Total Posts:9|Showing Posts:1-9
Jump to topic:

Transhumanism! Felicitous or Nicht?

MaxSterling
Posts: 62
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
9/7/2015 5:18:16 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
I am curious to the general consensus of the Religion forum on this topic. Is Transhumanism capable of being consolidated with your religious view, or lack therof?

As an ideological movement more or less centred around Humanity enforcing its own will on the natural progression of the universe, I can imagine how most people of faith might be resistant to it, but I've met some people with interesting tertiary conditions to their faith.

I have also spoken with some atheists who oppose it as it carries with it some themes of religion; some parts of it are, admittedly, disconcerting to those who value individuality depending on how you look at it.
"But why do you want REVENGE?!"

"I HAVE REASONS!!!!!"
Mobutu
Posts: 325
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
9/7/2015 5:20:59 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 9/7/2015 5:18:16 PM, MaxSterling wrote:
I am curious to the general consensus of the Religion forum on this topic. Is Transhumanism capable of being consolidated with your religious view, or lack therof?

As an ideological movement more or less centred around Humanity enforcing its own will on the natural progression of the universe, I can imagine how most people of faith might be resistant to it, but I've met some people with interesting tertiary conditions to their faith.

I have also spoken with some atheists who oppose it as it carries with it some themes of religion; some parts of it are, admittedly, disconcerting to those who value individuality depending on how you look at it.

I believe that "transhumanism" is totally forbidden under Christianity as we should not mutilate our bodies with such lumps of metal.
MaxSterling
Posts: 62
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
9/7/2015 5:27:14 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 9/7/2015 5:20:59 PM, Mobutu wrote:
At 9/7/2015 5:18:16 PM, MaxSterling wrote:
I am curious to the general consensus of the Religion forum on this topic. Is Transhumanism capable of being consolidated with your religious view, or lack therof?

As an ideological movement more or less centred around Humanity enforcing its own will on the natural progression of the universe, I can imagine how most people of faith might be resistant to it, but I've met some people with interesting tertiary conditions to their faith.

I have also spoken with some atheists who oppose it as it carries with it some themes of religion; some parts of it are, admittedly, disconcerting to those who value individuality depending on how you look at it.

I believe that "transhumanism" is totally forbidden under Christianity as we should not mutilate our bodies with such lumps of metal.

Well it doesn't have to be lumps of metal, some writers have fantasised about simply reaching a point where we can upload the entirety of our consciousness up to a server and exist there until we saw fit to delete ourselves.

I personally don't exactly ride with that camp, I'd rather get metal lumps ;D
"But why do you want REVENGE?!"

"I HAVE REASONS!!!!!"
joetheripper117
Posts: 284
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
9/7/2015 6:04:08 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 9/7/2015 5:27:14 PM, MaxSterling wrote:
At 9/7/2015 5:20:59 PM, Mobutu wrote:
At 9/7/2015 5:18:16 PM, MaxSterling wrote:
I am curious to the general consensus of the Religion forum on this topic. Is Transhumanism capable of being consolidated with your religious view, or lack therof?

As an ideological movement more or less centred around Humanity enforcing its own will on the natural progression of the universe, I can imagine how most people of faith might be resistant to it, but I've met some people with interesting tertiary conditions to their faith.

I have also spoken with some atheists who oppose it as it carries with it some themes of religion; some parts of it are, admittedly, disconcerting to those who value individuality depending on how you look at it.

I believe that "transhumanism" is totally forbidden under Christianity as we should not mutilate our bodies with such lumps of metal.

Well it doesn't have to be lumps of metal, some writers have fantasised about simply reaching a point where we can upload the entirety of our consciousness up to a server and exist there until we saw fit to delete ourselves.

I personally don't exactly ride with that camp, I'd rather get metal lumps ;D

I think it'd be pretty cool if we could be like the Borg from Star Trek, but without all that "Collective" nonsense.
"By all means let's be open-minded, but not so open-minded that our brains drop out."
-Richard Dawkins
"The onus is on you to say why; the onus is not on the rest of us to say why not."
-Richard Dawkins
MaxSterling
Posts: 62
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
9/7/2015 6:05:18 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 9/7/2015 6:04:08 PM, joetheripper117 wrote:
At 9/7/2015 5:27:14 PM, MaxSterling wrote:
At 9/7/2015 5:20:59 PM, Mobutu wrote:
At 9/7/2015 5:18:16 PM, MaxSterling wrote:
I am curious to the general consensus of the Religion forum on this topic. Is Transhumanism capable of being consolidated with your religious view, or lack therof?

As an ideological movement more or less centred around Humanity enforcing its own will on the natural progression of the universe, I can imagine how most people of faith might be resistant to it, but I've met some people with interesting tertiary conditions to their faith.

I have also spoken with some atheists who oppose it as it carries with it some themes of religion; some parts of it are, admittedly, disconcerting to those who value individuality depending on how you look at it.

