Author Topic: Transhumanism  (Read 8183 times)

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Offline Shiny

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Transhumanism
« on: June 27, 2011, 10:20:51 PM »
Wanted to open up a thread and discuss this issue because I feel it will be more prevelant in a few decades time.

How close do you think we will be until all suffering becomes eliminated from the human race? Or changing the genetic code to live longer?

I'm sure our world would turn into a Wall-E and Brave New World scenario. I do believe it is the worst and most dangerous idea ever poised by humans right next to artifical intelligence that could create their own emotions/thoughts/feelings ala Terminator. I wonder how much of this cultural movement is really science though.
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Offline ozgeorge

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #1 on: June 27, 2011, 11:16:46 PM »
I don't know what the future holds but I know that God will be there.
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Offline John of the North

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #2 on: June 27, 2011, 11:25:54 PM »
Wanted to open up a thread and discuss this issue because I feel it will be more prevelant in a few decades time.

How close do you think we will be until all suffering becomes eliminated from the human race? Or changing the genetic code to live longer?

I'm sure our world would turn into a Wall-E and Brave New World scenario. I do believe it is the worst and most dangerous idea ever poised by humans right next to artifical intelligence that could create their own emotions/thoughts/feelings ala Terminator. I wonder how much of this cultural movement is really science though.

Transhumanism may be a demonic ideology, but I'm reasonably confident it will be headed off by resource scarcity.
"Christianity is not a philosophy, not a doctrine, but life." - Elder Sophrony (Sakharov)

Offline bogdan

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #3 on: June 28, 2011, 12:25:59 AM »
I think it is probably technically possible, but I really don't see the visions of Ray Kurzweil coming true any time soon. Certainly not by 2040 or whenever. Not with our world as unstable as it's getting. Such visions could only arise in the heady pre-dot com bubble days.

@ John - Only until the nanobots figure out how to cannibalize the matter of the planet itself and gobble it all up in their mad dash of replication. :D

I'm not worried. They want to live forever, and I already know I am going to. My concern is with ensuring it will be a happy eternity and not a sad one.
« Last Edit: June 28, 2011, 12:27:51 AM by bogdan »

Offline Shiny

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2011, 01:57:23 AM »
Wanted to open up a thread and discuss this issue because I feel it will be more prevelant in a few decades time.

How close do you think we will be until all suffering becomes eliminated from the human race? Or changing the genetic code to live longer?

I'm sure our world would turn into a Wall-E and Brave New World scenario. I do believe it is the worst and most dangerous idea ever poised by humans right next to artifical intelligence that could create their own emotions/thoughts/feelings ala Terminator. I wonder how much of this cultural movement is really science though.

Transhumanism may be a demonic ideology, but I'm reasonably confident it will be headed off by resource scarcity.

Could you possibly expand on this?
“There is your brother, naked, crying, and you stand there confused over the choice of an attractive floor covering.”

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Offline JamesRottnek

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #5 on: July 02, 2011, 01:46:18 PM »
In my opinion, which is not the most informed scientific opinion in the world (I am by no means a theoretical physicist or even an engineer, nor do I fancy myself as such), disease and suffering will never be wiped out by mankind (by God, one day, but not until the end of times).  This is because single-celled organisms are CONSTANTLY evolving.  They take on new forms that are immune to medications existing when they do so, and consequently, take new research to fight.  Then there are things like AIDS and Ebola which haven't always, if I'm not mistaken, been around.  Plus all of the potential for a man-made virus (which is why I really think that it is dangerous for governments to play around with weaponizing single-celled organisms, and what not), either by a government, or by a terrorist group.  Not to mention the fact that it will be nearly impossible (scientifically speaking) to prevent accidental death - something that is probably (I can't really speak from personal experience, having only known a few people who have died, and none of them unexpectedly, really) a lot more emotionally troubling than death from a long-term disease or old age.  Then of course there are the intentional deaths (i.e. suicide and murder).  These things cause suffering.  That is just suffering from death (and in the case of some diseases, long-term pain).  It doesn't even take into account all of the ways we can damage each other emotionally, even through something as simple and easy as cruel words.

As for the genetic code being altered to extend life, I guess my opinion would depend on what is meant by "altered."  I know that scientists are close to (or appear to a layman to be) solving Progeria (sp?) and once they do that, I imagine it is only a matter of time before such medications can be applied to normal persons to slow down the ageing process. 

