My wife and I are reading Nancy Pearcey’s Love Thy Body.
In this nonfiction work, Pearcey explores the notion of “personhood theory.” This oft-hidden belief divides mind/”person” from material/body. It’s a blatantly Gnostic religious view. And as Love Thy Body explores, it’s the theory is behind many of today’s social ills, such as abortion, transgenderism, euthanasia, and the entire sexual revolution with its worship of self-identity.
Also, as Pearcey shares in chapter 3, the theory is behind much real-world mad science.
Note that the term “mad science” is mine, not Pearcey’s. But I use it because so many of Pearcey’s quotes bring many dystopian and supervillain stories directly to mind. If these activists had advanced tech and a secret lab, they would—if they acted on what they claim—literally become mad scientists.
One of the most prominent advocates of transhumanism is geneticist Lee Silver of Princeton University. In Remaking Eden: Cloning and Beyond in a Brave New World, Silver spins out a scenario in which humanity will bifurcate into two separate races—genetic übermenschen (super-persons) who rule over untermenschen (sub-persons). The first group will become the controllers of society. The second group will become the low-paid laborers and service-providers.1
As Pearcey herself can’t help remarking, “This prediction calls to mind the plotline of countless dystopian novels and movies.”
. . . There are transhumanists who hope to transcend the body altogether. Ray Kurzweil, Google’s director of engineering, hopes that advances in artificial intelligence will enable us to download our brain to a computer, making possible a kind of digital immortality.
This last quote is the most overtly chill-arious:
Futurist James Hughes advocates what he calls “uplifting” chimpanzees genetically to give them human intellectual capacities . . .
What are they thinking?
Are these folks at least somewhat self-aware? Have these advocates watched any sci-fi movies at all?
What would happen if someone came to these transhumanist activists to say, “Um, you do realize you are literally proposing the very same mad science that led to the terrible events in these speculative stories?”
I imagine the transhumanist activist would reply with something like, “Oh, come now. Those are only fairy tales. I’m about the real world.”
Which is, of course, exactly would a mad scientist would say.
- All quotes from Nancy Pearcey, Love Thy Body (2018), pages 98–99. ↩