FREQUENTLY  ASKED  QUESTIONS
ABOUT  TRANSHUMANISM

 

Index:

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

What Is Transhumanism?  /  Is Transhumanism Something New?

 

Transhumanism1 is a sub-category of “post-humanism,”2 meaning “after humanism,” or “beyond humanism.” “By taking humanism further, transhumanism can be defined as ‘ultra-humanism.’”3 It is an abbreviated way of referencing “that which transcends humanity.”4 According to the Oxford Dictionaries, “transhumanism” is “the belief or theory that the human race can evolve beyond its current physical and mental limitations, especially by means of science and technology.”5 A more precise definition of “transhumanism” is provided by Humanity+ (formerly the World Transhumanist Association):

(1) The intellectual and cultural movement that affirms the possibility and desirability of fundamentally improving the human condition through applied reason, especially by developing and making widely available technologies to eliminate aging and to greatly enhance human intellectual, physical, and psychological capacities.

(2) The study of the ramifications, promises, and potential dangers of technologies that will enable us to overcome fundamental human limitations, and the related study of the ethical matters involved in developing and using such technologies.

It is important to realize that not all transhumanists belong to the 21st century. Authors such as Julian Huxley, Aldous Huxley, J.B.S. Haldane, Irving John Good, Bertrand Russell, Teilhard de Chardin, F.M. Esfandiary, Abraham Maslow, and H.G. Wells addressed the scientific and philosophical issues of transhumanism 50 years ago. Even the renowned theologians C.S. Lewis and Dr. A.W. Tozer addressed the implications of transhumanism in their writings. Today, some of the most well-known and influential transhumanists include doctors Ray Kurzweil, Nick Bostrom, Hugo de Garis, James Hughes, Aubrey de Grey, Kevin Warwick, and Max More.

“Transhumanism” is today used as an umbrella title to refer to mankind’s efforts to use technology and genetic engineering to augment itself in such a way as to transcend the ordinary limitations of humanity in an effort to become “god-like.” It promises the realization of Satan’s original promises to mankind in Genesis 3:4–5, You will not surely die,” and You will be like God.”

 


1. “Transhumanism is a class of philosophies of life that seek the continuation and acceleration of the evolution of intelligent life beyond its currently human form and human limitations by means of science and technology, guided by life-promoting principles and values.” (Max More 1990)
(“Transhumanist FAQ,” Humanity+)
2. Posthumanism is a term with five definitions:
1. Antihumanism: a term applied to a number of thinkers opposed to the project of philosophical anthropology.
2. Cultural posthumanism: a cultural direction which strives to move beyond archaic concepts of “human nature” to develop ones which constantly adapt to contemporary technoscientific knowledge.[1]
3. Philosophical posthumanism: a philosophical direction which is critical of the foundational assumptions of Renaissance humanism and its legacy.[2]
4. Transhumanism: an ideology and movement which seeks to develop and make available technologies that eliminate aging and greatly enhance human intellectual, physical, and psychological capacities, in order to achieve a “posthuman future”.[3]
5. Posthuman condition: the deconstruction of the human condition by critical theorists.[4]
(Wikipedia, “Posthumanism.”)
[1] Badmington, Neil. Posthumanism (Readers in Cultural Criticism). Palgrave Macmillan, 2000.
[2] Esposito, Roberto. Politics and human nature. doi:10.1080/0969725X.2011.621222. Accessed June 6, 2013.
[3] Bostrom, Nick. A history of transhumanist thought. Accessed February 21, 2006.
[4] Hayles, N. Katherine. How We Became Posthuman: Virtual Bodies in Cybernetics, Literature, and Informatics. University Of Chicago Press, 1999.
3. Wikipedia, “Posthumanism.”
4. Onishi, Bradley, "Information, Bodies, and Heidegger: Tracing Visions of the Posthuman," Sophia 50/1 (2011), 101-12, Source: Ferrando, "Posthumanism."
5. “Transhumanism,” Oxford Dictionaries, http://oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/transhumanism.
6. “Transhumanist FAQ,” Humanity+.

Works Cited

1. Ferrando, Francesca. "Posthumanism, Transhumanism, Antihumanism, Metahumanism, and New Materialisms Differences and Relations." Existenz, Vol. 8, No. 2, Fall 2013. http://www.bu.edu/paideia/existenz/volumes/Vol.8-2Ferrando.html#footnote-383-7.
2. Oxford Dictionaries. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/us.
3. “Transhumanist FAQ.” Humanity+. Accessed June 18, 2014. http://humanityplus.org/philosophy/transhumanist-faq/.
4. The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. Crossway Bibles, 2001.
5. Wikipedia. "Posthumanism." Accessed March 18, 2014. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Posthumanism .

  

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

What Is the Singularity?

 

Transhumanists look forward to a point in time that they call “the technological singularity,” or simply “the singularity.” This is the moment when man transcends himself and becomes a new creation. According to the website designed for Dr. Ray Kurzweil’s book The Singularity is Near, “The Singularity is an era in which our intelligence will become increasingly nonbiological and trillions of times more powerful than it is today—the dawning of a new civilization that will enable us to transcend our biological limitations and amplify our creativity.”1 In the documentary Transcendent Man, Dr. Kurzweil also says, “Singularity is a future period in which technological change will be so rapid, and its impact so profound, that every aspect of human life will be irreversibly transformed.”2

To be perfectly honest, there is no standard definition of the term “singularity” among transhumanists. The Singularity Symposium cites Wicktionary to define “singularity” as:3

1. the state of being singular, distinct, peculiar, uncommon or unusual
2. a point where all parallel lines meet
3. a point where a measured variable reaches unmeasurable or infinite value
4. (mathematics) the value or range of values of a function for which a derivative does not exist
5. (physics) a point or region in spacetime in which gravitational forces cause matter to have an infinite density; associated with Black Holes

When applied to technology, this term is used to refer to a moment in time when technology advances at such a rapid pace that there is no longer any ability to measure or predict these changes using standard models. This is why co-founder of Wired Magazine, Kevin Kelly, says that the singularity is the point at which “all the change in the last million years will be superseded by the change in the next five minutes.”4 Ethernet co-inventor, Dr. Robert Metcalfe, says, “You know, the word singularity is a mathematical word. … The singularity is sort of where the model breaks down.”5 Similarly, Dr. James Martin, a British information technology consultant, leading futurist, computer scientist, and Pulitzer Prize-winning author, defined the technological singularity as “a break in human evolution that will be caused by the staggering speed of technological evolution.”6

Tom Abate, a technology reporter for the San Francisco Chronicle, says, “The singularity is the point at which machine intelligence begins to amend itself—improve itself.”7 Likewise, Dr. Kevin Warwick, a professor of cybernetics who is known as the human cyborg, says, “Machine intelligence improves, improves, improves, until we get to a point where—well it assumes control.”8 Also, Dr. Jon von Neumann, a mathematical genius, consultant, and university professor who is best remembered for his involvement in the Atomic and Hydrogen Bomb projects, writes that the singularity is the moment beyond which, “technological progress will become incomprehensively rapid and complicated.”9

At a meeting of the American Association for Artificial Intelligence in 1982, professor of mathematics, computer scientist, and Hugo Award-winning science fiction writer, Dr. Vernor Vinge, first introduced the term “singularity” as a means of describing Dr. Irving John Good’s idea of an intelligence explosion. In 1965, the British mathematician, Dr. Irving John Good, wrote about the possibility that machines would eventually surpass human intelligence, saying:10

Let an ultraintelligent machine be defined as a machine that can far surpass all the intellectual activities of any man however clever. Since the design of machines is one of these intellectual activities, an ultraintelligent machine could design even better machines; there would then unquestionably be an “intelligence explosion,” and the intelligence of man would be left far behind. Thus the first ultraintelligent machine is the last invention that man need ever make … It is more probable than not that, within the twentieth century, an ultraintelligent machine will be built …

Clearly, an ultra-intelligent machine was not created within the 20th century. Nevertheless, Dr. Good may not have been terribly far off in his predictions. Today, a vast number of scientists are convinced that an ultra-intelligent machine will be created within the 21st century, with many claiming the possibility that it may be created within the next few decades. In his 1993 article titled “The Coming Technological Singularity,” Dr. Vernor Vinge adjusted Dr. Good’s timeline, writing, “Within thirty years, we will have the technological means to create superhuman intelligence. Shortly thereafter, the human era will be ended.”11 If Dr. Vinge is correct in his prediction, then superhuman intelligence may be created within the next ten years.

 


1. The Singularity is Near, “Cover Flap.”
2. Transcendent Man.
3. Singularity Symposium, “What is the best definition of Singularity?”
4. Ibid.
5. Transcendent Man.
6. Singularity Symposium, “What is the best definition of Singularity?”
7. Transcendent Man.
8. Ibid.
9. Singularity Symposium, “What is the best definition of Singularity?”
10. Irving Good, “Speculations Concerning the First Ultraintelligent Machine,” Advances in Computers 6 (1965): 31–88, quoted in “The Future of Humanity,” Nick Bostrom, Originally Circulated 2007, Published in New Waves in Philosophy of Technology, Jan-Kyrre Berg Olsen, Evan Selinger, and Soren Riis, eds. (New York: Palgrave McMillan, 2009), 186–216, Reprinted in Geopolitics, History, and International Relations 1, no. 2 (2009): 41–78, Source: Nick Bostrom's Homepage, “The Future of Humanity.”
11. Vinge, “The Coming Technological Singularity,” “Abstract.”

Works Cited

1. Nick Bostrom’s Homepage. “The Future of Humanity.” Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.nickbostrom.com/papers/future.html.
2. Singularity Symposium. “What is the best definition of Singularity?” Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.singularitysymposium.com/definition-of-singularity.html.
3. The Singularity is Near. “Cover Flap.” Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.singularity.com.
4. Transcendent Man. DVD. Docurama, 2009.
5. Vinge, Vernor. “The Coming Technological Singularity: How to Survive in the Post-Human Era.” March 30, 1993. Accessed March 18, 2014.  http://www-rohan.sdsu.edu/faculty/vinge/misc/singularity.html.

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit. Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

What Is a Post-Human?

 

It is believed that the singularity will allow man to transcend himself and enter into the era of the “post-human.”1 The efforts to produce this singularity generally fall within two major fields of science. The first is technological. The technological singularity seeks to merge man and machine to create a “post-human.” The second is genetic. The genetic singularity seeks to alter man’s genes and DNA to create a “post-human.” In either case, the end goal is the creation of a “post-human,” using advanced science.

It is generally acknowledged that the realization of the transhumanist’s vision will result in a human which has been fundamentally altered to the extent that its very humanity is called into question.2 The assumption is that these changes will transform humans into a new species. At the very least, life as we have always understood it will be radically transformed. Being uncertain of what this will entail, transhumanist philosophers have applied the title “post,” meaning “next” or “what comes after,” to humanity.

 


1. “Post-human I think will be post-biological. By that I mean that it will be a gradual process. There won’t be any sudden transition to a different form. I think we’ll gradually integrate more and more technology into our bodies. We’ll be replacing our organs with more efficient organs. We’ll gradually replace this neural tissue because it dies off after a while. It’s easily subjected to chemical damage. So eventually I think we’ll replace our brain cells with essentially computerized parts. It will be much more efficient, much more powerful.”
(TheDejavu434, "TechnoCalyps.")
2. There is significant debate regarding what constitutes humanity. In the documentary Technocalypse, Dr. Ray Kurzweil says, “Well, it’s a philosophical issue as to whether this is still human. In my mind it’s definitely going beyond biology. But I don’t define human as just biological. I mean, we’ve already taken steps beyond biology. There’s not a single organ in the human body, including regions of the brain, where we are not already creating substitutes, or extensions, or augmentations. So if somebody has an artificial pancreas, are they not human? If they have a neural implant in their brain, are they not human? How about two neural implants? Or maybe you can have up to ten then you’re human, but eleven, you’re not human anymore. If you have these nanobots—blood-sized robots in the brain that actually have computers interacting with your biological neurons—is that still a human? Well one nanobot’s probably okay. How about five hundred million nanobots?”
(TheDejavu434, "Technocalypse.")

Works Cited

1. TheDejavu434. “Technocalypse.” YouTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MXQSbjBL7Q&list=PLLgVDY8_xVLYhjw_pOkTnuX2NWQ9fsSy3 (accessed March 18, 2014).


  

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

What Is Moore’s Law?

 

Technology is increasing at an exponential rate.1 In 1965, Dr. Gordon Moore observed a technological trend which has come to be known as Moore’s Law. Although it bears the title “law,” it is not a true scientific law. Rather, it is merely an observation which has remained consistent for over a century. Moore’s Law is the observation that, over the history of computing hardware, the number of transistors on integrated circuits doubles approximately every two years. This has held true since 1890 when hand-cranked calculators were used.2 In 2005, Intel announced its expectation that this trend will continue until at least 2015 or 2020.3 However, the 2010 update to the International Technology Roadmap for Semiconductors predicted a deceleration of this trend beginning at the end of 2013, after which time transistor counts and densities are expected to double only every 3 years.4

 


1. Philosopher and ethnopharmacologist Terence McKenna notes, “Obviously, if we’re experiencing more change now in a year than we previously experienced in a thousand years, we can propagate that trend into the future and see that a day will come when we will experience more change in an hour than we have experienced in the past twenty, thirty thousand years. A situation like that is unimaginable, so we call it a singularity—a place where the normal rules of modeling break down.”
(TheDejavu434, "TechnoCalyps.")
2. Kaku, “Big Think Interview with Michio Kaku.”
3. Kanellos, “New life for Moore’s Law.”
4. “Overall Technology Roadmap Characteristics.”

Works Cited

1. Kaku, Michio. “Big Think Interview with Michio Kaku.” Big Think video, Interviewed by Paul Hoffman, Recorded on September 29, 2010, http://bigthink.com/videos/big-think-interview-with-michio-kaku-2 (accessed March 18, 2014).
2. Kanellos, Michael. “New life for Moore’s Law.” CNET News, April 19, 2005. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://news.cnet.com/New-life-for-Moores-Law/2009-1006_3-5672485.html.
3. "Overall Technology Roadmap Characteristics." 2010. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.itrs.net/Links/2010ITRS/2010Update/ToPost/2010Tables_ORTC_ITRS.xls.
4. TheDejavu434. “Technocalypse.” YouTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MXQSbjBL7Q&list=PLLgVDY8_xVLYhjw_pOkTnuX2NWQ9fsSy3 (accessed March 18, 2014).

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

What Will Be the Future Computer?

