On April 16, 2018 the UK House of Lords surrendered to the AI Overlord and proclaimed the beginning of the New Atlantis of British prophetic tradition. Okay, they didn’t use those exact words. However, this is the effect of an innocuously entitled report, “AI In the UK”. In this remarkable document, the good Lords proposed an “AI Code” of five basic principles to keep humanity safe from AI. The report is based on the underlying assumption that AI is now running our world and we humans need to catch up with our new reality…or else. Effectively, we have surrendered the human race to an alien intelligence that is now beyond our control and we need to seek protection from it. But, as we will see, the story is bigger than that. What many do not realize is that, simultaneous with its AI leaps, the UK has also unleashed the artificial conception genie by opening the way to designer babies. Clearly, the future of humanity is in the hands of UK scientists and the UK people. Welcome to the New Atlantis.
British lawmakers this week proposed a cross-sector AI code for national and international adoption:
1Artificial intelligence should be developed for the common good and benefit of humanity.
2Artificial intelligence should operate on principles of intelligibility and fairness.
3Artificial intelligence should not be used to diminish the data rights or privacy of individuals, families, or communities.
4All citizens should have the right to be educated to enable them to flourish mentally, emotionally, and economically alongside artificial intelligence.
5The autonomous power to hurt, destroy, or deceive human beings should never be vested in artificial intelligence.
“The UK has a unique opportunity to shape AI positively for the public’s benefit and to lead the international community in AI’s ethical development, rather than passively accept its consequences,” chairman Timothy Clement-Jones said in a statement.
“AI is not without its risks and the adoption of the principles proposed by the Committee will help to mitigate these,” he continued. “An ethical approach ensures the public trusts this technology and sees the benefits of using it. It will also prepare them to challenge its misuse.”
While the report is pro AI, it also warns against allowing just a handful of “Giant or Big Tech” companies—Alphabet, Apple, Microsoft, Facebook, etc.—to monopolize AI…become even more powerful than any government… and run the world.
I, respectfully, applaud and thank the Lords for its AI Code. Someone had to do this. It is jolly well past time that a government took steps to tell the people what the f#*k is going on. Obviously, someone there has read the tea leaves and is aiming the UK at rulership over, or partnership with, the AI Overlord.
The thing is, London is more than just the center of the universe for AI ethics. It is also the center for another revolution in human evolution : genetic modification of the human body at the molecular level. This is the beginning of gene therapy and designer humans.
What do we get when AI and gene editing technologies merge?
THE NEXT HUMAN
The UK is way beyond other countries, save for China, in loosening the chains on the genetics revolution that will result in the appearance of the ‘next human’, as I call it.
In the past ten years the UK has cleared the way for eye popping research in one of the most controversial, yet astonishing spheres of human knowledge: the manipulation of our genetic code.
We all want a better life for our selves and our families. Ever since the discovery of the genetic code in the 1950s, scientists have been dreaming of a time when we can cut, paste, and edit DNA to improve humanity. Genome editing will put us on the fast track toward the sci fi fantasy of not just making a better human, but of manufacturing a super one.
Since 2012, and the emergence of the revolutionary CRISPR-Cas9 system, techniques for making precisely targeted alterations or edits to DNA sequences in living cells have become big news and soon will be BIG business.
CRISPR-Cas9 is a protein that acts like pair of scissors that enables us to cut and paste DNA and fix any harmful genetic mutations. Geneticists says it will lead to the end of all genetic diseases. NO DISEASE means a NEW HUMAN. Designing and building a new human is actually what these scientists are doing.
Running through these stories is an alarming thread. Much of this new gene editing research (on plant, animal and human cells) is being done without much oversight. The general public is vastly uniformed about how advanced this work is and its implications. So, too, are governments who do not have policies in place to deal with what is here, let alone what is coming.
Simply, emerging biotechnologies are giving humans the tools to play god.
Shh. Don’t tell anyone.
In February 2015, the British government approved a pioneering gene technology to prevent potentially fatal mitochondrial disease from passing from mother to child.
The U.K. achieved a double first in 2016: It became the first country to legally permit replacing part of an embryo with a third person’s genes, and the first to allow genetic modification in humans from the embryo stage.
Molecular biologist and ethicist David King, the founder of British watchdog group Human Genetics Alert, believes that embryo manipulation opens up “for the first time in human history, the possibility of consciously designing human beings, in a myriad of different ways.”
Opponents of the techniques, including the U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH) as well as bioethicists and religious leaders, believe they herald a dystopian future where parents will “play God” by opting to edit their unborn child’s genes to make it stronger, taller, healthier, whiter, blacker, bluer, whateverer.
A recent report from the Nuffield Council on Bioethics in London found that gene editing—particularly in embryos—demanded further scrutiny. Ethical opposition has arisen especially where, it said, the “scope for unforeseen consequences is considered to be great or editing is regarded as irreversible.”
In other words, if asked what the consequences of this will be the answer is “hell, if we know.”
This makes me wonder if the hell we know (aging, disease, untold suffering from genetic ‘deficiencies’) is better than the hell we don’t know?