As to the larger topic of Transhumanism, I would say it is - or at least can be - demonic.  My reason for thinking such is that it stems from fear, a fear of death.  This is not the normal type of fear of death, that almost everyone has, which stems from not knowing exactly what is to await you on the other side.  Rather, this type of fear of death stems from a fear of total annihilation because the majority of Transhumanists are atheists or agnostics.  Atheists and agnostics do not believe that there is a God (real agnostics only accept the possibility of God).  When you don't believe that there is a God, and you don't believe in the soul - which inevitably comes from atheism and agnosticism - you cannot believe in existence after physical death because life becomes nothing but chemical processes, there is nothing more to it.  Transhumanists make absurd claims (such as completely integrating humanity and computers by the middle of the century) because they are frightened and want to believe that they will continue to be, 300 years after their birth.  They don't want to face the possibility that they can cease to be.  What makes Transhumanism demonic is that it takes people away from thinking about life and the after-life by focusing on a search within themselves and a search for God, and twists that fear of ceasing to exist and of death into a technological search for the next big thing that can keep them going in their present life.  It is a demonic delusion that leads people away from God.
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Offline CRCulver

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #6 on: July 02, 2011, 02:13:28 PM »
Transhumanist thinking doesn't take God into account much, true. Still, I find most of the "it's unnatural!" arguments against transhumanism to apply to conventional medicine, yet no one bats an eye at researchers searching for diets, medication and pacemakers that can extend life further.  Is extending life by 20 or 30 years OK, but 300 years is automatically a demonic pursuit? Where do we draw the line?

I imagine most people interested in transhumanism are aware that, in a universe marked by entropy, there's no real physical immortality by our own efforts. From a Christian perspective, there's still room for God's mercy and Christ's atoning death on the cross.
« Last Edit: July 02, 2011, 02:15:01 PM by CRCulver »

Offline JamesRottnek

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #7 on: July 02, 2011, 04:31:04 PM »
Transhumanist thinking doesn't take God into account much, true. Still, I find most of the "it's unnatural!" arguments against transhumanism to apply to conventional medicine, yet no one bats an eye at researchers searching for diets, medication and pacemakers that can extend life further.  Is extending life by 20 or 30 years OK, but 300 years is automatically a demonic pursuit? Where do we draw the line?

I imagine most people interested in transhumanism are aware that, in a universe marked by entropy, there's no real physical immortality by our own efforts. From a Christian perspective, there's still room for God's mercy and Christ's atoning death on the cross.

If this is directed at me, I just want to clarify.  I don't think there is anything wrong with their goals of extending human life (though I do think there is something wrong with massive integration of computers and humanity, especially to the point of "uploading" our minds onto computers, because it shows a fundamental disrespect for creation, and a disunity between body and soul which is unOrthodox) for hundreds of years, per se.  Rather, it is their reasoning.  It is because they despise the idea of God, and because they are being led by demonic delusions down a path to distract them from God.  When you are convinced that if you live to 2040, you will be able to live forever on earth, you don't much need God.  You lose focus on Him, because you are too focused on extending your life here.  It's like a story about a man (I am sure there is a movie somewhere) who finds out he has cancer, and will die in one year.  So, he has two options.  He could spend that time with his family growing closer to them, and with Church, growing closer to God.  Alternatively, he could spend all of that time trying to discover a cure for his cancer and doing anything possible to fight it, at the cost of his relationship with his family.  He fails, and then dies realizing how he wasted what time he had, on a search for more time.   That, to me, is why Transhumanism is demonic.
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Offline John of the North

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #8 on: July 02, 2011, 05:00:04 PM »
Wanted to open up a thread and discuss this issue because I feel it will be more prevelant in a few decades time.

How close do you think we will be until all suffering becomes eliminated from the human race? Or changing the genetic code to live longer?

I'm sure our world would turn into a Wall-E and Brave New World scenario. I do believe it is the worst and most dangerous idea ever poised by humans right next to artifical intelligence that could create their own emotions/thoughts/feelings ala Terminator. I wonder how much of this cultural movement is really science though.

Transhumanism may be a demonic ideology, but I'm reasonably confident it will be headed off by resource scarcity.

Could you possibly expand on this?

The demonic connection?? Or the resource scarcity??
"Christianity is not a philosophy, not a doctrine, but life." - Elder Sophrony (Sakharov)

Offline Shiny

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #9 on: July 02, 2011, 06:18:03 PM »
Wanted to open up a thread and discuss this issue because I feel it will be more prevelant in a few decades time.

How close do you think we will be until all suffering becomes eliminated from the human race? Or changing the genetic code to live longer?

I'm sure our world would turn into a Wall-E and Brave New World scenario. I do believe it is the worst and most dangerous idea ever poised by humans right next to artifical intelligence that could create their own emotions/thoughts/feelings ala Terminator. I wonder how much of this cultural movement is really science though.

Transhumanism may be a demonic ideology, but I'm reasonably confident it will be headed off by resource scarcity.

Could you possibly expand on this?

The demonic connection?? Or the resource scarcity??
The resource scarcity?
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Offline biro

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #10 on: July 02, 2011, 07:27:14 PM »
On a side note, did anybody read "Robocalypse" yet? It's a novel, and it deals with a similar topic. I was wondering if it was any good.  :)
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Offline John of the North

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #11 on: July 03, 2011, 01:40:28 AM »
Wanted to open up a thread and discuss this issue because I feel it will be more prevelant in a few decades time.

How close do you think we will be until all suffering becomes eliminated from the human race? Or changing the genetic code to live longer?

I'm sure our world would turn into a Wall-E and Brave New World scenario. I do believe it is the worst and most dangerous idea ever poised by humans right next to artifical intelligence that could create their own emotions/thoughts/feelings ala Terminator. I wonder how much of this cultural movement is really science though.

