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February 2013 Discussion Group of the Mormon Transhumanist Association

Yesterday I had the pleasure to participate in the February 2013 Discussion Group of the Mormon Transhumanist Association (MTA), via Google+ Hangouts. The meeting was mainly dedicated to the memory of our departed friend Dan Massey.

Dan was a frequent participants in the monthly online Discussion Group of the MTA, and the video of the December meeting may have the last recorded words of Dan before his departure on January 28.

See also the video and transcripts of the August 2012 meeting. Dan described very eloquently the idea, also outlined in his comment to How to cope with death: the Cosmist ‘Third Way’, that other civilizations in the universe may have already developed resurrection technologies and may be already “providing resurrection services” to less advanced civilizations like ours. If this is the case, we and everyone else in the universe will be resurrected by the “Cosmic Government.”

Watch the full video of February 2013 meeting below.

Carl Youngblood started with a moving online version of the Mormon funeral rites, then Gabriel Rothblatt remembered Dan’s contribution to Terasem, and we shared good memories of Dan.

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Screenshot of the Fenruary 2013 Discussion Group of the MTA. Watch the full video above.

 

  • Mike Perry

    Watched the broadcast, enjoyed, and hope to participate in others. I am a “religious atheist” with hopes in the natural order (could call it “Dao” but I would not say “God”) and our ability to bring about our own proper future through reason, science and technology. I have hopes that this will include both personal immortality for everyone and raising the dead. I wish people for now would consider cryonics. I think it could be a way to accomplish “more good” in the world, and yield more benefit to the participant, even if other approaches to “coming back” will eventually work also.

  • Giulio Prisco

    Hi Mike, I hope you will participate in the next online meeting.

    Re cryonics, I will choose cryonics if I can afford it, because I wouldn’t want to miss the fun of the next few centuries, but it is good to think that even those who did not choose cryonics may be able to come back, someday.

  • spud100

    I was curious how the Transhumanist group within the Church of Mormon (Mormon Transhumanists) are treated by traditional Mormon members of the faith?

  • Giulio Prisco

    spud100 – The Mormon (Latter-Day Saints) Church has a concept of “theosis” – Man able to become like God, and God having been, once, like Man. The MTA emphasizes this aspect of the Mormon doctrine, finding many parallels with transhumanism.

    My impression when I went to Salt Lake City for the MTA conference last year is that the views of the MTA are not generally accepted in the LDS Church, but not rejected either.

    I will go to SLC again in a few weeks, find out more, and report. In the meantime I hope some Mormon member of the MTA will say more.

  • Hi spud100.

    There are diverse views among Mormons about the role of technology in our religion. Most Mormons at least embrace technology as an important enabler for some aspects of our faith, such as missionary work. Some Mormons, both Transhumanists and otherwise, trust that technology has a highly important role in our faith. You can see some thoughts from Mormon authorities on this subject at this link:

    http://community.transfigurism.org/quotes/mormon-authorities-on-science-and-technology

    Regarding Mormon Transhumanists, of course most Mormons (like most other persons) have not heard of Transhumanism, and there are diverse reactions when they do hear of Transhumanism for the first time. It’s worth noting, however, that the Mormon Transhumanist Association is by far the largest and fastest growing group of religiously-inclined Transhumanists, and this reflects the degree of compatibility between Mormonism and Transhumanism. H+ Magazine interviewed me on this subject a couple times:

    http://hplusmagazine.com/2010/08/22/mormon-transhumanism-eternal-progression-towards-becoming-god/

    http://hplusmagazine.com/2011/05/09/mormonism-the-most-transhumanist-religion/

    Please let me know if you have other questions. Thanks.

  • Alan Brooks

    If we could influence the Amish to be interested in these technologies, now THAT would be something.