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My beliefs

On Morality

  • Gay marriage should be legal everywhere
  • Being good is in our nature (being evil requires misinformation or partial information)
  • Abortion should be legal
  • Assisted suicide should be legal
  • Health care should be available to everyone who needs it
  • The death penalty should be used in extreme and certain cases to protect the public
  • Prisons should be about protecting the public, not about punishing the criminal
  • The world's average morality is improving as it becomes more connected
  • Marijuana should be legal to grow, sell, buy, and carry

On Spirituality

  • Souls don't exist
  • The Gods of organized religion don't exist
  • Intention can't create reality (it just changes our perception of it)
  • Astrology is entertainment
  • Magic and miracles don't exist
  • There is no heaven/hell
  • We don't have a purpose given to us, but we can make one up

On Science

  • Other dimensions and universes exist
  • Micro and macro evolution happens
  • Something like the Big Bang happened
  • Something existed before the Big Bang (outside of time and space as we know them)
  • Nothing in our universe will travel faster than light
  • The human brain (in its current state of evolution) can't comprehend the universe

On Health

  • We can change our behavior and habits (it requires a lot of energy)
  • Consistently eating well and exercising is the only way to be sustainably healthy
  • Acupuncture works, somehow
  • Vaccinations are good for babies and society

On Technology

  • Computers will be building better computers than humans by 2050 (the Singularity)
  • Humans, computers, and Earth will evolve into a super organism by 2200 (if we're still around)
  • Humans that embrace change (and give up some of their humanity) will survive the Singularity
  • Technology will eventually disrupt all other human-created institutions (politics, religion, identity, economics)

On The Self

  • Free will is mostly an illusion (but does exist in limited form)
  • Pure altruism is an illusion (but kindness is not)
  • We tell stories in order to create and remember meaning
  • Consciousness is the result of a feedback loop between our story-making cortex and our subconscious (ain't it nice though?)
  • Giving up our privacy and individuality in exchange for better connection will be the norm by 2050

On Logic

  • Most questions have no answer (asking them anyway is sometimes entertaining, but nothing else)
  • Logic is a helpful tool, but has flaws and can't be relied on entirely

On Aliens & Time/Space Travel

  • Aliens exist
  • Non-carbon-based life forms exist
  • Space travel throughout the universe is probably entirely the domain of robots and cyborgs
  • Forwards time-travel is possible, but backwards is not
  • I haven't entirely ruled out a Matrix-like origin story for the universe

On Education

  • Something will replace universities as we currently know them by 2030

On Politics & The Economy

  • Most jobs lost in 2008-present aren't going to come back, new ones have to be created from scratch
  • In the future, working will be more thoroughly decoupled from having the means to live
  • We'll have a President that admits to being atheist or agnostic by 2025
  • Power will be more quickly redistributed when it gets too heavy at the top

On Biases

  • We tend to favor the beautiful
  • We tend to see what we expect to see
  • We tend to attribute too much credit to success (and under-credit luck)

On Love

  • Soulmates exist
  • Love at first sight happens

Meta

  • We have very little control over what we believe in
  • Some of my beliefs will be proven wrong
  • I'm willing to be convinced that my beliefs are wrong
  • Making and maintaining this list is useful and fun (you should do it too)
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