I just had a long discussion with my flatmate about whether or not humanity should develop technology to the point where it could potentially destroy the universe, etc. Basically:
- I believe we should keep learning and developing technology
- He believes we shouldn't (with exceptions)
He seemed to think individual learning is good, yet developing technology in order to learn more, like the Hadron Collider, is bad because it could destroy the universe. I asked him what he thinks he would be when he is dead - "nothing, just dust".
He says we're ignorant to want to know what we're made out of, why the universe exists and why we're here just so we can learn more and develop social control. It seems to me that he wishes we wouldn't learn more at the possible cost of our existence; as he's attached to living.
There is a 2 year old in our household, and one day he was playing with the toaster. He turned the knob around, learning how it works. His mother stopped him from playing with it the moment she saw him.
I used this as an example of the need to learn. If he didn't play with the toaster, he wouldn't learn how it works. He would need to learn how to use the toaster to add variety to his daily intake of resources and make his life more interesting.
My flatmate argued that he shouldn't learn these things because then he would become one of the people who control society.
If we were a society that didn't learn, how would we function?