Albir Krganov, Head of the Spiritual Assembly of Muslims of Russia: “We are not against science, we are against Satanism”
The International Religious Forum, which took place from 13 to 14 September, has ended in St. Petersburg. The event gathered a large number of participants from almost 50 countries. Among them were leaders and representatives of different religious denominations and communities.
Today the theologians face the phenomenon of the development of information technologies, because along with the progress there are more and more threats to people of faith. It turns out that virtual muftis are already being used in the world. The head of the Spiritual Assembly of Muslims of Russia, Albir Krganov, told how representatives of Islam treat these processes.
“The religion of Islam itself calls for man to develop intellectually. According to scientists, there are more than 700 references to the topic of knowledge in the holy Koran. We are not against science. We are not against new technologies and artificial intelligence, but with an adjustment on who will write the software of this AI. Where there will be ethical norms and ethical responsibility of the person who will write it. We discussed this topic two years ago. There were examples in Europe and the US, including robots, where they made a nurse out of them. And there was an example that when asked, “What should I do with this patient?” He was ready to push this patient down the stairs because it was written in his software that some patients were interfering with the normal treatment process of others. The person wouldn’t do it, but the software allows him to do it. There are these very difficult moments. They seem to say that some general documents on ethical norms are signed. Journalists and other professionals and communities have them. However, we do not have such documents yet. We could not get an answer as to how they will react to it,” said Albir Krganov, Head of the Spiritual Assembly of Muslims of Russia.
According to him, it is very important that spiritual and moral components are at the head of the line when such new technologies are written, which are comfortable for living conditions and there is no one who is against it. According to Mr Krganov, now in some countries of the world so-called “electronic muftis” are already being used.
“There, scholars write fatwa, and a person already applies via the Internet, and there were questions here too. It is good that the states have paid attention to this. For example, in the Emirates, consiliums of scientists gathered advice and found answers to new questions. But there are others. Imagine that some extremist organization today buys this software and spreads it around the world. How many followers would there be? Nowadays there are many opportunities to interest young people. There are children’s programs and cartoons. We can get a very scary weapon. On the one hand, we should strive for the development of information technology, but we should also be attentive to this topic. We see and know that today huge sums are spent on such software. Including influencing the minds of believers. They have divided them into different categories. I think that this is not a new thing. Some people like sports, fashion and music. And there is a religious segment and through it they try to torture the minds of young people. Of course, they have a desire to control them and use these people as a mass. To direct them to do something through them,” said Albir Krganov.
According to Krganov, a few years ago there was a rumor in Moscow that Muslims were being killed in Myanmar and that several hundred people gathered in front of the embassy. However, no official religious structure gave its blessing to this, and then when they started to look into it, it turned out that these were all films from four years ago.
“So people don’t even sort it out, but such work is being done today. Our traditional religions need to go into this field and offer an alternative, but not stray from the core values. With a new approach to make it interesting. I think that only religions have such non-alternative potential. What is against religions is in Satanism or other pseudo-values. They just play on the opposites of what religion offers. And we lack the ability to convey our main and correct values to our youth in a modern language,” said Albir Krganov.
Albir Krganov also noted that religious figures alone would not be able to cope with the negative manifestations of the development of information technologies. In his opinion, it is necessary to create positive games for children, where there will be no murders. And for this purpose not only representatives of traditional religions, but also psychologists and film directors are required.