The Decline of Society is mainly due to Technology

Rob Banks

Pelican
Technology is an amoral tool, same as guns. In the hands of a moral people technology is used morally.
So it is mere coincidence that the fall of Western society to modern ideas (starting with the "Enlightenment" and leading all the way up to the 1960s cultural revolutions, and even present-day "progress") happened at the same time as the Industrial Revolution and subsequent advancement of technology?

p.s. I just discovered that this thread contains some old posts of mine. Did not read over them. I'm not sure if I still agrer with them or not. But this is a topic I have been more intetested in lately.
 

Viktor Zeegelaar

Ostrich
Orthodox Inquirer
My biggest concern with technology is the amount of choices it creates. As everything ''progresses'' there have to be more and more choices. Not 3 types of cars, 300. Not 3 tv's, 300. Not 4 types of Nike shirts, 40. This shatters the mind, keeps us in confusion, distraction and makes us constantly be distracted from the things that really matter, such as community, God, family. I strongly believe this ''choice agenda'' is a deliberate crucial puzzle piece in the agenda to destroy the soul.
 

Edek

Robin
Orthodox Catechumen
Technology is an amoral tool, same as guns. In the hands of a moral people technology is used morally.
I don't agree with that oft repeated, but rarely examined notion, as I outlined here.
https://www.rooshvforum.com/threads/how-to-live-a-simple-life.40616/post-1525721

A major theme in The Lord of the Rings is how people are changed by the tool of the one ring. Think of the devastation wrought on rural communities during the late Industrial revolution when farming machines came on the scene. Poof! Millions of men with no choice but to seek work in the city. Morality is not abstract, it is mostly in relation to others. When communities collapse and stable ties are broken, morality must be affected. Technology changes whole societies.

Following on from that, there is a vital distinction between a tool, like a hammer, which is an extension of a craftsman's body and skill, and a machine, which can execute the will of people who may lack the ability to make whatever the machine is making, giving them powers beyond what mere men are capable of. Power corrupts.

As for a chemical like the pill, it fundamentally changes the nature of being a woman. There is nothing neutral about its effect, if it is used - that is the only choice.
 

Sherman

Ostrich
Kacyznski’s thesis is that technology needs to be dismantled for us to survive. An atomic bomb could also be viewed as a tool. However, if atomic bombs are allowed to exist, they will eventually be used. So the only path to survival is to eliminate them. Kacyznski provides historical evidence that proves that the elite rulers have never been able to control even simple societies, and thus cannot control technology (even though they arrogantly believe that they can control it). Kacyznski’s thesis is not new but was clearly layed out in the Bible in the Tower of Babel story. The arrogant elite rulers believed they could control technology and do what they willed on earth in contradiction of nature, but God had a different opinion.
 
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Elipe

Pelican
So it is mere coincidence that the fall of Western society to modern ideas (starting with the "Enlightenment" and leading all the way up to the 1960s cultural revolutions, and even present-day "progress") happened at the same time as the Industrial Revolution and subsequent advancement of technology?
Not entirely. Technology increases material abundance, so it is not surprising that in an increasingly materialistic society without controls in place, "Enlightenment" values began developing.

A major theme in The Lord of the Rings is how people are changed by the tool of the one ring.
And yet, it was a simple Hobbit who wore the ring to use its power against the forces of evil and ultimately defeat that evil. It took the ring falling into the hands of a Hobbit to defeat the dark lord who could never have been defeated before that.

If you reject technology, your enemy will not hesitate to embrace it to crush you. You're putting yourself at a massive disadvantage. You can outlaw the pill while still using 3D printers, airplanes, and laser-etched eyeglasses. The key isn't to reject technology, it is to master technology, meaning that rather than letting technology master us (soy-faced IFLS types are mastered by it), we put controls on it. We make it work for us, not us for it.

Since Pharisees used the sabbath as a justification to refuse to help people in need and to abuse people, shall we consider the sabbath bad? No. As Jesus Himself said: the sabbath was made for man, not man for the sabbath.
 

Rob Banks

Pelican
Not entirely. Technology increases material abundance, so it is not surprising that in an increasingly materialistic society without controls in place, "Enlightenment" values began developing.
OK, but there has never been an example of a technologically-advanced society with the "proper controls in place" (other than maybe Nazi Germany, and I doubt that you would want to live in a society like that).

Technology tends towards efficiency.

Even if you did want to live in a society like Nazi Germany, it was eventually conquered by Liberalism because Liberalism (of which capitalism is a part) allows for better efficiency.
 

Blade Runner

Ostrich
Orthodox
As for a chemical like the pill, it fundamentally changes the nature of being a woman. There is nothing neutral about its effect, if it is used - that is the only choice.
This is an irrefutable argument, as medical innovation can absolutely be placed in the technology category. Well done.
 

