What beliefs shape our lives?

What beliefs shape our lives?


Do you think you know yourself, as well as what drives you and the world around you? We might consider the times we live in to be crazy, stressful and chaotic, but there is one thing we know for sure
about the present: it is humans who rule the world. In his writings, Yuval Noah Harari examined the history of humankind
with a keen eye, subsequently turning his attention to
its future. So, let’s see what do we know
about ourselves, by now? Well, on a large scale,
humans overcame famine, epidemics and war. And while these still persist, they are something to be “fixed” – the sooner the better – but they’re not a real threat to the overall survival of our species. Famine has turned into malnutrition, which is slowly and hopefully
disappearing, diseases are being studied
and controlled, and war on a nuclear level, would be devastating for all parties, leaving no one as the sole survivor. After having overcome these adversities, humans soon set their sights elsewhere better health, better lives, better selves. This is us, here, now, trying to become gods, to reach immortality, bliss, and unimaginable powers. How did humans arrive at this stage – to the total control of the ecosystem, from being just another mammalian species
in Africa? The first revolution was cognitive. Which really makes humans special – and by special we mean powerful above all others – is their ability to cooperate flexibly with one another, in large numbers and with an outstanding imagination. It is through storytelling that humans crafted their way to technical progress and eventually to the domination of the planet. But how exactly did they manage this? Well, they made an “agricultural deal” with the gods. It is through belief that they shaped their world. Humans would be given power over everything on the planet, in exchange for faith in supernatural beings. Animals would be entirely at their disposal and humans would rule over the world, under the imagined command of almighty gods, acting as a bridge between the divine and the mundane. Empires were formed with the birth of writing and money, and empires fell. One group of people met another and over time they progressed, triggering the scientific revolution. This one would change things drastically, doing away with the gods. Why keep them then, when humans can explain and control more and more of what was previously deemed unknowable? Humans became the center of the universe, each human for himself, unique as a snowflake. Liberalism did wonders for this creed, for if the individual knows best, the consumer knows best, the voter knows best and all revolves around him or her. But as scientists begin to poke at our brains and organisms in more depth, they are noticing more and more that we lack what it was that previously made us so special. No soul was found, no matter how much they looked for it. And what’s so special about a couple of neurons
firing anyway? Humans became to be seen as complex algorithms and nothing more. And if one actually considers it fully, humans don’t possess just one single self. They are conflicted inside, wanting this, and this, and this, not knowing themselves as well as
they think they do. With enough of your personal data
and information, Facebook can know more about you than your friends and even your partner. The big question is: how long before each of us has an app as a personal assistant, which knows how to keep us happy and functioning better than we know how to function alone? And what would be so bad about that anyway? Well, if humans are only complex algorithms, then electronic algorithms can be more complex than us, and might overpower us in knowledge in a not so distant future. What use will we be if most jobs are fulfilled by computers? Of course, this is just one path for the future but it is not unlikely. Rarely do humans invent new, core values, however one is emerging that might shape the lives of our children and grandchildren, and could even affect us in our lifetimes. That is information wants to be free. If information itself is valuable, and algorithms of information could one day operate the earth and all there is in it, what will we humans still be good for? This possible new religion, known as dataism, commands us to maximise the data flow, share and consume all information, and connect everything to the network. You might think you know yourself, but Google and Facebook
might soon be able to tell who you really are, what you like and what you really want to do, better than you can. So, what is more valuable to us, consciousness or intelligence? Hint: If we look closely at how we still, in this day and age, treat other conscious beings of lesser intelligence than ours, it could give us a glimpse of how we too will be treated. We’re just wondering… what would the world look like if non-conscious, but highly intelligent algorithms came to know us better than we knew ourselves? Subtitles by the Amara.org community

12 thoughts on “What beliefs shape our lives?

  1. Our third video is out, finally: How did humans get to be such a successful species? And more urgently what's next in store for them? Here are some possible answers, based on historian Yuval Noah Harari's new book, Homo Deus.

