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Friday, July 26, 2013

World Future 2013 - Part 2: Future-plex Mindset in a Hyper-complex World

by Debra Rae

Over the course of two and a half days, starting July 19, some 900 futurists are expected to gather at the Chicago Hilton for the World Future Society’s 2013 convention. With a view toward the 22nd century, visionaries will explore humanity’s “next horizon.” More than sixty sessions, workshops, and special events will feature future studies, as well as reports of progress toward achieving a coveted, one-world order. Eager attendees will enjoy a series of compelling presentations aimed at modeling and, then, forecasting (toward implementing) preferred scenarios deemed suitable for turn of the next century.

All bases will be covered—geopolitical, socio-economic, and religious. Former Danish ambassador and adjunct professor Joergen Oerstroem Moeller will flesh out an appropriate geopolitical model—one that manages “big data,” transcends economic obsession with the social justice model, and pulls anchor out from under the presumed-to-be defunct nation-states paradigm. Stephen Aguilar-Millan will address the provocative question, “Will We Still Have Money in 2100?” With a religious mandate to save Gaia-Mother Earth,[i] science fiction writer Brenda Cooper will call participants to “step backwards into Eden” and take personal responsibility for “gardening the world” by attending to climate change, finite fossil fuels, disappearing forests, dwindling fish and freshwater supplies.

·      Future-proof Mindset (Human Choice)
Since forecasting can succumb to outcomes that are “self-fulfilling,” “self-negating,” or “judgmental,” W.F.S. prognosticators hold that future events are determined by human choices, not external forces.[ii] Case in point, chief executive officer of the Jefferson Area Board for Aging, Marta M. Keane will explore how technology increasingly supports human choices to live longer, better, and more independent lives.

Israeli director of the Center for Strategic Futurist Thinking Tsvi Bisk will address a broad range of venturesome forecasts—e.g., food production via vertical urban agriculture; recycling carbon dioxide via artificial photosynthesis; enabling energy autonomy via nanotechnology; and converting human waste, garbage, and trash to gas via depolymerization units. His progressive mindset is promisingly future-proof.

·      Future-plex Mindset (Augmented Human Intelligence)
Drawing from his forthcoming book, The Naked Future: What Happens in a World That Anticipates Your Every Move? Patrick Tucker will address the dangerous future of humanity’s greatest would- be “invention,” the future itself.[iii]

Biblically speaking, humans have been granted the power “to will.” Nevertheless, exercising a future-proof mindset cannot “will” the future into existence, as visionaries would have us believe.[iv] Doing so requires more than mere human will and choice.[v] Rather than acknowledge need for God, however, prognosticators elect instead to surpass a “future-proof” mindset with an intelligence-augmented, “future-plex“ one.[vi]

Futurists posit that, in order to address grand challenges, it’s necessary to create and, then, use new information geared to solving big problems. Inspired not by the Holy Spirit, but rather by science fiction writers, Dr. Marvin Minsky and his ilk seek creative ways to enhance brainpower—e.g., by means of a brain co-processor that allows two-way interface of a machine working alongside the human brain.[vii]

To keep pace, one must apply exponential technologies toward mapping/electrically shocking the brain, harnessing the subconscious for accelerated performance, detecting emotions, fashioning virtual realities and synthetic genes, refining futuristic robotics, and equipping humanity to flourish in space.[viii]

Identifying as “humankind’s best investment” the pairing of futures technologies with cradle-to-grave, learning-by-doing, Ray Kurzweil started the Singularity University. Its mission is to educate, inspire, and empower global leaders to overcome humanity’s most perplexing obstacles. A forecasting advisor at Singularity University, conference presenter John Smart will suggest a twenty-year strategic horizon, coupled with useful leadership skills, for key areas of technological change inclusive of nano- science/technologies; resource/information/ engineering technologies; health/ social/ educational/cognitive technologies; socio-economic and security technologies.

But here’s where the real fun begins: Futurist and self-proclaimed cacophonist, Heather Schlegel will explore the intersection of technology and culture—specifically, the impact of technology on identity creation and complementary currencies transactions. Given “’Heathervescent’s cacophonistic flair,” attendees are promised “a wild romp through the future.”

Humanity’s “Bright, Happy [Manmade] Future
Purportedly because of exponential growth of technology, life expectancy, wealth, and education over the last two hundred years, Kurzweil predicts for humanity a bright, happy future.

Cosmic humanists believe that a mass quantum leap (global transformation) will mark a new age of group-conscious enlightenment. This misguided notion is promoted to the public by eco-occultists, illumined progressives, and futurists. To the undiscerning, the right use of energy among intuitive friends united by earth stewardship, sustainability, collectivism, and illumination sounds like the real deal; but it isn’t.

Vice president and senior futurist at the Institute for Alternative Futures, Eric Meade looks to the 22nd century for a “wisdom web” of enlightened overseers who, by means of “virtual” models, formulate visionary goals and, then, realize goals by compassionately placing global citizens in positions that best suit the needs of local- and/or global- communities.

