day you found it is somebody. Most answered me by saying that God loves everybody and there is a role for everybody, I guess that is the answer, that has always been the answer.