People around the world are turning to machines as a new religion.
Some religious organizations, like the Turing Church founded in 2011, are based on the notion that AI will put human beings on a par with God-like aliens by giving them super intelligence.
An expert in human-computer interaction toldthat such individuals who are following AI-powered prophets may believe the tech is ‘alive.’
The personalized, intelligent-seeming responses offered by bots, such as ChatGPT, are also luring people to seek meaning from the technology, Lars Holmquist, a professor of design and innovation at Nottingham Trent University, told.
Holmquist said: ‘The results of generative AI are very open for interpretation, so people can read anything into them.
‘Psychologists have historically proven that humans interpret their interactions with computers like real social relationships. So it’s very possible that people are using AI to find meaning and guidance, much like from religious scriptures, even though there may be no actual meaning there.
‘There have also been examples of people interpreting AI chatbots as being conscious – which they most definitely are not – which raises very interesting theological issues for those who believe humans are a unique creation.’
Robot priest Mindar is six feet four inches tall and has been reciting the Heart Sutra mantra to pilgrims since 2019 at a Buddhist temple in Kyoto, Japan.