At Medium, Harvard’s Avi Loeb offers,
We should not accept nature as fate, especially when dealing with the extinction of the human species. If our Artificial intelligence (AI) astronauts will venture into interstellar space, they will serve as monuments that humanity distinguished its destiny from the death prescribed to it by nature. Our natural endpoint involves the evolution of the Sun that will boil off all terrestrial water and sterilize Earth’s surface from life-as-we-know-it within a billion years. Most sun-like stars formed billions of years before the Sun and have already sterilized the surfaces of their formerly habitable Earths. We were not around billions of years ago to listen to the numerous cries for help from distressed civilizations on these planets. If these civilizations were indistinguishable from nature like the dinosaurs were 66 million years ago when the Chicxulub impactor killed them, then the ruins of these civilizations must lie on the surface of their burnt-up planets. Our AI astronauts might find these relics. But we could find the relics of the more intelligent species that ventured into interstellar space and avoided their natural doom to arrive at our doorstep near Earth.
Distinguishing ourselves by overcoming our natural destiny is what makes us human. I was supposed to play it safe and stay at home after noticing this morning the pileup of five inches of snow outdoors. Instead, I chose to maintain my morning jog at sunrise. When nature offers me a challenge, I enjoy facing it and marveling at its beauty. Life is worth living, particularly when we make possible what seems impossible at first sight. – “Distinguishing Ourselves from Nature” (March 4, 2023)
But wait! What fuels the possibility of separating ourselves from nature? Every run-of-the-mill science writer knows that we are merely the 99% chimpanzee that cannot transcend the accidental blob/monad-to-man history of life.
This human exceptionalism could be the most radical suggestion that Avi Loeb, no stranger to controversy, has ever made.
10 Replies to “Astrophysicist insists on the need to distinguish ourselves from nature”
“Distinguishing Ourselves from Nature” – Avi Loeb
Yet, as News pointed out, under atheistic naturalism there is no distinguishing, and/or separating, man from nature. We are genetically determined robots with no more control over our actions than a falling leaf blowing in the wind has control over the trajectory of its fall.
Or as Jerry Coyne tried to convince his students, we are meat robots,
Avi Loeb imagines humans, or at least “our Artificial intelligence (AI) astronauts”, will escape the future sterilization of the earth by the sun, yet this only delays the impending doom of humanity.
Not to be a wet blanket, but impending doom surrounds Avi Loeb, and humanity in general, from every side of his naturalistic worldview.
Might I suggest a more realistic way for Avi Loeb, and humanity in general, to escape the impending doom of the entire universe?
Man has only two choices: Choose to worship men or choose to worship God. If he chooses men to worship, he can expect to encounter our fallen nature. Without the the truth embodied in Jesus Christ, he chooses teachers from among men.
2 Timothy 4:3
“For the time is coming when people will not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they will accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions,”
“Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law.” – Aleister Crowley
So man today seeks “freedom” to indulge in anything, and devises arguments to get his way. And he misses the truth:
‘Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.’
1 John 1:8
“If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.”
There is always a third choice–not to worship anything or anyone at all. Thus, the origin of true freedom……
CD at 3,
“true freedom” to do what? Yes, man worshiping himself is an option but a short-lived one. I’d think about eternity, which is… uh… eternal.
It’s intriguing that the choice of not worshiping anything at all is unimaginable to some people.
PM1 at 5,
Intriguing how? That choice could be made in Biblical times. Nothing new.
I don’t understand this need to worship anything at all and certainly not a God who needs to have His ego constantly massaged by crowds of uncritically adoring worshippers.
Of related note:
Seversky at 7,
Do you think God is a man? Do you think God is worthy of criticism? It’s obvious that you do.
There’s still time. God, in the person of Jesus Christ, is waiting to hear from you.
Since Seversky is a fairly vocal Richard Dawkins devotee, has he, unwittingly, become a member of a cult?