No one can see the future, despite what fortune tellers say. If psychics could really predict the future (or see the past other than via memories and associations in dreams,) they would win the lottery. No one on Wall Street knows which way the market will go, either. If a real, hard AI were to arise tomorrow, not even IT could see the future, although IT would make better predictions than humans. The future will be a shock to many. Especially those who resist change. The Dark Ages should be behind us, not in front of us. ISIS and the anti-science movement are both on the same side in that regard. Belief in God should not be belief in a dogma that forces itself on others, making itself right by insisting all others are wrong (and need to die.) That’s madness and static thinking that have led to religious wars in the past. Many times such people come to rule over citizen slaves as despots, as in North Korea or Syria. If you don’t vote in lock step with them, you are gassed or sent to prison to be beaten. Despite the title of this post, there is usually more than just two choices to things. America seems polarized, in a rut, thinking everything is either good or evil, with no in between or compromise possible, now. “Now” is even a dirty word. We prefer to extend solutions (and debt) to future generations, if they even exist. Truth is, only critical thinking and willingness to change and learn can ensure any positive future. A new show on NatGeo is “Genius,” produced by Ron Howard, based on the Einstein biography. The Nazis hated Jews, and Einstein had to leave, but not before saying, “Nationalism is the measles of humanity.” Being identified with a cause or country or team is most satisfying for the ego, but ego is illusion. “A most persistent myth,” said one neuroscientist I once interviewed. Eckhart Tolle once said that the ego lives for the past or the future, never the present, (although the present is all we “own.”) So anyone obsessed with the past or the future overlooks and abuses those “in their path” to some imagined state of glory when they will have “arrived.” Yet when the future comes, it will be the present. The Bible: “Time shall be no more.” Physicist Sean Carroll: “Time stops at the singularity of a black hole.” We imagine living forever, and fear death, too, which promises to take away everything we “own.” (Eternal life vs life extension?) Amazingly, Ron Howard also produces the Breakthroughs series, and in the second season this month there is a program in which a deactivated HIV virus is being used to treat cancer. One killer versus another. This was the premise of my suspense novel on longevity science The Methuselah Gene, except I used HIV to fight aging by bypassing the blood/brain barrier to deposit a longevity gene taken from a bristlecone pine tree, the longest living plant. (There is a “Satan bug” mentioned, and an ISIS-like twist too.) And in the first season of Breakthroughs Ron Howard talked about longevity science. Yup. It’s a big universe, but also “it’s a small world, after all.”
New releases this month. See one you’d like to review?