The timeless human desire to be more beautiful, intelligent,
healthy, athletic, or young has given rise in our time to
technologies of human enhancement. Athletes use drugs to increase
their strength or stamina; cosmetic surgery is widely used to
improve physical appearance; millions of men take drugs like Viagra
to enhance sexual performance. And today researchers are exploring
technologies such as cell regeneration and implantable devices that
interact directly with the brain. Some condemn these developments
as a new kind of cheating-not just in sports but in life
itself-promising rewards without effort and depriving us most of
all of what it means to be authentic human beings.
"Transhumanists," on the other hand, reject what they see as a
rationalizing of human limits, as if being human means being
content forever with underachieving bodies and brains. To be human,
they insist, is to be restless with possibilities, always eager to
transcend biological limits.
As the debate grows in urgency, how should theology respond?
Christian theologians recognize truth on both sides of the
argument, pointing out how the yearnings of the transhumanists-if
not their technological methods-find deep affinities in Christian
belief. In this volume, Ronald Cole-Turner has joined seasoned
scholars and younger, emerging voices together to bring fresh
insight into the technologies that are already reshaping the future
of Christian life and hope.
Subjects: Health Sciences, Religion
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