7 ways you may seem godlike to an ancient human
We take so much for granted. If we could just flash back to the age where our ancestors were still hunting for survival or building the first blocks of primitive civilizations we would see just how incredibly far have we come. Biologically we are nothing more than just another animal that evolved on this Earth through a complex process of action and reaction. But amazingly, from our own biased perspective at least, this ability to rely on tools (technology) have made our otherwise fragile human selves the most powerful specie on this planet.
However, our big brains have also allowed for a breadth of other interesting features such as this ability to imagine and unfortunately in the process confuse fiction for reality. In order to make sense of what we see we often tend to ascribe to mythical entities that which we cannot otherwise understand. We thus often see God. Of course, the idea is to evolve past such tendencies, and this is one of the visions behind DoublePlusHuman. Meanwhile, however, we can take a jibe at this tendency in order to portray an interesting contrast:
Imagine yourself standing in front of a group of ancient humans in all your technological glory of the early 21st century. They would likely not be able to comprehend what they see and in their struggle to understand they would probably form myths about just who and what you are. Here are a few ways in which you may appear godlike to them.
1. You travel in a shiny chariot moved by the power of a hundred invisible horses
We call them cars, of course, and we find them to be such a basic fact of life. But to an ancient who has barely ever seen a horse carriage yet, imagine what effect might a shiny car rushing in from the night have, just to swoosh besides him at what to him may appear as the lightning speed.
2. You possess a magical gem stone that allows you to communicate to other "gods", predict rain and navigate the entire world.
Or what else might an ancient human think of your iPhone or Palm Pre? A black yet smooth and shiny "gem stone" that lits up at a touch of a finger allowing you to talk to another of your kind. And as you're done talking you touch it with your fingers a few more times and in a particularly peculiar way and then tell the poor jaw dropped ancient that it's gonna rain tomorrow.
And then the rain actually comes, just as you had prophesied.
3. You have instant access to all the knowledge in the world.
Your laptop with a wireless connection provides you access to pretty much all the knowledge of the world. If you could speak the language of an ancient you could literally answer any question he may have for you. All you need to do is look it up with your magical machine.
4. You possess a window to other worlds.
Virtual worlds and visually realistic 3D games give you a window to worlds where anything is possible and which contain scenes that are without a doubt beyond anything the ancient has ever dreamed off. He might think those are the "other worlds" from which you had cometh. In fact, a computer screen alone would probably make him wonder.
5. You can heat food to the boiling point within a minute.
Got hungry? Borrow a steak that the ancient just cut out from a hunted down animal and instead of laboriously starting a fire using stone sparks why not just plug the microwave into a solar generator you brought with yourself and have the steak cooked up within a minute! It's magic!
6. You can make images quickly appear on blank canvas.
I might not have put this here if it wasn't for an experience I personally had with my own grandfather, who lived a low tech life in a relatively low tech place and probably never saw a printer in action before. His expressions were glowing with amazement as I turned a picture from the screen into a picture on paper. My grandfather is not what you'd call an ancient, but if it had impressed him that much imagine what an ancient would feel?
7. You can capture their senses with awe inspiring light and sounds.
Fire up your subwoofers and bring out the lasers! This one is perhaps the best of all because of its incredible power to overwhelm all human senses. Audiovisual stimuli in form of music and light shows might just blow your ancient off his feet.. and throw into some kind of a shock, if he already wasn't there.
You are a human that comes from a civilization that can do this:
The question is, if you put an audience of ancient humans in that arena would they still be standing by the end of that whole ordeal? Or would they be kneeling.
But all of this is still pretty conservative. The seven points above are about things that most human individuals today can posses and which are already normal and widespread. Human beings have been to the depths of the ocean, conquered the sky and breached into space. They have also approached creating organic life itself thanks to the rapidly emerging field of genomics and are dangerously close to perpetual life extension.
This begs the question, what exactly is left for the domain of God after we have repeatedly proven to ourselves that what we have previously ascribed to him is now perfectly understandable and within grasp to us, the mere morals, only humans. God is dieing and we are killing it, and replacing it with better ideas, albeit there is a rather large population of people who will still cringe at what I just uttered.
Compared to ancient humans you already are a DoublePlusHuman, but compared to what we could be, we are still pretty weak. Let's keep evolving, and ditch the self-repressive illusions.