I believe that "transhumanism" is totally forbidden under Christianity as we should not mutilate our bodies with such lumps of metal.

Well it doesn't have to be lumps of metal, some writers have fantasised about simply reaching a point where we can upload the entirety of our consciousness up to a server and exist there until we saw fit to delete ourselves.

I personally don't exactly ride with that camp, I'd rather get metal lumps ;D

I think it'd be pretty cool if we could be like the Borg from Star Trek, but without all that "Collective" nonsense.

Resisting the collective if futile, Locusious
"But why do you want REVENGE?!"

"I HAVE REASONS!!!!!"
joetheripper117
Posts: 284
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
9/7/2015 6:13:58 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 9/7/2015 6:05:18 PM, MaxSterling wrote:
At 9/7/2015 6:04:08 PM, joetheripper117 wrote:
At 9/7/2015 5:27:14 PM, MaxSterling wrote:
At 9/7/2015 5:20:59 PM, Mobutu wrote:
At 9/7/2015 5:18:16 PM, MaxSterling wrote:
I am curious to the general consensus of the Religion forum on this topic. Is Transhumanism capable of being consolidated with your religious view, or lack therof?

As an ideological movement more or less centred around Humanity enforcing its own will on the natural progression of the universe, I can imagine how most people of faith might be resistant to it, but I've met some people with interesting tertiary conditions to their faith.

I have also spoken with some atheists who oppose it as it carries with it some themes of religion; some parts of it are, admittedly, disconcerting to those who value individuality depending on how you look at it.

I believe that "transhumanism" is totally forbidden under Christianity as we should not mutilate our bodies with such lumps of metal.

Well it doesn't have to be lumps of metal, some writers have fantasised about simply reaching a point where we can upload the entirety of our consciousness up to a server and exist there until we saw fit to delete ourselves.

I personally don't exactly ride with that camp, I'd rather get metal lumps ;D

I think it'd be pretty cool if we could be like the Borg from Star Trek, but without all that "Collective" nonsense.

Resisting the collective if futile, Locusious

We are the Borg. Lower your shields and surrender your ships. We will add your biological and technological distinctiveness to our own. Your culture will adapt to service us. Resistance is futile.
"By all means let's be open-minded, but not so open-minded that our brains drop out."
-Richard Dawkins
"The onus is on you to say why; the onus is not on the rest of us to say why not."
-Richard Dawkins
RuvDraba
Posts: 6,033
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
9/7/2015 6:22:36 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 9/7/2015 5:18:16 PM, MaxSterling wrote:
I am curious to the general consensus of the Religion forum on this topic. Is Transhumanism capable of being consolidated with your religious view, or lack therof?

Philosophically, Max, I think it's an empty idea. Consider...

Suppose we found a intelligent, compassionate, social, tool-using nonterrestrial species with a mouth above its eyes (a feature not shared by any vertebrate on earth), and incapable of breeding with humanity. Despite laying eggs and having three distinct sexes, it nevertheless knew what curiosity and loyalty were, and would sacrifice its own happiness for the security and welfare of those it loved.

What is it that humanity would not imitate from this species and learn from? Their technology? Their art? Their social structures and governance? Would kids imitate their odd mating rituals?

I think humanity would adopt and experiment with everything. The only thing that couldn't transfer easily would be that species' genome -- and with sufficiently advanced genetics, parts of the genome could be incorporated too, if they were thought sufficiently valuable.

So my suggestion is that humans are already in a state where, while we share homologous proteins with every living thing on our planet, our species identity isn't defined genetically as so much as by an ontology of species function.

And if so, that function is changing depending upon our social, informatic, and manufacturing technologies. And I think this process started a long time ago, when we chipped stone and tamed fire, and discovered how to make dogs part of a multispecies society.

So I'm wondering what the transhumanists are talking about. We're already a species that does not depend on genetic inheritance to survive and prosper. What else is there, and is it a matter of category, or only degree?
MaxSterling
Posts: 62
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
9/7/2015 6:44:02 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 9/7/2015 6:22:36 PM, RuvDraba wrote:
At 9/7/2015 5:18:16 PM, MaxSterling wrote:
I am curious to the general consensus of the Religion forum on this topic. Is Transhumanism capable of being consolidated with your religious view, or lack therof?

Philosophically, Max, I think it's an empty idea. Consider...

Suppose we found a intelligent, compassionate, social, tool-using nonterrestrial species with a mouth above its eyes (a feature not shared by any vertebrate on earth), and incapable of breeding with humanity. Despite laying eggs and having three distinct sexes, it nevertheless knew what curiosity and loyalty were, and would sacrifice its own happiness for the security and welfare of those it loved.

What is it that humanity would not imitate from this species and learn from? Their technology? Their art? Their social structures and governance? Would kids imitate their odd mating rituals?

