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  • Mirte Gratama

Don't let her bite

As a writer, I increasingly get asked: aren’t you 'effected' by AI? The rise of ChatGPT? A logical question, I understand. But at the same time, I find this question so sad, so disappointing. Usually, I keep the answer short and say that I don't really experience any hindrance from it. Which is true. But I prefer to give a sincere, complete answer and in such moments, I actually like to engage in a conversation. A conversation about AI, about us, we, humans versus this new technology.

This past weekend, there was another article in the newspaper about Artificial Intelligence, AI. As a text writer, content creator, and philosopher (yes, that's what I call myself nowadays, because thinking about life and humanity is my full-time job. Writing is just part-time), I feel the need to read this piece. Since the advent of AI, and even long before that, discussions revolve around the benefits and possibilities AI offers for humans and the world versus its disadvantages and threats. This article is no exception. It's a valid discussion, but in my opinion, it overlooks a deeper essence. And that essence is the essence of humanity.

Before I go on, I want to make clear that I do not belong to the group that thinks everything was better in the past. On the contrary, I am an advocate of change, provided that the change benefits both humans and the world in their most pure and rightful form. And that is precisely the core of the discussion that I believe should be had. How can humanity, with all its unique qualities, natural intelligence, talents, emotions, humor, feelings, and love, truly thrive? And how do we restore the beauty, strength and wisdom of the earth? Do we do that through technologies that go beyond our essence, making humans more passive and further detached from who they really are? Ignoring our unique consciousness as if it doesn't exist and doesn't matter. By bypassing our own power and knowledge, we forget that we carry an unprecedented intelligence within us.

If one feels, observes, thinks deeply, and can surrender to something greater than all of us; nature itself, a change emerges that not only elevates humanity to the highest level but also uplifts the earth and nature in general. In nothing but nature do we find the truth. The sun rising and setting. The moon that makes the seas dance. Bees pollinating flowers. New life growing inside a woman. A tree shedding its leaves, every year anew. A flock of birds descending in a line from Africa to Dutch meadows. A cut in the skin healing itself. A heart beating. A fresh summer morning and a clear starry sky. These are forms of truth that many seem to pay little or no attention to. As if we seem to have forgotten or never truly understood how extraordinary these things are. We appear to have no eyes for them anymore. Instead, we prefer to hang on to the lips of something artificial, bypassing that unique, valuable, and especially very wise nature. But whoever forgets or goes against that, destabilizes the power and wisdom of nature, denies their true self: being human and thus being a part of nature.

No matter what happens, no matter how the development of AI unfolds, no one, not Elon Musk or Larry Page, can change anything about nature. In fact, the more we ignore her power and strength, the greater the chance that she will bite back one day. And then... we will collectively loning for a world where ordinary and simple things matter. A world where we still think about an email we write. Create a piece of text that contains feelings, emotions and passion. A world where our hearts speak and love rules.

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