Suzuki Roshi once said something to the effect of, “You’re perfect as you are—and you could use a little work.”
Transhumanist, bioethicist, and former Buddhist monk James Hughes would agree. And that’s an understatement: there’s virtually nothing about us, he thinks, that can’t be enhanced to improve our chances at realization:
“I think the next couple of decades will probably be determined by our growing ability to control matter at the molecular level, by genetic engineering, and by advances in chemistry and tissue-engineering” he says. “Life expectancy will increase in almost all countries as we slow down the aging process and eliminate many diseases.” Not squeamish about the prospect of enhancing—or, plainly put, overhauling— the human being, Hughes thinks our lives may be changed most by neurotechnologies—stimulant drugs, “smart” drugs, and psychoactive substances that suppress mental illness.
Read Huffingtonpost blogger Richard Eskow’s interview with Hughes here—and keep an eye out for a discussion with James Hughes coming soon to the Tricycle Community.
Art (c) 2010 by Jonathon Rosen
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