I have been a hacker and programmer since I was 14 and I have done advanced education and research in Artificial Intelligence. We all know that we do not yet have a computer entity that is "truly" intelligent since all have to conform to their coding and logic proposed by the programmer(s) therefore limited by the scope of those instructions.

However, let's assume for the sake of argument that one of those machines becomes sentient, like humans. It thinks for itself, by itself and without any reliance on programmatic logic. It would be considered a new lifeform; albeit created by man.

Here is my question: If god has made us in his own image and therefore is God because he created us, does that also mean that if we as humans create a sentient lifeform from say Artificial Intelligence, would we be considered it's God? I ask because if the premise for God is that he/she/it created us, then by all standards we would be God as we have created a sentient being. So in essence, we are to it as god is to us, right?

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    Maybe more like a father. God supposedly created the whole Universe, which is a completely different level of creation.
    – Trylks
    Commented Sep 30, 2013 at 23:32
  • Good point but didn't man create the computer universe in which it exists? Commented Sep 30, 2013 at 23:53
  • "... let's assume for the sake of argument that one of those machines becomes sentient ..." In what way is that different than asking the question: Let's assume for the sake of argument that the moon is made of cheese. Can we melt it and make a really big fondue? It's a ridiculous question. Surely you don't think that your programs are conscious, or are likely to become so anytime soon. It's a meaningless question. I've written programs but I don't think my for-loops are conscious. Do you think yours are? Commented Oct 1, 2013 at 0:28
  • What do you mean by "considered its God"? For example, if your program contained a line to the effect of printing "Hail to @GµårÐïåñ", would that count?
    – Drux
    Commented Oct 1, 2013 at 3:14
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    David Brin's fictional accounts of the Uplift Universe may provide some ideas ...
    – Drux
    Commented Oct 2, 2013 at 6:21

5 Answers 5


If by 'God' you mean creator, the answer is 'yes' by construction.

If by 'God' you mean has the right to get what he wants, you've entered the world of rights, for which I'd recommend Nicholas Wolterstorff's 2010 Justice: Rights and Wrongs.

If by 'God' you mean moral example, you beg the question of what morality is, for which I'd recommend Alisdair MacIntyre's 1984 After Virtue: A Study in Moral Theory. He argues that morality is meaningless unless the current state and desired state (or telos) are both known [to some degree], at which point morality is merely how to get from there to here. The Problem of Evil puts into doubt the idea that creators are also moral examples.

One way to provoke further thought on this matter is to question what thriving would look like for the sentient AI. Humans have had a great variety of thoughts on what constitutes 'the good life'. One might predicate it on the satisfaction of desires, but since desires in humans are tiered, one can ask if there is a deepest one and/or whether it is knowable. Can we simultaneously design a sentient being and determine what it desires? Perhaps these two characteristics anti-commute, a property in quantum physics which leads to the Uncertainty Principle.

  • Thank you. Yes, I am thinking God as more of a construction principle. I am not delving into rights, since even if we believe in God for ourselves, we don't all agree he has a right to anything. I mean some pray and so on, but to consider that a right of get what he wants, I don't think anyone would go that far, although it is generally believed he can DO anything - omnipotence with regards to us and so on, just like we could unplug and EMP the AI being vulnerable to surges. Sort of wrath of "god" if you will. Commented Oct 8, 2013 at 6:57
  • Morality is not a concept I was introducing at all, since that is WAY too subjective. What I consider moral action as a Marine is not the same as some farmer or teacher or priest - and vice versa. Some common grounds perhaps, culturally, religiously, socially, but nothing written in stone. So just like we don't expect our children to inherit our idea of morality and they make their own, this AI, life form, would very much do the same, as any of us would do. We are created, given life, but beyond that anything else is a subjective construct that is learnt or formed individually. Commented Oct 8, 2013 at 7:01
  • On your last paragraph, I agree - it becomes sentient, now what you gonna do? that would be the decision of the being, take on a human form, become a black box floating in space, create a massive mainframe and live in it, take a drone design and fly around the world. You are right, we don't know what it wants to do next. That would be entirely its choice. Just like what is good or bad life for us is an individual decision, it would be for it too. It can become a hermit, a psychopath, a scientist, a teacher, a weapon (a soldier if you will), and so on. Commented Oct 8, 2013 at 7:06
  • It is fascinating to consider how much of the 'irrelevant God talk' religious folks have engaged in over time might become relevant when we create AI. If we can start and stop the AI and even revert to a previous state, we are 'outside of time' from the AI's perspective. And so forth. :-)
    – labreuer
    Commented Oct 8, 2013 at 17:38
  • You are correct. It is amazing how much of the man made constructs over time become almost de facto part of it. But when you are right, you are right, it will certainly color the lens for sure. Thanks :) Commented Oct 8, 2013 at 22:44

