Part 8 – what will be the new epic of our generation?

Oleg Matveychev:  In any case, the epos, saga or poem became a real religion of the Greeks, something that unified Hellas. In our world, it should not be a Hollywood epic screened everywhere, but a game, with interaction; a game about resistance to “the others”. Something is attacking the Earth, and we, earthlings of all religions, all tribes and peoples inside this game, fight off the attacks, do heroic feats, compete with each other in heroism and ingenuity and finally achieve victory which should not come easily, but instead through retreats and small defeats, when sometimes it was all hanging by a thread and so the game really touches the lives of people and the stakes are high.

Worldwide unifying ideology should be created originally on the level of imagination. This problem has existed since the times of Kant, who in the first issue of his Critique of Pure Reason arrived at the conclusion that two sources of knowledge that had been described by philosophers for thousands of years, namely that mind and sensations are not self-sustained and are founded in one’s imagination. Plainly speaking, it’s our imagination that dictates to us what we see, hear, smell, what we consider a perceived fact and what we don’t notice. And it’s our imagination that dictates how we reason, what causes we are looking for and which connections and arguments we build. Kant himself was surprised at this discovery, and in the second edition of Critique of Pure Reason he stepped back from it. However, we are not that timid!

The human brain is more complex than the universe. The number of possible connections between neurons is greater than the amount of matter in the universe. Every one of us carries more in their skull than the entire Cosmos! There are explosions, birth of supernovae and nebulas. Besides, what we see as Cosmos is past, because its light takes millions of years to reach the Earth. But what we have in our heads is future. The imagination surpasses the speed of light, and everything flows differently there, you are already where you wanted to be and even earlier than you realized you wanted to be there. The effect creates cause, and to be more exact, these two terms don’t even exist there, they belong to reason as Kant already understood, and simply package orders of imagination, process them and draw a certain discourse.

However, this is a separate matter and we are not talking about it now. The task is to work on the level of imagination, shift some layers, impress.

We need images, but not like in “Star Wars”, “Pirates of the Caribbean”, “Lord of the Rings”, “Avatar” and “Harry Potter”. All these blockbusters certainly awaken your imagination, they are the children’s fairy tales that billions of children on the planet are being raised with and these kids are already similar in some ways; they have common background. And a very certain ideological matrix is sewn into these blockbusters. I am not going to analyse which one right now, although the matter is worthy of attention of all philosophers, because it’s formatting the brain of billions of children and adults on the Earth.

But as I said, cinema is not going to do it. We need something interactive, some flash mob, participation in which creates a common worldwide identity. Not uniformity, but identity in a sense of involvement in a common goal. Not a fight of North and South, East and West; the whole world needs to fight with something extra-terrestrial. It may be a virus. And then as in the Camus novel The Plague, we all fight. Maybe a computer virus. Maybe aliens. But they need to be made so they make real damage and not just run around like demons on the drawn up levels.

Maybe it won’t be fighting. Maybe it will be a positive project, like Fedorov has it, “Philosophy of the common goals,” “Resurrection”. But it shouldn’t be done as a book; it needs interactivity. For example, task everyone with saving the maximum amount of genetic material or something, the main thing is to operationalize it, so it’s not just some scientists in labs working on longevity and resurrection, but it’s everyone who has a chance to participate, so people see their life duty in it, pleasure, drive and purpose.

If we are speaking about the game, it may even end in failure; humanity can even lose. The main thing that we win in a real situation, because the Greeks lost the Trojan War, and later won it in poems, then won a real war against the Persians. But that was a war between the East and the West. We need that it would be a war of earthlings against non-earthlings. We remember how the Kalmykian Buddhists united with Muslim Tatars and Christian Russians against Hitler. There needs to be a common enemy that is carrying a death threat to humanity. No more, no less; and not just a particular death from something. The best way is when humanity is fighting with the enemy; death itself. Death is the main enemy, the main enemy of all humanity and every person, irrespective of their religion and language. And the battle with this enemy is not a negative thing, it’s a positive project; to become immortal! What can be more absolute than such an ideology?

Anatoly Belyakov: But religious people may not go for that. Kind of “Kingdom of God on Earth instead of Heaven”, human pride; the attempt to become God and make decisions about one’s own death.

О.М: There was already a discussion about that, with Fedorov and later. Writers Gorsky and Setnitsky wrote a book “Smertoboznichestvo” (death-godliness), where they were proving that Fedorov does not contradict Christianity, but on the contrary. It is said “God did not create death”. And later Christ defeated it too.

A.B: Ok, let’s imagine everyone becomes immortal and then it turns out that if someone is bored with living he will have to commit a suicide and people will be doomed to do that since science can prolong anything indefinitely. To stop the extension of one’s life means to decide to commit suicide and that decision is the great sin in all religions, just like pride.

О.М: First, the desire to die from boredom and weariness is a melancholy that was appropriate for the preceding history, and here the person can try out different roles for hundreds of years, and also there is an opportunity to live a life that will never be boring, such as scientific pursuit, or even better, a philosophical pursuit. There is also one more alternative; a war, a real war, where all despaired can fight and kill each other instead of committing suicide. In this sense immortality can give (these people who have no will to live) a chance to become heroes and not victims of suicide. Generally, I don’t think our descendants will be more stupid than us, they will figure it out.