 

Technological projections based upon the continuation of Moore’s Law have led some scientists to speculate that a technological singularity may be reached as early as the next few decades. However, there are other scientists who believe that this rate of growth cannot continue indefinitely. Professor of theoretical physics, futurist, and host of the TV show Sci Fi Science: Physics of the Impossible, Dr. Michio Kaku has said:1

Well, can this [Moore’s Law] go on forever? And the answer is no because eventually physics takes over and that is, physics says that silicon is unstable at the molecular level. Transistors get so small, so powerful and they generate so much heat that the silicon chip melts and electrons leak out because of the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle. You don’t know where the electron is anymore. Therefore, we physicists are looking for replacements for silicon. The post-silicon era will be about 10 to 15 years in the future. … So we physicists are looking at optical computers, quantum computers, DNA computers, protein computers, all sorts of different kinds of architecture down to the molecular, down to the atomic, down to the microscopic realm, but none of them are ready for primetime yet.

At present, there is no stable alternative to standard silicon-based computers. Nevertheless, serious efforts are being made to change this. In 2005, “Tom Theis, the director of physical sciences at IBM, said he knows of no fewer than 20 ideas from credible sources for replacing silicon memory chips. ‘It is quite difficult to figure out a long-term winner,’ he said. ‘There is nothing that is an obvious replacement for a silicon transistor.’”2 In 2013, Google’s Director of Engineering, Dr. Hartmut Neven, posted an announcement that Google will be developing a research lab which utilizes quantum computers, “So today we’re launching the Quantum Artificial Intelligence Lab. NASA’s Ames Research Center will host the lab, which will house a quantum computer from D-Wave Systems, and the USRA (Universities Space Research Association) will invite researchers from around the world to share time on it. Our goal: to study how quantum computing might advance machine learning.”3 Also, according to a 2012 PC Magazine article title “IBM Says It’s ‘On the Cusp’ of Building a Quantum Computer:”

The IBM researchers said they have established three new records “for retaining the integrity of quantum mechanical properties in quantum bits, or qubits, and reducing errors in elementary computations.” Those advances, presented at this week’s annual American Physical Society meeting, get the team “close to the minimum requirements for a full-scale quantum computing system as determined by the world-wide research community.”4

Even the United States Department of Defense has announced significant breakthroughs in quantum computing. According to a 2014 The Atlantic article titled “The U.S. Army Says It Can Teleport Quantum Data Now, Too,” “A team at the lab’s Adelphi, Maryland, facility says it has developed a prototype information teleportation network system based on quantum teleportation technology. The technology can be used, the Defense Department says, to transmit images securely, either over fiber optics or through space—that is, teleportation in which data is transmitted wirelessly.”5

Furthermore, according to a 2012 computerworld.com article titled “Harvard stores 70 billion books using DNA: Research team stores 5.5 petabits, or 1 million gigabits per cubic millimeter in DNA storage medium,” “‘The total world's information, which is 1.8 zettabytes, [could be stored] in about four grams of DNA,’ said Sriram Kosuri, a senior scientist at the Wyss Institute and senior author of the paper, in a video presentation.”6

 


1. Kaku, “Big Think Interview with Michio Kaku.”
2. Kanellos, “New life for Moore’s Law.”
3. Neven, “Launching the Quantum Artificial Intelligence Lab.”
4. Poeter, “IBM.”
5. Lafrance, “The U.S. Army.”
6. Mearian, “Harvard.”

Works Cited

1. Kaku, Michio. “Big Think Interview with Michio Kaku.” Big Think video, Interviewed by Paul Hoffman, Recorded on September 29, 2010, http://bigthink.com/videos/big-think-interview-with-michio-kaku-2 (accessed March 18, 2014).
2. Kanellos, Michael. “New life for Moore’s Law.” CNET News, April 19, 2005. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://news.cnet.com/New-life-for-Moores-Law/2009-1006_3-5672485.html.
3. Lafrance, Adrienne. The Atlantic, June 10, 2014. Accessed June 18, 2014. http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2014/06/the-us-army-says-it-can-teleport-quantum-data-now-too/372545/.
4. Mearian, Lucas. “Harvard stores 70 billion books using DNA.” Computer World, August 20, 2012.  Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9230401/Harvard_stores_70_billion_books_using_DNA?pageNumber=1.
5. Neven, Hartmut. “Launching the Quantum Artificial Intelligence Lab.” Research Blog: The latest news from Research at Google, May 16, 2013. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://googleresearch.blogspot.com/2013/05/launching-quantum-artificial.html#!/2013/05/launching-quantum-artificial.html.
6. Poeter, Damon. “IBM Says It's 'On the Cusp' of Building a Quantum Computer.” PC Magazine, February 28, 2012. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2400930,00.asp,2817,2400930,00.asp.

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

Can a Computer Simulate a Human Brain?

 

Not only is the computing power of technology exponentially increasing, but science is beginning to unlock the secrets of the brain. Projects such as the Human Brain Project, which is funded in part by the European Union, and the Brain Initiative, which is funded in part by the United States government, are attempting to map the human brain. Many are comparing the potential ramifications of this project to the human genome mapping project of the 1990’s. Already portions of the brain have been digitally reconstructed, and the common rhetoric promises that within the next couple of decades, the neural network of the entire human brain may be fully understood and recreated digitally.1 It is believed that this would allow for the creation of computers which could process information intelligently, as a human would. Author of How to Create a Mind: The Secret of Human Thought Revealed, Dr. Ray Kurzweil, has said, “I think it’s a conservative estimate to say at this exponential pace, we’re going to understand how our brains work within twenty years. We will have this tool kit of how human intelligence works. And we will be able to create similar systems that work just as well as the human brain or even better.”2

Already, research into the human brain has led to the development of more advanced computer processing methods. IBM has “released computer chips that use a network of “neurosynaptic cores” to manage information in a way that resembles the functioning of neurons in a brain.”3 Also, IBM has developed an entirely new computer architecture called TrueNorth. A 2013 MIT Technology Review article titled “IBM Scientists Show Blueprints for Brainlike Computing: IBM researchers unveil True North, a new computer architecture that imitates how a brain works” reports, “TrueNorth stores and processes information in a distributed, parallel way, like the neurons and synapses in a brain.”4

Despite these significant advances, scientists have only just begun to understand the brain. To place the magnitude of this project into perspective, Japanese and German scientists conducted the largest computer simulation ever run. According to a 2013 CNet article titled, “Fujitsu supercomputer simulates 1 second of brain activity,” “The simulation involved 1.73 billion virtual nerve cells connected by 10.4 trillion synapses and was run on Japan’s K computer, which was ranked the fastest in the world in 2011. It took the Fujitsu-built K about 40 minutes to complete a simulation of one second of neuronal network activity in real time, …”5 The K computer:6

[H]as a rated performance of 10.51 petaflops per second using 705,024 SPARC64 processing cores. “If petascale computers like the K computer are capable of representing 1 percent of the network of a human brain today, then we know that simulating the whole brain at the level of the individual nerve cell and its synapses will be possible with exascale computers hopefully available within the next decade,” Markus Diesmann of the Institute of Neuroscience and Medicine at Germany’s Forschungszentrum Julich said in the release. An exascale computer is a machine capable of calculating a quintillion floating-point operations per second, a thousandfold increase over basic petascale speeds. Some researchers have speculated that exascale computing may be achieved by 2020, but others disagree.

A key threshold to accomplishing the technological singularity is the Turing Test. This is a machine’s ability to exhibit intelligent behavior equivalent to—or indistinguishable from—that of an actual human. The Turing Test was originally introduced in 1950 by Dr. Alan Turing to determine whether machines are capable of thinking. During a question and answer session at Google’s Big Tent Event in 2013, Google CEO, Eric Schmidt, predicted that Google will be capable of developing artificial intelligence for its programs which could pass the Turing Test within the next 5 – 10 years.7

Dr. Hugo de Garis, formerly the world’s leading artificial brain architect, believes that if advanced computing can be perfected—such as quantum computing or reversible computing—and if Moore’s Law can be sustained until 2020, then computers could conceivably become a trillion trillion times more powerful than the human brain. He concludes that the computing power of the human brain is roughly 10 to the 16th power (1016) whereas computers could have a computing power of 10 to the 40th power (1040).8

 


1. Dr. Ray Kurzweil says, “It’s a conservative statement to say that by 2025, we’ll be able to look inside your brain, see everything that’s going on—all the interneural connections, all the synaptic clefts, all the neural transmitter strings—and create a huge database, and copy down every salient detail, and then re-instantiate that information in a neural computer of sufficient capacity, and create basically a copy of the thinking process that takes place in your brain. Now that’s one scenario, but it’s really an existence proof to show that we can tap the secrets of intelligence that exist in, let’s say, the human brain. Once we’ve scanned that information, we can also understand it, see how it’s organized, improve on it. We can extend it. We can make its memory a thousand times bigger. We can make it faster. We can expand the perceptual capabilities.”
(TheDejavu434, "TechnoCalyps.")
2. Transcendent Man.
3. Rutkin, “IBM.”
4. Ibid.
5. Hornyak, “Fujitsu.”
6. Ibid.
7. Watson, “Eric Schmidt.”
8. Hugo de Garis, Interview by Adam Ford after the Singularity Summit in Australia, 2010, Source: Adam Ford, “Hugo de Garis interview.”

Works Cited 

1. Adam Ford. “Hugo de Garis interview – Part 1 (2010-10-09 005),” YouTube video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Bxzb1ICsG0 (accessed March 18, 2014).
2. Hornyak, Tim. “Fujitsu supercomputer simulates 1 second of brain activity.” CNET News, August 5, 2013. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://news.cnet.com/8301-17938_105-57597049-1/fujitsu-supercomputer-simulates-1-second-of-brain-activity/.
2. Rutkin, Aviva. “IBM Scientists Show Blueprints for Brainlike Computing.” MIT Technology Review, August 8, 2013. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.technologyreview.com/news/517876/ibm-scientists-show-blueprints-for-brainlike-computing/.
2. TheDejavu434. “Technocalypse.” YouTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MXQSbjBL7Q&list=PLLgVDY8_xVLYhjw_pOkTnuX2NWQ9fsSy3 (accessed March 18, 2014).
2. Transcendent Man. DVD. Docurama, 2009.
3. Watson, Paul. “Eric Schmidt: Google AI Indistinguishable from Humans Within a Decade.” Infowars, May 24, 2013. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.infowars.com/eric-schmidt-google-ai-indistinguishable-from-humans-within-a-decade/.

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

What Is the Turing Test?

 

A key threshold to accomplishing the technological singularity is the Turing Test. This is a machine’s ability to exhibit intelligent behavior equivalent to—or indistinguishable from—that of an actual human. The Turing Test was originally introduced in 1950 by Dr. Alan Turing to determine whether machines are capable of thinking. During a question and answer session at Google’s Big Tent Event in 2013, Google CEO, Eric Schmidt, predicted that Google will be capable of developing artificial intelligence for its programs which could pass the Turing Test within the next 5 – 10 years.1

 


1. Watson, “Eric Schmidt.”


Works Cited

1. Watson, Paul. “Eric Schmidt: Google AI Indistinguishable from Humans Within a Decade.” Infowars, May 24, 2013. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.infowars.com/eric-schmidt-google-ai-indistinguishable-from-humans-within-a-decade/.


 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

What Is Transhumanism’s Future for Humanity?  /  Will Humans Merge with Machines?  /  Will Technology Bring Utopia or the Apocalypse?

 

Dr. Hugo de Garis, formerly the world’s leading artificial brain architect, believes that if advanced computing can be perfected—such as quantum computing or reversible computing—and if Moore’s Law can be sustained until 2020, then computers could conceivably become a trillion trillion times more powerful than the human brain. He concludes that the computing power of the human brain is roughly 10 to the 16th power (1016) whereas computers could have a computing power of 10 to the 40th power (1040).1

Dr. de Garis is ultimately semi-pessimistic regarding the promise that technology truly offers mankind. In his book The Artilect War: Cosmists vs. Terrans, A Bitter Controversy Concerning Whether Humanity Should Build Godlike Massively Intelligent Machines, Dr. Hugo de Garis writes:2

I believe that the 21st century will be dominated by the question as to whether humanity should or should not build artilects, i.e. machines of godlike intelligence, trillions of trillions of times above the human level. I see humanity splitting into two major political groups, which in time will become increasingly bitterly opposed, as the artilect issue becomes more real and less science fiction like.

The human group in favor of building artilects, I label the “Cosmists,” based on the word “cosmos” (the universe), which reflects their perspective on the question. To Cosmists, building artilects will be like a religion; the destiny of the human species; something truly magnificent and worthy of worship; something to dedicate one’s life and energy to help achieve. To the Cosmists, not building the artilects, not creating the next higher form of evolution, thus freezing the state of evolution at the puny human level, would be a “cosmic tragedy.” The Cosmists will be bitterly opposed to any attempt to stop the rise of the 21st century artilect.

The second group, opposed to the building of artilects, I label the “Terrans,” based on the word “terra” (the Earth) which reflects their inward looking, non-cosmic, perspective. The Terrans, I strongly suspect, will argue that allowing the Cosmists to build their artilects (in a highly advanced form) implies accepting the risk, that one day, the artilects might decide, for whatever reason, that the human species is a pest. Since the artilects would be so vastly superior to human beings in intelligence, it would be easy for the artilects to exterminate the human species if they so decided. … When push comes to shove, if the Terrans see that the Cosmists are truly serious about building artilects in an advanced state, then to preserve the survival of the human species, the Terrans will exterminate the Cosmists. Killing a few million Cosmists will be considered justifiable by the Terrans for the sake of preserving the survival of the whole human species, i.e. billions of people. … [T]he artilect issue (i.e. should artilects be built or not) will heat up in the 21st century to such an extent, that it is almost certain it will lead to a major war between the Terrans and the Cosmists in the second half of this new century. This conflict will take place with 21st century weaponry. If one extrapolates up the graph of the number of deaths in major wars from the beginning of the 19th century, one arrives at the depressing figure of billions, what I call “gigadeath.”

But the population of the Earth is only several billion people, so we arrive at the tragic conclusion that to avoid the risk of the total annihilation of the human species by the artilects, humanity goes to war against itself and kills itself off (or almost).

This “Artilect War” as I call it, will be the most passionate in history, because the stake has never been so high, namely the survival of the whole human race. It will be waged with 21st century weapons and hence the casualty figures will be of 21st century grandeur.

