Big picture choices. Deception and Temptation. (19 Sept 23)
I’ve been looking at Genesis after Session 1 as part of the course. My personal mindful approach has got me comparing apples with apples as I read Genesis Chapter 3.
In 1991 Steve Jobs, of Apple fame, said our tools separate us from primates. Library of Congress. He knew the Condor moved more efficiently than people. The Condor was on the top of the efficiency list and above people, the crown of creation. (cf. Gen 1:28) Scientific American checked a person’s movement efficiency on a bike. Humans became supreme, and far more efficient than the Condor.
The Apple guru described the computer as the most wonderful tool, a bicycle for our minds.
I loved my bike. Fully connecting. Physically and emotionally engaged. Personal effort directly rewarded. Life in the outdoors is great. With time to observe it. Want an easier life?
What about a car, a computer, a self-driving car? Is the serpent still deceiving us? Can we get more skill, pleasure, knowledge and understanding without any effort! If so, do we get the same reward?
Working to gain Roadcraft is hard. It’s too tempting to pass the basic tests, to just drive and ride, even if unsafe. Do you like listening to a favourite instrument? You can learn to play it. With technology you can easily hear it played by someone or something else, whenever or wherever you chose. How much do you love the instrument? Creativity and the human connection can be lost without learning.
To use a computer, you must discover it has its own logic, operating system, approach, and requirements. A computer adds different work to the tasks they are supposed to assist. Choose to use and you’ll have disconnected alternative work to do. Software to learn and update. Devices to repeatedly purchase. Charged in many ways.
We need to slow down and be more aware. Christian mindfulness.
Self-driving cars? They may end up preventing people from being able and allowed to drive for themselves. Are we giving up too much of ourselves? For what? For whom?
The computer as a bicycle for the mind. Does this tempting metaphor hide the fuller more negative impact to persuade rather than inform choice. The snake told Eve, “Did God really say…” (Genesis 3:3) Knowing more can be good, but it may come at unimaginable cost. (Genesis 3:24) What is the full truth in action?
There is loss of humanity and identity with Deep Learning for Artificial Intelligence. There is good to be had too.
Good tools equip and enable a person rather than diminish or replace them. Self-checkout, Tickets by phone, Online shopping… People must remain greater than machines, and not subjugated by them. Are we being deceived and persuaded to sin. The, “You’ll be able to” temptation, should be met with, “what will I loose and have to do instead…?”
We are all tempted by sin daily. Even the Police behind their thin blue line.
Tempted by money? “No-one can serve two masters. Either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and Money.” Matthew 6:24 (NIV UK)
Money is referred to as Mammon by Jesus and this word is maintained in the Greek. Money provides quick fixes and power, but is Mammon controlling us? Love and Mammon can get quite mixed up. We should not lose our freedom or place as God’s children Royal. (cf. Matthew 17:24-27 and Genesis 3:23)
An apple a day keeps what away? We should consider the full picture of scripture and the range of different outcomes, when we choose what to consume in our consumer society.
Don’t get me wrong. I have a variety of tech, including an Apple MacBook. It’s great! Technology is a fantastic tool to be used by humans, but devices (irrespective of brand) can disconnect us and take over our humanity. “The Life We’re Looking For” is an excellent book. I’ve found it helps, “reclaim relationship in a technological world.”
Computers are useful tools, but they can’t love you back. Even my bike nearly finished me off in the wrong context. We must consider the big picture and choose wisely, to sustain relationship and faithful connection with God.
Want something good to eat?
Try a Markan sandwich!
(Intercalations, Interpolations, Insertions)