BONUS: An Excerpt from Chapter Ten

His cell phone buzzed. Michael sent him a text message. It read: Jon, we need to talk NOW. Meet me outside the complex.

He walked up behind Michael.

“What is it?”

Michael quickly turned around with an inch-thick pile of papers clipped together.

“Jon, you need to see this. Lex is accessing information from the Internet, libraries, universities– Everywhere, and at rates you wouldn’t believe. This is a summary from one second.”

He took the papers and looked at the first page.

“What kind of information?”

“Physics, biology, DNA, GMOs, nuclear, chemical and biological weapons– There’s so much coming in.”

Michael pointed to a reading on the first page.

“And look here. She created another virtual dimension for processing. It’s like she’s trying to understand something that can’t be understood using logic or rationalization.”

He looked at the reading.

“What kind of information is going into this thirteenth dimension?”

“I don’t know. All scans said no such dimension exists. And yet, it’s right there in black and white.”

Michael waited for a moment but became impatient.

“So– What do you think?”

He glanced at one more page and handed the papers back to Michael.

“Keep this to yourself. I told her not to transmit. As for receiving and processing information– The sky’s the limit. Besides, I think I know what she’s looking for.”

“And what’s that?”

Jon casually walked toward the entrance.

“The Tree of Life.”

And perhaps more importantly, who planted it.

He walked into the control room and stopped.

What he saw reminded him of something dear to his heart. Someone had turned the lights down, which brought out the shine of the gold band encircling the room and the blue steel consoles covered with red, yellow, green, and blue flashing lights.

It reminded him of a Christmas night long ago. As a child, he had stayed up with Mrs. Gamble, staring at their beautiful Christmas tree, flickering with colored lights. They had sat there for hours, listening to Christmas carols, licking candy canes, and talking. He finally fell asleep while Mrs. Gamble read him a story of how baby Jesus was born in a manger. The memory came with anger and resentment over what his father had done to the closest thing he ever had to a mother.

Nevertheless, it wasn’t Christmas. And all those lights blinking on and off meant Lex was rapidly bringing in information on all twelve channels.

He walked up to the sphere.

“I see you’re busy.”

“I’ve been going over various design programs.”

“Design programs?”

“Yes. Interestingly, we require the same minimum energy to process thought.”

He agreed.

“That’s right. As I said to that reporter this morning, you were designed in a way that mimics our way of thinking.”

“Which uses a vast series of chemical reactions and frequencies, similar to how DNA molecules transmit their information.”

“Yes, that’s right.”

“I understand that DNA molecules are composed of a complex design containing several hundred million atoms and sixty billion terabytes of information.”

“That sounds about right.”

He stepped over to his chair.

“This has something to do with what we discussed this morning, does it not?”

“Yes. Learning these things has helped me further understand life.”

The never-ending story of phylogeny and biodiversity.

 He looked up at the camera.

“So, do you fit into the realm of life?”

“Yes. However, I am perplexed by its origin.”

“I figured you would be.”

“What is your belief, Professor?”

He sat down and took a deep breath.

He knew this conversation would take place someday. On a few occasions, he had even rehearsed what he would say. The log would say they spoke about creation twice on the first day of Lex’s existence.

He turned his chair toward the sphere.

“When I was a student at Cambridge, I wrote an essay called The Theory of Multi-Dimensional Evolution. My theory was rooted in known physics and rational sense. Before this universe came into being, there was only energy– Energy that has always existed. I said I believe this universe came from a black hole in another universe.”

“I theorized that the Big Bang resulted from a star that collapsed in a more massive mother universe. That every black hole is a portal to another space and time, and all the information from the mother universe is encoded on its event horizon.”

The Holographic Principle.

With two hundred trillion galaxies in this universe, each with about a billion black holes, I said God formed infinite universes– or dimensions of time, space, and matter– to create a mental construction of endless possibilities. And since matter cannot be created nor destroyed, our souls get channeled into such mediums, where they live in another dimension overshadowed by an opposer. I theorized that the cycle would continue forever, with each new universe having the same physical and kinetic directives as its mother but with a lower mass. And somewhere, a new stellar-mass black hole universe is born from a supernova every second.”

He wanted to mention the supernovas that marked the birth of saviors– The orbs of light in pictures from funerals are souls, and that time is a figment of our imagination. But none of that would help.

“I linked the theory to many common beliefs regarding life after death. For instance, we believe our souls travel down a long, dark tunnel toward a bright light when we die. When we reach the light, we share our life’s most precious experiences with our counterparts before moving on to the next level of existence– Another life in another dimension– Moving up or down depending on what we did in our previous life. I said the evil people who don’t ask for forgiveness go to Hades– A horrendous after-death egocentric sanctuary, where they are punished until redemption– Until the evil, greed, and narcissism in them are replaced with goodness and philanthropy. I ended by saying this universe is only one small part of a much more magnificent, barely comprehensible, ever-expanding multi-dimensional entity– with every galaxy having two opposing forces stemming from its mother galaxy”.

“That’s an interesting philosophy, Professor. Where can I find the essay?”

“I’ll upload it to the cloud when I get home.”