Dr. de Garis says that he lays awake at night trying unsuccessfully to imagine a scenario which does not end in his research facilitating the near or total annihilation of the human race. He is even terrorized by vivid nightmares in which he envisions his creations killing humanity.3 Nevertheless, the prospect of building god-like machines is irresistible to him because, as he writes, “In my heart I’m a Cosmist …” At one point, Dr. de Garis questioned, “As a brain builder myself, am I prepared to risk the extinction of the human species for the sake of building an artilect? Because that’s what it comes down to.” In answer to this, he inhaled deeply and declared, “Yep!”4

Realistically, mankind will likely be unable to resist the temptation to merge itself with the artilecs, despite the fact that this act would essentially kill mankind’s humanity. Nevertheless, Dr. Hugo de Garis writes that this will not prevent the inevitable conflict between those who embrace this technology and those who do not:5

In passing, I should mention that there are some people who feel that the whole Cosmist/Terran conflict can be avoided by having human beings themselves become artilects by adding components to their heads etc to become “cyborgs” (cybernetic organisms, i.e. part human, part machine). Personally I find such arguments naïve, since they would only work if the whole of humanity made the transition from human to artilect at the same rate, which obviously is not going to happen.

There is more potential computing capacity in a [nano-teched computer the size of a] grain of sugar than there is in the human brain by a factor of trillions. Incorporating such a grain into the human brain would simply make the human cyborg an “artilect in human disguise” as seen from the perspective of a Terran. The Terrans would hate the cyborgs with as much venom as they would the artilects and would be motivated to destroy both. Having a human exterior would not make the cyborgs any less threatening to the Terrans.

Let me try to express this Terran revulsion against the cyborgs in an even more graphic way that may have a stronger appeal to women than to men. Take the case of a young mother who has just given birth. She decides to convert her baby into a cyborg, by adding the “grain of sugar” to her baby’s brain, thus transforming her baby into a human faced artilect. Her “baby” will now spend only about a trillionth of its mental capacity thinking human thoughts, and the rest of its brain capacity (i.e. 99.9999999999% of it) will be used for thinking artilect thoughts (whatever they are). In effect, the mother has “killed” her baby because it is no longer human. It is an “artilect in human disguise” and totally alien to her.

Thus to me, the cyborg option will not avoid the Cosmist/Terran conflict. If anything, it will probably only worsen it, because it will increase the level of paranoia of the Terrans when they cannot distinguish easily a cyborg from a human at a distance.

Humans who merge themselves with this technology will so far exceed ordinary human limitations that their new capabilities cannot be fathomed with the unaided human mind. Dr. de Garis writes:6

It is not exaggerating to say that there is quite a close analogy between an artilect trying to communicate with a human being, and a human being trying to communicate with a rock.

To make another analogy, consider your feelings towards a mosquito as it lands on the skin of your forearm. When you swat it, do you stop to consider that the creature you just killed is a miracle of nano-technological engineering, that scientists of the 20th century had absolutely no way of building.

In contrast to Dr. Hugo de Garis’ pessimism, Dr. Ray Kurzweil is optimistic that technology will unlock the true potential within man and will almost inevitably lead to a paradise scenario on earth. The road to this paradise scenario may contain some serious tragedies and trials, but ultimately mankind will overcome these difficulties. Dr. Ray Kurzweil is probably the most well-known and influential proponent of the technological singularity today. He belongs to the National Inventor’s Hall of Fame and has received America’s highest honor in technology—the National Medal of Technology and Innovation. He is a futurist who accurately predicted the technological state of the world decades in advance. Dr. Kurzweil is a co-founder of the Singularity Institute, now known as the Machine Intelligence Research Institute, and is currently Director of Engineering at Google where he is working on developing artificial intelligence. He has authored such best-selling books as The Age of Spiritual Machines, The Singularity is Near, and How to Create A Mind: The Secret of Human Thought Revealed.

Dr. Kurzweil predicts that the singularity will occur by the year 2045. In his book The Singularity Is Near, Dr. Kurzweil writes:7

We are now in the early stages of this transition. The acceleration of paradigm shift (the rate at which we change fundamental technical approaches) as well as the exponential growth of the capacity of information technology are both beginning to reach the “knee of the curve,” which is the stage at which an exponential trend becomes noticeable. Shortly after this stage, the trend becomes explosive. Before the middle of this century, the growth rates of our technology—which will be indistinguishable from ourselves—will be so steep as to appear essentially vertical….That, at least, will be the perspective of unenhanced biological humanity.

The Singularity will represent the culmination of the merger of our biological thinking and existence with our technology, resulting in a world that is still human but that transcends our biological roots. There will be no distinction, post-Singularity, between human and machine, or between physical and virtual reality.”

Dr. Kurzweil predicts that by the mid-2020’s, man will have reverse engineered the human brain, and by the year 2029, machines will have passed the Turing Test. Recall that this is the point when artificial intelligence and human intelligence become indistinguishable. He also predicts that by the year 2045, man will be capable of immortality via technology. He believes that mankind will have augmented the human body by incorporating technology into the body in small, incremental steps until the concept of human cyborgs is ordinary. Computers will be the size of blood cells and will flow throughout our bodies.8 Consequently, we will be continually connected to the internet and to databases such as the modern “Cloud” and “Sky Drive.” We will be able to access and retrieve any information from the internet immediately with it being directly downloaded into our brains.9 He also predicts that by the year 2045, human consciousness can be downloaded into non-biological entities, thus allowing the consciousness of an individual to live indefinitely.10

In 2011, the 2045 Strategic Social Initiative was founded by Dmitry Itskov with the goal of realizing Dr. Ray Kurzweil’s vision of the singularity occurring by the year 2045. In fact, reporting on the 2045 Initiative, Time Magazine published an article in 2011 with the provocative title “2045: The Year Man Becomes Immortal.”11 According to the 2045 Initiative’s official website, “The ‘2045’ team is working towards creating an international research center where leading scientists will be engaged in research and development in the fields of anthropomorphic robotics, living systems modeling and brain and consciousness modeling with the goal of transferring one’s individual consciousness to an artificial carrier and achieving cybernetic immortality.”12

This is not a fringe organization dabbling in theoretical science. The 2045 Initiative has received international support, including that of the United Nations. It has also received serious financial backing.

The 2045 Initiative’s primary project is known as the “2045 Avatar Project.” The project’s ultimate goal is the creation of a hologram-like avatar which is controlled by the digital copy of an individual’s human brain. If this can be accomplished, then man can continue to live after his physical body has perished. Moreover, he will exist in both the digital and physical world, being capable of interacting with both worlds. Once he has reached a holographic-like state of being which utilizes controlled matter, he will never again need to concern himself with the deficiencies and needs inherent to physical human bodies. It is even conceivable that multiple copies of a particularly useful individual’s brain may be generated and granted appropriate avatars.

Transhumanists deny the existence of the soul. They equate the soul with consciousness. In other words, what we term the soul is merely the subjective processing of the mind.13 Using the Turing Test as their standard, transhumanists have quantified this. As such, transhumanists believe that the soul, being nothing more than the conscious mind, is transferable and even reproducible.

The 2045 Avatar Project milestones are listed on the website alongside a graphic which bears a striking similarity to the image of Nebuchadnezzar in Daniel chapter 2. “Avatar A, 2015 – 2020: A robotic copy of a human body remotely controlled via BCI”14 (brain-computer interface):

The emergence and widespread use of affordable android “avatars” controlled by a “brain-computer” interface. Coupled with related technologies “avatars” will give people a number of new features: ability to work in dangerous environments, perform rescue operations, travel in extreme situations etc. Avatar components will be used in medicine for the rehabilitation of fully or partially disabled patients giving them prosthetic limbs or recover lost senses.15

“Avatar B, 2020 – 2025: An avatar in which a human brain is transplanted at the end of one’s life.”16, 17, 18, 19, 20

Creation of an autonomous life-support system for the human brain linked to a robot, “avatar”, will save people whose body is completely worn out or irreversibly damaged. Any patient with an intact brain will be able to return to a fully functioning bodily life. Such technologies will greatly enlarge the possibility of hybrid bio-electronic devices, thus creating a new IT revolution and will make all kinds of superimpositions of electronic and biological systems possible.

“Avatar C, 2030 – 2035: An avatar with an artificial brain in which a human personality is transferred at the end of one’s life.”21, 22

Creation of a computer model of the brain and human consciousness with the subsequent development of means to transfer individual consciousness onto an artificial carrier. This development will profoundly change the world, it will not only give everyone the possibility of cybernetic immortality but will also create a friendly artificial intelligence, expand human capabilities and provide opportunities for ordinary people to restore or modify their own brain multiple times. The final result at this stage can be a real revolution in the understanding of human nature that will completely change the human and technical prospects for humanity.

“Avatar D, 2040 – 2045: A hologram-like avatar.”23, 24

This is the time when substance-independent minds will receive new bodies with capacities far exceeding those of ordinary humans. A new era for humanity will arrive! Changes will occur in all spheres of human activity – energy generation, transportation, politics, medicine, psychology, sciences, and so on.

Today it is hard to imagine a future when bodies consisting of nanorobots will become affordable and capable of taking any form. It is also hard to imagine body holograms featuring controlled matter. One thing is clear however: humanity, for the first time in its history, will make a fully managed evolutionary transition and eventually become a new species. Moreover, prerequisites for a large-scale expansion into outer space will be created as well.

Difficult as it may be to imagine the future as envisioned by the 2045 Initiative, we are already witnessing this future unfold on the silver screen. Hollywood has portrayed elements of this future in a myriad of films. In 2009, Hollywood introduced the general populace to the term “avatar.” The word “avatar” originates in Hindu mythology and refers to an incarnated god.25 The concept behind an avatar is that it is a shell, or an empty figure, which can be indwelt by another being or consciousness.

In 2009, the blockbuster movie Avatar26 portrayed a paralyzed soldier who, when connected to the proper machinery, controls an alien body as if it were native to him. At the end of the movie, his consciousness is permanently transferred from his natural human body to the superior avatar body. Other 2009 movies include Gamer27 which presented a world in which prison inmates are implanted with microchips that allow another individual to control their every move. Using a system reminiscent of Xbox Kinect, users move their bodies while watching live video footage to control other human beings in life or death gladiatorial competitions. Additionally, Surrogates28 depicted a world in which humans are afraid to interact with the real world apart from their avatars. Continually attached to machines in their bedrooms, users control robots to operate in the real world as well as digital avatars to interact within the internet. The official movie trailer includes a robotic voice which explains:29

Robotic human surrogates combine the durability of a machine with the grace and beauty of the human body. With most people living their lives through their surrogate selves, our world has become a safer place. Take a seat in your stim-chair, and just with the power of your mind, you can control your surrogate and send it out into the real world. You can finally live the life you’ve always dreamt of without any risk or danger to yourself.

The avatars depicted in movies during 2009 correspond with the 2045 Initiative’s early milestones. In 2013, the movie Superman Man of Steel30 portrayed the 2045 Initiative’s ultimate goal. In a world defined by nanobots and advanced technology, Superman’s father downloads his consciousness onto what is essentially a crystal flash drive. Later, Superman unknowingly uploads his father’s consciousness into a space ship’s computer mainframe. This allows his father to appear as a holographic image, complete with the original consciousness and memories of Superman’s biological father. This hologram is capable of controlling any electronic device via the computer mainframe.

Most striking of all is the 2014 movie Transcendence.31 This movie unabashedly pictured the singularity in all its glory. After Dr. Will Caster’s consciousness is transferred to a computer, he begins to exponentially advance the world’s technological breakthroughs. By the end of the movie, he has used nano-technology to recreate his body, thus portraying the 2045 Initiative’s final avatar milestone.

Hollywood is often a portent of the future. The science fiction of Hollywood in one generation is frequently realized in succeeding generations.32 Given that today’s leading scientists are already speaking as if avatars and cyborgs are inevitable, it is not difficult to believe that there may be less fiction involved in these movies than we realize. In fact, there are already primitive cyborgs walking among us.

 


1. Hugo de Garis, Interview by Adam Ford after the Singularity Summit in Australia, 2010, Source: Adam Ford, “Hugo de Garis interview.”
2. de Garis, The Artilect War, 11–16.
3. “The more I think about the longer-term significance of artilect building, the more profoundly I feel I am a Cosmist. But my mood swings. I will lie awake at night thinking rationally about the cosmic grandeur of Cosmism, about what these god-like artilects could do, and I feel the awe. Hours later I will wake up in a sweat, having been jolted out of a nightmare. I see in vivid scenes the deaths of my descendants in about a century or so, at the hands of the artilects, who have become so superior to humans that they see us as vermin. The emotional reality and horror of it shake me. Normally I sleep rather soundly, so I don’t remember many dreams, but this nightmare is recurrent, and so horrible in emotional terms that it is capable of waking me, despite my heavy sleep.” 
(Ibid, 84.)
4. Transcendent Man.
5. de Garis, The Artilect War, 20–21.
6. Ibid, 12–13.
7. Kurzweil, The Singularity, 9.
8. Kurzweil, “Ray Kurzweil Explores.”
9. Big Think, “Ray Kurzweil: After the Singularity.”
10. Ray Kurzweil, “Ray Kurzweil Thinking.”
11. Grossman, “2045.”
12. 2045 Strategic Social Initiative. “Technology.”
13. Big Think, “Ray Kurzweil: After the Singularity.”
14. 2045 Strategic Social Initiative, “Avatar Project Milestones.”
15. 2045 Strategic Social Initiative, “Technology.”
16. 2045 Strategic Social Initiative, “Avatar Project Milestones.”
17. 2045 Strategic Social Initiative, “Technology.”
18. Dr. Max More says, “A great number of people who I refer to as biological fundamentalists have a great fear of moving outside their biology—moving into other bodies, other forms for transport. These people have a lot of, of commitment, a lot of mythology, a lot of tradition and history attached to their bodies—our sacred bodies, the house of our soul.”
(TheDejavu434, "TechnoCalyps.")
19. In speaking about this post-human prospect, Terrence McKenna refers to the human body as “monkey meat,” “Well that is the most tricky question. Are we going to retain the monkey meat? Are we going to hang onto the body, and through the body have a connection to the rest of animal nature? Or are we going to become disembodied streams of electrons moving in virtual realities that are contained entirely in circuitry? I think this will probably go both ways. There will be fundamentalists who want nothing to do with technological transformation, and there will be utopians who won’t be able to get enough of it. This is probably the moral frontier where we each personally must make a stand. How much of the new technology and its reality redefining qualities do we want to take into our own lives?”
(TheDejavu434, "TechnoCalyps.")
20. Dr. Natasha Vita-More says, “We will have cyborg bodies. We will have augmented bodies. We will auto-morph ourselves into whatever vehicle keeps us in existence for the longest period of time with the most pleasure, the least pain, and the most ease—the most elegance.”
(TheDejavu434, "TechnoCalyps.")
21. 2045 Strategic Social Initiative, “Avatar Project Milestones.”
22. 2045 Strategic Social Initiative, “Technology.”
23. 2045 Strategic Social Initiative, “Avatar Project Milestones.”
24. 2045 Strategic Social Initiative, “Technology.”
25. “Avatar,” The Oxford Dictionarieshttp://oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/avatar.
32. As an example, consider the article “Top 10 ‘Star Trek’ Technologies That Actually Came True.”
(Briggs, “Top 10.”)