Edek

Robin
Orthodox Catechumen
And yet, it was a simple Hobbit who wore the ring to use its power against the forces of evil and ultimately defeat that evil. It took the ring falling into the hands of a Hobbit to defeat the dark lord who could never have been defeated before that.
Eeehh, not so fast...


If you reject technology, your enemy will not hesitate to embrace it to crush you. You're putting yourself at a massive disadvantage. You can outlaw the pill while still using 3D printers, airplanes, and laser-etched eyeglasses. The key isn't to reject technology, it is to master technology, meaning that rather than letting technology master us (soy-faced IFLS types are mastered by it), we put controls on it. We make it work for us, not us for it.
And in doing so, we must be changed. A person with glasses doesn't need someone to help them. A person with airplanes doesn't need to walk long distances, and has options to travel around the world (changing previously isolated places in the process) that didn't even exist before: temptations that didn't exist before. A world with 3D printers everywhere is a world where no one needs to learn carpentry, or a hundred other skills. And so on.

My argument isn't for or against the use of this or that technology. I am rejecting the notion that technology is neutral and that we humans are in sole charge of its effect on us. We are not masters of our own bodies and minds, never mind the effect of technology on the social fabric of our world.
 
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Blade Runner

Ostrich
Orthodox
Indeed, it is an endless debate. I consider the topics of technology and "demons being allowed" to influence us in the world to be pretty much the same thing. We need to strive and suffer through testing and develop perseverance, repentance, and hope. Ultimately, we can talk all we want about how convoluted all these realities are, but the point remains we have to recognize our frailties and ask God for help and guidance. That is all. As I have said before, the good thing is, we know how the story ends. But we have to choose that ending for ourselves, and not be deceived.
 

Enoch

Hummingbird
This is an irrefutable argument, as medical innovation can absolutely be placed in the technology category. Well done.
Immoral people create technology that has immortal purposes. There was never any ambiguity about the pill. Its only purpose was to limit human reproduction. The internet has an ambiguous purpose, for example. Can be used to spread truth or child porn. It all comes back to the morality of the people. Technology cannot be understand outside of the people who create it.
 

Edek

Robin
Orthodox Catechumen
Immoral people create technology that has immoral purposes. There was never any ambiguity about the pill. Its only purpose was to limit human reproduction. The internet has an ambiguous purpose, for example. Can be used to spread truth or child porn. It all comes back to the morality of the people. Technology cannot be understand outside of the people who create it.
Forgive me, but I was replying to this statement of yours:

"Technology is an amoral tool, same as guns. In the hands of a moral people technology is used morally."

I think you have reversed your premise there.

Regarding the internet, even if I agreed that it was not intended to spread prawnography (I don't btw) from the start, the fact is that it is that way now, and it is that way because of people with no connection to people at home who use it i.e. there is no "the people" singular there. Practically every young boy and girl with internet access will be exposed to it, even with helicopter parents trying to prevent it. Even if they have no internet access at home, their friends do.
 
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Enoch

Hummingbird
Forgive me, but I was replying to this statement of yours:

"Technology is an amoral tool, same as guns. In the hands of a moral people technology is used morally."

I think you have reversed your premise there.
Technology is not sentient. It cannot be good or evil. Evil people can create "technology" that has no moral upside. Moral people will reject this technology and choose to avoid it.
 

Edek

Robin
Orthodox Catechumen
Technology is not sentient. It cannot be good or evil. Evil people can create "technology" that has no moral upside. Moral people will reject this technology and choose to avoid it.
That is a non sequitur to my argument here. Art, books, carpentry tools, the weather, and the food we eat are not sentient, but they have a profound effect on us beyond our control, which is my argument.
 

El Draque

Kingfisher
Orthodox
Technology is not sentient. It cannot be good or evil. Evil people can create "technology" that has no moral upside. Moral people will reject this technology and choose to avoid it.

Whether you choose to use a tech or not, does not alter the effect it will have on wider society.

I remember back in my years chasing women, i would regularly complain how SmartPhones & Tinder had ruined bars & nightclubs as a means of meeting the opposite sex. For years i never used either, but the effects were clear, and the dynamic that existed in these environments up until around 2012, was long gone.

Watching sport is another example. Going to a concert. Having an argument in a pub even. If you're not careful you can end up being discreetly filmed and end up on YouTube.

I believe more than anything SmartPhones have stifled wider society. People have blandified their daily interractions. Years back in the nineties, i remember working in a market. The conversations we used to have with the other staff, and customers seem to be very distinct to what i see now. People were self-entertaining, messing around was standard, people would also have long and drawn out conversations going down all kinds of rabbit holes.

Now, that same environment would be full of people looking at phones behind their stalls.
 