  2. Thought provoking stuff and amazing animation there bro. May I ask what softwares did you use to create and animate everything?

  3. We have philosophy, I imagine AI we create will too. Maybe we should remove the philosophically inconsistent and incorrect first.

  4. Lol this vid was quite interesting. You should have more subs for all the damn hard work you put in. I actually just posted my first animation and was wondering if you could check it out and give some feedback? Maybe you'll even like it and consider being a subscriber and who knows… in the future we could even collab 😉 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mvVLD-gXq_A

  5. This is a nitpick, but humans don't “rule” anything. This can be seen in a number of ways. The simplest way is to see that humanity has no direction or a way to even decide on a direction and implement a strategy for getting there. The increasing complexity of our understanding is the result of deterministic causal laws, but this has not yet created the meta-cognition to make any decisions regarding an overall direction for the species or its evolution. It's strange to say that a species “rules” when it has little idea of what it is, where to go, or how to get there if it did, though having an agreement on where to go would entail knowing something of how to get there. What is being “ruled” here? I just see a massive population of apes that evolved the cognitive faculties to organize for global-scale resource exploitation. And what is the point of this? If we don't go extinct we're going to be on this planet for hundreds of millions of years. We probably want to leave evolution's cave someday. In fact, this is already happening.

    Dataism, as being popularized, is ignoring the the second order effects of knowing that systems are influencing you. Google and facebook can know us, but we can also develop meta-cognition far more sophisticated than we have now – replacing our narratives and myths with the actual facts of the complex systems we embody. The systems that know us so well and can manipulate us could also manipulate us into realizing we're being manipulated. This creates interesting strategies for engaging with such systems – the real potential here is for transformation, not to be some cog manipulated blindly via thousands of vectors. Visualization tools could represent a model of your brain and how to manipulate it to a degree sufficient for options not yet characterized by the "just give up your data and let the system do as it will to you" scenario. This non-meta-cognitive scenario is actually incredibly dangerous.

    Dataism also seems to ignore the importance of subjective experience, but this can be the only thing of importance. People can only value dataism because of how its conception and implementation manifest as subjective experience. Dataism's use can thus only be in helping us develop the meta-cognition – whether embodied in the brain or some other computational substrate – to navigate the subjective state space.

    If information is “totally free”, then dystopian scenarios are possible where human beings are prevented from developing meta-cognition, our subjective experience is largely ignored except to serve larger organizational objectives, and meta-cognition instead resides in a few minds and the true power of it in synthetic machines. However, subjective experience is also information itself, and it has some mathematical correlation with the types of information that can be manipulated directly. Given that subjective experience is the only information that can ultimately matter, it seems strange to throw this out of the equation.

    As a thought experiment, imagine that everyone is made to experience subjective torment, but we can be made to behave in such a way to maintain some organizational objective. You go to work, communicate, engage in hobbies, you're otherwise maintained in top physical health, etc., and all your data is shared. This data is then worked on by machines that are controlling the non-conscious elements of your being – maintaining your behavior as a good robot – while your subjective state is one of torment decoupled from the behavior of the organism. Since data is all that matters, then this scenario is perfectly fine, yes? As long we're ignoring the data that is subjective experience itself.

    This is an absurd hypothetical, but it illustrates that subjective experience can be the only important thing about existence. Dataism is indeed the future – as long as information technology improves, the human being is going to become exploitable via increasing numbers of vectors – but vectors which also allow the realization of meta-cognition, which can have immunizing effects against the adoption of thought structures. How badly is this species going to blind itself? Or is it going to try to open its eyes?

  6. Guys!! The graphics are amassing, mush better than Kurzgesagt. The scripts… they are a little bit all around the place, but its fixable. The biggest problem is your marketing. You have amazing style, but no marketing. I find you by mistake. You should invest in to ads, maybe on sites like 9gag, and spark activity on redid. Also do some videos on a simple searchable topics… You channel has a lot of potential, but its not only THE potential that makes my phone working. You need marketing.

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