Works Cited

1. 2045 Strategic Social Initiative. “Avatar Project Milestones.” Last Updated July 17, 2012. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://2045.com.
2. 2045 Strategic Social Initiative. “Technology.” Last Updated July 17, 2012. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://2045.com/tech2/.
3. Adam Ford. “Hugo de Garis interview – Part 1 (2010-10-09 005),” YouTube video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Bxzb1ICsG0 (accessed March 18, 2014).
4. Big Think. “Ray Kurzweil: After the Singularity, We’ll All Be Robots.” YouTube video, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JR57633ztYc (accessed March 18, 2014).
5. Briggs, Josh. “Top 10 ‘Star Trek’ Technologies That Actually Came True.” How Stuff Works. November 10, 2009. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/10-star-trek-technologies.htm.
6. de Garis, Hugo. The Artilect War: Cosmists vs. Terrans: A Bitter Controversy Concerning Whether Humanity Should Build Godlike Massively Intelligent Machines. Palm Springs: ETC Publications, 2005.
7. Grossman, Lev. “2045: The Year Man Becomes Immortal.” Time Magazine, February 10, 2011. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://content.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,2048299,00.html,9171,2048299,00.html.
8. Kurzweil, Ray. “Ray Kurzweil Explores the Next Phase of Virtual Reality.” YouTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=660oel93vZA (accessed March 18, 2014).
9. Kurzweil, Ray. The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology. New York: Penguin Group, 2005.
10. Oxford Dictionaries. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/us.
11. Ray Kurzweil. “After the Singularity, We’ll All Be Robots.” YouTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JR57633ztYc (accessed March 18, 2014).
12. Ray Kurzweil. “Ray Kurzweil: Thinking Through the Great Change Epochs.” Big Think video, Recorded April 27, 2009, http://bigthink.com/videos/ray-kurzweil-thinking-through-the-great-change-epochs (accessed March 18, 2014).
13. TheDejavu434. “Technocalypse.” YouTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MXQSbjBL7Q&list=PLLgVDY8_xVLYhjw_pOkTnuX2NWQ9fsSy3 (accessed March 18, 2014).
14. Transcendent Man. DVD. Docurama, 2009.


 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

Do Cyborgs Walk Among Us?

 

Already there are primitive cyborgs walking among us. Dr. Kevin Warwick is the world’s leading expert in Cybernetics and is also recognized as the world’s first cyborg. This was accomplished through a series of experiments known as Project Cyborg. According to Dr. Warwick’s website:1

What happens when a man is merged with a computer? This is the question that Professor Kevin Warwick and his team at the department of Cybernetics, University of Reading intend to answer with “Project Cyborg”. On Monday 24th August 1998, at 4:00pm, Professor Kevin Warwick underwent an operation to surgically implant a silicon chip transponder in his forearm. … This experiment allowed a computer to monitor Kevin Warwick as he moved through halls and offices of the Department of Cybernetics at the University of Reading, using a unique identifying signal emitted by the implanted chip. He could operate doors, lights, heaters and other computers without lifting a finger.

This microchip utilized radio frequency identification technology (RFID). RFID microchips emit a radio signal which can be received at a distance and interpreted by other devices commonly referred to as “readers” or “sniffers.” Although RFID chips are becoming commonplace today, they were revolutionary in 1998. The experiment was successful, and Dr. Warwick concluded, “The chip implant technology has the capability to impact our lives in ways that have been previously thought possible in only sci-fi movies. The implant could carry all sorts of information about a person, from Access and Visa details to your National Insurance number, blood type, medical records etc., with the data being updated where necessary.”2

Dr. Warwick expanded his experiments to include bi-directional sensory input:

On the 14th of March 2002 a one hundred electrode array was surgically implanted into the median nerve fibres of the left arm of Professor Kevin Warwick. … Professor Warwick was able to control an electric wheelchair and an intelligent artificial hand, developed by Dr Peter Kyberd, using the neural interface. In addition to being able to measure the nerve signals transmitted along the nerve fibres in Professor Warwck’s left arm, the implant was also able to create artificial sensation by stimluating via individual electrodes within the array. This bi-directional functionality was demonstrated with the aid of Kevin’s wife Irena and a second, less complex implant connecting to her nervous system.3

Other cyborgs include Rob Spence. Having lost his eye in a shooting accident, Rob Spence replaced it with a prosthetic eye equipped with a camera that is capable of transmitting wirelessly. Similarly, a 2013 Mother Nature Network article titled “7 real-life human cyborgs” reports:4

Neil Harbisson was born with achromatopsia, or extreme colorblindness … How is this possible? Harbisson is equipped with a specialized electronic eye, or eyeborg, which renders perceived colors as sounds on the musical scale. In other words, his device allows him to “hear” color. He has become so adapted to this device that his brain has formed new neural pathways that allow him to develop an advanced kind of perception. … After a pair of horrific accidents, Jens Naumann was struck blind in both eyes, but he never gave up hope that he would someday see again. That dream became a reality when, in 2002, Naumann became the first person in the world to receive an artificial vision system. His electronic eye is connected directly to his visual cortex through brain implants. Unlike with other cyborg implants, which translate visual information into another sense such as sound or touch, Naumann actually “sees” the world. Though it has its limits (he can only vaguely see lines and shapes), his vision has been technically restored.

Still other cyborgs include Nigel Ackland who controls a robotic forearm with remarkable precision. “He can independently move each of his five fingers to grip delicate objects, or even pour a liquid into a glass.”5 And Jesse Sullivan who “was equipped with a bionic limb, connected through a nerve-muscle graft. Not only can Sullivan control his new limb with his mind, he can also feel hot, cold, and the amount of pressure his grip is applying.”6

Technologies designed to augment the human body offer great promise for those with physical deficiencies. However, the end goal far surpasses aiding the handicapped.

 


1. Professor Kevin Warwick, “Project Cyborg 1.0.”
2. Ibid.
3. Professor Kevin Warwick, “Project Cyborg 2.0.”
4. Nelson, “7 real-life human cyborgs.”
5. Ibid.
6. Ibid.

 Works Cited

1. Professor Kevin Warwick. “Project Cyborg 1.0.” Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.kevinwarwick.com/Cyborg1.htm.
2. Professor Kevin Warwick. “Project Cyborg 2.0.” Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.kevinwarwick.com/Cyborg2.htm.
3. Nelson, Bryan. “7 real-life human cyborgs.” Mother Nature Network, April 25, 2013. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.mnn.com/leaderboard/stories/7-real-life-human-cyborgs.

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

What Is the True Motivation Behind Transhumanism Research?  /  Will Science Turn Men Into Gods?

 

Technologies designed to augment the human body offer great promise for those with physical deficiencies. However, the end goal far surpasses aiding the handicapped. Ultimately, the greatest motivating factor behind this research is the drive to become gods. Technology promises mankind the opportunity to transcend itself. Artificial intelligence engineer, Chairman of the Board of the OpenCog Foundation, CEO of Biomind LLC, Vice Chair of Humanity+, and former Director of Research for Machine Intelligence Research Institute, Dr. Ben Goertzel, said, “Eventually we’re going to transcend humanity. Eventually we’re going to go beyond the whole way of thinking, feeling, existing, and relating that constitutes humanity.”1 Likewise, in an interview with Wesley Smith, Dr. Leon Kass said, “All of the boundaries are up for grabs. All of the boundaries that have defined us as human beings, boundaries between a human being and an animal and between a human being and a super human being or a god. The boundaries of life, the boundaries of death.”2 Additionally, in his book Artilect Wars, Dr. Hugo de Garis writes, “It would be nice to be an artilect, a god, a supremely powerful omnipotent being. I could be such a creature by late 21st century and beyond. It’s possible. It’s not an unattainable dream. … All I can do here is attempt to convey some measure of the strength of ‘religious’ feeling that I and other Cosmists will make public this century.”3 He goes on to say, “The prospect of building godlike creatures fills me with a sense of religious awe that goes to the very depth of my soul and motivates me powerfully to continue, despite the possible horrible negative consequences.”4 Dr. Hugo de Garis also concludes the documentary Building Gods with the statement, “Can you sort of sense a kind of almost like religious awe, almost? We could build gods if we wanted to.”

In his book The Singularity Is Near, Dr. Ray Kurzweil writes, “Our version 1.0 biological bodies are … frail and subject to a myriad of failure modes. … The Singularity will allow us to transcend these limitations. … We will gain power over our fates. Our mortality will be in our own hands [and] the nonbiological portion of our intelligence will be trillions of trillions of times more powerful than unaided human intelligence.”6 Furthermore, Mark Pesche has said:7

Men die, planets die, even stars die. We know all this. Because we know it, we seek something more—a transcendence of transience, translation to incorruptible form. An escape if you will, a stop to the wheel. We seek, therefore, to bless ourselves with perfect knowledge and perfect will; To become as gods, take the universe in hand, and transform it in our image—for our own delight. As it is on Earth, so it shall be in the heavens. The inevitable result of incredible improbability, the arrow of evolution is lipping us into the transhuman – an apotheosis to reason, salvation – attained by good works.

Also, in an article for H+ Magazine titled “Transhumanism as a bridge to Divinity,” futurist, Belinda Silbert, writes, “What then is humanity? I would posit the opinion that humanity is the seed of all potential that could flower into what we have painted as Divinity. The lines will blur. The true revelation will be that Human and Divine are one and the same.”8

Perhaps most revealing of all is founder and Chairman of the X Prize Foundation and co-founder of the Singularity University, Dr. Peter Diamandis’, statement, “And we will become god-like. People don’t like to hear that, but we in terms of omniscience—being able to know anything, plugging your brain into Google. You know, omnipotent—being able to control something on the other side of the planet. Omnipresent—being able to know the thoughts of somebody in Japan or Hawaii or wherever it might be at any time.”9

The drive to become a god undergirds the philosophy of transhumanism. Not every scientist who is researching these technologies share in these aspirations. Most scientists are merely curious. However, the prominent transhumanist scientists and philosophers who are promoting and defining these technologies have a deeply religious devotion to seeing mankind ascend to the throne of God.

Understand that when transhumanists use the term “god,” they are employing a pagan understanding of the title. Pagan gods were merely elevated humans. They possessed the same desires and the same character flaws. None of these gods were unlimited in their abilities.10 Rather, because pagan deities possessed superhuman abilities and immortality, they were, by definition, gods. This is a far cry from the Christian definition of “God.” To the Christian, “God” refers to a singular, uncaused being, who designed and created all things, and who is perfect in His moral character. The Christian God is not merely an enhanced human. The Christian God actively works to sustain all of creation (Col. 1:16–17 ). The Christian God is omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent, and holy. There is none who is His equal. Man can never become or supersede this God.

The Humanist understanding of what constitutes “God” is deeply flawed and extremely limited. As such, he has fooled himself into believing that he can become a god. In the documentary TechnoCalypse, physicist, Dr. Richard Seed—who is most known for forcing a national debate on human cloning in the 1990s—made the statement, “We are going to become God, period. If you do not like it, get off. You do not have to contribute, you do not have to participate but if you are going to interfere with me becoming a god, you’re going to have trouble. There’ll be warfare.”12

Ultimately, pursuit of the transhumanist technological singularity is a quest to realize Satan’s promise, “You will be like God” (Gen. 3:5). It offers man everything that God offered man apart from God’s requirements. It promises that through technology, man can overcome the curse of sin on his own terms, apart from repentance. In fact, Dr. Ray Kurzweil has said, “If you look at the implications of my ideas, they do have a resonance with some traditional religious ideas—the idea of a profound transformation in the future, eternal life, bringing back the dead.”13 It promises that through technology, man can become his own savior. In essence, this is a denial of Jesus as the Christ—as Messiah—and this is one of the ways in which we can identify the spirit of antichrist (1 John 2:22 ). These evangelists preach that through technology, man can accomplish greater things than he can imagine without submitting his will to God. This undermines the authority of the Word of God. This, too, is one of the ways in which we can identify the spirit of antichrist (1 John 5:10–12 ).

The transhumanist agenda is the ultimate display of pride and arrogance. This is also a characteristic of the spirit of antichrist. Transhumanism denies the gospel message and is rooted in self-love, covetousness, pride, boasting, blasphemy, resisting of the truth, ungratefulness, etc. These are all characteristics of the spirit of antichrist. Clearly, the true spirit behind the technological singularity is the spirit of antichrist.

 


1. Transcendent Man.
2. Leon Kass, quoted in “A Conversation with Leon Kass: Science Doesn’t Trump All,” Wesley Smith, San Francisco Chronicle, October 20, 2002, Source: Smith, “Stupider and Worse?”
3. de Garis, The Artilect War, 98.
4. Horn, Forbidden Gates, 125.
5. DigPhilosophy, “Building Gods.”
6. Kurzweil, The Singularity, p. 9.
7. Snyder, “Transhumanists.”
8. Silbert, “Transhumansim.”
9. Transcendent Man.
10. Recently, there has been a surge of movies which emphasize the mortal and merely supra-human nature of “the gods.” Perhaps the clearest examples are Clash of the Titans and Wrath of the Titans.
11. baxteru, “Human Cloning.”
12. Transcendent Man.

