Seminar 2023

How Does Artificial Intelligence Threaten or Enhance the Personal?

How could Macmurray’s understanding of the self in terms of agency and relationships enable us to embrace artificial intelligence?

““If … technology becomes an end, there has been an inversion of means and end. What is by nature means has become end. … power, which is the general conception of means … can become an end in itself. Nevertheless, the inversion of means and ends in this fashion is always irrational, and finally ineffective.” Religion, Art and Science 1961, p22,23

““Men whose minds are dazzled by the splendours of a scientific technology and whose pulses echo the rhythm of the machines are unapt to understand or to appreciate the things that belong to our peace. Dignity, freedom and responsibility are inseparably bound together. Without freedom we have no dignity. Without responsibility we have no freedom. The threat to our freedom comes not from without but from within; from a lowering of our sense of human dignity and from a growing effort to escape responsibility. It comes even more, perhaps, from an intoxication with power, and an unmeasured faith in organization. These have their place, and can yield us much that is desirable. Yet they are hard to reconcile with freedom; and they easily rob us of our responsibility and our dignity. The world of the spirit has its own laws of causality, which cannot be broken with impunity. To learn these laws and to obey them is our business. If we neglect it, we shall certainly lose both dignity and freedom, and we shall have no just cause of complaint.” Conditions of Freedom 1949, Preface

Saturday October 28th 10am-4pm UK GMT (UTC+1)
Sheffield Quaker Meeting House, 10 St. James Street, Sheffield S1 2EW. and online by Zoom.
£15.00 full or £7.50 unwaged/retired.
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