"A fanatical technological suppression of the self"

Seventh in the PE Series, Reviewing Chapter Six

Transhumanism Enters Popular Culture by Frederick Meekins describes how societal goals for adopting technologies are influenced by the Arts — in the form of comics, movies and TV shows. I recall the time when our culture was shaped by the Arts such as beautiful oil paintings, classical music, literary gems, and by the Bible as it was upheld and interpreted in all of these. Alas.

Meekins points out that if you are a Star Trek fan then you can understand the complexities of Transhumanism, even with its jargon packed with words like cybernetics, panspermia, nanotechnology and etc. He goes into some detail about "the Borg," aliens who "represent the totalitarian strain of Transhumanism… (p 217)

"Borg" is derived from the word "cyborg," which has come to categorize an entity whose physical components are as much robotic and mechanical as they are biological and organic. However, the greatest atrocity committed by the Borg is not so much that they impose these cybernetic enhancements against the will of those forced to undergo these procedures, it is that the Borg obliterate, or at least sublimate, the sense of individuality altogether. Through the systems of censors and processors placed within the bodies of those taken in by or assimilated by the Borg, the individual is incorporated into the Borg group consciousness known as the "collective."…

This communal solidarity is achieved through a fanatic technological suppression of the self… By minimizing the distinctiveness of each individual within the context of the larger group, even if one claims to be elevating the status of everyone by ensuring that each voice plays a part in determining the overall consensus, this notion of the ultimate communal entity having the only real value minimizes the worth of any of its singular components to the point of fostering a mentality of easy bio-disposability.

When a Borg falls in battle, the body is not respectfully retrieved, even when comrades are nearby. Rather, data components are extracted from the corpse with the remains at best reclaimed for what it can "give back to the community."...

As with other faiths and creeds, transhumanism can be viewed as having a number of denominations. Those bending their knees to the Borg as the patron saint of the Church of Our Beloved Central Processor believe that merging man and metal …ought to be the path pursued to take the species to the level beyond the merely human. The second path… [would be] by directly tinkering with the genetic blueprint already there to advance the capabilities of individuals to levels beyond baseline humans. This would be accomplished in part by adding genes from other species into the code for human beings. (p 219)

Will there come a point where the church will "have to grapple with just how much of the genetic code can be tampered with before it is no longer human?" (p 225) These and other not unlikely scenarios are considered in Meekins' PE essay.

This chapter was so insightful that I went on to read and enjoy one of his ebooks on Smashwords.com, and have added his blog feed to SisterSite.org. See at right, Epistolizer.

To summarize and end his article, he quoted Genesis 11:6, And the Lord said, Behold, the people is one, and they have all one language; and this they begin to do: and now nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do.

Beware: popular culture is the wave.

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...and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind ... the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind ...the beast of the earth after his kind, and cattle after their kind, and every thing that creepeth upon the earth after his kind: and God saw that it was good. -Genesis 1

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Flesh and Bone and The Protestant Conscience is an e-book on Amazon.com. It is 99¢ and in the Amazon lending library as well. The book description follows.

Would you let your conscience be your guide?

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As we ponder the ethics of in vitro fertilization, stem cell research and man-made chimeras, our thoughts trail off. How then should we live? (Ez 33:10)

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