Gnosis Diary: Life as a Heathen

My personal experiences, including religious and spiritual experiences, community interaction, general heathenry, and modern life on my heathen path, which is Asatru.

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What the Machine Knows

Posted by on in Paths Blogs

A friend of mine asked ChatGPT who I am, and got a pretty cool response. It's posted below. ChatGPT is called an "AI" but it's actually a machine learning program, not a true artificial intelligence. A friend asked it what it knew about me.

The Machine's Response

"Erin Lale is an author, artist, and pagan practitioner with a particular interest in Asatru and Heathenry. She is well-known for her writings on Norse mythology, magic, and spirituality. Erin has written several books and articles on these subjects, sharing her knowledge and experiences with others who are interested in exploring these paths.

One of her notable works is "Asatru For Beginners," a comprehensive guide for those who are new to the Asatru faith and seeking to learn more about its history, beliefs, and practices. The book covers various topics, including the gods and goddesses of the Norse pantheon, rituals, ethics, and the role of magic within the tradition.

In addition to her writing, Erin Lale is also an artist, creating works inspired by her spiritual beliefs and experiences. She has been involved in the pagan community for many years, participating in various events, workshops, and conferences as both a presenter and attendee.

For more information on Erin Lale and her work, you can visit her personal website or social media profiles, where she shares updates about her writing, art, and involvement in the pagan community." 

It probably inevitable that the first version of my book will remain the most famous version, but Asatru For Beginners is out of print now. The new edition is titled Asatru: A Beginner's Guide to the Heathen Path.

The machine's response is pretty accurate. Of course it left things out, but it got what I'm famous for. That's pretty amazing considering a basic google search would return anything with my name in it, including book reviews I've written, media coverage from when I ran for office, sf stories, social media posts that were pictures of cats, and things that were ascribed to me inaccurately. The machine managed to identify what was notable and famous, not just whatever appeared on the websites with the most eyeballs. It's not only better than a search engine, it's better than online encyclopedias, which leave out far too many people and are subject to human bias. Wikipedia had better watch out, there is a new and better way to find out basic info on a topic or about a person.

In other news:

This year I will finally be able to sign my new Asatru book at my local Pagan Pride Day, which will be this fall. It's been a long time since the last PPD here in 2019. My book came out in 2020, so I didn't get to do an in-person book tour when it was published. I'm super excited!

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Erin Lale is the author of Asatru For Beginners, and the updated, longer version of her book, Asatru: A Beginner's Guide to the Heathen Path. Erin has been a gythia since 1989. She was the editor and publisher of Berserkrgangr Magazine, and is admin/ owner of the Asatru Facebook Forum. She also writes science fiction and poetry, ran for public office, is a dyer and fiber artist, was acquisitions editor at a small press, and founded the Heathen Visibility Project.


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