Mostly I like to write on thought-provoking and curious topics. Here we are again: Religion and artificial intelligence. I think religion is the one that the sensitive topics among many topics. Some people big fans of different types of major religions of the world while others are not believers or they believe different forms of it. The idea I am most fond of is that both AI and religion are similar to each other. Let me explain how: Some people think artificial intelligence will surpass human intelligence and it will be dangerous for humanity whereas others think AI is the most valuable thing and it will help humanity to develop. Basically, both AI and religion topics have two different kinds of people who think differently.
How AI will shape Religion?
Technology is everywhere from retail to healthcare, and we need to accept that also religion is here. It would not be wrong if I say the relationship between technology and religion has not always been straightforward and like many people, faith leaders are worried about creating human-like machines because of some reasons such as morality and ethics. I would like to give you some AI examples interacted with religion:
- Confession chatbot app for followers of Catholicism. I believe there are two sides to this app as positive and negative. The positive side is it could help to remove the embarrassment of secrets in confession because people want to feel more comfortable and the negative side of it is that it would collect data and use it for different purposes by the government.
- Muslims across the world can use an app to follow daily prayer times and get notifications about sunrise and sunset and etc.
Those kinds of things are just a few examples of how AI shapes religion through applications.
What about AI and God?
As I mentioned before there are different types of major religions of the world and unfortunately humanity suffers from some people who are fanatic of the religions. e.g. terrorism, disagreement, national differences, etc. However, if there are also some problems occur because of people who have a lack of a religious belief, what about them? We are developing some new things through technological developments and a major emergent trend has changed its way to the scientific side. So, the question is can AI replace the need for belief in God? I know it is a more complicated topic and the answer will not be really basic and easy. According to my researches, there are different thoughts for sure.
One of them is if you believe God is the intelligence behind the universe, so this is also evidence that there is a God behind all and we can produce new technology. Basically, there is simple math, and if you understand both cause and result, you can get your answer but overall there is no strict answer about it.
The other one is humans have more guidance and knowledge now and they will look for more for sure. People will worship Artificially Intelligent God entities.
The last one is if the analogy is true that the human brain is essentially equivalent to that of computer hardware and human intelligence and mentality is equivalent to software, it is logically possible that at some point in the near future AI will equal or otherwise exceed general human intelligence and possibly even gain certain cognitive faculties which the biological brain has yet to evolve. It means that AI will in turn supersedes us as the dominant species on the planet and it is possible that the definition of God will be changed.
According to the British mathematician I. J. Good:
“Let an ultra-intelligent machine be defined as a machine that can far surpass all the intellectual activities of any man however clever. Since the design of machines is one of these intellectual activities, an ultra-intelligent machine could design even better machines; there would then unquestionably be an “intelligence explosion”, and the intelligence of man would be left far behind. Thus the first ultra-intelligent machine is the last invention that man need ever make.“
There are many possibilities related to AI and one of them is AI God. I am sure some things will be changed in the future – also in the near future and we need to be prepared. Although religion is a more important and sensitive topic, I think it deserves to talk about how or/and AI will shape religion.