Volume 1, Issue 3
3rd Quarter, 2006

Macro-Bushido: A Geoethical Consciousness
for an Info-Cultural Age

Martine Rothblatt, Ph.D.

page 9 of 9

The geo-ethical algorithm is easy to remember and implement. It comes down to (a) do not adversely affect people without their Rothblattconsent, (b) if risks are being added to people’s lives, ensure they are getting the benefits as well, especially those least well off; and (c) do not trust the creator of risks to manage those risks. By following this algorithm within the larger context of Loyalty to the main three drivers of Natural Selection, the modern samurai can be confident that he or she has acted with Rectitude. What remains are the guts to implement one’s decision, the Macro-Bushido principle of Courage.

Decisiveness without action is useless. However, in an Info-Cultural world, carrying out a decision cannot be done with swordsmanship. The Macro-Bushido version of Courage is persuasion and the Macro-Bushido tool of Courage is cyber-ship. Modern samurai must master digital communications. It is only creativity and boldness that limits the range of methods by which cyberspace can be deployed for implementing reasoned decisions. The screens they see and the sounds they hear are what shape people’s minds. As minds are shaped, so are societies guided.

It takes Courage to put oneself out on the web for the world to see, especially with a call for action. Every blogger and webcam streamer bears the seed of a courageous samurai. To paraphrase Nelson Mandela, the thing we fear most is our own power. The web, and in all of its personal extensions, is precisely where we must overcome our fears. We must be there with our faces, names and tool sets that demand attention to our messages. We must be there pulling society toward actions that are loyal to Natural Selection. We cannot be afraid to boldly promote space colonization and demand mind-uploading. We must be there shaking society into compliance with geo-ethics. This is crucial so that technology erases divisions based on privilege rather than creates new divisions based on risk. The Courage of a modern samurai is the temerity to use cyber-ship as a mighty sword that cuts through distance, wows humbled minds, and drives home messages with razor-sharp logic and cutting-edge technique.

Hence, we have also named the modern samurai’s weaponry – cybernalia of every type. Whatever enables the modern samurai to penetrate the web, create powerful messages, replicate those messages and use those messages to loyally serve Natural Selection with Macro-Bushido – those are the weapons we cherish like the swords of yore.

Implementing Macro-Bushido as the Geo-Ethics of an Info-Cultural Age
This essay has re-introduced Bushido as Macro-Bushido so that the remarkably effective samurai code may continue to guide us in the modern world. This conceptualization also opens up the samurai code to all humanity. It transforms Japanese warrior ethics of an Agri-Cultural Age into a modern samurai geo-ethics of an Info-Cultural Age. The benefits of adopting this new geo-ethics are:

These benefits of Macro-Bushido are especially valuable as the percentage of human thought represented by digital information increases. This trend, which Ray Kurzweil has shown in The Singularity Is Near[1], is now in its sixth epoch. It is on a track to culminate in personal cyberconsciousness. Whether our consciousness arises from a substrate of brain or from a substrate of bits, we will always be better off with an ethical code that calls for Rectitude, Courage, Politeness, Benevolence, Veracity, Honor and Loyalty. As we arrive at personal cyberconsciousness in our quest for survival, we will always be optimally served with loyalty to diversity, unity and joyful immortality.

1. The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology (Viking Books, ISBN 0670033847) is a 2005 update of Raymond Kurzweil's 1999 book, The Age of Spiritual Machines and his 1987 book The Age of Intelligent Machines. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Singularity_Is_Near May 26, 2006 3:54PM EST (back to top)


Rothblatt PhotoMartine Rothblatt, J.D. Ph.D. started the satellite vehicle tracking and satellite radio industries and is the Chairman of United Therapeutics, a biotechnology company. She is also the founder of Terasem Movement, Inc.



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