2017 Conference Registration Now Open

Registration is now open for this year's annual conference. This year's keynote speakers are Drs. Steven Peck, author of Evolving Faith, and Robin Hanson, author of Age of Em.

The first 20 first-time registrants to sign up will win a signed copy of our keynote speaker, Dr. Steven Peck's book, Evolving Faith.

This year's theme is "Evolving Gods." From its earliest beginnings, humanity has looked beyond itself, seeing in various deities its characteristics embodied to a superlative degree. Human conceptions of the divine have undergone dramatic shifts, from polytheistic contention for dominance between tribal deities, to notions of a god more powerful than all these, and eventually to the consigning of these tribal deities to oblivion as monotheism became predominant. Early Christians, Eastern Orthodox, and subsequent restorationist movements, like Mormonism, emphasized human divine potential through the process of theosis, deification, or divinization. Eastern religions taught the possibility of achieving unity with the divine community of enlightened beings.

In our present era of rapidly accelerating technological advancement, we are achieving tremendous improvements in physical and mental health, rejuvenation, and communal well-being. We are seeing declines in violence and suffering that bring us closer to the just society envisioned by many religions. At the same time, many traditional religions are in decline, while fundamentalist and secularist movements gain momentum. We also face numerous existential risks, including environmental degradation, technological obsolescence and political upheaval.

This theme raises questions about how our conception of the divine and of morality has changed over time and how it continues to change in our transhuman age; about the function of religion and the new shapes it is taking; and about how we humans should approach our increasingly godlike powers, and what kinds of gods we will choose to resemble, for good or ill.

Interested speakers, be sure to submit your papers before the end of this month. See our call for papers for more details.

Ben Blair to serve as Chief Special Projects Officer

The Mormon Transhumanist Association is pleased to announce Ben Blair has been selected to serve as Chief Special Projects Officer by Blaire Ostler, CEO of the Association. He was unanimously approved by the board of directors under the direction of Christopher Bradford, President of the Association.

Blaire Ostler has said, “I have complete confidence in Ben’s ability to head up our Special Projects Division. I am eager to see Ben’s extensive qualifications and expertise in action. His talents and abilities are a great asset to the Association and we’re glad to have him on board!”

The Association congratulates Ben, and thanks him for his willingness to contribute his time and talents to the success of the Association. Below is additional information about him. 

Ben is a co-founder of Teachur. He holds MA and PhD degrees in Philosophy and Education from Teachers College, Columbia University, and has spent several years teaching courses in foundations of education at the college and graduate level. He spent much of the last 20 years evaluating, developing, and aligning curriculum across a range of disciplines, including five years as Director of specialized curriculum with K12.com, a leading provider of online education. Ben resides in Oakland, CA with his wife and 6 kids.

March for Science

March for Science is an effort comprised of dozens of independent, nonpartisan coordinators. Recent rhetoric has inspired them organize marches on Washington D.C. and in Satellite Marches across the country. It's mission statement is as follows:

The March For Science champions public funded and publicly communicated science as a pillar of human freedom and prosperity. We unite as a diverse, non-partisan group to call for science that upholds the common good, and for political leaders and policymakers to enact evidence-based policies in the public interest.

The Mormon Transhumanist Affirmation states the following:

We believe that scientific knowledge and technological power are among the means ordained of God to enable such exaltation, including realization of diverse prophetic visions of transfiguration, immortality, resurrection, renewal of this world, and the discovery and creation of worlds without end. We feel a duty to use science and technology according to wisdom and inspiration, to identify and prepare for risks and responsibilities associated with future advances, and to persuade others to do likewise. 

Much of the stated goals of March for Science and the Mormon Transhumanist Association are in harmony. Whatever one's political persuasion, we hope that you may find ways to support science and its role in society both secular and religious.

More information about March for Science can be found on their website or Facebook page.

More information about the Mormon Transhumanist association can likewise be found on our website or Facebook page.


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