My name is Tyoma. I am writing this at the beginning of the 21st century, pressing the keys on my keyboard. If you don’t know the word keyboard, then you are not from the 21st century and can look it up in what we used to call dictionary; if you are reading this, you are most likely a historian, anyway.
Allow me a couple of words about the origins of this piece. As so many boys in the 20th century, I loved to read sci fi; space travel, scientific wonders, your nightmare monsters and time machines around every corner. But I quickly realized that almost all authors, from geniuses to mediocrities, who have always made up a vast majority, use the genre of science fiction to escape in their narrative the burden of the fundamental laws, those of nature and society alike. If you don’t like gravitation, get yourself anti-gravity bags; if the censor, editorial policy or the required political correctness would not let you talk about the existing social problems, then send you characters ten or twenty centuries in the future to the other end of the galaxy. Women are looking for melodrama, boys for adventure, opponents of an oppressive government for something between the lines, literary critics for style. The best novels and stories appeal to readers from very different circles, but most of them are meant for a specific audience.
Towards the end of high school, when the natural sciences became my obvious choice, I realized to my own surprise that sci fi was getting less interesting, and sometimes downright boring. At some point I figured out that this is happening because sci fi is not at all sci. The events from the future described in the novels and stories cannot happen in the future, because they can never happen at all as they contradict to the fundamental laws of nature. Those readers who do not see scientific knowledge as instrumental for the development of human society will probably pay more attention to the quality of paper on which the story is published than to its being unscientific, but to me all these phantasies are no more acceptable that minor chords in the Ode to Joy for a conductor.
How many sci fi novels can you recall, where the author had courage not to use any wonders? As soon as you see the word "starship", which is led by a dashing captain to the nearby, not particularly inhabited and still empty planetary systems, it is a fairy tale. Starships cannot exist, because even the hypothetically best fuel – matter/antimatter, which is hundreds of times more effective than thermonuke, will not let a starship develop the speed required to travel to the nearest stars and back in one human life. It was calculated in the 1950s by one American scientist, and immediately forgotten by the general audience as a nuisance. The miraculous lithium crystals which move Starship Enterprise back and force across the galaxy are exactly as preposterous as minus 1 degree on the absolute temperature scale. For the time machine, see above. Various thrillers with alien monsters are hypothetically possible, but the monsters would unlikely bother about such trifle as humans, if they took pains to spend hundreds, or rather thousands of years one way to get to the Earth and have it conquered. Enough said, I guess.
The elements of future predicting or sci fi are often used in literature, but the authors and their readers rarely pay much attention to them. To me personally, the best sci fi novel is "Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea". Although Jules Verne was fantasizing non-stop, his phantasies were based on scientific discoveries already known in his times, and the novel does not contain any glaring absurdities, despite the explosive scientific development of the 20th century. Of the more modern books, I would like to mention the little known "Fiasco" by Stanislaw Lem, where he is pondering over the problems of potential communication with alien civilizations, staying within the limits imposed by the laws of nature. But the book, whose form (not spirit) appeals to me most, is the five hundred year old "The City of the Sun" by Tommaso Campanella.
This piece is neither a review of scientific development at the beginning of the 21st century, nor a compilation of amusing sci fi ideas from various sources. I will also not be bothering about looking up proper quotes: all thoughts collected below are not mine, unless they have never been published elsewhere so far. The main selection criterion is not how amusing or unexpected the idea is, but its importance and probable relation to the history of humanity. I absolutely refuse to predict future (this is fantasy). Instead, I will try to extrapolate fundamental modern tendencies until the rather visible end of the human civilization. My forecast is based on two philosophical axioms:
I also refuse to talk about the time any of the stages might last, but only give the qualitative analysis of how far the progress or regress can go in a particular direction.
Let us travel into the most realistic future.
Stem cell research will develop into the industry of effective, on-going repair of human body. Few people will need an extra leg instead of an amputated one, and the progeny are likely to have no problems with heart and kidneys. Rather, regeneration of the body and incredible level of immunity will be perfect enough to let an individual live six or nine hundred years with the body of a thirty year old. The only body part that cannot be extensively repaired, let alone exchanged, in the human brain, and not because it is fundamentally impossible, but because an "overhaul" would produce a different brain, and subsequently, a different person. The humanity will have to re-define the concept of human death, so that the world does not get overpopulated by senile, thousand year old men with the bodies of Greek statues.