What most are not seeing is that the genetic revolution and the AI revolution are aimed at the same goal : the fundamental transformation of the human species from a carbon based existence to a silicon based one.
As I discussed in The Skingularity Is Near, we are being genetically engineered into a new type of human. We are doing this with a combination of four technologies: Bits or AI, Atoms or nanotechnology, Neurons or neuroscience and Genes or genetic manipulation. All four are becoming one seamless technology aimed at the human body, especially the skin.
As the US and China have both said no to the kind of gene editing that Britain is now taking a leadership role in one thing is likely: this new ‘transhuman’ being will carry a British passport.
It will be artificially conceived, genetically altered in a lab while in the embryo phase, and merged with artificial intelligence once it leaves the beaker.
What, exactly, are the consequences of this merger?
No one knows. We won’t know until Gene Genie or Genie Gene arrives.
THE NEW ATLANTIS
What kind of being will this new Brit be? For an answer we can turn to British history and to its prophetic tradition where smart folks have been discussing this question for centuries.
In olde England, interpreting the Book of Revelation was serious business. When King James wrote a commentary for his 1610 translation of the Bible, he took seriously the prophecy of Daniel that said in the End Times knowledge will increase. A new human would emerge. This new human would be a being of light like the resurrected Christ. British poet, painter and prophet, William Blake, prophesied this new being would dwell in the New Jerusalem in England.
This increase in knowledge was on display in the form of superior English technological advancements in agriculture, metallurgy, chemistry, navigation, printing. Each of these technologies was viewed by the ‘Puritans’, as they came to be called, as evidence that the secrets of nature were being revealed to God’s chosen men and we could use them to perfect ourselves and become like Adam and Christ.
Every great English scientist of the 17th century from Boyle to Isaac Newton believed in the prophecies of the New Jerusalem, the Second Coming of Christ and the appearance of the Next Human. The key for them was to discover the lost knowledge and perfection of Adam, (the lost knowledge of the Perfect Rainbow Light Body).
The founder of modern science, Isaac Newton, believed himself a messiah and a prophet. He wrote that the coming “Sons of the Resurrection” would have perfected light bodies like that of Christ…and that he would be among them.
The brightest light of the New Jerusalem or Eden in England was Francis Bacon, author, statesman, genius, and prophet. Building on the works of the Franciscan, Roger Bacon, Paracelsus, Bruno and the Rosicrucians, Bacon’s works assert that advancement of technological knowledge is essential for human salvation and restoration of perfection. He called upon philosophers to get over their disdain of ‘dirty’ technology. Instead, we need to command technology to do our dirty work and enjoy the fruits of our labors.
The preface to Bacon’s work, “The Great Instauration” (1620), states that he aimed to demonstrate how the mind of humanity “might be restored to its perfect and original condition,” pointing to the fruit of his work being the attainment of the perfect light body of Adam. For Bacon, human restoration to the light body of Christ is part of the Divine Plan. Fulfillment of this plan could be accelerated with new technology.
After his death in 1626, Bacon’s magnum opus, “The New Atlantis,” was published. Written toward the end of his life, this novel envisions a Utopia, the New Atlantis, that is based on accounts of Eden and the prophecies of the New Jerusalem. In this work, Bacon promoted the use of new technology to restore human perfection.
In the novel, Bacon imagines a group of Magi or wise men of Solomon’s House. These magi used technology to attain an angelic state, the perfect state of Adam before the Fall and of Christ after his ascension. Solomon’s House was named after King Solomon, Israel’s king who attained perfection c. 900 B.C.
In “New Atlantis”, Bacon imagined the magi of Solomon’s House spreading their technology the world over and bringing about the restoration or perfection of humanity. Having penetrated the secrets of nature, Bacon prophesied the curing of all diseases, the prolongation of life, the transformation of humans into other bodies and the making of a new species.
This is exactly what is occurring in London today.
Francis Bacon’s greatest legacy may be the fusing of the ideas of technology and human transcendence. This fusion, combined with the belief that the Second Coming was imminent, launched the ships of the Puritans, who sailed to the New World, America, intent on creating the Next Human, a vessel capable of holding the Christ Spirit.
Bacon’s breakthroughs led to the Scientific Revolution of the 17th century. With it came a paradigm shift. Instead of technology being used to restore the old, the new emphasis was on the creation of a new reality. The Royal Society of London, the so-called Invisible College which formed around Robert Boyle, was formed to recover the lost knowledge of Adam in pursuit of this new reality and did so with enormous success. England plus science / technology equaled global rulership for the Brits.
Perhaps it is in the British DNA. It was, after all, Sir Francis Bacon, one of the greatest British geniuses ever to walk the earth, who launched the scientific revolution that has led to our present moment. Bacon’s “New Atlantis” was a prophecy when it was published in 1626. Today, it is our emerging reality.
Once again, I thank and applaud the British government and its people for taking a leadership role in AI and genetic ethics. Let us hope that they will be successful in navigating us through the challenges ahead.