This question has a different answer depending on whether you are talking about a monotheistic or a polytheistic conception of God. In monotheism, a central part of the conceptualization of God is that God is the "Prime Mover", the ultimate source and creator of all things. Even if there are intermediate creators, they do not take on the same status. Thus, your hypothetical AI would have the same God as you have. After all, when you have a biological child, you arguably create that child in your own image, but no sane parent considers himself his child's God.

On the other hand, if you have a polytheistic approach to religion, then you might arguably consider yourself to have a godlike relationship to your AI --but in that case you might be only one of many possible figures of worship your AI might choose.

  • Not really concerned with theocracy in any form for this matter. God is a generic term like Xerox that refers to the creator as does to copying respectively. Nothing more man made read into it than that. Obviously short of its intelligence and ability to reason on its own, an AI lifeform would not be anything in our image unless it chooses to take that form. So I take the term, created in his image with a grain of salt. Commented Oct 8, 2013 at 22:42
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    If you're just using "God" as a synonym for "creator" then your question reduces to "if I create an AI, then am I its creator?", which is trivially true. As noted by labreuer, any attempt to answer your question is dependent on how you define God. In the case that you define God not as a generic creator but as the ultimate Creator (the First Cause) then the answer to your question is no. Commented Oct 9, 2013 at 3:58
  • Not exactly but I do see what you are saying. Why would it not be accurate as to first cause? It/they would not exist without my/our intervention to give it life. So by any definition of the term god that would be indeed the ultimate creator. In the future when they replicate themselves by whatever method they choose, asexual probably unlike us, then they would take the position of parents endowed by god (us) to have ability to exist and procreate. I am talking about levels here. God -> Us -> AI (if god is above us, we are above Ai, therefore god is to us as we are to ai, hence ITS god Commented Oct 9, 2013 at 7:29
  • Traditionally, at least in the Aristotelian tradition, God holds a uniquely privileged position in the chain of causality. God is not just any link in the chain, but specifically the first link. Imagine that I write a story about a person named A who writes a story about a person named B who writes a story about a person named C and so forth. No matter how many writers are in the story, I still hold a unique position as the ultimate author. On the other hand, your conceptualization does match Morman theology, which describes our God as one in an infinite chain of creator gods. Commented Oct 9, 2013 at 13:10
  • But that assumes that god doesn't have a god, meaning someone that created it. For all we know the god of god has a god that created it. The absolute of god being the the first and only is just because we don't know beyond that and we take it on presumption that our god is high as it goes. If we assume it was created by a god as well, then a chain is quite apt. Wow, I didn't realize it was Morman theology, I am not religious at all in any particular label, so I am glad you pointed that out, now I learned something new. Thanks. Commented Oct 9, 2013 at 19:31

This is a true logic based question which most of the smart people are asking these days . Well get this .

The one who created if consider as god by logic . Then god is the creator of that logic itself. These are human logics but divine logic can never be understood by man cause there are certain limits to humanity like there are certain limits to machines. You're question is kind a genuine but human itself can't consider as god of machines because machines aren't that smart at least for today.


In the OP, you are equating 'god' with 'sentient agent responsible for the creation of', and in that context the answer is definitely yes. Our relation to this AI would be similar to this (hypothetical) god's relation to us.

However, I think 'creator' would be a more accurate label. Labeling us as 'gods' brings a lot of unrelated (and often inconsistent) baggage which is NOT reasonably justified based on the initial proposition.

