I have come to a serious problem in my philosophical construct on this wide and wild road of my PhD studies. It is such a head fuck, to be frank that over the past week or so I feel that Nietzsches Abyss is a nothing but a children’s toy that no longer scares me.
A little background for this to make a little more sense. I was raised Catholic, renounced that and all religious structures by the time I was 11 and subsequently even renounced Faith later on in life. Literally, and philosophically speaking I trust in facts, derived by and from the scientific method fully understanding and relishing the fact that facts change with new information presented analysed and peer-reviewed. To that extent, if you wanted to label me, which is pointless and a waste of time, let’s consider my physical and meta-physical construct to be that of a rational atheist.
With that, I can understand that philosophy at first glance seems to be a bit odd of a choice but it really isn’t. I won’t however bore you with the details, they are mind numbing in depth, detail and I’ve spent the past 20 years reading, talking and writing about them.
No, specifically this is what is currently making my head explode. The entire aim of what I am writing, studying and talking about is to scientifically, and philosophically examining and building a roadmap for a new left outside of any political spectrum – in other words, creating a framework or guidebook of how to implement a rational humanistic society without force in the 21st Century. I know it is a bold as fuck attempt but I figured that I might as well go out with a bang. In any case, the road to said work so far has predominately dealt with historical analysis of the political spectrum, left and right, something I hugely enjoy with the aim of analysing faults, victories and so on.
I am getting to the point now in which I have to build a system of implementation. Clearly, I haven’t even gotten close to putting a framework around rational non-violent humanism but I am confident in my progress on that. With any brainy exercise it’s never a dialectical process and whilst, rationally, I shouldn’t worry about any or all implications it hit me the other day:
What if one of the individual motivators of change to something new is faith?
What I am asking is, what if the vision I am trying to build requires more than scientific reason and argument? That possibility is literally frying my mind these days.
How can someone that has no belief in faith ask to be faithful?
It’s a real conundrum for many reasons. Firstly, asking anyone to do anything is something I struggle with greatly. I strongly adhere to the principles of anarchism – hence my aim to create a practical non-violent philosophy – and forcible leadership – not to be mistake for ideological leadership – is something I strongly disagree with. Secondly, there is no real factual existence of non-violent rational humanism in group structures out there to be scientifically examined and discussed. Granted, small pockets of human conclaves adhering to these principles are emerging but we are nowhere near a stage of them being able to be critically examined.
With that, what I am examining at this stage is predominately theoretical and well yes, that is philosophy, even practical political philosophy. Separating practical from theory can occasionally require more than one cup of coffee per hour.
With that though and whatever my intentions may be, once arriving at the stage of possible implication or even the discussion thereof you’re gonna have to have a little Faith.
And that really fucks with me.
Mostly, because I have little or no faith in humans, which I realize is pretty pessimistic but an undeniable fact. Historically speaking I struggle to come to any other conclusion, and yes of course my own personal take on that situation play a role in that assessment.
I am not asking for any guidance to make me an optimist, believe me, despite the superficial bleakness of said statement I am still a happy camper.
Regardless, if I don’t, generally speaking, believe in the possibility of rational positivity of humans in groups, what is the point of this whole train of thought? For one, it is clearly needed but again, the question remains: If I cannot present facts and reason for the possibility of success ( there is plenty of facts and reason for its necessity ) I will have to rely on the belief that positive, progressive, non-violent rational humanism is the way to go, brothers and sisters, and will have to ask the same of anyone willing to listen.
That begets the question what Faith is, what correlation Faith has with repressive institutional structures, aka religion, and if Faith has place in rational humanism and now to the real head-scratching aspect of philosophy in the 21st century:
What implication / value has Faith in Humanism when it comes to A.I.
Make no mistake, A.I. is here and represents the next step in human evolution, one that we, for now, can still shape and control.
Artificial Intelligence can make Homo Sapiens obsolete, and if we have any real interest in building a better future for our species we need to talk about what we want any A.I. to learn, and how and why. Will there be competing belief structures in A.I., i.e. will one A.I. be programmed to support and work within the existing neo-fascist dehumanizing hyper capitalistic system we are currently all enjoying and the other to be what us rational humanists are aiming for? How would that conflict look like, if there was one?
You see where this is going. My head is swimming again.
Time for some more coffee.