Saturday, April 10, 2010
Human, subhuman, and transhuman
German Nazi society classified Jews as "subhumans". Jews could then be killed and confined without feeling that crimes against humanity where being committed. There is now an emerging "transhumanist" dream of becoming greater than human: living for hundreds or thousands of years, attaining superhuman powers, having a youthful healthy body for a hundred years, greater intelligence, and much more. It's becoming possible with the technological enhancement of the human body. If civilization continues on this path, in a hundred years the human species may split off a new species; recognized as no longer human, just as we say that chimpanzees are sub-human or non-human. Would that new species respect us, the remaining humans? Would we be "sub-transhumans"? Would they despise, kill or enslave us? Or, will there be many sub-species of transhumans specialized to different tasks? The future is not ours, except in dreams to go toward or avoid.