Spiritual Programming (OT, but Python-inspired)

Claudio Grondi claudio.grondi at freenet.de
Mon Jan 2 17:00:50 EST 2006

There are many ways of going crazy, but the most valuable of them is 
this one which makes a genius out of an ordinary man.


UrsusMaximus at gmail.com wrote:
> While preparing a Python411 podcast about classes and OOP, my mind
> wondered far afield. I found myself constructing an extended metaphor
> or analogy between the way programs are organized and certain
> philosophical ideas. So, going where my better angels dare not, here is
> the forbidden fruit of my noodling:
> Spiritual Programming:
> It seems to me that, if anything of a person survives death in any way,
> it must do so in some way very different from that way in which we
> exist now.
> For now, we live in a  temporal world, and once our body and brain
> ceases to function, then our mind can no longer function in this
> temporal world, and we cease to exist in this temporal world
> So, our current consciousness and awareness is a temporal one. We
> experience the one way flow of time. We are not actually conscious of
> any permanent thing, only of the changing world as time flows forward.
> In this sense, we are like the ghost in the machine of a computer
> system running a computer program, or programs, written in a procedural
> language and style. That is, the instructions in our program flow in a
> linear sequence, with each instruction impacting and giving way to the
> next instruction. Oh, there are the occasional looping structures, and
> even the occasional out-of-left-field chaos causing go-to; but we
> nevertheless experience all these things as linear and procedural.
> It seems apparent to me that , if anything of us survives it must do so
> outside time, and any surviving consciousness could not experience the
> same sort of temporal, linear, procedural existence of which we are now
> aware. Oh, I can imagine a timeless essence of our "being" existing
> timelessly but statically, observing the remnant of our "informational
> holes" evolving and dissolving away in the temporal universe; but this
> would be a cold survival after all, hardly worthy of the name.
> But perhaps there is a non-temporal world of eternity, that has
> structures more reminiscent of higher order programming structures. So,
> for instance, functional programming takes and builds upon its
> procedural predecessors. So maybe our better, more re-useable parts,
> that we develop in this temporal existence, are recycled into
> functional units in a non-temporal world. There would still be a
> direction of logic flow, but it would be a higher order reality than a
> linear, procedural one.
> But beyond this perhaps we can imagine an object oriented world, one in
> which the more functional, re-useable parts of people and things from
> this lower, temporal world are re-packaged into objects containing both
> functional methods and also parameters of state. These higher order
> objects, and the relationships they form amongst themselves, can be
> imagined to exist in a more timeless state than mere procedural
> programs, or even functional ones, in that the complex object oriented
> structures of such a timeless world would hold meaning even when viewed
> as a whole, and not just when played linearly like a phonograph record.
> There must be some higher order cognate of time, in this object
> oriented world, but we are not able to conceive of it at this time. Our
> awareness of existence in this higher order world would be very
> different than our current awareness of linearly flowing time, but must
> be more in the way of sensing the movements of meaning and
> relationships amongst the informational matrices of this higher order,
> object oriented universe.
> One can visualize a universe in which there are are an infinite number
> of infinite dimensions, but these dimensions also keep expanding at an
> infinite rate forever. This expansion could be thought of as the
> cognate of time. Entities in this world could freely move back and
> forth in any dimension, and could experience the totality of reality
> all at once, but still experience the novelty of "time".
> I do not know how Aspect Oriented Programming fits into this picture,
> if at all. But one can imagine higher orders of programming logic and
> structure than  OOP, whether AOP qualifies or some other, yet
> undescribed programing paradigm.  And, we do not know how many higher
> layers of programming structure exist  beyond our current technical
> understanding.
> Perhaps this is one reason why programmers are so passionate, and even
> religious, about their programming tools; because they intuitively
> sense that we are dealing with ideas that, however crudely, mirror
> eternal realities of immense significance.
> Ron Stephens
> <a href="http://www.awaretek.com/python/index.html">Python411 Podcast
> Series</a>

More information about the Python-list mailing list