The concept of “Transhumanism” stems from the belief that humans are constantly evolving and to fully achieve the superior state of their being, an amalgamation of science and technology is necessary to enhance their intellectual, physical and psychological capacities.
“Transhumanism is a class of philosophies of life that seek the continuation and acceleration of the evolution of intelligent life beyond its current human form and human limitations by means of science and technology, guided by life-promoting principles and values.”
– Max More (1990)
The conceptual process of “Transhumanism” started from the time when a society called X-Club was formed where scientists such as Charles Darwin discussed their esoteric beliefs and gave lectures about evolution that symbolizes change.
Next came Friedrich Nietzsche who theorized the idea of “übermensch,” or superman, taking humanity to the next stage of evolution in the eugenic sense.
The Fabian Society in England wanted to create a socialist “New World Order” where writers such as George Orwell and Aldous Huxley believed in transcending the barriers of humanity to become “superman”.
The dystopian world created in the novels- “1984” and “Brave New World” revolted against the very biblical notion of the old world order and resistance to critical thought. This introduces our exploration of the world through science and technology that elevates man to superman.
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Aldous Huxley even went beyond and researched extensively on the drug LSD to control the human mind. His brother, Julian Huxley introduced the term “Transhumanism” first in his book “Religion Without Revelation”.
Eventually, the existence of the internet broke several barriers to what we could achieve and replaced LSD by becoming the “world brain” or “noosphere” where everyone is connected.
Transhumanists consider the human brain as a machine that can be transferred to other bodies or machines.
Some of the transhumanist developments are as follows:
- Possibility to achieve immortality by resurrection through cryonics and technology.
- Development of a world running with new advents like robots, genetic engineering, virtual reality, brain and space exploration, nanotechnology, artificial intelligence, cybernetics and synthetic biology.
- MRI machine that can be worn as a beanie to read minds.
- Elon Musk is working on a neuralink project where chips and electrodes can be added to the brain and connect us directly to the network like computers.
- Body Augmentation includes taking pictures with a special lens, universal language earbud, and special leg prosthesis for runners and organs that are optimised in a personalised way.
- Exosuits that increase our physical strength.
- Genetically engineering our genome so as to select the most powerful embryos and gene-editing technology through which we can eliminate all heritable diseases.
- The increasing availability of products that are personalised in terms of AI tools that help us find which career options are suitable for us.
As technology and science advance, the philosophical debate on what humanity values most will arise. Are we turning into cyborgs? Are we already cyborgs? Will everyone will equally be able to afford these augmented tools for themselves? Will it be ethical to prioritize a world run by technology over morality?
As the transhumanists progress towards a “new world order”, there would be a day when chips would be implanted into our brain like in “The Matrix” and drugs to accelerate your intellectual capacity will come like in “Lucy” or “Limitless”.
All that remains is to install a technology beneath the skin’s surface. After all, it’s needless to say that every possibility can become a reality.
Image Credits: Google Images
Feature Image designed by Saudamini Seth
Sources: Forbes, The Guardian, Daily Sabah
Find the blogger: @Drishti Shroff
This post is tagged under: cybernetics, cyborg, drugs, robots vs humans, science and technology, ubermensch, superman, george orwell, aldous huxley, julius huxley, robots, genetic engineering, futuristic, transhumanism, elon musk, dangers of transhumanism, morality, brain control
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