The Lutheran Witness

Transhumanism: The Danger of Humans without Bodies

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Comments (6)
  1. Derek G. says:

    Somewhere along the Star Trek continuum, an author wrote Dr. McCoy complaining that the transporter effectively killed you the first time you used it. Your molecules were broken down, and the pattern was sent to a receiver that made a new you from another set of molecules. But the soul was lost.

    With transhumanism, I wonder if the uploaded “mind” will actually be as robust as the original. Or will it be more of a duplicate, where current memories could be stored but new ones aren’t formed?

    There’s a lot of good sci-fi in the topic of transhumanism. But I’m not convinced of the potential. The “singularity” has more likelihood of happening.

  2. matt gregory says:

    Technological progress is real and just as a caveman couldn’t conceive of ever flying between continents, travelling to the moon, not dying of most any infection humans today cannot begin to grasp what will be trivial and common to humans even 50 years from now.

    If you have the imagination to believe in the fairy tales of people who died millennia before science then you surely can look at the change around you and realize that humanity will defeat death all on its own and unlike your fear of death crutch “defeat” that one will be real. And you and your religion will seem as sad and primitive to them as you view the crude religions that preceded your own.

  3. Violet says:

    Interesting perspective, though it lacks awareness of the full potential in human augmentation. Transhumanists believe in the idea of morphological freedom, that one’s body is their own property and no one else’s. (Free will) So the fixation on uploading consciousness is unnecessarily specific. We will modify our biology radically, long before uploading becomes possible. This is in addition to the creation of synthetic organisms for human purposes. Christians ought to be wary of downplaying this as a near term possibility. Yahweh’s “creations” will seem quite wanting in comparison to those borne of human ingenuity.

  4. Charos says:

    This description of singularity is woefully inadequate. Transhumanists do of course consider the option of “uploading” consciousness but to limit the description ignores the wide swath of the field. Singularity for example can also theoretically be reached peace meal. The integration of technology and genetics over time. The transhumanist would point to the fact we are ALREADY doing this, we have artificial limbs, artificial organs, we perform skin grafts, so let’s say a technology comes along that increases is, or creativity, or memory by installing, neuron by neuron, nanomachines and processors in those centres of the brain? What if an eye can be installed that gives the blind vision by wiring it into the sight centre of the brain? At what point would a “human” cease to be human? When 50% of their body is computerised? 60%? If I lose my leg and obtain a steel one that happens to be superior to the original, how does that affect my humanity? If my memory is made more photographic and perfect, would I cease being human? Another means toward singularity is through genetics, or integrating consciousness in a gestalt manner in the manner we see in something like ghost in the shell or the matrix, being “plugged in” to one another. Another approach is sheer genetics, if I can have a child with a 170 iq and I choose not to, but all their classmates are genius level intellects,you think that kid with a 100 iq is going to thank a parent for opting to make them stupider than their peers?

    The fact is, we’re already moving toward this point very quickly, at the rate technology is moving we’re going to have computers that can pass the Turing test within 50 years or so, that isn’t a matter of IF, but WHEN…whether that intelligence is an integration of us, or pure ai, it will still be a sentient, thinking being…how we act toward it will speak as to the quality of our species…

  5. George Graham says:

    Everybody wants to go to Heaven, but nobody wants to die.

  6. Andre Ráth says:

    As a person advocating for certain aspects of transhumanism, I think you have the definition of transhumanism wrong. You say transhumanists want to upload themselves into computers, and conquer mortality, but that is only a subsection of transhumanists. Some only want to remove genetic diseases, some wish for further integration with technology- Perhaps they have some crippling disability, and see their biology limit their potential (the blind can’t be pilots, even if a blind person wished to be one. The color blind can never achieve their full potential as artists). Still some wish for a longer life (not always immortality), so that they can do more good in their time on earth.