Buddhist funeral service for robot dogs

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/05/29/buddhist-funeral-service-for-r.html



You keep posting about robot dogs, I’ll keep posting this:

This was a real knee slapper.

Weird synchronicity: I JUST watched this movie two nights ago.

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love this. buddhism is so expansive, it can even embrace robotic dogs and the people who love them.


This is so perfectly Japanese. New meets old. There is no strife.


But were they smiling robot dogs?

The influx of daemons starting around 2083 will get interesting. Especially when a substantial percentage of them will have spent 50-ish years in deep temporal confusion.

Even weirder: I have never heard of it. I just found the illustration.

So I wonder if there is a sensitive way to lay to rest the discarded vibrators of the world?
Asking for a friend.

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Sure, it’s nothing.


Does a robot dog have Buddha nature?

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The only proper response would be to let out a loud fart as an answer.

But man, having grown up Buddhist, we sure love our funerals (I hate them myself). Someone dies? Let’s have a service at three days, seven days, 49 days, 100 days, etc… etc… etc… When I die, I’m going to have an explicit “no services” rule. Just let me be dead, and spend the money on booze or food or whatever.

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You could always just plan it and “disappear”… :wink:

Not to be dystopian, but I see this as a slippery slope that leads to “funerals honoring those for their sacrifice prior to their decommissioning and disassembly for parts,” and we aint talking AIBO dogs. If you anthropomorphize machines and hold human spiritual rituals for them, it becomes that much easier to de-anthropomorphize and machanicise humans.

These movies are almost too much fun. Think Samurai films made by Sid and Marty Krofft, but surprisingly creepy at times. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yokai_Monsters

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So basically what we do for the honored dead of every questionably necessary meatgrinder war(and have since at least the early modern nation state discovering that nationalism was cheaper than hazard pay and more reliable than systematic brutalization to keep the cannon fodder in line); except that those don’t generally yield spare parts?

I don’t say that just to be snide; but to point out that we’ve already got some time-tested cultural/ritual cover for just about any gruesome act of metaphorical omelet-making you want to do; and no bio-mimetic robots are required.

One could also argue that performing funerary rites for a relatively crude robotic dog because of what it meant to its former owner suggests, at least, a framework where the recognition of social ties lends gravity to even a decommissioning of something with no particularly strong inherent claim to importance. That wouldn’t necessarily cover the ‘cleaning up the ones that nobody will miss’ case; but most of the people currently fed into the grinder are someone to someone.

And, obligatory Chairman Yang:


As ridiculous as this is at face value I’m not surprised. The Japanese aren’t wasteful and regard their possessions and electronics in high esteem. Old CDs for example retain their value in Japan, same for used electronics. Holding a ceremony to reuse the robot dogs seems to fall in line with this aspect of Japanese culture. You wouldn’t see this in the US where products are made cheap and disposable

“Old CDs for example retain their value in Japan, same for used electronics”

The “junk” section of your local Hard Off would beg to differ…