Transhumanism may be a demonic ideology, but I'm reasonably confident it will be headed off by resource scarcity.

Could you possibly expand on this?

The demonic connection?? Or the resource scarcity??
The resource scarcity?

Technological advancement, as predicted by Transhumanists in extreme, is only possible using an energy dense, cheap, and plentiful fuel source. The Earth is pretty much a closed system. Even if it is possible to rapidly advance technology to such a degree, it comes down to resources. The only thing technology can do to resource consumption is improve efficiency. But improvements to efficiency do not decrease consumption, they only increase it. This is because the same input will produce more output.

Or put differently: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qHr8OzaloLM
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Offline orthonorm

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #12 on: July 03, 2011, 02:20:41 AM »
Why ain't GiC here defending his faith?
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Offline primuspilus

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #13 on: July 05, 2011, 11:04:25 AM »
Quote
Transhumanist thinking doesn't take God into account much, true. Still, I find most of the "it's unnatural!" arguments against transhumanism to apply to conventional medicine, yet no one bats an eye at researchers searching for diets, medication and pacemakers that can extend life further.  Is extending life by 20 or 30 years OK, but 300 years is automatically a demonic pursuit? Where do we draw the line?

To me, any time you remove God and replace Him with human glorification it is demonic.

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Offline CRCulver

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #14 on: July 05, 2011, 11:46:13 AM »
To me, any time you remove God and replace Him with human glorification it is demonic.

Do you have anything constructive to contribute or do you just want to raise strawmen?

Offline primuspilus

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #15 on: July 05, 2011, 11:54:35 AM »
Quote
Do you have anything constructive to contribute or do you just want to raise strawmen?

Last time I checked, it was ok to provide my opinion, which if you paid attention, the words, "To me" usually signify an opinion, which I gave. If that makes me a strawman, as you so put it, fine.

primuspilus
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Offline CRCulver

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #16 on: July 05, 2011, 12:01:33 PM »
Last time I checked, it was ok to provide my opinion, which if you paid attention, the words, "To me" usually signify an opinion, which I gave. If that makes me a strawman, as you so put it, fine.

You quoted my post, and then said something that had no bearing on what I said.

Offline primuspilus

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #17 on: July 05, 2011, 01:18:00 PM »
Quote
automatically a demonic pursuit

I gave my opinion based on the above. I just wanted to quote everything so it didnt look like I took it out of context.

primuspilus
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Offline wolf

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #18 on: July 06, 2011, 12:35:31 PM »
My brother is big into transhumanism, and it's quite scary. Not least because it is so obviously rooted in a desire for the same things that Christianity deals with, i.e fear of death and the hope for something better. Considering that we barely know anything about genetic code, or so I'm told, I think we are a long way off eliminating suffering completely.
I do think that it is something that we should oppose though. It seeks to "save" humans by material progress, not to mention aligning itself with unethical practices such as eugenics, euthanasia and abortion. I also think the economic and political impact of the technology that the transhumanists are talking about is something to be feared.

Regarding where to draw the line, I am personally OK with longevity from an ethical standpoint on its own, as it is no different to modern medicine. However, I think we need to take in the reasons why people want their lives extended, as well as the political impact before deciding to support such a technology. For me, that is the more pressing reason not to support it, as well as the mental state and motivations of those who want to live indefinitely. Importing our mind into a computer is going to far IMO.
« Last Edit: July 06, 2011, 12:36:26 PM by wolf »

Offline CBGardner

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #19 on: July 06, 2011, 12:43:01 PM »
Why ain't GiC here defending his faith?

I was thinking I'd see some posts from him/her as well. He's/She's always in on the techno/science babble.
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Offline Iconodule

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #20 on: July 06, 2011, 01:34:44 PM »
Hey, didn't you already start a topic about this before?

http://www.orthodoxchristianity.net/forum/index.php/topic,32067.0.html

Transhumanism is a form of atheist messianism, like Marxism, but even less interesting. 
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Offline Jetavan

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Re: Transhumanism
« Reply #21 on: July 12, 2014, 11:59:50 AM »
Strange. Never thought I'd see Mormons and Transhumanists overlap:

Quote
What is the Mormon Transhumanist Association?

The Mormon Transhumanist Association is an international nonprofit organization that promotes radical flourishing in compassion and creation through technology and religion, as outlined in the Transhumanist Declaration and the Mormon Transhumanist Affirmation....

What is the relation between Mormonism and Transhumanism?

Increasingly, persons are recognizing parallels and complements between Mormon and Transhumanist views. On the one hand, Mormonism is a religion of the Judeo-Christian tradition that advocates immersive discipleship of Jesus Christ that leads to creative and compassionate works. On the other hand, Transhumanism is a mostly secular ideology that advocates ethical use of technology to expand human abilities. However, Mormonism and Transhumanism advocate remarkably similar views of human nature and potential: material beings organized according to law, rapidly advancing knowledge and power, imminent fundamental changes to anatomy and environment, and eventual transcendence of present limitations....
« Last Edit: July 12, 2014, 12:00:16 PM by Jetavan »
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