The philosophy of artificial intelligence.

Can it love?

You donít get a much more thorny question than this one. First, you have to define what love is. Philosophers and poets have been working on that for thousands of years. One thing is certain, however: love is more than simply the emotion of lust. Even eunuchs can love others. For lack of a better definition, I will use the one from the BibleÖ not because Iím a Christian (although I am) but simply because I believe itís the best definition of love that has ever been written:

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. (1 Corinthians 13:4-7, NIV)

Many of these things are character traits: patient, kind, not boastful, not proud, not rude, not self-seeking, keeping no record of wrongs, always protects, always perseveres. I would argue that all of these are things that any human-level AI agent would be able to exhibit (but few would; few humans possess these traits!)

Some of these are related to emotions: not easily angered, not envious, does not delight in evil, rejoicing with the truth. As I stated in the emotions section, it's easy to show how any human-level AI could exhibit these emotions. So it only stands to reason that any human-level AI agent could achieve this status.

What does that leave? Always trusts. Always hopes. Faith and hope. Without both, it is impossible to love. With both, love is well within reach.

So, why all this talk about faith, hope and love? Well...

Next: Does it have a soul?

Jump To:
Is it alive?
Does it have emotions?
Is it conscious?
Can it have faith?
Can it have hope?
Can it love?
Does it have a soul?

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