You may or may not have heard of Jason Silva.
However his thoughts and videos are going viral on Facebook and YouTube.
Jason Silva describes himself as a philosopher, futurist and to Nat Geo, a filmmaker. He’s the guy behind the show “Brain Games”, currently available on Netflix, as well as the recently released 8-part series, “Origins”, discussing the origins of a number of things. However, one thing that sets Silva apart for many of his philosopher contemporaries is his description of himself as a futurist and transhumanist.
What the hell is a transhumanist, you might be asking? Well transhumanists are a sect of philosophers who are part of a “movement that aims to transform the human condition by developing and making widely available sophisticated technologies to greatly enhance human intellectual, physical and psychological capacities” per Wikipedia’s definition.
If you ask Silva himself, he would tell you that “transhumanism is all about harnessing technology to overcome the limitations of humanity.”
Paraphrasing Silva, “Transhumanists support the creation of technology that transfers your consciousness into an immortal coil like software being run on better hardware”.
iPhone, therefore I am
In a very interesting yet provocative quote, Silva states, “iPhone, therefore I am” implying that technology is an intrinsic part of ourselves.
As soon as humankind started making stone tools, the wheels were set in motion for our species to develop more and more with time and the world around us to create what we have to today as well as who we are today.
Silva states, “So you might say that who we are is due to the feedback loops between us and our tools, to the degree that our tools become extended appendages, even though they are not without our biological skin tissue, they are nonetheless part of our cognitive arsenal”.
The pinnacle of humanness
In Silva’s, and most other transhumanists’ minds, the idea of computers and technology becoming so sophisticated as to merge with that of humankind is not viewed as a threat but as an achievement. Silva references another futurist, Ray Kurzweil, who, in a very long quote I will shorten, basically says that it’s only the beginning for our ability to create cognitive scaffolding that was sufficient to usher in technology. We’ve spilled out of our minds. This is our triumph. This is what it means to be human.