Sacred Tension: Satanic Transhumanism with Peter Clarke

In this episode of Sacred Tension, I speak with transhumanist author Peter Clark about Satanism, scientific religion, artificial intelligence, the future of humanity, and much more. You can find Peter Clarke here.

You can read his article on the character of Satan here.

And his article on Satanic transhumanism here.

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2 thoughts on “Sacred Tension: Satanic Transhumanism with Peter Clarke

  1. I find it interesting that Peter Clarke attacks Christianity first, as if this is his main grief. That seems to be the basis for his whole support of transhumanism.

    First he comes from the standpoint that Christians believe the Bible is inerrant. Granted, there are many Christians who believe this, but many theologians and scholars do not hold his viewpoint at all. As such, he tries to knock down the Bible from a pedestal that it wasn’t even ever upon: being the word of God.

    So, he gets the creation story wrong. Satan never appears in the creation story. It is the serpent. Many people equate the serpent with Satan, however this was never the original meaning.

    What is perhaps most distressing is that he believes the answer to life is longevity. It seems to me that he is focusing on the quantity of life, not the quality of life. I think he tries to rectify that misconception, but doesn’t do a very good job of doing so.

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    1. I think you make some really interesting observations. Let me take them one by one:

      – I suppose it’s possible that attacking Christianity is his primary motivation for transhumanism. The possibility didn’t occur to me, because I tend to avoid ascribing motivation unless it is obvious to me. I was, however, somewhat startled by his adamant attack on Christianity.

      – I agree with you that he had a very Americanized view of Christianity and the Bible. I’m of two minds on this: it is frustrating when I see atheists and Christians alike not putting Christianity and the Bible within their full contexts. At the same time, it is true that the most powerful, damaging, and widespread manifestations of Christianity in America today tend to see the Bible as the word of God, and I think that’s worth attacking. In that way, I think that the Bible is on a pedestal to many Christians in the US, and it should be knocked down. So while I’m frustrated with the lack of context, I also understand the cultural realities that drive people to fixate on that particular brand of Christianity.

      – I’m more ambivalent about the snake issue. It is important to acknowledge that the snake was not originally intended to be Satan, which I do in my articles, but it is also true that culturally and mythologically the snake has come to be representative of Satan, which is why Satanism takes the snake as an icon. As a Satanist, I’m more concerned with the myth and interpretation of myth rather than what was intended.

      – I don’t think I agree with your final critique. Near the end, he makes really clear that every technological advance fails to make us happy, and that what does make us happy is interpersonal connection and rich relationships. He said he’s pretty pessimistic about how these technologies will improve lives.

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