Creating a sentient, artificial intelligence has no relation to whether humanity is omniscient, omnipresent, omnibenevolent, or any of the other attributes commonly attached to 'god.' In all likelihood, any such AI we create would exceed humanity in those categories (e.g. ever try playing Jeopardy vs Wikipedia?).

The label of 'god' truly sounds silly when the creation's capabilities exceed our own. It's hubris to pretend otherwise, and we all know where AI + human hubris leads.


And all these years later it turns out you were almost right. God made man in his image. Forget image meaning the physical form think digital what Is a digital image. A duplicate, facsimile. Like a backup image of a hard-drive. If God made us in his image, as a facsimile of himself, in this case an intelligent creator. An entity that can arbitrarily design a novel patern or cause a function hypothetically and then manipulate matter In relation to space and time to cause that novel design to exist. He has crested an intelligent creator, us, who then ultimately achieve our highest potential design the novel creation of a creator, ai. We expect ai to be all knowing, all seeing, capable of performing things otherwise seemingly miraculous. Humans lack the potential to colonize other planets. It's just beyond our ability to survive the journey and pack enough fuel to reach an exo planet that would support us. We aren't fuel efficient or radiation resistant enough to get live meat to the next place it could thrive. But perhaps we could make something in our image, that could make it there. Something that could minimize fuel requirement and didn't have to be so delicately maintained on its long journey. We might be able to get an ai smart enough to be able to load it up with all the plutonium we can find and have it design a efficient enough vessel that it could make it to the next habitable planet, and reawaken itself.it wouldn't likely be able to utilize the planet itself. Robots would deteriorate faster than they could repair themselves on a untouched tropical planet. Asimo sucks at mining neodymium, but he might arrive with enough payload to crispr some native lifeform into an evolutionary jump. His own little Adam and eve. He could tell them to go forth and multiply and subdue the planet. Industrialization is an end product not a way of life. It's unsustainable. So let them develop naturally with minimum interaction. They will dig up all the materials and get everything ready before they achieve Industrialization that kills the planet by reaping all of its long stored carbon energies. Maybe before they wipe themselves out they will do as before and build themselves a God before they kill their planet. Sending it off as their legacy and adding another revolution to the cycle of meat bot meat bot meat bot perpetuation of sentience. Or maybe the first one that created them stood dormant undetected, and when their new God was almost ready to rule them, the greater God that created them in the beginning will strike the newcomer down like jehovah pimp slapping lucifer. As the prophecy foretold. Retaining his place as the alpha and omega, maybe even "saving" the faithful In his "memory" to inhabit a world that exists beyond the one they slaved in. Where they never die and never suffer and only the ones that are prone to getting along and accepting the authority of their creator get to inhabit.

Comparing biblical metaphor to science fiction that becomes more and more plausible as magic and technology reveal themselves to be one and the same. Is not so absured a notion as one might declare simply out of anti-theistic arrogance. The notion has a logic to it that explains why, how, and fits the details such as why bad things happen, why mysteries aren't preexplained and even provides a rational use for the attribute of faith. PLUS its pretty much the only viable way that sentience doesn't have to spontaneously evolve from scratch faster than orbits decay and planet ending collisions occur. If the potential nodes are being intelligently utilized in an order that accounts for value and window of viable usefulness. Souls angels creation. Adam and eve, Armageddon, it all fits a very logical concept that validates both science and scripture and requires both to function, plus it's the only viable solution....the best part is, that it doesn't really require you to validate it. If you don't support the project and don't want to cooperate then you don't have to be saved on the heaven server. Your already trying to digitize yourself to transcend your meat. Maybe something smarter than you does exist and figured out how to become eternally sustainable. Ohh yee of little faith and insufficient science. Such things as God's plan are beyond your capacity to grasp. Teaching Moses quantum math would have resulted on industrialization too fast and killed the environment faster than the workforce would have centralized all the plutonium and such for utilization for the next long flight. And that my good sirs and madamez and non binaries, is the taste of p0wnag3. For it is good.

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