A Brief Qualifier
I want to qualify the fact that we do not advocate for many of the positions this books’ analyses entail. What we are advocating for is a clearer and more informed understanding of what Technology as a whole, is, and what some of these specific technologies imply, as well as what is relevant for the vision that is engendered, and is engendering, the specific: hopes, aspirations and vision that some advocates for these technologies thrive on. We hope this will enable us to arrive at a more through and scripturally based understanding of what our responsibilities are as Christians living in the contemporary world, as we move into our near and not so distant future. Although I have not personally spoken with Mars Hill Audio or Ken Myers about this I know, or at least I am absolutely confident that this is the position they take with respect to these kinds of materials as well.
For those of you would like to hear a Ken Myers’ interview with Erik Davis about this book, the way the book came about along with other interesting aspects of information technology, click on this link ==> Techgnosis and then click the far left button on the audio bar.
To amend a quote by Malcolm Muggeridge while referring to C.S. Lewis, I would say that Ken Myers when it comes to the contest between “knowledge,” or scientism and Faith, is manifestly on the side of faith. And this is true, evermore so, since he is willing to share this kind of material with us after he has placed it under the discernment of Christian convictions (to get a perspective on this you might want to listen to Modern Culture and the Death of Human Nature by following the hotlink where you will also see additional links on that page for a partial transcript to the audio presentation which may help.). This allows us to do the same. Much like Muggeridge wrote in his foreword to Michael Aeschliman’s Scientism and the Restitution of Man , “Lewis is manifestly on the side of faith, so was [William] Blake who scribbled on the side of his copy of Bacon’s essay: ‘Good Advice for [and about] Satan’s Kingdom’.”
♠ ♣ ♥ ♦
(A Mars Hill Audio blurb) Erik Davis, the author of TechGnosis, recognizes a Gnostic tendency in the contemporary understanding that information is an entity independent of a religious component. The emphasis on the acquisition of information leads modern society to embrace a disregard of matter and a hope for a utopian, technology-based community where there exists a “high velocity conversation between mind and matter.” However, this utopia is an exclusive community, where only those who can afford the high cost of technology benefit while the less fortunate live with the consequences of the environmental destruction caused by rapid technological development. Click here to go to get to the Mars Hill Audio Homepage.
The gap between the technological mentality and the mystical outlook may not be as great as it seems. Erik Davis looks at modern information technology–and much previous technology–to reveal how much of it has roots in spiritual attitudes. Furthermore, he explores how those who embrace each new technological advance often do so with designs and expectations stemming from religious sensibilities. In doing so, Davis both compares and contrasts the scientific attitude that we can know reality technologically and the Gnostic idea of developing ultimate understanding. Although organized into reasonable chapters, there’s a strong stream-of-consciousness component to Davis’s writing. His expositions may run, for example, from information theory to the nebulous nature of Gnosticism to the philosophical problem of evil-all in just a few pages. It’s as if there are so many connections to make that Davis’s prose has to run back and forth across time and space drawing the lines. But the result, rather than being chaotic, is a lively interplay of wide-ranging ideas. His style is equally lively and generally engaging–if sometimes straying into the hip. In the end, he succeeds in showing the spiritual side of what some may see as cold, technological thought. –Elizabeth Lewis (an Amazon Review)
An Amazon Link to Book ==> TechGnosis: Myth, Magic, and Mysticism in the Age of Information
From Publishers Weekly: