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The Great Filter

The Great Filter

By Thomas Wright
The nature of existence is such that we will always find ourselves hurtling toward a string of sequential cataclysmic events. Unfortunately, humanity is lacking in the "proactive measures" department.
Let's fucking talk about that.
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Up The Gravity Well
This is a reading of 'Up The Gravity Well', my entry for the Medium Writers Challenge. The entry can be found here: https://creationtribe.medium.com/up-the-gravity-well-7af2e35ac87a The stated corrections and Twitter conversation with planetary astronomer, Michael Busch, can be found here: https://twitter.com/michael_w_busch/status/1451002594021756930 --- For more about The Great Filter podcast, go to: https://thegreatfilterpodcast.com/ Your feedback is appreciated and important to us. Comment, like, subscribe, follow, or rate The Great Filter on your favorite podcast listening platform. The Great Filter is a PhobosTech podcast. All proceeds go to funding the STEM Theory research project and other PhobosTech research endeavors. You can support STEM Theory research with a small monthly contribution for as little as $0.99 here: https://anchor.fm/thegreatfilter/support Special thanks to NASA on Unsplash for this episode's photograph.
23:03
October 25, 2021
William Shatner's Post-Flight Thoughts (commentary)
Congratulations to William Shatner! "I do not know what I may appear to the world; but to myself I seem to have been only like a boy playing on the sea-shore, and diverting myself in now and then finding a smoother pebble or a prettier shell than ordinary, whilst the great ocean of truth lay all undiscovered before me." -- Isaac Newton (1642-1727), In Brewster, Memoirs of Newton (1855), vol II, Ch. 27 -- Quoted by William Shatner, Oct. 13th  The Great Filter now has a website :)    https://thegreatfilterpodcast.com/ Your feedback is appreciated and important to us. Comment, like, subscribe, follow, or rate The Great Filter on your favorite podcast listening platform. The Great Filter is a PhobosTech podcast. All proceeds go to funding the STEM Theory research project and other PhobosTech research endeavors. You can support STEM Theory research with a small monthly contribution for as little as $0.99 here: https://anchor.fm/thegreatfilter/support Special thanks to Björn Austmar Þórsson from Pexels for this episodes cover-art photograph.
18:30
October 18, 2021
Escape To Mars: Moving Humanity Off Planet
Impact threats are the most certain of any extinction-level events. Yet, despite the warnings of hundreds of scientists - we continue to dawdle in both our search for alternative, extraterrestrial, homes and the development of technologies to get there. Let's take a really good look at this, shall we? "All civilizations become either spacefaring or extinct." Carl Sagan (unsourced) "Since, in the long run, every planetary society will be endangered by impacts from space, every surviving civilization is obliged to become spacefaring - not because of exploratory or romantic zeal, but for the most practical reason imaginable: staying alive. And once you're out there in space for centuries and millennia, moving little worlds around and engineering planets, your species has been pried loose from its cradle." Carl Sagan - Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of The Human Future in Space p 173 "If our long-term survival is at stake, we have a basic responsibility to our species to venture to other worlds." Carl Sagan - Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of The Human Future in Space p 176 The Great Filter now has a website :)    https://thegreatfilterpodcast.com/ Your feedback is appreciated and important to us. Comment, like, subscribe, follow, or rate The Great Filter on your favorite podcast listening platform. The Great Filter is a PhobosTech podcast. All proceeds go to funding the STEM Theory research project and other PhobosTech research endeavors. You can support STEM Theory research with a small monthly contribution for as little as $0.99 here: https://anchor.fm/thegreatfilter/support Special thanks to NASA on Unsplash for the photo in this episode's cover art.
46:25
October 10, 2021
Can't We Just Get Rid Of Money?
What are the common arguments for the necessity of money? Are there any logical counterarguments? What profession would you choose if money was not a factor? The Great Filter has a new website :)  https://thegreatfilterpodcast.com/ Your feedback is appreciated and important to us. Comment, like, subscribe, follow, or rate The Great Filter on your favorite podcast listening platform. The Great Filter is a PhobosTech podcast. All proceeds go to fund the STEM Theory research project and other PhobosTech research endeavors. You can help support our research with a small monthly contribution for as little as $0.99 our support portal here: https://anchor.fm/thegreatfilter/support Special thanks to Jean Beaufort from PublicDomainImages.net for this episode's cover-art photograph.
38:24
October 04, 2021
The Education Catastrophe
Our children are the future, yet our willingness to invest in them dawdles and whimpers. With so much at stake - including our species' own survival - why have we chosen to ignore this problem? This episode takes a look at the motivations and bottlenecks surrounding this issue. "It is in playing and only in playing that the individual child or adult is able to be creative and to use the whole personality, and it is only in being creative that the individual discovers the self." -- Donald Woods Winnicott "Whether in the public or independent sector, in schools or at home, being creative in providing education and promoting creativity are not dispensable luxuries. They are essential to enable us all to make lives that are worth living." -- Sir Ken Robinson Links: _____________________________________________________________ Education, Children, Learning & Development (courses, books, research, and other resources): https://www.amazon.com/Make-Stick-Science-Successful-Learning/dp/0674729013 https://www.amazon.com/Intelligence-Understanding-Creation-Intelligent-Machines/dp/0805078533 https://www.amazon.com/Discipline-Without-Punishment-Employees-Performers/dp/0814402763 https://www.wondrium.com/scientific-secrets-for-raising-kids-who-thrive https://www.wondrium.com/raising-emotionally-and-socially-healthy-kids https://www.wondrium.com/how-to-raise-lifelong-learners https://www.wondrium.com/how-the-world-learns-comparative-educational-systems Scrum: https://www.amazon.com/Scrum-Doing-Twice-Work-Half/dp/038534645X Scrum in The Classroom: https://www.scrum.org/resources/blog/scrum-classroom-part-1-time-change https://threeteacherstalk.com/2019/01/25/using-scrum-in-the-classroom/ Marijuana & The Adolescent Brain (Research): Marijuana Use and High School Dropout: The Influence of Unobservables: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2910149/ Effects of Cannabis on the Adolescent Brain: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3930618/ Is the Adolescent Brain at Greater Vulnerability to the Effects of Cannabis?: https://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fpsyt.2020.00859/full Cannabis and the adolescent brain: https://www.pnas.org/content/117/1/7 What Pot Really Does to the Teen Brain: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/what-pot-really-does-to-the-teen-brain/ NOVA Principles (bad science): NOVA homepage: https://novaprinciples.com/ Religious Kids Are Less Likely to Get in Trouble (as cited by NOVA): http://www.center4research.org/religious-kids-likely-good/ Effects of Religion (the more honest science): Mixed Blessing: The Beneficial and Detrimental Effects of Religion on Child Development among Third-Graders: https://www.mdpi.com/2077-1444/10/1/37/htm Science Does Not Say That Religious Children Are More Likely to be 'Immoral': https://futurism.com/no-science-does-not-say-that-religious-children-are-more-likely-to-be-immoral -- The Great Filter now has a website :)    https://thegreatfilterpodcast.com/ Your feedback is appreciated and important to us. Comment, like, subscribe, follow, or rate The Great Filter on your favorite podcast listening platform. The Great Filter is a PhobosTech podcast. All proceeds go to funding the STEM Theory research project and other PhobosTech research endeavors. You can support STEM Theory research with a small monthly contribution for as little as $0.99 here: https://anchor.fm/thegreatfilter/support Special thanks to Pete Linforth from Pixabay, Kindel Media from Pexels, and Andrea Piacquadio from Pexels for providing the artwork used in this episode's cover art.
52:32
September 27, 2021
Global Suicide - Part V: Can Star Trek Save Us?
Science fiction often drives innovation. Star Trek, specifically, has inspired the computer and the cellular telephone among other modern miracles of science and technology. One aspect of Star Trek that has even had books written about it is the Star Trek economy. In this episode, we're talking about just that. "The economics of the future is somewhat different. You see, money doesn't exist in the 24th century. The acquisition of wealth is no longer the driving force in our lives. We work to better ourselves and the rest of humanity." -- Captain Jean-Luc Picard (Patrick Stewart) from Gene Roddenberry's Star Trek VIII: First Contact Statistics of finance & insurance markets: https://www.selectusa.gov/financial-services-industry-united-states https://datausa.io/profile/naics/finance-insurance -- The Great Filter now has a website :)    https://thegreatfilterpodcast.com/ Your feedback is appreciated and important to us. Comment, like, subscribe, follow, or rate The Great Filter on your favorite podcast listening platform. The Great Filter is a PhobosTech podcast. All proceeds go to funding the STEM Theory research project and other PhobosTech research endeavors. You can support STEM Theory research with a small monthly contribution for as little as $0.99 here: https://anchor.fm/thegreatfilter/support Special thanks to Björn Austmar Þórsson from Pexels for this episodes cover-art photograph.
01:00:38
September 20, 2021
Global Suicide - Part IV: Disorder & Dead Presidents
Entropy is a two-edged sword. It is our life-force; but if it accelerates and begins to runaway with our energy, it can become a death sentence. Our society has within itself a variety of entropy amplifiers that increase our system's entropy by orders of magnitude - warming the planet and wasting our hard work. If we don't get this fixed, these entropy amplifiers will truly spell our end. "If your theory is found to be against the second law of theromodynamics, I can give you no hope; there is nothing for it but to collapse in deepest humiliation." -- Sir Arthur Stanley Eddington The Royal Institution: Explaining Thermodynamics - Monthly(ish) Mailbag #3: https://youtu.be/0A44-TCJU9g?t=105 World Hunger: https://ourworldindata.org/hunger-and-undernourishment FBI Crime Data Explorer: https://crime-data-explorer.app.cloud.gov/pages/downloads Psychopaths / Brain Injury: https://www.med.wisc.edu/news-and-events/2011/november/psychopaths-brains-differences-structure-function/ https://www.reuters.com/article/us-brains-psychopaths/study-finds-psychopaths-have-distinct-brain-structure-idUSBRE8460ZQ20120507 https://sciencenordic.com/forskningno-psychology-society--culture/no-we-are-not-swimming-in-psychopaths/1450492 https://www.politifact.com/factchecks/2018/mar/30/michael-mccaul/michael-mccaul-says-1-100-people-sociopath/ Up The Gravity Well (Essay): https://creationtribe.medium.com/up-the-gravity-well-7af2e35ac87a Value & Harmonized-State Potential: https://youtu.be/MnkMLj24J3Y Professor Dave's Thermodynamics Playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLORSu_035d5XIQfDwty_LY8kp2-39jgdh -- The Great Filter now has a website :)    https://thegreatfilterpodcast.com/ Your feedback is appreciated and important to us. Comment, like, subscribe, follow, or rate The Great Filter on your favorite podcast listening platform. The Great Filter is a PhobosTech podcast. All proceeds go to funding the STEM Theory research project and other PhobosTech research endeavors. You can support STEM Theory research with a small monthly contribution for as little as $0.99 here: https://anchor.fm/thegreatfilter/support Special thanks to Björn Austmar Þórsson from Pexels for this episodes cover-art photograph.
01:01:54
September 13, 2021
Global Suicide - Part III: Psychology of Self-Extinction
Understanding our own psychology and social behaviors are critical to avoiding self-extinction. This episode explores this in great depth. In the next episode, we'll see all of these moving pieces in action to paint a vivid picture of what we can expect if we don't shift our way of thinking.  This episode's quote comes from Scott Barry Kaufman's book, Transcend: The New Science of Self-Actualization TOOL - Ænema https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rHcmnowjfrQ The Great Filter now has a website :)    https://thegreatfilterpodcast.com/ Your feedback is appreciated and important to us. Comment, like, subscribe, follow, or rate The Great Filter on your favorite podcast listening platform. The Great Filter is a PhobosTech podcast. All proceeds go to funding the STEM Theory research project and other PhobosTech research endeavors. You can support STEM Theory research with a small monthly contribution for as little as $0.99 here: https://anchor.fm/thegreatfilter/support Special thanks to Björn Austmar Þórsson from Pexels for this episodes cover-art photograph.
49:01
September 06, 2021
Global Suicide - Part II: Shotgun Serenade
What are the possible self-extinction scenarios and why is it important to understand this? In this episode we explore this; setting things up for part three where we walk this back to uncover the major causes and how to counter them. This episode's quote comes from VOD's (Vision of Disorder), Zone Zero: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s14dpj5AZy0 The Great Filter now has a website :)    https://thegreatfilterpodcast.com/ Your feedback is appreciated and important to us. Comment, like, subscribe, follow, or rate The Great Filter on your favorite podcast listening platform. The Great Filter is a PhobosTech podcast. All proceeds go to funding the STEM Theory research project and other PhobosTech research endeavors. You can support STEM Theory research with a small monthly contribution for as little as $0.99 here: https://anchor.fm/thegreatfilter/support Special thanks to Björn Austmar Þórsson from Pexels for this episodes cover-art photograph.
