Friday, December 04, 2015

28 Xmas Stories, 7

The Robot Who Didn’t Believe In Santa Claus

There was this one robot once who didn’t believe in Santa Claus, about which you might say Big whoop I bet a lot of robots don’t believe in Santa Claus, or, if you are smarter even you might say I bet a lot of robots don’t believe, period because you would be thinking that robots, being cold bundles of electricity and chrome and diodes and sometimes spare parts, aren’t programmed to believe and that circuit boards can’t engage in the kind of faith-based speculation that belief entails.

But robots can believe things. It’s just that this particular robot did not happen to believe in this particular thing, Santa Claus.

It didn’t have any real reason for not believing in Santa Claus, but if this was pointed out to it the robot would say, in a metallic voice that still sounded a little condescending despite having zero inflection:

If there was a reason to not believe in something, then that would imply that there were reasons to believe in something. 

if there is a reason to believe in a thing, that reason might be proven False

the robot would then argue, using its logic circuits like a cudgel:

Anything that can be proven False might be also proven True, and anything that can be proven to be True might possibly exist, and if it might possibly exist then one should believe in it – because why would a logical being such as say a robot who doesn’t believe in Santa Claus

(it would add parenthetically)

deny the possible existence of something that is possible? If something is possible it is illogical not to believe that it might exist, so the only reason to not believe in something is if one has no reason for not believing in that thing.

By the time it finished that line of argument, which went on for much longer than I have laid down here, most people had tired of the robot and walked away.   

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