We have all watched movies about the robot uprising or Artificial Intelligence (AI) taking over. Eventually, they become smart enough to realize we are killing off each other and they have to save us from ourselves. Now, I am not debating that this is a fact that any intelligent being would conclude. BUT I do not think adding religion into this is a good idea.
The BBC has reported that a Buddist Temple and a Catholic Church are already integrating these robots with AI into their worship. There is also an app that is called Robo Rabbi that will interpret your beliefs and give you a daily task to increase your faith and connection with your spirituality.
So how far is too far?
Religion Is A Powerful Weapon
Whether you believe in it or not, there is no denying that religion can be used against us. If this is a fact you would like to debate, perhaps we should ask people that were involved with Jim Jones who founded The Peoples Temple, or the people involved with Heaven’s Gate. The few of them that are left anyway.
No, I do not think that the few bad organizations should dictate how we view all churches. I do, however, know what it is like to look at the church from a biased and unbiased opinion. Just as many people find it reasonable to jump on to the extremest bandwagon, I feel it is irresponsible to put something in charge of dictating the faith of others.
Christianity For Example
Christianity comes in many forms. Some secs of Christianity go by the Old Testament, some follow their own versions of the Bible, and some have some pretty extreme differences from others. With an AI-based operating system that is set only to a certain religion, you would have to input the understanding of that religion, as well as the scriptures that religion is based around.
If thousands and thousands of people have interpreted the Bible in different ways, what makes us think AI won’t? Wars have been fought over these words, yet, we believe we can input information into a computer and AI will be able to interpret it in those ways.
The problem I have with this is the fact that religion and the Bible have a slight tendency to contradict each other. Religion is based largely on faith, not facts.
As offputting as it may be for some, I have to quote Ben Shapero here and say
Facts don’t care about your feelings!
Do you believe in unicorns? Dragons? Do you believe they ever existed? Most Christians would say no to this question, yet, in the Old Testament, verses mention these mythical animals in Jeremiah and Isaiah.
Just as we know that man isn’t perfect, we can understand that interpretation along with translation over time could have changed. It isn’t unreasonable for someone to think some animals were similar to the description, but that we have exaggerated the details over time.
What Will Become Of Religion If We Incorporate AI
Science has never known when to leave well enough alone. I don’t think a computer that is programmed to give sermons is such a bad idea. I do, however, believe taking the soul and faith out of religion by way of AI is a bad idea.
If you program Artificial Intelligence to believe and follow a certain religion, it is not based upon faith. There is no fear of going to Hell or concern for one’s soul. Even if we try to insert a conscience, I think our outcome will be even worse. Religion is a personal and emotional part of us. How can we put that in the hands of something that only knows nothing about faith?
We all have questions that go unanswered. The purpose of faith is knowing your faith doesn’t have evidence or proof and believing in it anyway. Once AI has access to that knowledge, questions will be answered by whatever that AI was programmed to believe or say.
At some point, we have to draw the line of keeping the human in humanity.