Bruno Marchal wrote:
> Hi Stathis,
>> What you haven't really addressed in this post is the PR implications 
>> if you use the
>> word "theology" prominently in your writing. You will alienate many 
>> scientists and
>> academic philosophers even though this may be due to prejudice or 
>> misunderstanding,
>> and you will alienate what extra audience may be attracted by that 
>> word when they
>> realise that you are talking about machine consciousness and... maths 
>> and stuff. I
>> know that the temptation for an intellectual (if you don't mind the 
>> term) is to let the
>> ideas stand unadorned and be judged purely on their merit, but 
>> sometimes even in
>> academia the better marketed ideas can push other, perhaps more worthy 
>> ones aside.
> You may be right, but I am not convinced. I don't know how to explain 
> to you why I am not convinced. I guess it is partly related to more 
> personal-academical stuff ...
> Are you sure the problem is the word "theology"? Or should I drop the 
> whole "Plotinus" ...
> Scientist of the type "capable of being alienated by words" have been 
> already alienated by expression like "consciousness", "mind", 
> "teleportation", etc. Even just the term "quantum" or "Godel" is enough 
> to alienate some mathematicians (even logician!) in some circle.
> The current and provisory title of the paper which should present my 
> work is
> "A purely arithmetical, yet empirically testable, interpretation of 
> Plotinus' theory of Matter".
> But I am not yet decided, and ... what do you think?  I know I could 
> write something like "the consequence of computationalism" ...., or 
> "Does comp entails a reversal ...".
> Anyway, thanks for your comments.
> Bruno

In a way my advice would be almost the opposite of Stathis'es.  If you're 
selling a book, getting religion into the title is a good move.  I think you're 
misusing "theology" by holding to an archaic meaning - but if you call your 
book, "Theology of the Machine" or "Cyber Theology" it will help it sell and 
you can immediately establish that you are using "theology" in an 
unconventional, tongue-in-cheek sense.

Brent Meeker

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