The Modern Cosmism Conference on October 10 in New York City promises to be a super must-go event dedicated to a fresh, modern interpretation and formulation of Cosmism. I will be there, and I hope to see you there.
The conference is organized by the Cosmism Foundation of Vlad Bowen. While Vlad’s approach to Cosmism seems totally compatible with my own, he makes more concessions to New-Age-ish spirit and language – which isn’t really “New” since it comes directly from the Russian Cosmists.
However, Vlad’s ideas are compatible with R.U. Sirius’ summary of Cosmism and Ben Goertzel’s “A Cosmist Manifesto.” Therefore, in the let-1000-flowers-bloom spirit of The Turing Church, I welcome Vlad as a spiritual brother and wish his initiative all the best. I think Vlad’s New-Age-ish Modern Cosmism could be more successful than other attempts to reload and popularize Cosmism.
Vlad will be speaking on “Modern Cosmism and Transhumanism” on Thursday, July 30, at the “Our Transhuman Futures” conference at Juniata College.
Cosmism was originated in Russia more than a hundred years ago. That was an esoteric futuristic philosophy about post-humanity, technological immortality, resurrection and cosmic expansion. Early Russian cosmists proposed the idea of decompaction (lightweighting) of the human body, that eventually wouldn’t need an atmosphere and would be powered directly by solar energy. They call it “radiant humanity” – a perfect society of highly moral and super-conscious beings merging and colonizing the whole Universe. Modern Cosmism brings to this doctrine an ontological foundation, a scientific structure and a deeper comprehension of possible technology.
Cosmism will “work closely together” with Transhumanism on the transition period until consciousness uploading becomes possible. Then, most likely humanity will be divided in two main directions: an Earth-based genetically improved biological civilization and a departing digital society, creating a new cosmic reality where the concepts of truth, consciousness, freedom and happiness will be deeply revised.
The conference will review the critical question about meeting and joining with other cosmic civilizations and suggest some answers concerning their “eerie silence”. We will touch some related problems in cosmology, and astrophysics such as the shape and future of the Universe, black hole information paradox, multidimensional space, dark energy and interpretation of quantum mechanics. Are they a separate arrow of time? Are there exceptions to the principle of causality?
Like no other area of philosophy and technology before, Modern Cosmism raises fundamental questions about the post human nature and how it will be connected to the reality and why we should eventually get rid of our biological hardware. How we can define Cosmic Evolution and what is the role of intelligent life? Is the structure of reality included the consciousness? Is this possible to create a Universe in a lab?
Are there limits to the functional simulations of consciousness? Will we be able to create super intelligent agents with consciousness and feelings? What are the limits of artificial capacities we should create? Could we enhance our own humanity by genetically redesign our nature?
The conference will address fundamental philosophical issues that arise with the future design and use of artificial consciousness, mind uploading and cyber-immortality. How will our concepts of subjectivity, perception, and morality change, if we will live in mega-consciousness environment where you can experience multiple presence, personality, gender (or no gender at all) and unlimited kinds of artificial feelings? What is a possible ramification and consequences of digital consciousness? Cosmism suggested that the profound nature of the reality is also digital and it utilizes existential source code coming from Being that is using “radiant humanity” for its own preservation and modification.
Our keynote and plenary speakers are well-known international protagonists of Cosmism, Transhumanism and interdisciplinary researchers. Their lectures will discuss the most important current issues of Modern Cosmism from the point of view of philosophy, technology, ethics, robotics, psychology, and anthropology.