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Lucas Benjamin @aznbokchoy

Good and Evil

How do we know if we are acting on the right side? There certainly seems to be two sides right? The history of laws and revolutions show us the difference between good and evil exists. Reinforced ideas of good and evil in our society creates a desire to make the right choices. Why does one go to war, but the belief it is a good choice?

Other individuals are totally appalled by the idea of intentionally committing an act of violence. So very quickly, we see a clear line between good and evil gets complicated. Shortly, I talk about rethinking the concept of karma, and how this may help our ability to choose the right action over the wrong. …


The truest vehicle to knowing love is the heart.

We know there is a part of ourselves who can discern different things about another person to determine if they love us (or us them). We can review past things that have been said or done to find evidence of love. But, only the heart can tell you that you know they love you (or you them). The simple distinction between a mind’s deduction and the grace of the heart should resonate with most people.

The difference between a mind’s judgement and a heart’s knowledge is the difference between love and the idea of love. The heart is an important aspect of ourselves to tap into. Being able to feel, use, or listen to our heart takes work. …


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Can any good come from discussing mental health online?

I believe so.

When it comes anonymity online, we are used to hearing about its negative consequences. There are stories of cyberbullies, predators, and criminal hackers. Obviously, these components of complexity to the internet are imperfect and damaging. People can be led down negative emotional paths due to their technological ecosystems. Many of these issues could be resolved simply from spending less time online. So, what’s the catch.

I believe there is a lot more good, positive people and interactions within our internet’s ecosystem than bad.

Obviously, this differs from the common narrative we hear. Negative stories make better news. However, everyday interactions of online users helping and communicating with each other goes unnoticed. If we redirect the spotlight, we can continue to build reciprocal networks that are beneficial. …


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Photo by Julia Vinci on Unsplash

Does art made by computers have the same aesthetic value as that of a human artist? Is a robot even capable of portraying the creativity or intelligence needed to create great works of art? At first pass these questions seem nonsensical, and probably unimportant. Yet, the continued evolution and integration of technologies like artificial intelligence and robotics draw our attention to the relationship of art, beauty, and technology.

As humans we have a hard time judging the value of artificial intelligence. It is hard to separate what features of the AI are directly related to its code versus knowledge the system has learned over time. For most of Artificial Intelligence’s existence the Turing Test has been looked to measure a machine’s intelligence. A program passes the Turing Test if it is able to trick a human into thinking it is actually a person. While this feat is impressive, some researchers believe this test is inadequate. A program can pass the Turing Test by mimicking basic language skills, rather than using genuine intelligence to converse meaningfully. …


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The idea of humans cohabiting with robots really seems to rub most people the wrong way. A common scenario causing this fear is that artificial intelligence will become so great, it will take over the world and either control us or kill our species. Whether we will be able to develop conscious robots or superior AI, at the current moment is a fundamental unknown. However, we can reflect on what our projected fear towards robots is saying about our current culture and the western worldview in general. …


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This weekend I gained a totally new insight into art therapy, and how it is so much more than a mindfulness practice. For a long time I thought art, when used as a “therapy”, was primarily helpful because it channeled our focus away from our thoughts. Therefore, I typically grouped the practice alongside things like meditation. Instead, what I discovered, and what I will talk about more in this post is about the therapeutic expressiveness of art. I also will share my ideas on how the future of technology ties into all of this.

Before I touch on the more nuanced aspects of art therapy, I would like to share my recent experience painting. This past weekend a friend and I had plans to go to concert Saturday night. We decided to paint during the day before we headed over to the show. However, we became some immersed in the creative process we ended up never leaving for the show. …


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The Subconscious Mind

Your subconscious mind is a fertile garden which bears the fruit of the seeds YOU plant in it. What does this mean? All the thoughts, conversations, and media we consume is taken into our subconscious mind. We know we are what we eat, well we are too what we think!

What’s unique about the subconscious mind is it takes in anything you give it. While the conscious mind can think critically and reject thoughts, the subconscious mind just processes what it is fed. The other important aspect to note is that the subconscious mind can’t differentiate between what is real and what imaginary. There are countless studies which show imagining an activity stimulates similar responses as physically performing it.


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While many of us are aware that facial recognition technologies are in development, not as many of us are aware of who is actually using them. This is because the modern surveillance landscape is still being defined. We can think of a number of applications for facial recognition software that could make our lives better off. One of the most unique examples I have come across is an app by Listerine, yes the mouthwash company. Listerine’s app is able to provide feedback to blind individuals by vibrating a smartwatch in order to let them know if someone is smiling at them. Applications like this can obviously improve our daily lives. …


The idea of humans cohabiting with robots really seems to rub most people the wrong way. A common scenario causing this fear is that artificial intelligence will become so great, it will take over the world and either control us or kill our species. Whether we will be able to develop conscious robots or superior AI, at the current moment is a fundamental unknown. However, we can reflect on what our projected fear towards robots is saying about our current culture and the western worldview in general. …


Image for post
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This weekend I gained a totally new insight into art therapy, and how it is so much more than a mindfulness practice. For a long time I thought art, when used as a “therapy”, was primarily helpful because it channeled our focus away from our thoughts. Therefore, I typically grouped the practice alongside things like meditation. Instead, what I discovered, and what I will talk about more in this post is about the therapeutic expressiveness of art. I also will share my ideas on how the future of technology ties into all of this.

Before I touch on the more nuanced aspects of art therapy, I would like to share my recent experience painting. This past weekend a friend and I had plans to go to concert Saturday night. We decided to paint during the day before we headed over to the show. However, we became some immersed in the creative process we ended up never leaving for the show. …

About

Creighton Pyles

Writer | Optimist | Philosopher | Emerging Tech

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