Why We Should Create Artificial Offspring: Meaning and the Collective Afterlife

Science and Engineering Ethics 24 (4):1097-1118 (2018)
Download Edit this record How to cite View on PhilPapers
This article argues that the creation of artificial offspring could make our lives more meaningful. By ‘artificial offspring’ I mean beings that we construct, with a mix of human and non-human-like qualities. Robotic artificial intelligences are paradigmatic examples of the form. There are two reasons for thinking that the creation of such beings could make our lives more meaningful and valuable. The first is that the existence of a collective afterlife—i.e. a set of human-like lives that continue after we die—is likely to be an important source and sustainer of meaning in our present lives. The second is that the creation of artificial offspring provides a plausible and potentially better pathway to a collective afterlife than the traditional biological pathway. Both of these arguments are defended from a variety of objections and misunderstandings.
PhilPapers/Archive ID
Revision history
Archival date: 2017-06-06
View upload history
References found in this work BETA
Death and the Afterlife.Scheffler, Samuel
Running Risks Morally.Weatherson, Brian

View all 25 references / Add more references

Citations of this work BETA

Add more citations

Added to PP index

Total views
931 ( #2,297 of 42,375 )

Recent downloads (6 months)
156 ( #2,596 of 42,375 )

How can I increase my downloads?

Downloads since first upload
This graph includes both downloads from PhilArchive and clicks to external links.