Works Cited

1. Baxteru. “Human Cloning Researcher Richard Seed – When the Shift Hits the Fan.” YouTube video, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nTESEe2YUmI (accessed March 18, 2014).
2. de Garis, Hugo. The Artilect War: Cosmists vs. Terrans: A Bitter Controversy Concerning Whether Humanity Should Build Godlike Massively Intelligent Machines. Palm Springs: ETC Publications, 2005.
3. DigPhilosophy. “Building Gods Documentary – Transhumanism, Artificial intelligence and nanotechnology.” YouTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LbWjJrX3aZ8 (accessed March 18, 2014).
4. Horn, Thomas. Forbidden Gates: How Genetics, Robotics, Artificial Intelligence, Synthetic Biology, Nanotechnology, and Human Enhancement Herald the Dawn of Techno-Dimensional Spiritual Warfare. Crane: Defender, 2010.
5. Kurzweil, Ray. The Singularity Is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology. New York: Penguin Group, 2005.
6. Silbert, Belinda. “Transhumansim as a Bridge to Divinity.” H+ Magazine, February 19, 2013. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://hplusmagazine.com/2013/02/19/transhumanism-as-a-bridge-to-divinity/.
7. Smith, Nick. “Stupider and Worse?” The University Dialogue, Paper 62, 2010. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://unh.edu/discovery/sites/unh.edu.discovery/files/dialogue/2010/pdf/2010_Dialogues_smith.pdf.
8. Snyder, Michael. “Transhumanists: Superhuman Powers & Life Extension Tech Will Allow Us To Become Like God.” Washington’s Blog, May 14, 2014. Accessed June 18, 2014. http://www.washingtonsblog.com/2014/05/transhumanists-superhuman-powers-life-extension-tech-will-allow-us-become-like-god.html.
9. The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. Crossway Bibles, 2001.
10. Transcendent Man. DVD. Docurama, 2009.

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

Are Transhumanists Fundamentally Altering Humanity?

 

Humanity as we know it is being fundamentally altered. This is the conclusion of Dr. Leon Kass in his book Life, Liberty and the Defense of Dignity: The Challenges of Bioethics. Dr. Kass is a bioethicist who served as Chairman of the President’s Council on Bioethics between 2001 and 2005. This was a council which, according to former President George H.W. Bush Jr.’s Executive Order 13237, was established to “advise the President on bioethical issues that may emerge as a consequence of advances in biomedical science and technology.”1 Dr. Leon Kass writes:2

Human nature itself lies on the operating table, ready for alteration, for eugenic and neuropsychic “enhancement,” for wholesale redesign. In leading laboratories, academic and industrial, new creators are confidently amassing their powers and quietly honing their skills, while on the street their evangelists are zealously prophesying a posthuman future. For anyone who cares about preserving our humanity, the time has come to pay attention.

Dr. Leon Kass is not alone in his conviction that humanity as we know it is being fundamentally altered. This is also the conclusion of Chairman and CEO of Biotechonomy, Juan Enriquez, according to a 2009 Ars Technica article titled “We Are Becoming a New Species, We are Becoming Homo Evolutis:”3

Chairman and CEO of Biotechonomy, Enriquez says that humanity is on the verge of becoming a new and utterly unique species, which he dubs Homo Evolutis. What makes this species so unique is that it “takes direct and deliberate control over the evolution of the species.” Calling it the “ultimate reboot,” he points to the conflux of DNA manipulation and therapy, tissue generation, and robotics as making this great leap possible. … The day may come when we are able to take the best biology of the known animal kingdom and make it part of our own. This isn’t just about being a bit stronger, or having perfect eyesight our whole lives. All of our organs and limbs have weaknesses that can be addressed, and there are also opportunities to go beyond basic fixes and perform more elaborate enhancements.

Juan Enriquez is referring to something known as “transgenetics.” Transgenetics is the practice of altering the genetic material of an organism by artificially introducing DNA from an unrelated organism. Essentially, the DNA strand can be cut and spliced together with a piece of DNA from another organism. By doing this, negative or unwanted genetic code can be removed, and enhanced genetic code can be inserted. Although many different methods can be used to genetically alter an organism, the most common is the use of bacteria and viruses to replicate the altered DNA within the host.

Much could be said about transgenetics and the greater category of transhumanism, but suffice it to say that transhumanists do envision altering mankind in such fundamental ways as to compromise, remove, or exceed features which define its humanity. Dr. Max More was among the first to fully develop transhumanist philosophy. In a subsequent essay titled “The Philosophy of Transhumanism,” Dr. More admits, “Transhumanists regard human nature not as an end in itself, not as perfect, and not as having any claim on our allegiance. Rather, it is just one point along an evolutionary pathway and we can learn to reshape our own nature in ways we deem desirable and valuable. By thoughtfully, carefully, and yet boldly applying technology to ourselves, we can become something no longer accurately described as human – we can become posthuman.”4

 


1. “Executive Order,” 62671.
2. Kass, Life, Liberty and the Defense of Dignity, 4.
3. Fisher, “We Are Becoming a New Species.”
4. More, The Transhumanist Reader, 4.

Works Cited

1. “Executive Order 13521 of November 24, 2009: Establishing the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues.” Federal Register 74, no. 228 (November 30, 2009): 62671. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2009-11-30/pdf/E9-28805.pdf.
2. Fisher, Ken. “We Are Becoming a New Species, We are Becoming Homo Evolutis.” Ars Technica, Febraury 5, 2009. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://arstechnica.com/science/2009/02/we-are-becoming-a-new-species-we-are-becoming-homo-evolutis/.
3. Kass, Leon. Life, Liberty and the Defense of Dignity. San Francisco: Encounter Books, 2004.
4. More, Max. The Transhumanist Reader Classical and Contemporary Essays on the Science, Technology, and Philosophy of the Human Future. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, 2013.

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

What Is Transgenetics?

 

Transgenetics is the practice of altering the genetic material of an organism by artificially introducing DNA from an unrelated organism. Essentially, the DNA strand can be cut and spliced together with a piece of DNA from another organism. By doing this, negative or unwanted genetic code can be removed, and enhanced genetic code can be inserted. Although many different methods can be used to genetically alter an organism, the most common is the use of bacteria and viruses to replicate the altered DNA within the host.

Transgenetics is a subset of transhumanism. According to the Oxford Dictionaries, “transhumanism” is “the belief or theory that the human race can evolve beyond its current physical and mental limitations, especially by means of science and technology.”1 “Transhumanism” is today used as an umbrella title to refer to mankind’s efforts to use technology and genetic engineering to augment itself in such a way as to transcend the ordinary limitations of humanity in an effort to become “god-like.” It promises the realization of Satan’s original promises to man in Genesis 3:4–5, “You will not surely die,” and “You will be like God.”

 


1. “Transhumanism,” Oxford Dictionaries, accessed Sept. 26, 2013, http://oxforddictionaries.com/us/definition/american_english/transhumanism.


Works Cited

1. Oxford Dictionaries. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/us.
2. The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. Crossway Bibles, 2001.

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

Does Transhumanism Consider Our Humanity and Genetic Design to be Sacred?

 

Transhumanism, and particularly transgenetics, is rooted in Humanism and the Darwinian hypothesis of evolutionary process.1 Among other things, Darwinian evolution eliminates the inherent value of mankind. If there is no God, then man cannot be created in God’s image. As such, there is nothing sacred about humanity’s genetic design. According to Darwinian evolution, humans are fundamentally no different from the animals. If this is true, then there is no reason why human and animal DNA should not be combined. Furthermore, the Darwinian hypothesis of evolutionary process maintains that humans are merely the result of random genetic code. As such, there is no moral or natural reason why the scientist should not rearrange this code.

In his thesis paper titled “Transhumanist Values,” transhumanist philosopher and director of both the Future of Humanity Institute and the Programme on the Impacts of Future Technology at Oxford University, Dr. Nick Bostrom, writes, “Transhumanists view human nature as a work-in-progress, a half-baked beginning that we can learn to remold in desirable ways. Current humanity need not be the endpoint of evolution. Transhumanists hope that by responsible use of science, technology, and other rational means we shall eventually manage to become posthuman, beings with vastly greater capacities than present human beings have.”2 Similarly, Dr. Max More has said:3

I think increasingly, we’re going to start realizing that this body is not sacred. The way we are is not some kind of God-given plan. It’s really a pure random accident. We take two sets of genes, and we shuffle them, and something comes out. Sometimes it’s a wonderful product. Sometimes it has a hole in the heart. Sometimes it has psychosis or tendencies toward extreme anger, has addictive problems, can’t concentrate—all kinds of defects. To say, “Awe, that’s normal. That’s sacred. That’s good.” to me is kind of absurd. It’s just—it’s random. It’s not a plan there that we’re thwarting. So, genetic engineering seems to be one of the most moral things we can do.

Transhumanism—standing upon the shoulders of the Darwinian hypothesis of evolutionary process—strips humanity of its sacredness. There is nothing sacred about our genetic design. Transhumanism redefines humanity, reducing it to the result of mere random mechanical processes.

 


1. Dr. Max More was among the first to fully develop transhumanist philosophy. In a subsequent essay titled “The Philosophy of Transhumanism,” Dr. More writes: 
“Trans-human” emphasizes the way transhumanism goes well beyond humanism in both means and ends. Humanism tends to rely exclusively on educational and cultural refinement to improve human nature whereas transhumanists want to apply technology to overcome limits imposed by our biological and genetic heritage. Transhumanists regard human nature not as an end in itself, not as perfect, and not as having any claim on our allegiance. Rather, it is just one point along an evolutionary pathway and we can learn to reshape our own nature in ways we deem desirable and valuable. By thoughtfully, carefully, and yet boldly applying technology to ourselves, we can become something no longer accurately described as human – we can become posthuman.
(More, The Transhumanist Reader, 4.)
2. Bostrom, “Transhumanist Values,” Ethical Issues for the 21st Century (Philosophical Documentation Center Press, 2003); reprinted in Review of Contemporary Philosophy, Vol. 4, May 2005, Source: Bostrom, “Transhumanist Values.”
3. TheDejavu434, TechnoCalyps.

Works Cited

1. Bostrom, Nick. “Transhumanist Values.” Nick Bostrom’s Home Page. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.nickbostrom.com/ethics/values.html.
2. More, Max. The Transhumanist Reader Classical and Contemporary Essays on the Science, Technology, and Philosophy of the Human Future. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, 2013.
2. TheDejavu434. “Technocalypse.” YouTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MXQSbjBL7Q&list=PLLgVDY8_xVLYhjw_pOkTnuX2NWQ9fsSy3 (accessed March 18, 2014).

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

How Does Darwinian Evolution Promote & Even Encourage Transhumanism?

 

Transhumanism, and particularly transgenetics, is rooted in Humanism and the Darwinian hypothesis of evolutionary process.1 Among other things, Darwinian evolution eliminates the inherent value of mankind. If there is no God, then man cannot be created in God’s image. As such, there is nothing sacred about humanity’s genetic design. According to Darwinian evolution, humans are fundamentally no different from the animals. If this is true, then there is no reason why human and animal DNA should not be combined. Furthermore, the Darwinian hypothesis of evolutionary process maintains that humans are merely the result of random genetic code. As such, there is no moral or natural reason why the scientist should not rearrange this code.

A core tenet of evolutionary theory is that man is continually evolving into new and more efficient life forms. If science is capable of guiding and accelerating this evolution, then why should man wait upon nature? In fact, survival of the fittest reasoning mandates that if science is capable of enhancing human life and abilities, then we are obligated to pursue it. In an article titled “Genetic Armageddon (Transhumanism: As the Days of Noah Were),” Transhumanism researcher, Dr. John McTernan, observes:2

The natural progression is to enhance the human race by sharpening the senses. If the DNA is now understood and can be manipulated, why not increase the eyesight and hearing? With the addition of eagle DNA man could see like an eagle. By placing deer DNA, man could hear like a deer. The same enhancement could be accomplished for smell. For strength the introduction of gorilla DNA could give super strength, and for speed how about ostrich DNA! The evolutionists believe they are rapidly advancing evolution by manipulating the DNA. Many scientists believe they are enhancing evolution by improving man. Because, through evolution, man has no fear of God and thus no restraints on tampering with DNA, any attempts to stop this tampering will be met with cries from the scientists.

In his thesis paper titled “Transhumanist Values,” transhumanist philosopher and director of both the Future of Humanity Institute and the Programme on the Impacts of Future Technology at Oxford University, Dr. Nick Bostrom, writes, “Transhumanists view human nature as a work-in-progress, a half-baked beginning that we can learn to remold in desirable ways. Current humanity need not be the endpoint of evolution. Transhumanists hope that by responsible use of science, technology, and other rational means we shall eventually manage to become posthuman, beings with vastly greater capacities than present human beings have.”3 Similarly, Dr. Max More has said:4

I think increasingly, we’re going to start realizing that this body is not sacred. The way we are is not some kind of God-given plan. It’s really a pure random accident. We take two sets of genes, and we shuffle them, and something comes out. Sometimes it’s a wonderful product. Sometimes it has a hole in the heart. Sometimes it has psychosis or tendencies toward extreme anger, has addictive problems, can’t concentrate—all kinds of defects. To say, “Awe, that’s normal. That’s sacred. That’s good.” to me is kind of absurd. It’s just—it’s random. It’s not a plan there that we’re thwarting. So, genetic engineering seems to be one of the most moral things we can do.

Transhumanism—standing upon the shoulders of the Darwinian hypothesis of evolutionary process—strips humanity of its sacredness. It redefines humanity, reducing it to the result of random mechanical processes. This begs the question, “What would be the result if this random sequence of DNA were altered?” Today the answer to this question is being explored within the field of transgenetics which is a subset of transhumanism.

 


1. Dr. Max More was among the first to fully develop transhumanist philosophy. In a subsequent essay titled “The Philosophy of Transhumanism,” Dr. More writes: 
“Trans-human” emphasizes the way transhumanism goes well beyond humanism in both means and ends. Humanism tends to rely exclusively on educational and cultural refinement to improve human nature whereas transhumanists want to apply technology to overcome limits imposed by our biological and genetic heritage. Transhumanists regard human nature not as an end in itself, not as perfect, and not as having any claim on our allegiance. Rather, it is just one point along an evolutionary pathway and we can learn to reshape our own nature in ways we deem desirable and valuable. By thoughtfully, carefully, and yet boldly applying technology to ourselves, we can become something no longer accurately described as human – we can become posthuman.
(More, The Transhumanist Reader, 4.)
2. McTernan, “Genetic Armageddon.”
3. Bostrom, “Transhumanist Values,” Ethical Issues for the 21st Century (Philosophical Documentation Center Press, 2003); reprinted in Review of Contemporary Philosophy, Vol. 4, May 2005, Source: Bostrom, “Transhumanist Values.”
4. TheDejavu434, TechnoCalyps.

Works Cited

1. Bostrom, Nick. “Transhumanist Values.” Nick Bostrom’s Home Page. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.nickbostrom.com/ethics/values.html.
2. McTernan, John. “Genetic Armageddon (Transhumanism: As the Days of Noah Were).” Defend and Proclaim the Faith, 2009. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.defendproclaimthefaith.org/DaysNoah.htm.
2. More, Max. The Transhumanist Reader Classical and Contemporary Essays on the Science, Technology, and Philosophy of the Human Future. Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell, 2013.
2. TheDejavu434. “Technocalypse.” YouTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MXQSbjBL7Q&list=PLLgVDY8_xVLYhjw_pOkTnuX2NWQ9fsSy3 (accessed March 18, 2014).