I think humanity would adopt and experiment with everything. The only thing that couldn't transfer easily would be that species' genome -- and with sufficiently advanced genetics, parts of the genome could be incorporated too, if they were thought sufficiently valuable.

So my suggestion is that humans are already in a state where, while we share homologous proteins with every living thing on our planet, our species identity isn't defined genetically as so much as by an ontology of species function.

And if so, that function is changing depending upon our social, informatic, and manufacturing technologies. And I think this process started a long time ago, when we chipped stone and tamed fire, and discovered how to make dogs part of a multispecies society.

So I'm wondering what the transhumanists are talking about. We're already a species that does not depend on genetic inheritance to survive and prosper. What else is there, and is it a matter of category, or only degree?

Well put, however transhumanism refers more specifically to using technology to advance our species at a greater rate than, as you say, we have been. It allows us to truly self-identify on either the individual level or the grandiose level of the species. It also, to some extent, implies the capability to begin manipulate the universe on a larger scale than we can even imagine.

If you intend to imply that the identification of 'transhumanism' is meaningless due to our obvious natural progression to that point, I can see merit in that.
"But why do you want REVENGE?!"

"I HAVE REASONS!!!!!"
RuvDraba
Posts: 6,033
Add as Friend
Challenge to a Debate
Send a Message
9/7/2015 7:53:25 PM
Posted: 1 year ago
At 9/7/2015 6:44:02 PM, MaxSterling wrote:
At 9/7/2015 6:22:36 PM, RuvDraba wrote:
At 9/7/2015 5:18:16 PM, MaxSterling wrote:
I am curious to the general consensus of the Religion forum on this topic. Is Transhumanism capable of being consolidated with your religious view, or lack therof?

Philosophically, Max, I think it's an empty idea. Consider...

Suppose we found a intelligent, compassionate, social, tool-using nonterrestrial species with a mouth above its eyes (a feature not shared by any vertebrate on earth), and incapable of breeding with humanity. Despite laying eggs and having three distinct sexes, it nevertheless knew what curiosity and loyalty were, and would sacrifice its own happiness for the security and welfare of those it loved.

What is it that humanity would not imitate from this species and learn from? Their technology? Their art? Their social structures and governance? Would kids imitate their odd mating rituals?

I think humanity would adopt and experiment with everything. The only thing that couldn't transfer easily would be that species' genome -- and with sufficiently advanced genetics, parts of the genome could be incorporated too, if they were thought sufficiently valuable.

So my suggestion is that humans are already in a state where, while we share homologous proteins with every living thing on our planet, our species identity isn't defined genetically as so much as by an ontology of species function.

And if so, that function is changing depending upon our social, informatic, and manufacturing technologies. And I think this process started a long time ago, when we chipped stone and tamed fire, and discovered how to make dogs part of a multispecies society.

So I'm wondering what the transhumanists are talking about. We're already a species that does not depend on genetic inheritance to survive and prosper. What else is there, and is it a matter of category, or only degree?

Transhumanism refers more specifically to using technology to advance our species at a greater rate than, as you say, we have been. It allows us to truly self-identify on either the individual level or the grandiose level of the species. It also, to some extent, implies the capability to begin manipulate the universe on a larger scale than we can even imagine.

That's what I mean, Max. The latter point seems either trivially fulfilled, or self-contradictory:

Trivially fulfilled: we're already changing our planet's weather and biosphere without imagining we could. That process began when we first started using fire to drive game out of forests and grasslands, tens of thousands of years ago.

Self-contradictory: please describe a scenario in which the first time we alter the orbit of a planet, say, comes as a complete surprise to us. :)

Meanwhile, if we're capable of seeing a species with mouths above their eyes as people, just like us, how do we really conceive 'us' then? It's not genetic, so how do we define it?

As a starting point, I sketched a handful of elements: curiosity, compassion, loyalty, self-awareness and tool-use. Anything exhibiting those traits might 'feel' human to us, even if it had nothing in common with us genetically.

But we could also create such agencies ourselves. Artificial intelligences, synthetic life... Will we consider them persons, or not? If so, will we consider them 'human', or will we prefer to define 'human' somewhat arbitrarily by transient genetics -- bearing in mind that genomes change anyway?

Serious question. :)

And to return to your earlier point about self-identification... an awful lot of transhumanism just seems to be the worship of hyper-individualism. I talked before about our species already not being solely defined by genetic inheritance, but at the individual level, we are each very much creatures of our genes and milieu. What works to change our ontology of 'species' may mean nothing to the condition of a given individual.

There's an awful lot of unacknowledged narcissism tucked away in transhumanism, which is not to say that all such speculation is narcissistic. Yet I can't help apprehending a sense of unfocused escapism there -- perhaps because of the SF heritage of the idea.

If you intend to imply that the identification of 'transhumanism' is meaningless due to our obvious natural progression to that point, I can see merit in that.

I think it has some serious definitional issues, Max. Or at least, I can't see my way past these sorts of questions.