Genetic research and practical intrusion into human genome will become routine. Young parents will be trying to deliver their yet unbegotten children from potential maladies, to the extent it will be allowed by the genetic code, the body of laws on what and under which circumstances can be changed in the future person. Practical genetics will remain part of medicine, but the genetically modified fetuses will be subject to mandatory monitoring. In case of significant deviation of fetus development from the norm, the mother will have to terminate the pregnancy. Humans would not want to produce either degenerate or superhuman monsters, and the right to life would be given to such people only upon their birth.
The society will not be allowed to pressure those parents who want to produce their children naturally, without manipulating genome, into terminating an imperfect pregnancy. Their fetus will have human rights upon conception, to perpetuate the human race and let mentally and physically healthy people have traditional families.
Although the humanity will no longer face any technical restrictions on producing children of two men or two women, cloning individuals or producing children of more than two parents, these violations will be severely punished. Perhaps, exile for life of all participants and assistants to a remote island in the Pacific deprived of any blessings of civilization would be the most humane treatment.
Full and exhaustive description of human brain activity will make it possible to create a functioning (perhaps, electronic) model of a specific living person, indistinguishable in its behavior and reactions to the environment from the original, an electronic clone of sorts. Although a clone would have precisely the same consciousness and feelings as its human original, it does not have the right to live, unless the cloned person decides, upon proper checks and procedures, to die and keep existing in the electronic form. I will get back to it later.
Explosive development of informatics at the end of the 20th century will eventually result in further merging of humans and their computers. First, the computers will get into the human ear and will be operated by the body language and voice. Then they will learn to project visual information directly onto the eye ground without additional glasses and will be operated by movement of pupils alone. At the next stage, the computers will learn to make permanent and perfect scans of the respective brain areas and interpret them. This will put the humans into constant, silent dialogue with a computer, which actually reads thoughts of its master and reacts accordingly. The only thing left is to embed the computer somewhere into the human body, somewhere on the nape below the brain, or over the lungs. It will also consist of the left and right hemispheres, somewhat specialized in their functionalities, but able to take control over the situation, if the other hemisphere gets "sick", and feed on the same glucose and oxygen as the other parts of human bodies.
Contrary to the normal Homo Sapiens, who is, obviously, not telepathic, a person with a thought reading computer will be able to address through it, over a kind of global WiFi connected to all other computers in the world, another person and read their thoughts, if the other party accepts the call. As fantastic as this world may sound, telepathic connection among all people will affect the human progress no more than the invention of the telegraph in the XIX century. After this text has been written, I stumbled onto the article "Practical futurology: we will become honest cyborgs" (sorry, I am not sure it is available in English), which fully agrees with my assumptions, which is the best proof of a certain degree of objectivity.
At the beginning of the XXI century, it is already quite possible to ask your computer about anything at all at any hour. Ever more information is found not on the websites created by (not quite always) communication professionals, but on forums, blogs and social networks. The goal of the search, to find the most relevant materials upon request of each particular user, consists of three interrelated areas:
Communication with other people, studies, work and entertainment will merge into a larger whole taking up most of one’s day. You could call it paradise on Earth, if the electronic reality could be "printed" in the form of palpable objects, which is, obviously, impossible, as there will always have been one real Nefertiti, however many wildly realistic virtual copies might be produced.
An embedded computer comes handy not only to search information and communicate telepathically, but also to register exactly and in all detail everything a person sees, hears, feels, and their thoughts about it. Essentially, instead of using their own memory, people will be relying on electronic media, both embedded into the human body, and external ones available through a high availability personal channel. The chance to relive the most important episodes of one’s life in all details will let people analyze themselves to the extent beyond our reach.
The communication will mostly turn into exchange of one’s recollections and thoughts, both those that took place moments ago and those from the early childhood, just like chat ICQ. Quite naturally, not everybody will want to share all thoughts and details of a certain period; people will keep filtering their communication channels to be better understood by the interlocutor, and also to protect their confidentiality. Filtering causes distortions, which can be called either lie or art, depending upon the way you see it, which is what Oscar Wilde talked about in The Decay of Lying. Significant writers of the future will also we painters and filmmakers, and will be creating their works based on the lives of their friends and their own ones, who chose to share their memories, interwoven with fictitious characters and episodes directly in their brain. Then all you need is to define the target audience, starting from one person and up to the whole world, and the new piece is ready for googling.
The modern industrial development of the society as understood by the Americans, i.e. work more to buy more new things, will definitely not last too long. A balanced person does not generally need plenty of things. People are rather trying to demonstrate their high social status, and plenty of money in the bank first need to be converted into furs and watches. Once social interaction moves into the social networks, the importance of the external tangible attributes will dwindle; people are chatting with each other because they are in some way interested, and not because someone has got a big house in an upscale area.
