Re: Zen and the Singularity

From: Damien Broderick (
Date: Sun Jun 30 2002 - 21:07:22 MDT

At 10:41 PM 6/30/02 -0400, Eliezer wrote:

>The original question I asked was whether a Friendly AI, if a given
>religion were true, would be able to jump to that despite being
>programmed by atheists.

One question raised in the thread, however, was whether a *Catholic* could
consider it possible for an AI to affirm, via reasoning, the truth of
Catholicism. I repeat my earlier point about Thomist philosophy, which is
still the basis of Catholic doctrine. Scholastic theology teaches that God
*can* be known through natural means, although not perfectly (that, of
course, requires the divine gift of grace [which will not be withheld,
however], and the guidance of scripture). Since the AI has both ample
reason and complete access to scripture, it should be able (according to
Thomas) to reason its way to Jesus as the Son of God. It might not,
admittedly, attain salvation through baptism of faith, but arguably that's
a private matter better left to a machine and its god.

Damien Broderick

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