Ep 92: Merging Man and Machine: Transhumanism and Religion – with guest Seth Villegas


If you lost a limb, would you use technology to help you regain some of your ability? What if you were deaf? Chances are, if technology could help you, you probably would jump at the opportunity. But how about taking it one step farther. What if technology could make you smarter than you already are? Stronger? Maybe even live longer, perhaps forever? Welcome to the world of transhumanism.  Goals like these are what proponents of the transhumanist movement have in mind – the merging of man and machine for the “betterment” of themselves.

Sometimes this involves “upgrading” their bodies. Some go farther and hope for radical life extension, or even hope to achieve immortality by uploading their brains to the internet.

But at what cost?  Would these measures actually help us avoid death?  Today, my guest is Seth Villegas.  Seth is a PhD student at Boston University’s School of Theology.  He focuses on the intersection between technology and ethics, and how even a seemingly secular movement like transhumanism can have similarities with religion.

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Some of the background music you heard are clips from:

Sudden Goodbye by Alex (c) copyright 2013 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/AlexBeroza/43002 Ft: TheDice

The Sun Smiles on LightSail 2 by gurdonark (c) copyright 2019 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/gurdonark/60157 Ft: 7OOP3D

Triptych of Snippets by septahelix (c) copyright 2019 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution (3.0) license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/septahelix/60171

Depart (cdk mix) by Analog By Nature (c) copyright 2015 Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license. http://dig.ccmixter.org/files/cdk/50347
Ft: Tekno Eddy

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