No such thing
Within this website I explore whether there is a spiritual realm, a supernatural realm, containing God, mind, souls, consciousness with its contents (ideas, emotions, love, reason, etc) — this, from a purely philosophical and unreligious point of view.
In this article, I first assume there is a spiritual realm so as to explore the implications; then I present my conclusions elsewhere.
No such thing as utopia in this physical realm (universe). Perhaps it is possible for there to be a physical realm having different properties that is a utopia for the conscious creatures residing within?
Those proposing and implementing a utopian society often cause worse suffering. Even if you could design and implement a semi-utopian society, subsequent generations would warp it into something non-utopian.
Over time, humans have improved societies, and science has improved the quality of life, but the amount of suffering has also increased (WWI and WWII and etc). And societies get worse as well; maybe there is always forward progress in general? But when the oil runs out I think a lot of the improvements will revert.
There is no basis for a rational foundation of morality.
For example: assume morality is based on something like the golden rule, to not cause needless pain and suffering, and to maximize happiness and fulfillment of others and self.
Sounds great, but it doesn't work. As soon as everyone is trained (indoctrinated?) to hold these values, an autocrat will come along to take advantage of the weakness this causes, and everyone will find themselves slaves.
We live in conflict, and moral rules must include and account for human nature which is, just like other animals, savage and brutish.
Looking to religion to supply "true" morality doesn't solve the problem. Religious people and their doctrines have no better morality than anyone else. The evidence: both historical and present examples of moral atrocities committed in the name of some religion.
Is utopia yet-future, some sort of re-created new-heavens-and-new-earth world having nothing bad and only good?
Our current life can be considered utopia for most people if you do the following: include only the good parts and ignore the bad parts, if you cut-and-paste all the good parts and string them together (assuming the bad parts aren't too bad).
God is the creator of everything good and beautiful, and only inhabits these good parts anyway, so utopia consists in those parts of our life God indwells. Utopia is God's view of our life. We would expect such a cut-and-paste life to be all chopped up, but from God's perspective there is continuity from one good moment to the next.
What good does it do us if God has such an exalted view of reality, if we suffer?
Cellular respiration converts ADP to ATP using glucose, oxygen, water, and phosphorus.
By having a biological molecule containing phosphorus (or any other element), this means: whatever function of the body this biochemical system performs requires having an adequate supply of phosphorus. The correct amount; in the right place; and in the right form. So by creating a universe out of physical matter you automatically established that it will have scarce resources. Once you have scarce resource you will have competition for these resources, and the stronger will vanquish the weaker to get them.
Once you have scarce resources and competition you no longer have the possibility of a utopia. Utopia requires unlimited resources with no competition.
The competition in this universe results in animals eating each other alive and savage dictators committing genocide.
I was driving on the twisty curvy street near my cabin and a deer was feeding on a berry bush on the opposite side of the street. He/she was standing in the street and had to decide whether to stop eating and run away as I drove by. What a horrible life, to have to eat your meals in mortal fear like this.
Then soon after, as I returned, I saw the deer walking through a field nearby and I realized that a hunter might shoot it and kill it since it is hunting season. What a horrible world, that creatures have to worry about being shot at. (Even if they don't realize it, it's still horrible.)
And it's horrible for humans too, in many way, suffering untold indignities and abuses.
This world is not utopia.
If there is a future utopia, where is it? Can't be the physical universe because this place is obviously not utopia, having pain and suffering.
Is the future utopia purely spiritual? Or is there a new kind of "physical" universe? (the new heavens and new earth?)
An idea about utopia: After you die, your soul has access to every conscious experience you had while alive. I don't mean the memories of events; this is not the same as the actual conscious experience of the events. (This assumes these are recorded somewhere, probably in the spiritual realm.)
After you die, for all eternity, your soul can "re-live" these experiences and create playlists of them and hide the bad experiences it doesn't want to experience anymore. Like putting together photo albums (or in this case, "experiential albums").
If you had enough good life experiences so it never got boring, this sounds like a pretty good deal. And you can improve your future utopia by having a lot of really good life experiences, and by not dwelling on bad feelings and etc.
Two categories of people that this is a lousy deal: (1) Someone who, when in the womb, just after they first start to experience consciously, they are snuffed out; and (2) those having miserable lives with very few good parts.
This life is not utopia; this universe is not utopia. But what is utopia anyway? I have in mind something like the Christian new heavens and new earth, a magical world having no pain and suffering, no evil. I certainly don't mean the Marxist ideal of utopia in which people (and animals) still suffer and die.
In utopia, only goodness and beauty exist; there is no badness, no ugliness, no suffering, certainly no pain and evil. True utopia is a realm fully inhabited by God, since God is goodness and beauty, and since he/she is the creator of everything good and beautiful. The only things in utopia are things of God, things created by God.
This universe is not utopia, which we can easily see by comparing it with true utopia as I have defined it.
What is utopia like?
I was looking at photos of all my stuff that was stored in some friends' garage and some storage units. This, in preparation to go back and clean it all out, getting rid of as much as possible. It's emotionally exhausting to choose to part with each item, and so it takes a lot of time preparing, mentally: giving up one treasure one day, and another the next day, and on and on, day after day; falling in bed emotionally drained at the end of each day.
Each item triggered a flood of memories. One of the themes of my life has been to recapture it all, to re-live all the wonderful experiences. I want to hang on to each item so I can remember and re-live the life I lived before this item ended up in storage. (Before discarding items, I plan to take a photo of each, so I can look at them via photos. But then I will have to hang on to the photos and ensure I never lose them.)
I also do this by writing down key events as they occur, with dates. Then I can refer to this to reconstruct the events as my memory of the details slowly fades with time.
This all got me to thinking, that maybe what utopia (after death) is: we have full access to every experience we had while alive. Not merely the memory of it, but the conscious lived experience of it. Then we can use these to create the equivalent of photo albums (life albums) with the experiences organized in different ways. Then we can re-play then and re-experience them just as we do when listening to a symphony composed and created by a great composer.
Someone who lived a life of severe suffering would first delete all the experiences of suffering before composing their utopian albums of lived life. Or maybe there is a way to re-live these experiences without the pain and suffering. Perhaps you can edit them to maximize the joy in re-living them?
You wouldn't need a body in this utopia because the re-lived experiences include the experience from a body.
Perhaps this would not be such a grand utopia for a person who died young after having only a few conscious experiences, just after their brain became capable of conscious experience.
I was listening to some John Lennon songs with his spirituality and social views expressed. I doubt that if I join in to the cause of peace and love, the world will become a utopia. And what happens when we have global resource depletion (of water, food, energy, and other)?