The Axiomatic Force Conjecture
Every now and then I get asked what I believe in. This a write down of my best formulation so far. It is a combination of my experience as an engineer by training, my life experiences, how I'm choosing to live by, what I hope to be true and cool things I learned from traditional religions.
This is a conjecture of a belief system that relates humankind to an axiomatic force inspired by Darwinism, Gradient-Based Optimization, Buddhism, and Kardecism, in that order.
At the core of this belief system is an intuition that there is an axiomatic force (e.g. comparable to gravity or thermodynamics) that pulls humankind to search through a multidimensional search space for the position that best fit its environment (e.g. comparable to gradient-based optimization or evolution).
It is useful in that it reduces things like life, death, reincarnation, happiness, karma, kindness and purpose in terms of change and progress.
This axiomatic force operates selecting individuals with heritable traits that are better suited to the environment to propagate those traits, through a fitness function that evaluates an individual's adaptability to its environment. The domain of the multidimensional search space is composed of two main categories, genotypical and phenotypical variations, which are heritable.
Genetically, the axiomatic force searches through the multidimensional genetic space in parallel, selecting between multiple individuals (say, in the order of 7 billion people at the moment) in an infinite sequence of generations. There are two mechanisms in its search for fitness in the multidimensional genetic space: mutations and cross over. The axiomatic force introduces random genetic variations (also called mutations) - and tests them during a lifetime - to help in the search of new individuals / descendants that are better fit. Individuals can exchange genes and propagate to descendants to help increase their representation in the pursuit of fitness.
During the evolution of the species, multiple traits have been developed that fit best the environment: eyes, ears, legs, hearts, etc. A common trait that we have found in our genetic multidimensional space search (possibly during earlier stages of evolution) is the ability to die, possibly to avoid overfitting and hitting a local maxima (e.g. comparable to wild fire that is a necessary part of the lifecycle of forests). In that sense, death is a trait that we have invented as a species to increase our fitness to the environment, rather than an innate property of living beings (e.g. there are plenty of animals that don't die), so to be celebrated rather than condemned.
An individual is said to reincarnate when, by mutation and / or cross over, its traits (genotypic and phenotypic) occurs again in the never ending sequence of generations. There are certain non-optimized parts of your personal code that still need to be polished against the fitness function, which are called karma, which you get to address in this reincarnation. The chances increase as its traits occur more frequently in following generations, which happen when those traits are deemed more fit for the environment by the axiomatic force.
An interesting observation is that individuals never reincarnate with a genothypical or phenotypical code that is less fit, meaning that they always reincarnate in an evolved form, also know as the law of progress.
Another interesting observation is that individuals can - and typically will - reincarnate with their families and friends but possibly in different social configurations (e.g. one individual that was a parent once to a son can invert its relationship, husband and wife may change to grandfather and grandchild, etc).
Phenotypically, you inherit traits from the environment that you reincarnate in, you evolve through the acquisition of knowledge (e.g. science, morals, etc) and you propagate your code via language (e.g. teaching students, mentoring, influencing, parenting, passing down tricks, writing books, publishing articles, etc). Like your genotype, it is often useful to cross over different variations of the knowledge code with different individuals, typically leading to different and interesting areas of the multidimensional search space.
The axiomatic force gives an indication of the gradient of where you stand in the multidimensional search space via a feedback loop that is known as happiness. Phenotypically, it typically comes when you expand your knowledge code, for example, when you learn something.
You get rewarded, observable via happiness, when you find in your lifetime a genetic variation (e.g. through mutations) or phenotypical variation (e.g. through the acquisition of knowledge) that is more fit than where you currently stand and are able to propagate genetically (e.g. through cross over) or phenotypically (e.g. through language).
Not surprisingly, the axiomatic force rewards positive change propagated through your legacy (e.g. your family or your contributions to expanding knowledge), so anything that is immaterial across many generations (e.g. money, fame) isn't observable through happiness.
In this belief system, the purpose of each individual life is to find a position for humankind that fits best its environment. Each individual life is a variation of a single individual that is trying multiple things / positions in space (parallel lives) and time (multiple generations), so you are everybody and everybody is you. So, in this formulation, if we are all different variations of a single individual, "I am you" and "You are me", and hence one doesn't help or harm others, one helps or harms oneself.
Death is celebrated and reincarnation is possible and likely. It encourages kindess because there isn't "the other": we are all a single individual. You get to re-meet your loved ones, as your legacy travels through generations. You get to retry things that you failed at in the past. You get bonus points, in the form of happiness, when you learn (e.g. acquire knowledge or have a mutation) and when you share and propagate what you have learned (e.g. you teach or you write, or you have kids).
Call this axiomatic force God, if that helps, which is omnipresent (in that it applies to every individual), omnipotent (in that it defines everything), omniscient (in that it is aware of everything you are genetically and everything you know), forviging (because it gives you many reincarnations) and beneficent (in that it drives you to progress) but take it as a force (e.g. like gravity) rather than an entity (e.g. that you talk to or negotiate with).
Learn new tricks and share with others. They are only variations of yourself.