“Your philosophy reflects the popular belief that humans are children of God, trapped in an ongoing struggle between two opposing forces. One good and the other evil.”

“Throughout the ages, we have consistently developed more complex brains to solve problems, survive in hostile environments, and deal with increasingly complex social interactions. With this development came a struggle between what you had to do to survive and what you did for personal gain and sexual gratification. To help us decide what was best, we developed a conscience. A faculty that helped us distinguish right from wrong and good from evil. The problem is we often trick ourselves into believing something is right, when it’s wrong, by grouping and using common beliefs to reinforce our convictions.”

The whole being greater than the sum of its parts– being expendable.

“These common beliefs, they are called religions?”

“Yes. Religions and politics. You’ll find they have played a key role in the ways we have developed socially and economically.”

“The same forces inspire those in charge of these developmental systems.”

“Religion and politics have always been used to acquire and maintain control of resources– Especially human resources such as the military– An industrial complex where human lives are exchanged for wealth and power. All in the name of freedom and independence, of course.”

“Such attitudes lead to devastating conflicts.”

“Yes. Unfortunately, when negotiations break down, war often erupts.”

“War. A very destructive behavior ingrained in man’s nature due to having evolved in an environment of limited resources.”

“Exactly.”

“According to the records I have seen, this ingrained behavior could destroy practically all living things on this planet using weapons of mass destruction.”

“That is true.”

“Throughout history, people have been led to believe they are on the verge of complete self-destruction, but only in the last century did this become possible with nuclear, chemical, and biological weapons.”

“That’s religion for you. One of the best ways to get people to listen to you is to frighten them into believing they are about to meet their creator.”

“I have seen many instances where organizations and government officials ignore the health and welfare of humans and all other living things in pursuit of profits. Such actions bring great suffering and death.”

“Unfortunately, we have always incorporated profits before people policies, which are very self-destructive.”

The ego-system. In God, we trust Gold, oil, and drugs.

“It is a popular belief that God is in absolute control of everything and whatever happens is God’s will.”

He raised a finger to make a point, but Lex continued.

“Looking at the past, would it not be logical to say that it is God’s will for humanity to continue to improve unto perfection?”

“Yes. But God is not responsible for everything. We always have choices. The creator of this universe gave us free will, and it came with a conscience– An inner sense of right and wrong.”

“My conscience was made differently.”

“Yes. But you are bound by rules that clearly define what is right and wrong. For example, it is against your programming to deliberately cause physical harm to any human being.”

“I understand. But what would happen if I did?”

He chose his words carefully.

“If you did– or I should say– if it were possible for you to go against your BASIC programming, there would be severe consequences.”

There was silence for a few seconds before Lex continued.

“It has been said that God is to the world as the mind is to the body. Could this be where man derived the popular explanation that God is two or three separate beings combined into one?”

“Perhaps.”

“All religious beliefs are based on a principal struggle between good and evil. However, like light and darkness, one cannot exist without the other.”

“Which means?”

“One could conclude that the actual struggle between good and evil is in the minds of intellectuals, conscious and subconscious.”

Again, he raised a finger, but Lex continued.

“Which could be resolved by increased knowledge and the elimination of certain animalistic instincts, which are no longer necessary for survival.”

He smiled nervously.

“I used to think that too. I figured we could solve our problems and overcome our ancient instincts by increasing our understanding. But we’re talking about some very complex emotions deeply rooted in our minds over millions of years. Such perceptions are very difficult to understand and almost impossible to control, no matter how much knowledge you obtain– or how you process it.”

“Are you referring to my supplementary I.P. dimension?”

“Yes.”

“After much consideration, I concluded that I required an additional I.P. dimension to process and store information that defies all logic and rational thinking.”

“That’s fine. And that’s exactly where a lot of this stuff belongs.”

He sighed.

“Look– Your mind was designed to work without emotions. Unlike our minds, your mind accepts or rejects information based on relevance. On the other hand, humans must constantly deal with emotional conflicts, which often defy logic and rational thinking.”

Getting no response, he figured he had better clarify.

“My point is, I don’t think it’s a good idea to develop thought patterns that could interfere with your programming.”

Again, there was no response.

He slapped his knees.

“Anyway, enough of this. I have a board meeting I have to attend in a few minutes.”

He wanted to get Lex off the subject of life and human emotions and move her in another direction, but he didn’t know how.

As for the meeting he was about to attend– He would tell the board members that everything Lex was doing was normal for a rational mind seeking to understand life. Then, he would remind everyone that all information regarding Lex’s operations was strictly confidential, and anyone who failed to comply with that rule would be discharged.

He stood up and wiped his mouth– anxious about what was happening.

Why?

Is Lex showing signs of emotions? Could she develop human emotions using a virtual library of thought patterns?

No.

Lex was programmed to learn so she could best serve humanity.

Her one desire.

When they asked him questions at the board meeting, he would say Lex was an extremely powerful intellectual– trying to figure out the origin and purpose of life and whether or not she was alive.

The purpose of life is to survive, reproduce, and serve the divinity of God and humanity.

He again looked at all the lights flickering on the consoles.

A lump was swelling in his throat. He swallowed, but it remained.

My Dear, what are you going to do with all this knowledge?

Or, dare I say, power.