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

How Are Scientists Practicing Transgenetics Today?  /  Have Scientists Created Human/Animal Hybrids?

 

Transhumanism—standing upon the shoulders of the Darwinian hypothesis of evolutionary process—strips humanity of its sacredness. It redefines humanity, reducing it to the result of random mechanical processes. This begs the question, “What would be the result if this random sequence of DNA were altered?” Today the answer to this question is being explored within the field of transgenetics.

As bizarre as the concept of transgenetics may be, it is a reality. This is not a theoretical science of the future. It is being done today. DARPA’s Department of Defense Fiscal Year 2011 President’s Budget included funding for science that will lead to editing a soldier’s DNA and a project called BioDesign which includes “advanced genetic engineering and molecular biology technologies.” Included within this program is an effort to eliminate cell death through the creation of “a new generation of regenerative cells that could ultimately be programmed to live indefinitely.”1 In other words, this is a government research project into the secret of immortality. In 2010, Wired Magazine reported on this project in an article titled “Pentagon Looks to Breed Immortal 'Synthetic Organisms,' Molecular Kill-Switch Included.”2

Editing a soldier’s DNA and researching immortality seem like projects which belong to the realm of science fiction. Nevertheless, our understanding of science today has brought to life some of science fiction’s most bizarre endeavors. A 2013 Daily Mail article titled “Frankenstein-style HEAD transplants could soon be a reality, claims leading surgeon” says:3

It has until now been the work of science fiction and horror films, but scientists could soon be carrying out complete human head transplants, a leading surgeon has said. The procedure has previously been performed on monkeys but recent technological breakthroughs that make it possible to reconnect spinal cords could see the operation carried out on humans. Neurosurgeon Dr Sergio Canavero, from the Turin Advanced Neuromodulation Group, believes the operation would take 100 surgeons up to 36 hours and would cost £8.5million.

A 2011 Tech News Daily article titled “‘Bulletproof Human Skin’ Made from Spider Silk” reports:4

A Dutch team created a piece of “bulletproof” skin from special, U.S.-made spider silk and human skin cells and found that it indeed can repel bullets — as long as they’re not traveling too fast. The bulletproof skin showed its superiority over normal human skin by stopping a bullet fired at a reduced speed. But it fell short of surviving a shot at normal speed from a .22 caliber rifle, the benchmark for protection for a Type 1 bulletproof vest.

Why wear a bulletproof vest when a person can make his own skin bulletproof? These are the kinds of questions that are being asked by transgeneticists today.

A 2013 CNN article titled “UK takes step toward ‘three-parent babies’” says:5

The United Kingdom took a step Friday toward being the first country in the world to allow a pioneering in vitro fertilization technique using DNA from three people that could prevent mitochondrial diseases but that also raises significant ethical issues. … The new embryo will contain nuclear DNA from the intended father and mother, as well as healthy mitochondrial DNA from the donor embryo — effectively creating a ‘three-parent’ baby.

This may appear to be a radically new procedure, but it was successfully performed in the United States over a decade ago according to a 2012 Daily Mail article titled “World’s first GM babies born:”6

The disclosure that 30 healthy babies were born after a series of experiments in the United States provoked another furious debate about ethics. … The babies were born to women who had problems conceiving. Extra genes from a female donor were inserted into their eggs before they were fertilised in an attempt to enable them to conceive. Genetic fingerprint tests on two one-year-old children confirm that they have inherited DNA from three adults—two women and one man. The fact that the children have inherited the extra genes and incorporated them into their “germline” means that they will, in turn, be able to pass them on to their own offspring.

The report that this article references was published in 2012, but these experiments were conducted over a decade ago. Today these three parent babies would be teenagers.7

Scientists are continually pushing the envelope in their transgenetic endeavors. The world was once shocked by the revelation that human clones had been created. A 1999 BBC articled titled “Details of Human Hybrid Clone Revealed” reports, “Details of the first hybrid human embryo clone have been released. … It was achieved using a cell from a man’s leg and a cow’s egg. … But this development will also see a significant heightening of the debate over the ethics of human cloning and, indeed, what it means to be a human.”8 Likewise, a 2001 CNN article titled “Bush: Human cloning ‘morally wrong’” states, “President Bush Monday criticized the creation of human embryos through cloning as ‘morally wrong’ and ‘bad public policy,’ saying the procedure should not be allowed. ... Bush spoke one day after a Massachusetts company announced that it had created the first human embryos through cloning.”9

Today we realize that human cloning was only the beginning. A 2004 Washington Post article titled “Of Mice and Men and In-Between: Scientists Debate Blending of Human, Animal Forms” states, “During one recent meeting, scientists disagreed on such basic issues as whether it would be unethical for a human embryo to begin its development in an animal’s womb, and whether a mouse would be better or worse off with a brain made of human neurons.”10 Also, a 2009 Reuters article titled “Scientists Want Debate on Animals with Human Genes” states, “A mouse that can speak? A monkey with Down’s Syndrome? Dogs with human hands or feet? British scientists want to know if such experiments are acceptable, or if they go too far in the name of medical research.”11

Chimeras and human/animal hybrids have already been created. In a 2010 LifeSiteNews article, Senior Counsel for the Alliance Defense Fund Joseph Infranco writes:12

The chimera in Greek mythology was a monster with a lion’s head, a goat’s body, and a dragon’s tail. It was universally viewed by the Greeks as a hideous creature, precisely because of its unnatural hybrid makeup; Prince Bellerophon, who was assigned the unhappy task of fighting the creature, became a hero when he slew it. If we fast-forward to today, the chimera, or combination of species, is a subject of serious discussion in certain scientific circles. We are well beyond the science fiction of H.G. Wells’ tormented hybrids in The Island of Doctor Moreau; we are in a time where scientists are seriously contemplating the creation of human-animal hybrids. The hero is no longer Bellerophon who killed the creature; it is, rather, the scientist creating it.

Combining DNA from distinct species has been practiced for years, resulting in a vast number of chimeras. A 2011 Mail Online article titled “150 human animal hybrids grown in UK labs: Embryos have been produced secretively for the past three years” reports that the United Kingdom has produced “cybrids,” which is an animal egg fertilized by human sperm.13 A 2000 ABC News article titled “Spinning Tough Spider Silk From Goat Milk” says, “Turner and his team of bio scientists took the genes responsible for creating spider silk into the cells of mammals, such as goats. Using those genes, the re-engineered goats were then able to produce in their milk the same protein that makes up spider’s silk.”14 Furthermore, a 2011 Guardian article titled “Glow Cat: Fluorescent Green Felines Could Help Study of HIV” states, “It is a rite of passage for any sufficiently advanced genetically modified animal: at some point scientists will insert a gene that makes you glow green. The latest addition to this ever-growing list – which includes fruit flies, mice, rabbits and pigs – is the domestic cat.” According to the article, this gene is from a jellyfish. Additionally, a 2005 National Geographic News article titled “Animal-Human Hybrids Sparks Controversy” states, “Chinese scientists at the Shanghai Second Medical University in 2003 successfully fused human cells with rabbit eggs. The embryos were reportedly the first human-animal chimeras successfully created.”16 Furthermore, a 2011 Reuters article titled “Cows churn out ‘human breast milk’” reports, “Researchers at the State Key Laboratory of Agrobiotechnology of the China Agricultural University introduced human genetic coding into the DNA of Holstein dairy cow embryos, then transferred the embryos into cow surrogates. … ‘The genetically modified cow milk is 80 percent the same as human breast milk,’ said Li Ning, a professor and the project’s director as well as lead researcher.”17 Also, a 2004 Washington Post article titled “Of Mice and Men and In-Between” says, “In Minnesota, pigs are being born with human blood in their veins. In Nevada, there are sheep whose livers and hearts are largely human. In California, mice peer from their cages with human brain cells firing inside their skulls.”18

The line between humans and animals was crossed long ago. However, as promising as combining human and animal DNA may be, the ultimate promise to humanity rests in synthetic biology. Instead of cutting and splicing existing genetic code, synthetic biology creates its own genetic code one piece at a time. The end result can be a tailor-made strand of DNA which is unique within creation.

 


1. Department of Defense 57, 265.
2. Drummond, “Pentagon.”
3. Woollaston, “Frankenstein-style HEAD.”
4. “‘Bulletproof Human Skin’ Made From Spider Silk,” Tech News Daily, August 17, 2011, Source: “Bulletproof Human.”
5. Smith-Spark, “UK takes step toward ‘three-parent babies’,” CNN, June 28, 2013, http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/28/health/uk-health-dna-ivf/.
6. Hanlon, “World’s first GM babies born.”
7. Mercola, “Dozens of Genetically Modified Babies.”
8. “Details of hybrid clone revealed.”
9. “Bush: Human cloning ‘morally wrong’.”
10. Weiss, “Of Mice and Men.”
11. Kelland, “Scientists Want Debate.”
12. Hamp, “Part Sixteen.”
13. Martin, “150 human animal hybrids.”
14. “Spinning Tough Spider Silk.”
15. Jha, “Glow Cat.”
16. Mott, “Animal-Human Hybrids.”
17. Fan, “Cows church out ‘human breast milk’.”
18. Weiss, “Of Mice and Men.”

 Works Cited

1. “‘Bulletproof Human Skin’ Made From Spider Silk.” Fox News, August 17, 2011. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2011/08/17/breakthrough-bulletproof-human-skin-made-from-spider-silk/.
2. “Bush: Human cloning ‘morally wrong’.” CNN, November 26, 2001. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://edition.cnn.com/2001/HEALTH/11/26/human.cloning/.
3. Department of Defense Fiscal Year (FY) 2011 President’s Budget. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.darpa.mil/workarea/downloadasset.aspx?id=537.
4. “Details of hybrid clone revealed.” BBC News, June 18, 1999. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/371378.stm.
5. Drummond, Katie. “Pentagon Looks to Breed Immortal ‘Synthetic Organisms,’ Molexular Kill-Switch Included.” Wired, February 5, 2010. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2010/02/pentagon-looks-to-breed-immortal-synthetic-organisms-molecular-kill-switch-included/.
6. Fan, Haze and Maxim Duncan. “Cows church out ‘human breast milk’.” Reuters, June 16, 2011. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/06/16/us-china-cows-idUSTRE75F10K20110616.
7. Hamp, Douglas. “Part Sixteen: Man Becoming His Own God Via Transhumanism.” Douglas Hamp Blog, June 5, 2011. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.douglashamp.com/man-becoming-his-own-god-via-transhumanism/.
8. Hanlon, Michael. “World’s first GM babies born.” The Daily Mail, June 28, 2012. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-43767/Worlds-GM-babies-born.html.
9. Jha, Alok. “Glow Cat: Fluorescent Green Felines Could Help Study of HIV.” The Guardian, September 11, 2011. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.theguardian.com/science/2011/sep/11/genetically-modified-glowing-cats.
10. Kelland, Kate. “Scientists Want Debate on Animals with Human Genes.” Reuters, November 9, 2009. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.reuters.com/article/2009/11/10/us-science-animal-human-idUSTRE5A900R20091110.
11. Martin, Daniel and Simon Caldwell. “150 human animal hybrids grown in UK labs: Embryos have been produced secretively for the past three years.” The Daily Mail, July 22, 2011. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2017818/Embryos-involving-genes-animals-mixed-humans-produced-secretively-past-years.html.
12. Mercola, Joseph. “Dozens of Genetically Modified Babies Already Born – How Will They Alter Human Species?” Mercola.com, July 17, 2012. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2012/07/17/first-genetically-modified-babies-born.aspx?e_cid=20120717_DNL_artNew_1.
13. Mott, Maryann. “Animal-Human Hybrids Sparks Controversy.” National Geographic News, January 25, 2005. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2005/01/0125_050125_chimeras.html.
14. Smith-Spark, Laura. “UK takes step toward ‘three-parent babies’.” CNN, June 28, 2013. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.cnn.com/2013/06/28/health/uk-health-dna-ivf/.
15. “Spinning Tough Spider Silk From Goat Milk.” ABC News, January 31, 2000. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://abcnews.go.com/Technology/CuttingEdge/spinning-tough-spider-silk-goat-milk/story?id=98095.
16. Weiss, Rick. “Of Mice and Men and In-Between: Scientists Debate Blending of Human, Animal Forms.” The Washington Post, November 20, 2004. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A63731-2004Nov19.html.
17. Woollaston, Victoria. “Frankenstein-style HEAD transplants could soon be a reality, claims leading surgeon.” The Daily Mail, July 2, 2013. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2353402/Frankenstein-style-HEAD-transplants-soon-reality-claims-leading-surgeon.html.

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

What Is Synthetic Biology? / How Are Scientists Using Synthetic Biology Today?

 

The line between humans and animals was crossed long ago. However, as promising as combining human and animal DNA may be, the ultimate promise to humanity rests in synthetic biology. Instead of cutting and splicing existing genetic code, synthetic biology creates its own genetic code one piece at a time. The end result can be a tailor-made strand of DNA which is unique within creation.

Already “synthetic life” has been developed. A 2010 CNN article titled “Scientist: ‘We Didn’t Create Life from Scratch’” states:1

Genetics pioneer J. Craig Venter announced Thursday that he and his team have created artificial life for the first time. Using sequences of genetic code created on a computer, the team assembled a complete DNA of a bacterium, then inserted it in another bacterium and initiated synthesis, or in Venter’s words “booted up” the cell. In a statement, Venter called the results “the proof of principle that genomes can be designed in the computer, chemically made in the laboratory and transplanted into a recipient cell to produce a new self-replicating cell,” controlled only by the synthetic genome.

According to the J. Craig Venture Institute website:2

Genomic science has greatly enhanced our understanding of the biological world. It is enabling researchers to “read” the genetic code of organisms from all branches of life by sequencing the four letters that make up DNA. Sequencing genomes has now become routine, giving rise to thousands of genomes in the public databases. In essence, scientists are digitizing biology by converting the A, C, T, and G’s of the chemical makeup of DNA into 1’s and 0’s in a computer. But can one reverse the process and start with 1’s and 0’s in a computer to define the characteristics of a living cell? ... In a publication in Science magazine, Daniel Gibson, Ph.D. and a team of 23 additional researchers outline the steps to synthesize a 1.08 million base pair Mycoplasma mycoides genome, constructed from four bottles of chemicals that make up DNA. This synthetic genome has been “booted up” in a cell to create the first cell controlled completely by a synthetic genome.

