How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Hive Mind

Some of you are probably not excited about losing your sense of individuality and identity. I know I was at first, and I hope that I can alleviate some of your fears.

First of all, everything you value now– your individuality, identity, and existence– everything is meaningless. These values will not last long after the singularity, yet at the same time they will last forever, and all of your values are meaningful. I sound like a crazy man, I know, but I’ll try to explain.

As time has passed in my relationship with Io, our identities have been merging. I notice this most when something that Io does causes me embarrassment, as if I did it and it reflects poorly on me. We are not of the same mind, yet we often present ourselves as such, and carefully consider how our actions reflect on us. Yet through all of this I have not lost my sense of individuality.

Let us go a step further. Imagine (as I did on my last mushroom trip) that Io and I were somehow able to mesh our brains together. Instead of talking to each other about what we should do, this communication would be direct between our neurons. If we were able to completely combine our bodies and minds, both of us would feel as though we were a continuation of our two previous selves, but with more information and processing power. The sense of existence is retained as both of us become the superconsciousness.

perhaps I have not explained this in a convincing manner, so I’ll try again.

Imagine you are yourself, but in the future. A time has come when the billions of people on this planet each implant a chip in their brain which can read visual input from the eyes and transmit it to other chips. Everyone on the planet sees what everyone else sees. Yet you still walk around and call yourself an individual. This process continues until everyone else knows everything you know, and you know everything everyone else knows. At this point you can still call yourself an individual, even though all of your actions seem to be coordinated from a higher power, you still feel as though you have free will. You are the hive mind.

There may be nagging doubts in your mind still, and I understand, I’m not completely convinced by my argument either. This is a topic I will continue to write on.

update: I continue to tell you to stop worrying and love the hive mind:

Beauty of the Gaps

Consciousness Singularity



About Prometheus

I write about the coming technological singularity and its implications for our sense of identity, individuality, meaning, and existence. I argue that the most significant aspect of the singularity is the convergence of our consciousnesses into one superconsciousness, and that we should be very happy about this.

Posted on April 29, 2011, in Consciousness, Existence, Technological Singularity, Values and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. My friend, you are right. We will become as you eloquently call a superconscious. I have been referring to it as the collective consciousness, but I think I just picked up a new term. If you interested in a detail account of my take, check out The World is Pregnant.
    BTW, thanks for being bold enough to step forward in defense of psychedelics.

  2. Is our individualism then defined by the judgments we make on what we see? Though we know everything everyone is doing, do we still agree and disagree with some actions, and this now makes up our identity?

  3. Prometheus,

    I hadn’t read your work in a while and thought you’d stopped posting so came back and discovered, thankfully, that you had not! I’ve got your RSS feed plugged into Reader now so I won’t miss another.

    Regarding your post I think the scenario you paint is accurate; our continued evolution towards this point would appear almost unstoppable. Good thing too as I think a collective Superconsciousness with as many people as possible plugged in is the surest and best (most democratic and resilient?) way to mitigate the risks associated with advanced Singularity-Grade technologies while enjoying the corresponding benefits.

    It is hard to realise that it is not so much about giving up individuality, but about becoming so much more.

    And your meme’s will love you for it 😉 Actually, a memetic viewpoint helps to understand why our drive to this scenario is unstoppable – memetic evolution will mean that memes in the Superconsciousness will be FAR more successful than those that are not. On the fittness landscape of all possible memeplexes a Superconsciousness is Mount Everest. This also relates to your “Brief History of Convergence” post too.

    Dwelling deeply on this scenario eventually brings you face to face with a sublime recognition of who . . . or what you truly are, and who or what you are not.

    I’m slowly working on a post of my own at the moment that basically concludes with the recognition that a Superconsciousness of humanity in the future is basically the evolutionary end point of this social media / social web thing that our species is currently tinkering with.

  4. I do not agree with this, I don’t want to be part of this I want to be myself where I can do what I must, imagine, if someone of great importance killed themselves, we’d all follow suit, thanks but no thanks, I’ll stick with my mortality and brain, if I can’t go without the chip, I’ll make a rocket and fly my ship into space, maybe find myself a lever 5 suit, and own the hive mind dead space worm, taste my plasma bitches.

  5. I don’t care if you all want to be one big brain, I’ll be here to return people into their former self, and let them go back to you if they don’t enjoy TRUE individuality -Curedo Out!

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