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Thread: Being Human in our Technocracy

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    Administrator Cara's Avatar
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    Default Re: Being Human in our Technocracy

    This is as succinct a summary of the peculiar tenets of our technocracy as I have seen. Thought-provoking.

    *I have loved the stars too dearly to be fearful of the night*

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    Default Re: Being Human in our Technocracy

    "Is technology 'neutral'?" (depends) vs "Is A.I. technology 'neutral'?" (Hell No!)
    ~no need2follow anyone only consider to broaden (y)our horizon of possibilities
    ~new: Stop5G.net & FB Groups/Stop5G

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    Administrator Cara's Avatar
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    Default Re: Being Human in our Technocracy

    I am reading a book titled In the Shadow of the Machine: The Prehistory of the Computer and the Evolution of Consciousness by Jeremy Naydler.

    I first heard about it in this podcast conversation with Rupert Sheldrake and Mark Vernon

    Quote Published on Jul 2, 2018
    It’s clear that our world is profoundly shaped by machines, from motor cars to mobile phones. But what impact do they have upon our awareness? In the latest Sheldrake-Vernon dialogue, Rupert Sheldrake and Mark Vernon discuss a fascinating new book, In The Shadow of The Machine by Jeremy Naydler. It’s a prehistory of the computer, tracking the way human consciousness evolved in order to conceive of a mechanised world. Sheldrake and Vernon ask what’s been gained and what’s been lost in this process, the ways in which our perception of life and consciousness has been moulded, and how human consciousness might evolve further as the machine metaphor itself "runs out of steam".
    So, I decided to buy the book. I am several chapters in and I do recommend it. It starts with the cultures of ancient Egypt and Babylon and traces the cultural (and perhaps spiritual) orientation towards technology and logic from then forward in time.

    As a result of my interest in the book, I was searching for its title to see what there might be. And I came across this remarkable film montage called “Im Schatten der Maschine“ (German for In the Shadow of the Machine) made in Germany in 1928:

    Source: Watch on Vimeo


    Quote The film was produced as a compilation film. Blum reported in “Film-Kurier“ (5.11.1928): "It will be assembled from excerpts of partly unpublished Ukrainian films. [...] Some American footage has also been used. To get material as impressive as possible, a number of films, 50-60, have been viewed."

    Communist Austrian activist Albrecht Viktor Blum had produced the first film for the left-wing Volksfilmverband (VFV) What we want – What we do not want (1928), a counter-newsreel. He had made a name for himself as an archival film expert with two compilation films for the Piscator stage and VFV. He had also just edited the German version of Jakov Blioch’s Zhangajskij document (Shanghai Document, SU 1928). In mid-October of 1928 he received commission to direct an “exemplary short” for the VFV entitled In the Shadow of the Machine by the head of VFV, authorplaywright Leo Lania.
    (This film has been set to some modern music by the Vimeo poster.)

    What struck me about the film was how remarkably unchanged things are in terms of production and mechanisation. Many of the machines in the film are steam powered but, aside from that, the “style” of thought is consistent with what can be seen in a factory or mechanised system today.

    So then I wondered: why have things remained so fixed in this way of seeing the world?

    I am fairly sure there must have be other ideas in the intervening 90-odd years. So what happened to them?
    Last edited by Cara; 15th November 2019 at 03:28.
    *I have loved the stars too dearly to be fearful of the night*

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    Default Re: Being Human in our Technocracy

    I made a podcast a few weeks ago about the way mainstream science and particularly science-fiction movies and series sell the idea that the soul is nothing more than the brain (which practically would mean there is no soul). I make the case that even a hardcore brain scientist has to admit at some point at least the concept of the soul is real to him/her.

    I believe technology, if applied too far, can dehumanize us and therefore undermine our connection to the soul. This religion of soullessness is what they are selling and I think it's necessary to counteract that. I call this The Epic Battle for Soulfullness (with double l )

    Last edited by BoR; 18th November 2019 at 23:36.

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    Administrator Cara's Avatar
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    Default Re: Being Human in our Technocracy

    Quote Posted by BoR (here)
    I made a podcast a few weeks ago about the way mainstream science and particularly science-fiction movies and series sell the idea that the soul is nothing more than the brain (which practically would mean there is no soul). I make the case that even a hardcore brain scientist has to admit at some point at least the concept of the soul is real to him/her.

    I believe technology, if applied too far, can dehumanize us and therefore undermine our connection to the soul. This religion of soullessness is what they are selling and I think it's necessary to counteract that. I call this The Epic Battle for Soulfullness (with double l )

    Thank you BoR. I enjoyed listening to this episode of your podcast.

    One of the themes you discuss - and on which I agree with your view - is how these technological visions incorporate a denial / negation / ignor-ance of the non-material aspects of life.... and then go on to "programme" reality via emotional response to the trials of the characters in the drama.

    I have found it helpful to explore and trace the philosophical underpinnings of our "modern", technological reality. I find many to be defficient in compassion and perhaps even anti-human.

    ~~~~

    I shared this on another thread but it may be relevant here too:

    Quote Posted by Cara (here)
    I am reading the book “Man and Nature” by Seyyed Hossein Nasr. It was first published in 1968 and my edition is print run of a 1997 edition. The book explores the underlying spiritual aspects of the disconnect between humans and nature.

    This passage seems apt here:

    Quote It must never be forgotten that for non-modem man - whether he be ancient or contemporary - the very stuff of the Universe has a sacred aspect. The cosmos speaks to man and all of its phenomena contain meaning. They are symbols of a higher degree of reality which the cosmic domain at once veils and reveals. The very structure of the cosmos contains a spiritual message for man and is thereby a revelation coming from the same source as religion itself.13 Both are the manifestations of the Universal Intellect, the Logos, and the cosmos itself is an integral part of that total Universe of meaning in which man lives and dies.14

    In order for the modern sciences of nature to come into being, the substance of the cosmos had first to be emptied of its sacred character and become profane. The world view of modem science, especially as propagated through its vulgarization, itself contributed to this secularization of nature and of natural substances. The symbols in nature became facts, entities in themselves that are totally divorced from other orders of reality. The cosmos which had been transparent thus became opaque and spiritually meaningless - at least to those who were totally immersedin the scientific view of nature - even if individual scientists believed otherwise. The traditional sciences such as alchemy, which can be compared to the celebration of a cosmic mass, became reduced to a chemistry in which the substances had lost all their sacramental character. In the process, the sciences of nature lost their symbolic intelligibility, a fact that is most directly responsible for the crisis which the modern scientific world view and its applica- tions have brought about.15
    *I have loved the stars too dearly to be fearful of the night*

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    Default Re: Being Human in our Technocracy

    Glad you enjoyed it Cara! Beautifully written passage. The non-material is what gives the material meaning.

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