[ExI] The meaning of life (in transhumanism)

BillK pharos at gmail.com
Mon Feb 17 23:33:39 UTC 2014

On Mon, Feb 17, 2014 at 11:14 PM, Anders Sandberg wrote:
> A while ago I started working on an essay called "the meaning of life in
> transhumanism", but quite soon I got distracted (Oh! Shiny!) and it
> languished. Then I got an offer to turn it into a book chapter, and it is
> now up and running. However, while much of it is standard scholarship
> (Nikolai Fedorov's cosmism and its links to Tipler and FHI-style big
> futures) I think it would be sensible to actually ask you in the community
> for your views of what the "meaning of life is".
> Some ground rules: Yes, it is not clear that the question even makes sense.
> Do your best. See http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/life-meaning/ for a lot
> of takes on what might be going on (including a pretty cool use of uploading
> as a counterargument to soul-centred views). I am interested in meanings
> that actually relate to transhumanism: either as an idea that motivates you
> to want to enhance yourselves or hope humanity does get enhanced, or as an
> explanation of why all of this enhancement actually is moving things along
> in the right direction, or maybe the meaning of life as the right
> direction(s) to enhance ourselves along.

It changes as you age. The meaning of life for a twenty year old is
not the same as for a seventy year old.
Similarly if you are a 30 year old with a young family, the meaning of
life changes again.

If life extension is successful and everyone stabilizes in a permanent
healthy 30 year old body for centuries, then a rethink of the meaning
of life might be in order.

What gets you out of bed every day might reduce to simple curiosity.
What's up, doc?


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