Known in many circles as the hierarchy, wise men (also called the Elder Brothers) presumptuously claim to have evolved to the point of godhood and thereby qualify themselves as guides over less gifted underlings. By design, humanity’s “preferred future” will feature a self-appointed “wisdom web” of mega-managers, empowered under headship of a “free-world supra-national political being” to enforce totalitarian rule over a trans-federal “democratic” dictatorship.[ix] Utopia? I think not.

Yes, remarkable techno-vations greatly enhance modern life but, unless guided by grace, human knowledge is but folly. [x] The young Solomon[xi] understood that reverential regard for God is “the beginning of knowledge.”[xii] Discerning what’s right and, then, responding with good judgment are hallmarks of true knowledge.[xiii] Notwithstanding, upon wresting the reigns from God, strong-minded, progressive futurists are destined to produce a wilderness of “stony waste.”[xiv] Fantasy of a one-world, wanna-be utopia is just that—fantasy subject to “sudden destruction.”[xv]

[i]  In Greek mythology, Gaia or Ge is goddess of the Earth. Worship of Mother Earth is the basis for ancient mystery religions, cosmic humanism, and radical environmentalism, whose proponents see Gaia-Earth as an interconnected, living ecosystem whose delicate nature requires protection of world government.
[ii]  2 Corinthians 4:18—“While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.”
[iii]  Jeremiah 29:11—“For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "… plans to give you hope and a future.”
God unfolds the future, along with hope for it; the future is no invention of humanity. The uture is no ward mapping/  God, however, hnology  and her family. Thank you, one and all, for your many kindnesses.
[iv]  Romans 7:18—“For I know that in me [that is, in my flesh] dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but [how] to perform that which is good I find not.”
[v]  Yes, in order to speak the future into existence, more is required than human will and choice, however, futurists err by omitting God from the equation. In reality, humans are uniquely created with a sense of eternity (Ecclesiastes 3:11). As Creator, God alone acts upon and fulfills that sense of timelessness. He knows the end from the beginning, and only His purposes will stand (Isaiah 46:9-10). Apart from God, humans are powerless (John 15:5). Read more: http://www.gotquestions.org/man-live-without-God.html#ixzz2Yqy1gNCR.
[vi]  #Lecturer Fabienne Goux-Baudiment is associate professor of Foresight and Innovation at the University of Angers (France). Her talk aims at describing the context of the coming century, explaining how it might generate a wildly future-proof mind-set, and identifying tracks that should be cleared to develop a future-plex mind-set for a hyper-complex world.
[vii]  Dr. Ed Boyden, Optogenetics Neuro-engineer and Neuro-scientist at MIT, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x4W1ypBf9us&.
[viii]  Beyond creating “a new mankind” that no longer wastes resources, futurists expect to develop manageable matter and new energy sources. Flying cars and artificial intelligence round out their vision that culminates in transferring an individual’s personality into a more advanced, non-biological carrier. Focusing on nano-, bio-, info-, cognitive-, genetics-, and robotic- technologies, Global Future 2045 neuro-scientists, neuro-engineers, and futurists call upon the U.N. General Assembly to facilitate transition to what’s dubbed “neo-humanity.”
[ix]   Nelson Rockefeller referenced a powerful “free-world supra-national political being” (also, a single, benevolent world “Administrator”) while lecturing at Harvard University in 1962. See also: Nelson Rockefeller, The Future of Federalism (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University, 1964). Scripturally, a latter-day visionary, called Antichrist, will become the greatest dictator the world has ever known. In time, he will demand loyalty, and eventually worship (Revelation 7:14 and 13:7b-8). While opposing Christ, he will pretend to be Christ.
[x]  Proverbs 1:5—“ Let the wise hear and increase in learning, and the one who understands obtain guidance.” Proverbs 1:7—“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction.
[xi]  1 Kings 3:5-12—“At Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon in a dream by night, and God said, ‘Ask what I shall give you.’ And Solomon said, ‘ … Give your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern your people, that I may discern between good and evil…” It pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this. And God said to him, ‘Because you have asked this, and have not asked for yourself long life or riches or the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern what is right, behold, I now do according to your word. Behold, I give you a wise and discerning mind, so that none like you has been before you and none like you shall arise after you.’”
[xii]  Proverbs 1:7—“The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge; Fools despise wisdom and instruction.”
[xiii] — Psalm 119:66 “Teach me good judgment and knowledge, for I believe in your commandments.”
[xiv]  Jeremiah 17:5-6—“This is what the LORD says: ‘Cursed is the one who trusts in man, who draws strength from mere flesh and whose heart turns away from the LORD. For he will be like a bush in the desert and will not see when prosperity comes—but will live in stony wastes in the wilderness, a land of salt without inhabitant.’”
[xv]  1 Thessalonians 5:3—“While they are saying, ‘Peace and safety!’ then destruction will come upon them suddenly like labor pains upon a woman with child; and they will not escape.”

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