Another, more appealing aspect of owning a thing is the deep feeling of having something unique, which is so familiar to collectors. The exposition may be displaying a perfect copy, while the original will be kept in an undisclosed place; such collecting does not require industrial development, though, but rather its opposite.
Misuse of the environment will have to be stopped with the energy saving technologies bringing energy consumption close to zero. Humans should not be nostalgic about the industrial era; nor do they need agriculture on the huge areas it currently claims. People will eventually be provided with healthy, tasty and naturally digestible food without retreating to the genetically modified products with their unpredictable effects, and such food will be synthetic. Scientific research, which will become the main area of human progress, requiring high energy consumption will be moved to the space, where the problem of global warming does not exist.
Even though everything will become available "on the screen", i.e. in the virtual world, people will never stop travelling physically. Short distances, up to ten miles or so, they will be happy to cover by foot. For the lazy ones, there will be motorized seven-league boots for fast walking on forest trails.
For long distance travel and delivery of whatever little might need to be transported, there will be an extended network of individual mini wagons, something like pneumatic mail that used to be popular in the mid-XX century. Capsuled wagons will be flying through a perfect vacuum tunnel, pushed away from the walls by electromagnets on superconductors. The speed of such capsules might easily reach the first cosmic velocity, so that several minutes of zero gravity may become a standard entertainment for a 20 minute travel from New York to London 500 feet below the sea level.
Other modes of transportation will eventually die out, modern highways will be demolished and given back to forest animals, skies will be returned to birds, and rivers to fish.
When they choose to get out into the natural environment, people will rely on their own physical strength kayaking on the rivers, sailing the seas or flying among the mountain eagles. In a sense, this life will be deeply natural, but at the same time quite modern and protected. When my mother calls me home for dinner, I have to leave my kayak at the nearest subway station disguised as a hollow tree, and get home. After dinner, when my mother has got her share of plain human attention, I can get back to my white water, being sure that the rescue robot will pull me out of the water within a minute, if I overestimate my ability. As the virtual reality is getting more and more real, the reality is becoming more virtual.
For effective travel to the space and back, a Tower of Babel will be built somewhere around Kilimanjaro, an artificial mountain of high strength materials, going through the atmosphere up to the wind free level of some 20 miles. Engineering progress will at some point produce a material hundreds or thousands of times more durable than graphene, which will make possible the hard to imagine bridge from the top of the tower to the geostationary satellite. Aerial lift from the Earth to the sky would take some time, but consume virtually no energy and be environmentally friendly, in a way like a ski lift.
I will get back to star travel later on.
Democratic forms of government have been known to the humanity at all historical stages. It is widely agreed that democracy is, perhaps, the most effective political system known so far, but it is equally widely forgotten that most successful democracies were not absolute, but subject to a system of qualifications. The Greek democracy never applied to slaves and women, and at most times imposed land ownership requirements. Judging by these standards, South Africa was a democracy at all times. The conspicuously democratic Switzerland only granted women voting rights at the federal level in 1971, with the last of its cantons granting local voting rights to women in 1990. The Constitution of the United States is the cornerstone of the modern democracy, but it counts slaves as 3/5 of a free person and does not count Indians at all (Article I, Section 2), which is how far the democracy got by 1787. In our times, the democratic process in the US is basically run by political consultancies, gerrymandering, a tricky mix of realistic and unrealistic promises dispensed to the voters increasingly intimidated by the global events, and highly professional brainwashing. Democracy in the US still exists, but it is limited to a rather narrow circle of people who can afford to affect the mass media. Taking this system to the absurd extreme, one might wish to argue that the Soviet Union also was a democracy, because all important decisions were taken by a dozen of Politburo members in an open (democratic?) voting, and the rest simply did not qualify to vote.
Here is another example illustrating that a formal solution to an important problem cannot necessarily be achieved by counting votes of the interested individuals. Let us consider a small village located on both sides of a busy road. Since there is only one school in the village, the residents demand that their children be provided safe environment, as so far they have been crossing the road between the cars. Their demand is most definitely legitimate.
Except for the children, who will certainly not be consulted on any issues, although they may in some ways be smarter than their parents, there are three interested parties:
A compromise that would in some way satisfy everybody does not exist. A large referendum including all the interested voters will result in maintaining status quo. The referendum of the most interested party, the village residents, will pass a decision to start the construction, but nothing will happen, as the village residents cannot pay even for a streetlight.