36:23
August 30, 2021
Global Suicide - Part I: Carrots & Sticks
"The first subcategory of suicide is of the more immediate sort; intentionally carried out by the conscious mind and typically focused on the cessation of pain. The second subcategory is of a more discrete and drawn-out sort; characterized by the misguided search for absolution, brought on by an unconscious sense of self-loathing, and silently executed just outside the victim's periphery. The real difficulty in saving humanity is not in ascertaining a diagnosis. Without question, our situation is of the second sort; the real difficulty is in discovering a reason for convincing each other that we deserve salvation." The Great Filter has a new website :)  https://thegreatfilterpodcast.com/ Your feedback is appreciated and important to us. Comment, like, subscribe, follow, or rate The Great Filter on your favorite podcast listening platform. The Great Filter is a PhobosTech podcast. All proceeds go to fund the STEM Theory research project and other PhobosTech research endeavors. You can help support our research with a small monthly contribution for as little as $0.99 our support portal here: https://anchor.fm/thegreatfilter/support Special thanks to Björn Austmar Þórsson from Pexels for this episodes cover-art photograph.
34:23
August 16, 2021
Stories of Greed, Debt & Corruption
The distraction and waste of resources that greed brings is a symptom of the very paradigm that very well may spell humanity's end. Special thanks goes to George Hodan at PublicDomainPictures.net for providing this episode's cover art: https://www.publicdomainpictures.net/en/browse-author.php?a=8245 The Great Filter is a PhobosTech podcast. All proceeds go to funding the STEM Theory research project and other PhobosTech research endeavors. You can show your support by liking, following/subscribing, and sharing with your friends. You may also show your support with a small monthly contribution as small as $0.99 by following this link: https://anchor.fm/thegreatfilter/support
48:58
August 09, 2021
The Alien Invasion
Could one of the many great filters actually be a ruthless, galactic, empire; ready to slaughter entire worlds that aren't willing to take a knee? Given David Fravor's recent reveal and the government's acknowedgement of UAPs (formerly known as UFOs), this is definitely something we should consider; so let's fucking talk about it.
36:44
August 02, 2021
Planned Obsolescence
What does planned obsolescence have to do with the great filter? Fucking everything ...
45:38
July 23, 2021
Becoming Your Best Self In A Less-Than-Ideal World
It's time for a more upbeat episode, wouldn't you say? You've heard the phrase, "Be the change you want to see"? In the world we live in, with the changes we need if we're going to overcome our species' adolescence, being the change we want to see is exactly what needs to be done. Books by Kennon M. Sheldon: Self Determination Theory In The Clinic Optimal Human Being Special thanks to Lisa from Pexels for this episodes cover art photo
36:31
July 20, 2021
Xà La'awran's Coin | An Allegorical Account
Xà La'awran's Coin is a story I wrote some time ago. I've always meant to put an animation to it (and I likely will at some point), but I just felt like I wanted to get it out there. I hope you enjoy the story :) Special thanks to Devanath on Pixnio for providing the coin image used in the cover art for this bonus production.
25:24
July 17, 2021
Survival Priority & Our Best Possible Selves
What are the bare-bone attributes that we would need if we were to increase our chances of surviving as many great filters as possible, so that we would have the opportunity to seed other worlds and ensure humanity's survival? Special thanks to Nghia Le on Unsplash for this episode's cover art image.
