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Transhumanism

MARS HILL AUDIO Journal

Volume 140

Available for mp3 purchase
Guests on Volume 140: Matthew Rubery, on the history of the “talking book,” and on how reading aloud differs from listening to it being read; James Herrick, on the “post-human” aspirations of the transhumanist movement, and how its plausibility is established by stories; Jack Baker & Jeffrey Bilbro, on lessons that universities should heed from Wendell Berry’s essays, poetry, and fiction about commitment to living in a place; Timothy Gloege, on the influence of business methods on 20th-century evangelicalism through the shaping of Moody Bible Institute; David Hollinger, on how the sons and daughters of mid-20th-century missionaries to Asia came back to the U.S. and influenced government, journalism, and the academy; and Barrett Fisher, on the themes of the challenge of faithfulness as presented in Shusaku Endo’s Silence and in Martin Scorsese’s film version.

MARS HILL AUDIO Reprint 23

Mark Shiffman, "Humanity 4.5"

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(From First Things, November 2015)

Transhumanism is an attitude toward humanity that views life and consciousness as data and material limitations (particularly the body) as disposable wetware. Through science and technology, transhumanists hope to achieve immortality by surpassing our current bodily limits, thus crossing over to a different type of humanity. While it is tempting to dismiss transhumanism as a fringe science fiction, professor of classical studies, Mark Shiffman, warns that the Cartesian aspirations of transhumanists are becoming more accepted and more common. And this should not come as a suprirse, since the agenda to transcend ourselves emerges from a history of thought that reaches as far back as the thirteenth century. In this Audio Reprint, Shiffman repeats a forgotten account of human history in order to help readers identify our own assumptions about humanity and to reexamine our relationship to God and his creation. 45 minutes. $2.

MARS HILL AUDIO Journal

Volume 118

Available for mp3 purchase
Guests on Volume 118: Gilbert Meilaender, on the ethical questions raised by anti-aging research, especially its most extreme forms in the "transhumanist" movement; Ron Highfield, on why the modern assumptions about personal identity, freedom, and human dignity create prejudices against the Gospel's account of God and the self; Mark Mitchell, on why gratitude and stewardship should be seen as fundamental political postures; Daniel M. Bell, Jr., on how capitalism nurtures the assumption of the autonomous self; Helen Rhee, on the centrality of almsgiving to Christian identity in the early Church; and Peter Brown, on how the early Church's wrestling with the questions of wealth and poverty steered a course between radical asceticism and careless indulgence.