The answer to this problem is weighted voting; each parent has 100 votes, other village residents – 30 votes each, car drivers – 5 votes each, and the district residents – 1 vote each. The law should state, which events trigger a weighted referendum, and what weight is attributable to various categories. The election law (district constitution) shall also be passed by a referendum and be sufficiently stable.
The higher is the weight of the participant in resolving an issue, the higher is the responsibility they might have to assume, regardless of whether or not they took part in the voting. If the decision on the underground passing turns out positive, the residents of the village should be ready to postpone the overdue plumbing repair, and the kids will not get their new gym, as the budget truly has its limits.
Nearly all important issues do not benefit the majority, but serve the interests of an interested minority. To pull the desired decision through, people have invented the art of rhetoric, appealing to higher values and other, for the most part, quite shameless demagogy, as well as the more plainly appealing bribes, kickbacks and other criminal stuff. There is nothing wrong about passing a decision that benefits a minority, if the minority agrees to compensate the main losses of the majority. If the majority in principle does not lose anything, regardless of the chosen solution, then it simply does not take part in solving of that particular issue, according to the well-known principle of self-government.
I apologize for repeating the basics, but they are required for a clear description of the further political tendencies, as I see them.
For decisions to be effective, they must be passed by interested individuals; the more one is affected by the consequences of the decision, the more votes one must be granted. In the future, people will be increasingly resolving issues not at the level of formal state bureaucracy or corporate rules, but at the level of various social groups, well or not so well defined. In addition to searching or posting information on the net, people will have an equally inherent right to put up issues and vote on the issues put up by other people. Weight of the vote is controlled by the rules of each community, and based on importance of that issue for the voter, as well as on the voter’s adequacy, experience and intelligence previously shown in similar voting. It is possible that even on the scale of multimillion groups the influence of several specific individuals will be so high that they will be passing a decision contrary to the opinion of the weakly qualified, but popular opposition. This is only acceptable provided there are stable voting rules, where the algorithm of weight calculation does not depend upon the specific interests of the "ruling class".
The society will tend to avoid having representatives released from the normal everyday life, whose profession is decision making, and will rather prefer to deal with normal individuals for whom reading mail and news is as important as voting on someone’s issues. It is also likely that executives implementing the voting results will be dispensable. The head of the board of parents, who pulled the bridge construction through, will have to be prepared to oversee the construction for free, and the parents will have to render countless free services. The traditional system of balances, separation of powers into legislative, executive and court, with the power of media and capital added in the XIX century, will be transformed into caucus, where the volume of each voice does not depend on the lungs of its owner, but changes from one voting to the other.
Transfer of an increasing portion of the decisions from the state back to the individual will, quite naturally, weaken the state, reduce the centralized power and cause global decentralization. A weak state will spend less of the public resources, to a lesser extent take part in their ineffective redistribution, as well as have fewer ways to protect its citizens. The measures of disciplinary, administrative and criminal restraining will shift within competence of a social group, religious sect, immigrant ghetto, glitterati etc. The deeper one is involved in the life of a certain circle, the more one can lose for violation of written or unwritten rules, right? People owe their birth to their parents alone, which is why there should be no other institutes but family claiming restrictions on one’s freedom without one’s free choice.
Despite an incredible potential variety of social structures, the category that will remain vitally important is the actual place of residence, a geographically stratified society. While at this time the humanists around the world dream of melting pots, integration, friendship among people of different cultures and other expensive illusions, the weaker governments of the future will be dealing with much more specific, down-to-earth issues, i.e. how to ensure mutual safety and tolerance, when individuals holding different views meat on the neutral territory that belongs to "nobody" and is still controlled by the old fashioned government. As this is being written, such experiment is being tested in Belgium; the Fleming and Walloon are negotiating the mutually acceptable principles of co-existence in Brussels.
Although separation of the world into relatively small enclaves looks wild and totally inacceptable for the modern cosmopolitan world, it is the way of life most traditional and inherent to the humans. 99% of people lived this way and thought themselves happy. Until the Renaissance, it had not even occurred to anybody that life can be different. The country, whose political system changed least since the Middle Ages, is also the most successful economy of the world, and it is Switzerland. The Swiss recipe is perfectly well known to the whole world: zero outward expansion, the most direct democracy, virtually impossible immigration (except for spouses and highly qualified specialists), general tendency to quiet, successful life.