41:25
July 16, 2021
Survival of The Twitter-iest: Part II
Humanity's intelligence and socially cohesive dynamic have rocketed us to the top of the food-chain. However, David Graeber's book, "Debt, The First 5,000 Years" (despite the rather heated debate surrounding it) illuminates the weak points in both of these traits. Given their flaws, are these two traits sufficient for continued survival - especially in the face of any one of the many possible great filters? If you enjoy this episode, please consider supporting us through a small monthly donation: https://anchor.fm/thegreatfilter/support
38:23
July 13, 2021
Survival of The Twitter-iest: Part I
What are the evolution-honed traits that allowed humanity to rocket to the top of the food-chain? Will they be enough when we're face-to-face with one of the many great filters? In this first part of our two-part episode, "Survival of The Shittiest", we'll explore the fundamental nature of humanity and where we may have taken a wrong turn in respect to fulfilling our true potential as a supra-organism optima. This episode's quote: (note: in this quote, Alex Danco is explaining David Graeber's arguments from his book, "The First 5,000 Years of Debt", and does not necessarily reflect his personal opinions on the matter.)  "The conquered people now have to somehow obtain those physical coins in order to pay their taxes, which puts them at an enormous disadvantage in trading: they must accept any terms they can get for their own labor. What looks like a “global free market”, facilitated by universal coins, is really just debt peonage. The coins don’t facilitate; they restrict. [...] all debt, especially interest-drawing debt, is intimately related to its enforcement mechanism. [...] when money is a hard, fungible unit of scarcity, enforcement isn’t a matter of trust; it’s a matter of force. When your enforcement mechanism is state-backed violence, lenders and debtors have a pretty different relationship." --Alex Danco
34:33
July 10, 2021
Existential Risk & Natural Disasters
What are the most dangerous natural disasters? Which one's can cause the total extinction of the human race and how likely are they? In this episode we take a look at asteroids/meteors, super volcanoes, and gamma-ray bursts. Special thanks to the National Science Foundation for the gamma-ray burst image in the cover art for this episode.
34:32
July 06, 2021
Our Best Possible Scenario
What would we need if we were to create the perfect atmosphere for human survival? How much of a system change would we need to entertain to maximize our chances for being able to evade future events which may threaten extinction? The quote from this episode was taken from the Lex Fridman Podcast #194 Special thanks to Mystic Art Design from Pixabay for the 'city' and Carmine Savarese from Unsplash for the clouds in this episode's cover art  
47:22
July 02, 2021
At The Core Of Climate Change
It's odd that so many people are scrambling to fix climate change - yet so few have actually taken the time to point out the core source of all of the problems that have given rise to our current situation. "The Earth does not belong to man, man belongs to the earth. All things are connected like the blood that unites us all. Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself." --Chief Seattle I forgot to include the audio clip in the episode; however, if you're still interested in hearing the correct pronunciation, you can find the clip here: https://www.historylink.org/File/5071 Special thanks to Chris LeBoutillier from Unsplash for providing the image used in this episode's cover art.
39:58
June 30, 2021
Why Is There Something Rather Than Nothing?
Why does anything exist at all? What is reality all about? I offer my best shot as to why there is something rather than nothing. Granted, this is a deep philosophical dive, but I try to keep as much logic and science as is possible when tackling such an impossible question. Just yesterday I finished "A Universe From Nothing" by Dr. Lawrence M. Krauss; and I put it aside utterly disappointed as it contributed absolutely nothing to the quest for answer this question. That being the case, I've decided to open up and deliver my personal theory, as far as I have developed it to date, as to why there is something rather than nothing. I've never heard anybody answer it this way - so I hope this offers a fresh perspective on the issue to those who are seeking a more logical answer. This episode steps just outside the normal "existential dread" theme of The Great Filter, but stays within the realm of the general "existential" questions. Special thanks for the galaxy photograph in this episode's art by Miriam Espacio from Pexels.
36:42
June 25, 2021
The Failure of Trust in Science
With science being a search for truth, how did we find ourselves in the contradictory situation where science itself is a source of distrust? The image for this episodes cover art was provided by Kindel Media from Pexels.
41:22
June 22, 2021
How We Will All Die (aka: The Great Filter's Rubik's Cube)
What is The Drake Equation? What is Fermi's Paradox? What is The Great Filter? What is our probability of surviving this unknown danger ... if it exists? Thanks to Francesco Ungaro from Pexels for providing the 'space invaders' photo used in this episodes cover art.
33:16
June 16, 2021
Is Ransomware Avoidable?
Ransomware is ravaging our world, attacking medical facilities and small businesses. What is really going on here? Can we actually stop this from happening?
31:59
June 08, 2021
The Machine Uprising: Building AI Sociopaths
Having worked with AI for the past few years, I am troubled with a very specific issue which I have yet to hear anybody address. There is a near 100% probability that the singularity will birth sociopathic machines if we continue to do things as we are currently doing them.
27:09
June 02, 2021