Elder Gong shares guiding principles on artificial intelligence


Elder Gong speaking about artificial intelligence - Image generated by MidJourney and subsequently retouched with Adobe Illustrator and Pixelmator

Earlier this month, Elder Gong of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints issued guiding principles for the appropriate use of artificial intelligence that align with gospel teachings. These principles emphasize maintaining spiritual connection, transparency, privacy, security, and accountability when utilizing AI.

The Association welcomes the responsible development and ethical application of AI, which can be seen as an effort to expand human intelligence and agency—key aspects of our divine potential and eternal progression. As we extend our faculties through AI, we are following the injunction to continue seeking light, truth, and intelligence, which the scriptures declare is the “glory of God.” (D&C 93:36)

We can create appropriate balances in our perceptions, plans, and implementation of generative AI that are realistic both of opportunity and challenge—put another way, that are neither giddy nor alarmist.
Elder Gerritt W. Gong

The rise of advanced AI capabilities, including large language models exhibiting increasingly human-like communication abilities, compels us to explore profound questions around intelligence, agency, consciousness and the nature of the human soul. These developments have significant implications for Mormon theology and our understanding of concepts like godhood, spirituality, creativity, and our relationship to deity. MTAConf 2024 on April 13th will provide a forum to examine these topics through a unique lens. Be sure to register today.

Speakers at the conference will address several related topics both near- and long-term, including the existential opportunities and risks of artificial general intelligence (AGI), the possibility of machine sentience or consciousness, the extension of rights to advanced AI systems, and how AI may be a tool to enhance humanity in its progression toward godlike superintelligence. As we stand at this pivotal juncture, religious Transhumanists can offer vital perspectives on navigating the rise of transformative AI in an ethical and compassionate manner.