Although we have never lived in Switzerland, we know that the Swiss cantons can exist beyond its borders. For four years, we had been inadvertent residents of Alpine, NJ. We could never become full community members, but whatever little we saw through the fences of our neighbors impressed us. Everybody knows about Monaco, but also in France and Italy there is a decent number of rich villages, which prefer to keep low profile. Not in the immediate proximity to, but close enough to the palaces there are modernized huts, where people live by very different laws. The only thing both communities wish is to forget about each other as deeply as possible, and they fiercely protect their boundaries from the outsiders.
It is a very sad thought that the gap between the poor and the rich will only be getting larger. The world will never give up money, and there will always be someone willing to take a champagne bath, when a couple of thousand miles away some poor souls are picking their last crumbs and preparing to die, because they cannot pay for a bottle of medicine.
Already in the second quarter of the XXI century, the first world will ultimately ban immigration on humanitarian grounds, and crossing the EU border will become as difficult as getting through the Berlin wall. By the middle of the XXI century countries will revive the British practice of the XVIII and XIX centuries, when instead of imprisonment criminals will be getting a ticket, this time to an airplane, to some exotic country, depending upon the wishes and solvency of the of the criminal, upon paying the imposed fine, of course. If the crime is serious, the ticket will be one way without the right to return, which was also part of that practice.
Humanitarian organizations will not disappear even with such humanitarian regress. There will always be those feeling it is their mission to go to the jungle and teach kids to read, and the doctors saving thousands of people from some new malady. The first world will welcome these activities, because there are able people in all societies, and enthusiasts of the humanitarian cause will actually serve as casting agents choosing the most talented ones for immigration to the first world, where they will get into the standard and functional system supporting upward mobility. No wonder the teachers and doctors will need protection from the local bigots, because a smart illiterate kid next door is much more useful than the same kid doing financial analysis on Wall Street. In a sense, the First World will actually become a melting pot for able people, but it will be ruthlessly sending down the drain all those who do not naturally fit the alloy.
Global tolerance and weak traditional institutions will result in existence of communities that we would find hard to accept at this point. How would you like a Land of Alcoholics, where vodka is the main and, therefore, free product? Or Cokeland, where everyone is on coke? Those who cannot afford to live in Cokeland can settle for the affordable land of synthetic drugs. The country of sexual maniacs, where every male feels compelled to rape any unfamiliar female? And around the corner something more similar to Taliban. The gamers would deserve their own continent, where they play to death catch-me-if-you-can in their 9D Avatar costumes. Then there is bound to be a Gomorrah, where thieves feel safe. No so long ago I was forced to digest the fact that even quite enlightened residents of Moscow admit, already now, that they would be rather relieved if a large portion of the city population was simply deported beyond the city limits, even if they hold the Russian citizenship, and I am afraid I would be unpleasantly unsurprised if the residents of South Africa decided at some point in the future that apartheid was generally useful to their society. Human fantasies, perversions and discoveries have no limits.
Each geographically segregated community, country or commonwealth will impose a certain form of border control. Since the information on all people will already have been collected into the central database, the procedure of obtaining an entry visa will take a split second, and will pretty much look like entering a sliding door of a supermarket. If the door does not open, step aside and read on the bullet proof display why. By entering the territory, you fully subject yourself to the local laws, attitudes and traditions; when at Rome, do as the Romans do. Libert?, ?galit? and fraternit? will require abolition of diplomatic exemptions.
Humanism of each of the societies can be measured by how freely an individual can get to its exit door. It would not occur to someone rich that his neighbors might prohibit him to have a drink in the town, if that is his fancy. Marginal societies, such as beggars, also will not insist that its members conduct their business solely on their home territory. It is the normal people, the middle class of the future that will turn out to be least humane. To survive as a competitive society, it will impose various checks on those who are sufficiently strong to move upwards and sideways. The declaration of human rights will be treated as a XX century curiosity.
As already said above, an embedded computer, undestroyable memory of everything an individual saw, immediate access to unlimited information already collected into databases, telepathy, effective bodily immortality and all that stuff will change the way of life a lot. The new type of people created with technologies can be called a new human race. By far not all people will want to become cyborgs, some of them will want to stay, say, Europeans, or whatever they might be called by that time. Mixed marriages between cyborgs and humans will be rare, but not impossible. Just imagine, your IQ is over 10,000, you have mastered all the sciences, you telepathically feel the moods of the whole world, but you are absolutely unable to predict the next step of the woman you love, as she simply does not have an embedded computer. I would go nuts.