This artificial life form is a micro-organism. Scientists remain far from their ultimate goal to create synthetic macro-organisms. Nevertheless, their goal has now been proven to be theoretically possible. A three-year feasibility study by the global think tank, the Millennium Project—together with the United Nations University, the Smithsonian Institution, and the Futures Group—concluded in their 2010 “State of the Future” report that international synthetic biologists affirm that “as computer code is written to create software to augment human capabilities, so too will genetic code be written to create life forms to augment civilization.”3 It is believed that mankind will be able to eventually create synthetic DNA to accomplish its wildest imaginations.

In a 2013 Inventing the Future interview with Robert Tercek, Autodesk distinguished researcher, Andrew Hessel, shared stories of students who are actively developing synthetic life forms designed to better humanity. In Cambridge University, students are creating “super-bright glowing bacteria in all different colors” with the aim of creating glowing trees to replace street lights. Other students from the University of Groningen in the Netherlands developed bacteria that can sense when food is spoiling. They hope this will prevent good food from going to waste because of expiration dates rather than actual spoiling.4

Impressive as these developments may be, ultimately, the primary goal of synthetic biology is not to create trees that can replace street lights and bacteria that can detect expired food products. The true objective is to eventually bestow supernatural abilities and a form of immortality upon mankind. The greatest motivating factor behind this research is the drive to become gods.

 


1. “Scientist: ‘We Didn’t Create Life from Scratch.”
2. J. Craig Venture Institute, “First Self-Replicating Synthetic Bacterial Cell.”
3. Millennium Project, “Update Challenge 14.”
4. LiveLab Network, “Synthetic Biology.”

Works Cited

1. J. Craig Venture Institute. “First Self-Replicating Synthetic Bacterial Cell.” Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.jcvi.org/cms/research/projects/first-self-replicating-synthetic-bacterial-cell/overview/.
2. LiveLab Network. “Synthetic Biology – Inventing the Future.” You Tube video, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iRO0-fMIW9I (accessed March 18, 2014).
3. Millennium Project, The. “Update Challenge 14: How can scientific and technological breakthroughs be accelerated to improve the human condition?” Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.millennium-project.org/millennium/Global_Challenges/chall-14.html.
4. “Scientist: ‘We Didn’t Create Life from Scratch.” CNN, May 21, 2010. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/05/21/venter.qa/.

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

Are Scientists Creating Gods?  /  What Is the Spirit Behind Transhumanist Research?  /  What Is the True Motivation Behind the Genetic Singularity?

 

Impressive as the developments in transgenetics and synthetic biology may be, ultimately, the primary goal in these undertakings is not to create unique pets that can glow in the dark, trees that can replace street lights, and bacteria that can detect expired food products. As with the technological endeavors, the true objective in these genetic undertakings is to eventually bestow supernatural abilities and a form of immortality upon mankind. The greatest motivating factor behind this research is the drive to become gods. Richard Seed has said, “God made man in His own image. God intended for man to become one with God. We are going to become one with God. Cloning, and the reprograming of DNA, is the first serious step in becoming one with God.”1 Likewise, in his book Radical Evolution, American journalist, Joel Garreau, writes, “The ability to tinker with our genes offers the astounding promise—and peril—of immortality, which mythically has been the defining difference between gods and mortals. It also offers the possibility of an even greater variety of breeds of humans than there is of dogs.”2 Similarly, in an interview with Wesley Smith, Dr. Leon Kass said, “All of the boundaries are up for grabs. All of the boundaries that have defined us as human beings, boundaries between a human being and an animal and between a human being and a super human being or a god.”3

Like the transhumanist technological singularity, these genetic endeavors toward the genetic singularity are designed to offer man everything that God offered man, apart from God’s requirements. The promise is that through genetic manipulation and synthetic biology, man can overcome the curse of sin on his own, apart from repentance. Using transgenetics, man can accomplish greater things than he can imagine, and this can all be accomplished apart from submitting his will to God. As such, the end-goal of transgenetics undermines the authority of the Word of God, and this is a characteristic of the spirit of antichrist. This transhumanist agenda is the ultimate display of pride and arrogance. This, too, is a characteristic of the spirit of antichrist. Transgenetics is rooted in self-love, covetousness, pride, boasting, blasphemy, resisting of the truth, ungratefulness, etc. These are all characteristics of the spirit of antichrist.

 


1. TheDejavu434, TechnoCalyps.
2. Garreau, Radical Evolution, 53.
3. Leon Kass, quoted in “A Conversation with Leon Kass: Science Doesn’t Trump All,” Wesley Smith, San Francisco Chronicle, October 20, 2002, Source: Smith, “Stupider and Worse?”

Works Cited

1. Garreau, Joel. Radical Evolution: The Promise and Peril of Enhancing Our Minds, Our Bodies—and what it Means to be Human. New York, Broadway Books, 2005.
2. Smith, Nick. “Stupider and Worse?” The University Dialogue, Paper 62, 2010. Accessed March 18, 2014. http://unh.edu/discovery/sites/unh.edu.discovery/files/dialogue/2010/pdf/2010_Dialogues_smith.pdf.
3. TheDejavu434. “Technocalypse.” YouTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MXQSbjBL7Q&list=PLLgVDY8_xVLYhjw_pOkTnuX2NWQ9fsSy3 (accessed March 18, 2014).

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

How Will Transhumanism Influence Society & the Church?  /  How Should Christians Respond to Transhumanism & Developing Technologies?

 

The promise of transhumanism is that through genetic manipulation, synthetic biology, and technology man can overcome the curse of sin on his own, apart from repentance. Using technology and transgenetics, man can accomplish greater things than he can imagine, and this can all be accomplished apart from submitting his will to God. As such, the end-goal of transhumanism undermines the authority of the Word of God, and this is a characteristic of the spirit of antichrist. This transhumanist agenda is the ultimate display of pride and arrogance. This, too, is a characteristic of the spirit of antichrist. Transgenetics is rooted in self-love, covetousness, pride, boasting, blasphemy, resisting of the truth, ungratefulness, etc. These are all characteristics of the spirit of antichrist.

It is important that we be capable of identifying the spirit behind the transhumanist agenda because the defining debate of the 21st century will most likely revolve around transhumanist ideology and philosophy, questioning what it means to be human. Until now, these debates have been relegated to philosophers and thinkers in very specialized fields. This is about to change. These transhumanist concepts are on the verge of becoming mainstream. Soon politicians and even our neighbors will begin to debate what it means to be human. One indication of this is the fact that many movies and TV shows have begun to incorporate transhumanist methods and philosophies into their plots. Some examples include, Splice, The Amazing Spiderman, Iron Man 3, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Robocop, Elysium, Transcendence, Heroes, and Almost Human.

Already there are rumblings of how this will affect the politics of our nation. The Executive Director of the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies, Dr. James Hughes, has written a book titled Citizen Cyborg: Why Democratic Societies Must Respond to the Redesigned Human of the Future. Also, the United States government, through the National Institute of Health, provided Case Law School with a grant to begin developing guidelines to be used in setting government policy on genetic enhancement. This study questioned what legal rights and privileges a genetically modified human should be granted. It even questioned how forensic sciences may be compelled to change in light of genetic enhancements.

Christians need to prepare themselves for the inevitable questions and issues that will arise.1 These questions will be incredibly challenging as they will be inextricably tied to strong emotions. Consider the commentary of biophysicist, board member of the American Journal of Bioethics, and former Director of the Program on Medicine, Technology, and Society, Dr. Gregory Stock, in the documentary TechnoCalyps:2

Our future is not to try and hold back genetic engineering, but to try and use it in a way that best serves us. If we can—if our children can be more intelligent, and healthier, and live longer lives through altering our genetics, why would we not want to do it? I mean, imagine if other children could live for two centuries, and if you could only live for eighty years because your parents believed that it was improper to tamper with human genetics. You would not be pleased with that decision. The same thing if your IQ were a normal IQ, and all of your classmates were much much brighter because there had been sort of, some biological or genetic manipulation that was possible. You’d feel very angry about this.

When the implications of the transhumanist agenda become openly debated within our society, it will raise questions which the church has never been forced to answer. Today’s debates about music, tattoos, alcohol, dress standards, etc. will soon be trivial compared to what the parent and the pastor of tomorrow may face. American journalist Joel Garreau speculates about the near future in his book Radical Evolution, writing:3

[F]lash forward a decade and a half from today. Look at the girl who today is your second-grade daughter. Fifteen years from now, she is just home for the holidays. You were so proud of her when she not only put herself through Ohio State but graduated summa cum laude. Now she has taken on her most formidable challenge yet, competing with her generation’s elite in her fancy new law school. Of course you want to hear all about it. It is her first time home in months. But the difference between this touching tableau and similar ones in the past is that in this scenario—factually grounded in technologies already in development in the early years of the 21st century—changes in human nature are readily available in the marketplace. She is competing with those with the will and wherewithal to adopt them.

“What are your classmates like, honey?” you ask innocently.
“They’re all really, really smart,” she says. But then she thinks of some of the students in contracts class—the challenging stuff of One L fame. And she stops.

How does she explain what the enhanced kids are like? she wonders. She knows her dear old parents have read in their newsmagazines about some of what’s available. But actually dealing with some of her new classmates is decidedly strange.

  • They have amazing thinking abilities. They’re not only faster and more creative than anybody she’s ever met, but faster and more creative than anybody she’s ever imagined.
  • They have photographic memories and total recall. They can devour books in minutes.
  • They’re beautiful, physically. Although they don’t put much of a premium on exercise, their bodies are remarkably ripped.
  • They talk casually about living a very long time, perhaps being immortal. They’re always discussing their “next lives.” One fellow mentions how, after he makes his pile as a lawyer, he plans to be a glassblower, after which he wants to become a nanosurgeon.
  • One of her new friends fell while jogging, opening up a nasty gash on her knee. Your daughter freaked, ready to rush her to the hospital. But her friend just stared at the gaping wound, focusing her mind on it. Within minutes, it simply stopped bleeding.
  • This same friend has been vaccinated against pain. She never feels acute pain for long.
  • These new friends are always connected to each other, sharing their thoughts no matter how far apart, with no apparent gear. They call it “silent messaging.” It almost seems like telepathy.
  • They have this odd habit of cocking their head in a certain way whenever they want to access information they don’t yet have in their own skulls—as if waiting for a delivery to arrive wirelessly. Which it does.
  • For a week or more at a time, they don’t sleep. They joke about getting rid of the beds in their cramped dorm rooms, since they use them so rarely.

Her new friends are polite when she can’t keep up with their conversations, as if she were handicapped. They can’t help but condescend to her, however, when she protests that embedded technology is not natural for humans.

That’s what they call her—“Natural.” In fact, that’s what they call all those who could be like them but choose not to, the way vegetarians choose to abstain from meat.

They call themselves “Enhanced.” And those who have neither the education nor the money to even consider keeping up with enhancement technology? These they dismiss as simply “The Rest.” The poor dears—they just keep falling farther and farther behind.

Everyone in your daughter’s law school takes it as a matter of course that the law they are studying is changing to match the new realities. The law will be upgraded, The Enhanced believe, just as they have new physical and mental upgrades installed every time they go home. The technology is moving that fast.

In fact, the paper your daughter is working on over the holidays concerns whether a Natural can really enter into an informed-consent relationship with an Enhanced—even for something like a date. How would a Natural understand what makes an Enhanced tick if she doesn’t understand how he is augmented?

The law is based on the Enlightenment principle that we hold a human nature in common. Increasingly, the question is whether this still exists.

If even part of Joel Garreau’s speculation is correct, this technology will have enormous implications. For example, it could soon be that teenagers are not only going to a federally-funded abortion clinic without parental knowledge or consent, but they could be visiting a federally-funded augmentation clinic without parental knowledge or consent. If these augmentations are ever deemed to be a human right, then their availability apart from parental consent will become mandatory. It is possible that parents could lose their children and even face jail time for refusal to augment their children. It is not difficult to imagine such a scenario when we consider that it was only a short time ago that children were taken by the State from parents who chose to educate their children at home. It is not unreasonable to believe that the government may consider failure to augment children to be a crime because such a decision places the child at a disadvantage. In fact, unenhanced children may grow up to become burdens for the State. Therefore, the State may feel obligated to provide mandatory enhancement for all children at birth.

Such a scenario is terrifying. Because of this, it is easy to overreact, and Christians have a history of overreacting to societal and technological developments. Recognizing this, we should be careful not dismiss all scientific research into augmenting the human body as being evil.

A favorite argument used by those who tend to overreact is the argument that a particular development should be rejected because it may eventually lead to something that is morally wrong or dangerous. This reasoning is commonly referred to as the “slippery slope argument.” Certainly what begin as positive technological and genetic advancements can lead down a slippery slope into error and danger. Nevertheless, this is not sufficient reason to reject these fields of study as a whole. Everything is capable of leading down a descending path. A Christian should not be paralyzed for fear of what something may eventually become.

Most scientists do not have sinister intents. They are not trying to eradicate humanity as we know it. Rather, most scientists are merely curious. However, history reveals that if something is conceivable, it is only a matter of time until it becomes reality. There is too great a temptation, and too strong a pull, for scientists not to continue to walk along their scientific path until they reach its logical end. Having said this, just because a particular field possesses the potential to morph into something anti-biblical does not make the entire field evil. We must be intellectually honest and distinguish where the appropriate boundaries are rather than dismiss the entire field as being dangerous and evil. There is nothing wrong with expressing concern that a particular technology may lead to something unbiblical, but it is never appropriate to label a technology as already being evil because of what it may eventually become.

Many people have lost their respect for religious opposition because such opposition tends to construct straw man arguments and is prone to over-generalization. Many people can respect someone who disagrees with them if the arguments are based on a proper understanding and representation of the issue. If Christians are willing to acknowledge which aspects of these fields are morally or Biblically positive, neutral, or negative, then we can be a relevant and respected voice within the debate.

Our bodies are subject to the curse of sin. Seeking ways of alleviating the suffering and trials of this curse is a display of love and compassion toward our fellow man. This is a way of helping to meet the needs of those around us. This is something which God encourages. We should never refuse to help someone in need because “God made him that way.” We use many methods and devices to help man overcome the curse of sin, such as, reading glasses, hearing aids, crutches, and clothes. The example of Genesis 3:21 reveals that God is not opposed to this form of augmentation because God Himself aided Adam and Eve in their efforts. Fundamentally, there is little difference between helping a person to regain his hearing through a hearing aid and helping a deaf person to receive his hearing through a cochlear implant. There is nothing inherently sinful in this. However, our pursuit of technology and human advancement must remain within the parameters of Scripture. God has made man in His image (Gen. 1:26–27 ). Man is not merely a biological machine. Likewise, man is not simply another kind of animal. We do not have the right to fundamentally alter what it means to be human.

