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A Reminder from a Sex Robot by Gabe Lyons

If you haven’t heard of her yet, let me introduce you to Roxxxy, the world’s first robotic sex doll.

She was all the rave at the 2010 Adult Entertainment Expo in Las Vegas a couple of weeks ago. Roxxxy comes complete with different personalities her owner can choose from. She does more than facilitate a sex act; Roxxxy’s been designed to carry on simple conversations. Using artificial intelligence technology, she can talk about everything from football and cars to more intimate conversation. Her creator, Douglas Hines, says the real aim is to make the doll someone the owner can talk to and relate to. “Sex only goes so far — then you want to be able to talk to the person,” Hines said.[1] She is “able to talk, listen, carry on a conversation, feel your touch and be your true friend.”[2]

If you are like me, it may cause you to wonder, “Are we really at a place where society has devalued relationship to the point that a talking sex robot really makes sense? Is it possible that people are willing to pay $7,000 for that?”

Maybe.

Let me ask you: When was the last time you had a meaningful conversation with someone? I’m talking about an eye-to-eye, soul-to-soul kind of interaction.

If it hasn’t been recently, I’d understand. Consider your competition. Over 350 million Facebook users refer to their average of 135 digital acquaintances as “friends.”[3] And many have come to believe that “community” is something to “log in” and out of, not a bond achieved over years of pain and mutual sacrifice. Some of us, if we’re being honest, struggle to relate well with our own husbands or wives, or to carry on deep conversations with friends. Could it be possible that we are losing the idea of intimate, connected, authentic and sacrificial relationship to an entire generation?

Every human being longs for relationship. In Simply Christian, N.T. Wright calls the “hunger for relationship” one of four signposts that point spiritual seekers to the existence of a Judeo-Christian God.[4] It’s been innate since God made Eve for Adam. He was lonely. He wanted companionship. So God granted it to him in the form of woman.

Nothing has changed today. We all want relationship. And in some cases, as evidenced by the creation of Roxxxy, some people will go to extreme lengths to find it—even if it means talking to a slab of wire and stylized rubber.

Which provokes a few questions.

- How many of your recent responses to others could have been just as easily handled by a Roxxxy-style, scripted robot? Are we listening and responding to people as if we really cared? How are we doing at feeding the appetite for real relationship everyone around us longs for?

- On the flipside, when is the last time you took the risk of sharing your real feelings, weaknesses, or struggles with a true friend? You know the type, the kind of people that get in your face and aren’t afraid to tell you what you really need to hear.

- And lastly, what does the porn industry’s recognition that sex is about something more than just an orgasm say about the way God designed the human soul?

[1] Peter Svensson, AP Technology Writer: Sex Robot Appeals to the Mind. Associated Press: http://www.news4jax.com/technology/22199437/detail.html

[2] Renay San Miguel, Tech News World, Roxxxy Sexbot: It’s Not Her looks, It’s Her Personalities: http://www.technewsworld.com/story/Roxxxy-Sexbot-Its-Not-Her-Looks-Its-Her-Personalities-69076.html?wlc=1263268074

[3] http://www.facebook.com/press/info.php?statistics

[4] N.T. Wright points out four “echoes of a voice” that are signposts for the spiritual seeker. The others are a longing for justice, a delight in beauty and the quest for spirituality. See Simply Christian by N.T. Wright.



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