Although the complexity of human brain as a computer is limited, something like the complexity of Google as of 2010, and it can be technically transferred into electronic format, the further development of two brains, even under the influence of exactly the same external events, will differ. In its essence, biological brain is an analog device, and it gets older differently from the digital and extremely reliable electronics. For an electronic copy of the brain to imitate the behavior of the original in all details, it must not only model the human thinking process, but also exactly predict arbitrary mistakes of that process caused, for example, by death of separate neurons as the result of a falling into a ditch upon immoderate alcohol consumption. This is a truly complicated, but solvable problem, even though it requires many years of constant interaction between the biological and electronic brains, preferably, one’s whole life.
Upon getting a sufficient amount of signals that their main, biological brain is wearing off, one can switch to their developed electronic brain and burry their human body. For continued functioning in this world, they can get various body models, from a cute seahorse to a giant, and change them according to their mood. The only thing the cyborgs will ask from their brothers who moved onto the astral plane is not to go as people or animals people normally interact with, otherwise the folk tales will turn into a real Monsters, Inc. Besides, these bodiless spirits will have to be sterile. All four participants of the immaculate conception – bodiless spirit, angel, the human Madonna and her child will be most cruelly persecuted by the society, and if the law so allows, crucified. Two bodiless spouses will be unable to produce bodiless children, as no economy will be able to deal with the population growth in geometrical progression, women will still have to be give birth naturally and without any electronic filling.
People moving this way into the astral plane still belong to the live nature, in an amazing way repeating the metamorphosis of caterpillar-chrysalis-butterfly. The only difference is that a butterfly lives for several days, while a bodiless spirit is eternal, unless it wishes to fall asleep forever. But even people who rest in eternal piece must be ready to be resurrected, if the society decides that there is a good reason why they have to discuss some vital matter.
Travelling between stars will be theoretically possible for bodiless, immortal spirits. I suppose, there will be a sufficient number of those wishing to fly to Alpha Centauri and back. The problem is that travel by starship will still be taking enormous time, and it is unlikely that anybody would wish to fall so hopelessly behind their contemporaries. I believe, things might look something like this:
Maybe, I should go and patent it after all ... (;-)
At the beginning of this text I postulated that everything will be fine, and the humanity, which behaves like a drunk on the verge of a precipice, and every second risks falling down, will have enough natural instinct to get through all traps and have worthy existence allowed to it by the nature. Any specific person, as well as a bodiless spirit and humanity as a whole will cease to exist in the remote future, and I will try to explain why this is unavoidable.
Homo Sapiens, cyborgs derived from this species and spirits will still have two vital qualities in common:
The humanity as a live organism will be desperately fighting against any attempts to create superhumans, mutants, mixed species and any other live creatures exceeding humans in their complexity. But as any fight against the progress, it will one day be lost, and a couple of particularly advanced bodiless spirits will get the right to more advance brains than their neighbors on the astral plane. And worth still, in a couple of hundred of thousand years they will get the right to reproduce and produce their firstborn, directly in the electronic form, because it cannot be born from a biological woman.
This firstborn and its siblings will have lost any connection with their biological ancestors, as they will be creatures of a different species (family, order, class, phylum, and kingdom). We cannot even fantasize as to how they will live and what they will be like. Most probably, they will leave the Earth in peace and scatter across the galaxy using the transportation network built by their ancestors in the Milky Way. Possibly, they will turn out to be quite inquisitive creatures, and might decide to experiment with some suitable planet by creating there a higher life form on the basis of the local chipmunks. At any rate, they will be at least as powerful as the gods in the understanding of the humans in the early Anno Domini years.
There is no scientific evidence that the man was created by God, which is why I left the God out of the picture for the purposes of description of the human evolution. I will not move beyond pure didactic, and remember that, however vaguely, I am a Christian. In my opinion, almost all events described in Bible could be perfectly real, and haven taken place without hypnosis, witchery and divine providence, given adequately advanced technology, with some help from the astral plane residents who had got there earlier, either from the Earth, or most likely, from some neighbor stars. In such case, the humanity will, sooner or later, discover the actual traces of the divine or extraterrestrial intervention. In the best case, we can discover computer interfaces of sorts, and realize that we live in a kind anti-Matrix; we believe that we live purely biological life, but everything we do is registered in a super powerful divine database. Then humanity can save on building its own electronic brains and memory storages, and use the existing ones upon the respective permission from the God (or gods). In this sense, "we look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come" from the Nicene Creed will turn into a materialistic process of entry into the astral place prepared by the higher creatures together will all those, whose entries are available in the divine computer.