There is a difference between helping man to overcome his infirmities and “upgrading” man to become super-human. Our infirmities are a consequence of our sin. These are aberrations of God’s perfect plan for our lives. As such, there is nothing inherently wrong with developing a means to overcome these infirmities. (Of course, we should always keep in mind that even though our infirmities are a curse upon mankind because of sin, they can also be a blessing because they can remind mankind of his need for a Saviour. We desperately need healing—both physically and spiritually—and our infirmities can be an important reminder of this truth.) However, there is something inherently wrong with seeking to improve upon God’s design for man.4 Man does not need to be upgraded. God’s design for man is “very good” (Gen. 1:31 ). This was the declaration of our omniscient and holy God. How then are we supposed to improve upon what God has already called very good? Because we are not omniscient, our “improvements” will most likely have unforeseen consequences.

God has established a barrier between species (Gen. 1:20–27; Lev. 20:15–16 ). We may not understand why God established this barrier. We may not even agree with it. Nevertheless, we do not have the right to cross barriers which God has established. Genetic manipulation which confuses and intermingles the DNA of separate species defies God’s protective guidelines and His intent for creation. It is at this point that scientific advances cross the line and proceed in defiance of God.

Another line which must not be crossed pertains to our self-control. God has given us a sound mind and a spirit of self-control (2 Peter 1:4–7; Gal. 5:22–23; 2 Tim. 1:7 ). Humans should never augment themselves in such a way that they lose control over their mental processes. It does not matter whether this control is given over to a machine or to other humans. We must never relinquish our self-control.

Of course, this is not as easy as it may sound. As Christians, we ought to be willing to accept the sacrifices and struggles which may arise from our remaining faithful to God’s Word. It could be that we may not be able to join in society’s use of certain technologies. This may mean that we can no longer experience certain luxuries and aspects of life to which we have become accustomed. This may even result in persecution and ridicule. This may also cause us to “fall behind” our co-workers and peers, making it increasingly difficult to find work and to function in society.

Obedience to God’s Word is not always easy. Nevertheless, it is what we as Christians are called to do. Jesus declares in John 14:15, “‘If you love me, you will keep my commandments.’” We must trust that God knows what is ultimately best for us even when we cannot see it ourselves.

Science has boundaries. Not every scientist who is working on these technologies is attempting to transform man into a god. Most scientists are simply curious or are genuinely seeking to better mankind. Nevertheless, many of these scientists have crossed the acceptable limitations established by God. The ends do not justify the means, regardless of how admirable or enticing they may be. Whether they realize it or not, many of these scientists have furthered the cause of the spirit of antichrist. In the pursuit of their goals, they have rejected the authority of Scripture, they have coveted after something which may not belong to mankind, and they have displayed an arrogance against God.

As Christians, we need to determine where the Scriptural boundaries are for these transhumanist technologies. We then need to take a stand for these boundaries and become involved in the debate. Transhumanist philosophers are currently laying the necessary foundation for future public policy to embrace these technologies. Right now, some guidelines and laws are being established regarding these issues, but this is largely being done outside of the public view. If we wait until these technologies are implemented and utilized by society to become informed and involved in the debate, then we will have lost our opportunity to effect true change. Instead, we will find ourselves reacting to that which has already been established. At that point, it is very difficult to cause any significant and lasting changes.

Pastors should also begin preparing themselves for the inevitable questions that will arise as a result of this technology and the philosophy that undergirds them. It will not be long before people seek answers to the questions that will arise as a result of these technologies. Where will they turn? How many pastors today are prepared to answer such questions?

Sometimes it is easy to become so preoccupied with immediate concerns that pastors fail to anticipate the questions and concerns of tomorrow. However, an important responsibility of any shepherd is to peer into the distance in search of approaching threats. Pastors should serve as watchmen on the wall and look ahead to the future, anticipating the threats and questions which will arise. This requires extra work and an intentionality in their studies. Pastors today simply cannot afford to live within a religious bubble.

Transhumanism will likely give rise to the greatest debates of the 21st century. If the spirit of antichrist is truly behind this philosophy, then we as Christians need to gear up for an incredible spiritual battle. This will not be an easy challenge, but the implications are too great to risk ignoring the subject.

 


1. Futurist, science fiction writer, and editor of the Mirrorshades anthology, Bruce Sterling reminds us that the rise of the post-human epoch will not solve many of our current problems. Instead, it may only intensify these issues while adding to them an additional layer of problems:
It’s important to recognize that the post-human epoch is coming. It really is. It’s what we want. And it’s kind of—you can see it written in the pages of magazines. It’s—the word of the prophet is on the subway walls here. We really, really, do want to violate human limits now, and we’re getting closer and closer to the ability to do it. But, it’s also important to realize that this is not the end of history. It doesn’t solve any of our other problems. It just creates new problems that are going to intensify. And there’s going to be more than one kind of post-humanity. And the mere fact that you’re no longer human doesn’t mean you don’t have the same personality problems that you did before. It doesn’t liberate you from yourself. It probably makes you more than you were before, not less. You’re not gonna clank and beep like Robocop. You’re just gonna to have new abilities and new powers. And, you know, dealing with power is troublesome. If you have more power, you have more responsibility, not less.
(TheDejavu434, TechnoCalyps.)
2. TheDejavu434, TechnoCalyps.
3. Garreau, Radical Evolution, 6–8.
4. God designed man in perfection, but this design has been corrupted due to the curse of sin. However, transhumanists are not content to repair these defects. Instead, they view any apparently removable limitation as a design defect which should be “corrected.” Consider, for example, the comment of Dr. Max More, “We’re all stupid. We don’t think very well. We can’t remember more than about seven numbers in a row before our brain gives up. We have very bad short term memories. We can’t think about long chains of reasoning without forgetting where we started. That’s all design defects as far as I’m concerned. So, is that an enhancement to improve that, or is it repairing a defect? It doesn’t really matter. We should be using technology to make ourselves better.”
(TheDejavu434, TechnoCalypse.)

 Works Cited

1. Garreau, Joel. Radical Evolution: The Promise and Peril of Enhancing Our Minds, Our Bodies—and what it Means to be Human. New York, Broadway Books, 2005.
2. TheDejavu434. “Technocalypse.” YouTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MXQSbjBL7Q&list=PLLgVDY8_xVLYhjw_pOkTnuX2NWQ9fsSy3 (accessed March 18, 2014).

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

Are These Technologies a Slippery Slope Leading to Unbiblical Behavior?

 

Some of the potential scenarios that transhumanism affords are terrifying. Because of this, it is easy to overreact, and Christians have a history of overreacting to societal and technological developments. Recognizing this, we should be careful not to dismiss all scientific research into augmenting the human body as being evil.

A favorite argument used by those who tend to overreact is the argument that a particular development should be rejected because it may eventually lead to something that is morally wrong or dangerous. This reasoning is commonly referred to as the “slippery slope argument.” Certainly what begin as positive technological and genetic advancements can lead down a slippery slope into error and danger. Nevertheless, this is not sufficient reason to reject these fields of study as a whole. Everything is capable of leading down a descending path. A Christian should not be paralyzed for fear of what something may eventually become.

Most scientists do not have sinister intents. They are not trying to eradicate humanity as we know it. Rather, most scientists are merely curious. However, history reveals that if something is conceivable, it is only a matter of time until it becomes reality. There is too great a temptation, and too strong a pull, for scientists not to continue to walk along their scientific path until they reach its logical end. Having said this, just because a particular field possesses the potential to morph into something anti-biblical does not make the entire field evil. We must be intellectually honest and distinguish where the appropriate boundaries are rather than dismiss the entire field as being dangerous and evil. There is nothing wrong with expressing concern that a particular technology may lead to something unbiblical, but it is never appropriate to label a technology as already being evil because of what it may eventually become.

Many people have lost their respect for religious opposition because such opposition tends to construct straw man arguments and is prone to over-generalization. Many people can respect someone who disagrees with them if the arguments are based on a proper understanding and representation of the issue. If Christians are willing to acknowledge which aspects of these fields are morally or Biblically positive, neutral, or negative, then we can be a relevant and respected voice within the debate.

 


 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

Is God Opposed to Augmenting the Human Body?  /  Does Man Have the Right to Fundamentally Alter What It Means to Be Human?  /  What Are the Technological Boundary Lines a Christian Must Not Cross?

 

Our bodies are subject to the curse of sin. Seeking ways of alleviating the suffering and trials of this curse is a display of love and compassion toward our fellow man. This is a way of helping to meet the needs of those around us. This is something which God encourages. We should never refuse to help someone in need because “God made him that way.” We use many methods and devices to help man overcome the curse of sin, such as, reading glasses, hearing aids, crutches, and clothes. The example of Genesis 3:21 reveals that God is not opposed to this form of augmentation because God Himself aided Adam and Eve in their efforts. Fundamentally, there is little difference between helping a person to regain his hearing through a hearing aid and helping a deaf person to receive his hearing through a cochlear implant. There is nothing inherently sinful in this. However, our pursuit of technology and human advancement must remain within the parameters of Scripture. God has made man in His image (Gen. 1:26–27 ). Man is not merely a biological machine. Likewise, man is not simply another kind of animal. We do not have the right to fundamentally alter what it means to be human.

There is a difference between helping man to overcome his infirmities and “upgrading” man to become super-human. Our infirmities are a consequence of our sin. These are aberrations of God’s perfect plan for our lives. As such, there is nothing inherently wrong with developing a means to overcome these infirmities. (Of course, we should always keep in mind that even though our infirmities are a curse upon mankind because of sin, they can also be a blessing because they can remind mankind of his need for a Saviour. We desperately need healing—both physically and spiritually—and our infirmities can be an important reminder of this truth.) However, there is something inherently wrong with seeking to improve upon God’s design for man.1 Man does not need to be upgraded. God’s design for man is “very good” (Gen. 1:31 ). This was the declaration of our omniscient and holy God. How then are we supposed to improve upon what God has already called very good? Because we are not omniscient, our “improvements” will most likely have unforeseen consequences.

God has established a barrier between species (Gen. 1:20–27; Lev. 20:15–16 ). We may not understand why God established this barrier. We may not even agree with it. Nevertheless, we do not have the right to cross barriers which God has established. Genetic manipulation which confuses and intermingles the DNA of separate species defies God’s protective guidelines and His intent for creation. It is at this point that scientific advances cross the line and proceed in defiance of God.

Another line which must not be crossed pertains to our self-control. God has given us a sound mind and a spirit of self-control (2 Peter 1:4–7; Gal. 5:22–23; 2 Tim. 1:7 ). Humans should never augment themselves in such a way that they lose control over their mental processes. It does not matter whether this control is given over to a machine or to other humans. We must never relinquish our self-control.

Of course, this is not as easy as it may sound. As Christians, we ought to be willing to accept the sacrifices and struggles which may arise from our remaining faithful to God’s Word. It could be that we may not be able to join in society’s use of certain technologies. This may mean that we can no longer experience certain luxuries and aspects of life to which we have become accustomed. This may even result in persecution and ridicule. This may also cause us to “fall behind” our co-workers and peers, making it increasingly difficult to find work and to function in society.

Obedience to God’s Word is not always easy. Nevertheless, it is what we as Christians are called to do. Jesus declares in John 14:15, “‘If you love me, you will keep my commandments.’” We must trust that God knows what is ultimately best for us even when we cannot see it ourselves.

Science has boundaries. Not every scientist who is working on these technologies is attempting to transform man into a god. Most scientists are simply curious or are genuinely seeking to better mankind. Nevertheless, many of these scientists have crossed the acceptable limitations established by God. The ends do not justify the means, regardless of how admirable or enticing they may be. Whether they realize it or not, many of these scientists have furthered the cause of the spirit of antichrist. In the pursuit of their goals, they have rejected the authority of Scripture, they have coveted after something which may not belong to mankind, and they have displayed an arrogance against God.

As Christians, we need to determine where the Scriptural boundaries are for these transhumanist technologies. We then need to take a stand for these boundaries and become involved in the debate. Transhumanism will likely give rise to the greatest debates of the 21st century. If the spirit of antichrist is truly behind this philosophy, then we as Christians need to gear up for an incredible spiritual battle. This will not be an easy challenge, but the implications are too great to risk ignoring the subject.

 


1. God designed man in perfection, but this design has been corrupted due to the curse of sin. However, transhumanists are not content to repair these defects. Instead, they view any apparently removable limitation as a design defect which should be “corrected.” Consider, for example, the comment of Dr. Max More, “We’re all stupid. We don’t think very well. We can’t remember more than about seven numbers in a row before our brain gives up. We have very bad short term memories. We can’t think about long chains of reasoning without forgetting where we started. That’s all design defects as far as I’m concerned. So, is that an enhancement to improve that, or is it repairing a defect? It doesn’t really matter. We should be using technology to make ourselves better.”
(TheDejavu434, TechnoCalypse.)

Works Cited

1. TheDejavu434. “Technocalypse.” YouTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7MXQSbjBL7Q&list=PLLgVDY8_xVLYhjw_pOkTnuX2NWQ9fsSy3 (accessed March 18, 2014).
2. The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. Crossway Bibles, 2001.

 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

 

How Should Pastors Respond to the Rise of Transhumanism?

 

Pastors should also begin preparing themselves for the inevitable questions that will arise as a result of this technology and the philosophy that undergirds them. It will not be long before people seek answers to the questions that will arise as a result of these technologies. Where will they turn? How many pastors today are prepared to answer such questions?

Sometimes it is easy to become so preoccupied with immediate concerns that pastors fail to anticipate the questions and concerns of tomorrow. However, an important responsibility of any shepherd is to peer into the distance in search of approaching threats. Pastors should serve as watchmen on the wall and look ahead to the future, anticipating the threats and questions which will arise. This requires extra work and an intentionality in their studies. Pastors today simply cannot afford to live within a religious bubble.

Transhumanism will likely give rise to the greatest debates of the 21st century. If the spirit of antichrist is truly behind this philosophy, then we as Christians need to gear up for an incredible spiritual battle. This will not be an easy challenge, but the implications are too great to risk ignoring the subject.

 


 

The above comes from our book Sinister Spirit . Check out this book to see how transhumanism is linked to the spirit of antichrist.

 

Author: Timothy Zebell, 2014