Blade Runner

Ostrich
Orthodox
Immoral people create technology that has immortal purposes. There was never any ambiguity about the pill. Its only purpose was to limit human reproduction. The internet has an ambiguous purpose, for example. Can be used to spread truth or child porn. It all comes back to the morality of the people. Technology cannot be understand outside of the people who create it.
Tech, or organizational structures, political schemes/ideas, are largely inspired by demons - precisely because they know we can't handle it and it is mostly chaos producing (in the long run). I'm not taking agency away from people, but even God told us "it is impossible that offenses should not come to pass, but woe to him through whom they come". That means the world is something different than we would like it to be, in ways we can't control, at least on a population level.
 

Blade Runner

Ostrich
Orthodox
Technology is not sentient. It cannot be good or evil. Evil people can create "technology" that has no moral upside. Moral people will reject this technology and choose to avoid it.
You're missing his point. If you flood my everyday existence with scantily clad women, beer commercials, 1/2 pound burgers, etc it doesn't matter how moral I am, I am not going to "avoid it" 100% of the time. It's like saying, if you just try hard enough, or if you had "faith" you won't sin. LOL, it fundamentally misunderstands man's broken nature that needs to be repaired - especially in large populations where some people aren't raised with faith of any kind!

Ethics and morality are situational. Abraham asked God about the "innocents" in Sodom and Gomorrah for a reason. Likewise, God told Jonah why he wouldn't destroy Nineveh, even though Jonah thought otherwise.
 

Elipe

Pelican
OK, but there has never been an example of a technologically-advanced society with the "proper controls in place" (other than maybe Nazi Germany, and I doubt that you would want to live in a society like that).
How about a church? Society is fractal, the difference is scale. Scale up the church and you have your model. Even RVF serves as an example of a technologically-advanced society with proper controls. We're Christians and we're using computers and the internet to talk about God, Christ, and things of that nature. We're not exchanging naughty pics like so many other communities on the internet do. Are we sinning by using RVF?

And in doing so, we must be changed. A person with glasses doesn't need someone to help them. A person with airplanes doesn't need to walk long distances, and has options to travel around the world (changing previously isolated places in the process) that didn't even exist before: temptations that didn't exist before. A world with 3D printers everywhere is a world where no one needs to learn carpentry, or a hundred other skills. And so on.

My argument isn't for or against the use of this or that technology. I am rejecting the notion that technology is neutral and that we humans are in sole charge of its effect on us. We are not masters of our own bodies and minds, never mind the effect of technology on the social fabric of our world.
A person with glasses still sits in a church and listens to a sermon. A person who flies using an airplane lands in another country and there goes to church on Sunday and listens to a sermon. And again, we on the internet go on RVF and discuss things without enticing each other into temptation. A world with 3D printers everywhere is still a world with carpenters in much the same way that a world with digital art still has traditional art done by paintbrushes and paint.

My argument is that technology, despite having the ability to impact us, can be constrained in ways that honor the Lord. You already do this on a personal level. Scale it up to an institutional or infrastructural level.

That is a non sequitur to my argument here. Art, books, carpentry tools, the weather, and the food we eat are not sentient, but they have a profound effect on us beyond our control, which is my argument.
Yes, things change. Get over it. Adapt or die.

Tech, or organizational structures, political schemes/ideas, are largely inspired by demons - precisely because they know we can't handle it and it is mostly chaos producing (in the long run). I'm not taking agency away from people, but even God told us "it is impossible that offenses should not come to pass, but woe to him through whom they come". That means the world is something different than we would like it to be, in ways we can't control, at least on a population level.
Everything is influenced by demons. That's just a consequence of living in a world they're allowed to roam. Doesn't mean there can't be counter-influence. And true, you can't control everybody. That's also true of (((them))).

You're missing his point. If you flood my everyday existence with scantily clad women, beer commercials, 1/2 pound burgers, etc it doesn't matter how moral I am, I am not going to "avoid it" 100% of the time. It's like saying, if you just try hard enough, or if you had "faith" you won't sin. LOL, it fundamentally misunderstands man's broken nature that needs to be repaired - especially in large populations where some people aren't raised with faith of any kind!
The problem with technology isn't technology, it's like you said - human nature. And maybe we solve these problems by forcing women to wear hijabs, ban alcohol, and engineer a forced famine to stop people from eating, but then you've got other problems. And you will just keep going around and around in circles.

Human history is just humans going around in a circle trying to "fix" the symptoms of that which is not fixable by human effort. Technology is the same thing. There is nothing new under the sun.
 

Edek

Robin
Orthodox Catechumen
Yes, things change. Get over it. Adapt or die.
Rather, the choices are "adapt and die", or "don't adapt, and die".

There is no "or" when it comes to death (not talking about the afterlife here). That said, you are agreeing with my point: when technological changes affect the whole society, people are left with little good choice but to change as well, for better or for worse.

I don't disagree with anything else you said, it just isn't replying to my point: technology is not amoral, inert and something we ultimately control in terms of its effect on us, which was @Enoch 's point, at least at first. Technology profoundly affects human nature and societies, as does many other things.
 
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