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I have some bad news

Hello Church of Reality members,

I have some bad news and there's no easy way to say this but I have stage 4 lung cancer. As a Realist and someone who understands numbers far to well, this is a fatal diagnosis. So it's just a matter of when and not if this eventually kills me. There is a possibility I will be surprised by some unexpected good new but I'm not counting on that.

My life is a casino right now. If I have the lucky protein then I get the lucky treatment. I am going to MD Anderson in Houston Texas and at least make an attempt to put up a good fight. What I'm looking for is more months of quality time where I can upload my thoughts to the world. The world will be better off if I can get more time. I call MD Anderson America's best casino. There's a probability curve, I'm a point on it somewhere. And I don't know where.

I have been working on the Church of Reality web site and trying to finish up some important concept that I want to get down while I'm still here. Preparing for my digital afterlife. Leonard Nimoy is gone - but Spock it still with us. And it is my hope that they ideas that I started here will be expanded upon by many good minds and be a template for the future.

Over the last 18 years since I came up with the Church of Reality idea, it has developed far beyond anything I dreamed of at the beginning. I now feel like that rather inventing a religion, I'm discovering something that already exists in Reality itself. And because it exists in Reality other people tend to discover the same things I did. So the Church of Reality isn't going to die with me. I'm just trying to get the ideas out sooner rather than later.

Although the development of the philosophy has been better than expected, the spreading of the ideas has been somewhat of a failure. I'm just not the Reality evangelist that this needs and it has failed to take off. Maybe the name "Church of Reality" wasn't the best choice? Maybe I never figured out the mental blocks people have towards scientific philosophy?

Maybe in the hands of someone else that aspect will do better. I'm just too much of a control freak. Some of my friends have joked that this isn't going to take off till after I die, so I guess we're going to get to test that out.

Considering my fate I'm still healthy for now and in good spirits. I have done more in my life than most people do in 100 lifetimes. At age 60 I'm already down to my last 1/4 tank and if I don't get that I really have nothing to complain about. I have a lot of friends who are offering to take care of me. I have a paid for house, some savings, and I'm still doing well off my spam filtering business. While I plan to put up a good fight if I get 2 years that would be considered a win.

I have lived a good life. I have done more than most people have done in 100 lifetimes. At the age of 60 I was already down to my last 1/4 tank so if I don't get the last 20 years I really have little to complain about. At this point my goals are to upload what's left of me to the web, which is the afterlife in my world.

Oddly enough the idea of being dead doesn't worry me. And that might be the denial speaking. However the process of getting there is going to be overwhelming. And it's been just a week since I found out. And I'm exploring the idea that there might even be an upside to being terminal. Maybe new opportunities will open up.

A person's story is everything they do from the moment they are born to the moment they die. And then your story is the effect you had on advancing the evolution of life from what we were, to what we are, to what we will become. So my story will become part of the story of humanity, which is part of the story of life on this planet, and part of the story of the universe. And with the internet the essence of who I am and what makes my existence have meaning will be preserved.

I have always believed that if a person decides to "own their story" and choose to live a life worth living that when they are faced with the end of their personal existence it would be much easier. And now that I am there I can say it is definitely true. I have not lived a perfect life and looking back there are quite a few things where I could have made a better choice. But at this point I'm feeling unusually positive about my situation as my last adventures unfold. I did create the Church of Reality and that makes me feel like my existence had value. And that gives me a measure of peace. Maybe my death will be inspirational as well.

While I have spent much of my life writing software for cyberspace I have also written quite a bit of software for meat space. This email is an example of that. Meat space is coded in ideas and philosophies and I'm hoping in the time I have left to see what else I can accomplish. Facing death definitely sharpens the mind so I'm going to take advantage of that.

I have not decided what to do with the Church of Reality yet. I'm thinking that since this is mostly all my work that once I'm done with it that this website be preserved as is, but that others will look at it as a starting point and rewrite the whole thing with a team on minds and do it right. If you were to compare it to software development the Church of Reality web site would be an early alpha proof of concept application that needs to be rewritten from scratch and done right. And it needs leadership, someone who can take this and go out and make it happen. People who can do all the things I failed to do.

Also - there's now a PayPal donation button on the front page of the web site. Some of the treatments I'm going to try that are not covered by insurance are likely to be expensive. I am in not to bad of shape financially for now. But if I succeed in surviving for longer than expected that could change. I have many friends what want to do things for me and want to help. So this is a way you can help if you want to. And it is tax deductible. Other than that, if you have the ability to mirror the web site and we can get this stored in multiple locations on the web that would be even better.

My latest thing I'm writing about is called "Religion for Robots". The idea is to create a philosophy of life that is so scientifically accurate that an AI that is smarter than humans having an existential crisis wondering "What is the meaning of Artificial Life?", would find an answer here. That would be a possible solution to the "control problem" of Artificial Intelligence.


I suppose I'll wrap this up here as I can ramble on forever. And forever isn't as quite long as it used to be.

Marc Perkel First One Church of Reality http://www.churchofreality.org "We are here for a short time, but we are all part of the story of the universe."

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