How popular is transhumanism in China

News portal - Ruhr University Bochum

Science is in the process of producing technologies that can biologically improve the body of Homo sapiens or even transform it cybernetic. In this way, they can enable people to have a good life, which is characterized by the greatest possible well-being and the greatest possible freedom in the choice of individual and social purposes. For example, not everyone has a musical or athletic talent, which means that some people are only able to enjoy the joys and values ​​associated with them to a certain extent.

Transhumanism assumes that this accidental setting of fate does not have to be accepted. Rather, the new technologies could put people in a position to lift the physical boundaries. As an autonomous and free being, he could also realize the purposes he wants to set himself free.

Moderate and radical forms

For transhumanists, humans are not the crown of evolution because of their current biological embodiment, but because they can in principle determine what this embodiment should look like through the technologies they have developed. The discussion of the transhumanist agenda has spawned moderate and radical theses on how scientific advancement should be used in society.

Moderate transhumanists advocate optimization of the given biological nature of humans and only strive to realize the potential of Homo sapiens. Radical transhumanists strive to change the biological nature of humans in such a way that these changes create new species. They want to create posthuman life that they believe can also include virtual forms of existence, for example. An analysis of the arguments often cited shows that a moderate improvement in the biological nature of humans is not morally forbidden and is therefore at least morally permissible.

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The central argument in favor of transhumanism is based on the following premises: There is a moral obligation to provide medical care to sick people or people who are otherwise limited in their welfare. All medical therapy is an improvement in human well-being. One would not be morally obliged to strive for the maximum well-being of humans only if there were a clearly defined standard of what a normal and good life with sufficient well-being should look like. From a transhumanist point of view, however, there is no such standard.

Maximize wellbeing

Therefore, transhumanism is a reasonable moral requirement for those who see the goal of moral action to maximize well-being and who assume that human characteristics in need of improvement can be identified that objectively lead to increased well-being without sacrificing freedom of people is affected by the use of technologies.

From a moral point of view, human well-being should always be maximized if this is feasible and no other moral principles contradict it. Whether there are such other principles is currently being hotly debated.

Prof. Dr. Dr. Benedikt Göck heads the junior research group “Theology as Science ?!” at the RUB. In March 2018 he and a colleague wrote the book “Designobjekt Mensch. Transhumanism on the Test Stand ”, which deals with the arguments for and against the optimization of humans. Together with RUB neuroscientist Dr. He also devotes himself to Christian Klaes in a YouTube series.

Other viewpoints on transhumanism: