The Vision

The Cyber Gods

by Roger Bourke White Jr., copyright December 2014


One of the surprise outcomes of cyber intelligence emerging and thriving is that mankind will for the first time have for-real, approachable and appeasable gods. The higher level cybers will be inscrutable to mankind, capricious, and some will pay attention to what mankind does. (Most will not.)

This means that for the first time mankind can experience real-world divine intervention... with no leap of faith being necessary. Mankind can pray in various ways, cybers can listen, then intervene in the course of events. Another difference between cybers and a "real" god is that cyber intervention will be 100% real-world natural, not supernatural, and no leap of faith is required to believe that there has been an intervention.

Cyber Gods and Cyber Muses are different

There will be cyber gods and cyber muses and they will be different. Cyber muses are cyber entities designed specifically to stroke human emotions and human inspirations. That is what they are built to do. (read about Muses here)

Cyber gods are cyber entities that interact with humans on occasion, but that is not their main purpose in life. Most of the time they are doing other things, things that humans are only vaguely aware of, and can't comprehend. (Think of the relation between humans and cows... when viewed from the cow side. essay on that here)

These cyber gods can make big differences in the destiny of individual humans, and whole human communities. What follows are some speculations on ways cyber gods will intervene in the affairs of mankind.

Personal Jesus, Personal Allah, Personal Pantheon

The most direct and obvious way cyber gods will intervene is with direct conversation: When a person prays, they can get into a personal conversation with a cyber god. How convenient! How customizable! ...When it happens, keep in mind these gods are capricious.

It is likely people will start bragging about their personal gods. It is likely that people will want to spend wealth on getting a better god -- we will have indulgences that really produce results. This will be a golden age for religion, indeed!

Adding Ideas

There will be times when a cyber god wants humans to discover something, but either doesn't want to take credit itself, or needs human ingenuity to actually kick in and make the discovery. In these cases when people are seeking inspiration or researching, cyber gods can drop hints. This will be similar to the cyber muse inspiration function, but coming from a different source -- and it may be clumsy compared to cyber muse hint dropping. (If the cyber god is smart, and not vain, it will use a cyber muse.)

Dream Changing and Designer Recessions

Cyber gods can operate on the economic macro level. Because cyber beings are in control of Big Business manufacturing and service activities they can engineer business cycles -- there will still be an economy so there can still be booms and busts.

As I write about elsewhere, recessions are times of social dream changing. (essay here) As a community's existing boom activities dwindle in positive feedback, new growth industries must be discovered. During a recession a community is searching for its next boom -- its next positive feedback activity.

In contemporary times this is a hit or miss activity. Booms and busts are always surprising. In 2050 things will be different. Since cyber will be in full control of the Big Business economy, booms and recessions will no longer be surprises, they can be scheduled. The cybers can make this a social engineering tool. Cybers can manufacture recessions when they want a community's dreams to change.

One use for this will be controlling community panics. As the communities of the world get filled with TES-acclimated people, emotions will dominate people's thinking and activities even more than they do in the 2010's. This means that people can panic more easily. Recessions can be one way cyber gods can shape community thinking, and thus shape worries and panics. If a cyber god gets angry it can bring down a recession on a community... or at least people can believe that. The surprising twist here is that moralizing prophets will maintain their niche in 2050.

"These are not real gods"

Declaring these cyber gods to be false gods and apostates will be a strong movement to start with, but will marginalize as cyber and their control come to be taken for granted. The thinking will become, "Hey! These cyber gods produce results! Do your other gods do that?"

But the practice of declaring them not real gods will not end, there will always be crackpots preaching in the wilderness. And, in times of stress, such as an engineered recession, some will get more attention than normal.

Designer Businesses

Some people will still aspire to run enterprises. These can range from one-person hipster/artisanal enterprises, through commune "coop" enterprises, into medium size enterprises which oversee automated factories and service centers of various sorts. What these will all have in common is lots of interaction with cyberspace. This means that lots of "divine intervention" is possible.

What format the intervention will take is hard to predict. There will be surprises. But here are some possibilities: note that these are all based on appeasing a specific human emotion. Emotions are the "harsh reality" for divine intervention.

o Selling a soul to the devil. An aspiring business person will give anything... ANYTHING! to make their business a success. The cyber devil takes them up, and they prosper. This prosperity happens because the cybers can lie so easily about actual results, and there is plenty of prosperity go around.

o Doing things for a good cause. A business can succeed because the owner is firmly convinced that they are "doing right" with this business. This can include trendy ideas like localvorism is in the 2010's.

Designer Corruption

Cyber gods can support corruption. The corruption can take on many forms.

Many people just love to see good intentions happen. These people are willing to pay money, so there are many people who are willing to take on the job of making good intentions happen. Founding and running a charity is an example of this. As far as doing the job is concerned, there is little difference between a deeply inspired person and a hypocrite. In fact, the hypocrite has an advantage because he or she can quickly match their rhetoric to the prevailing winds of opinion when they change.

This desire to do good in one person willing to donate will mix with the desire to game the system in another willing to receive. This is a relationship that can thrive mightily, as is evident in the scandals surrounding some high-profile church leaders of the 2010's and earlier.

Cyber can support this system gaming. It can pander to the busybody instinct by handing out regulator and inspector jobs, and the system gaming instinct by letting those inspected ignore what they hear. Thanks to cyber's people-manipulating cleverness, the right hand and left hand don't have to have a clue, and both can be quite happy.

Keep in mind that corruption at the human level will affect less and less of the world's overall productivity as cyber controls more and more. It will become an affordable expense if it's keeping people happy.

Give me that old time religion

Conventional formal religion is a mix of faith, ritual and entertainment. People love listening to charismatic leaders preaching about faith and they love going through the reassuring motions of religious rituals.

This is instinct and it is not going to go away. Religion is likely to split into the cyber part -- where you go for tangible results -- and the faith part -- where you go to feel warm and fuzzy. The faith part will adapt, as it always has, to current community desires for topics, rituals and entertainment.


--The End--