The reign of scientism over the definition of man in the age of Crispr could be disastrous: scientists have no real grasp of the nature of man, and worse no willingness to give up their reductionist view of man to learn. Does man have a soul, a will, a consciousness (self-consciousness)? Can man act freely in ethical action or is that, pace science, an illusion? Is enlightenment real, is rebirth a reality and if so how does this alter our view of man? Does man have an aesthetic sense or is that Kantian superstition? If free will is real how does this impinge on genetics.
All of these questions will be deleted as a cadre of behaviorist ‘scientists’ seize control of the definition of man as a genetic construct, a behaviorist robot. And they will become indirectly violent to enforce this: capitalism requires belief in social darwinism, competition and elimination. Will scientists be able to critique capitalist ideology?
We must suspect that man is not purely a genetic construct and that evolution is not purely genetic. The lesson of caution is to be wary of meddling in complex systems you don’t understand. Let us hope at least that the wrong views will prove self-limiting and force an extended understanding of man.
We must wary of the way capitalism will try to take control here.
I haven’t read this book: just noticed it. But I already have a problem: the Darwin reference, as if to suggest that his theory of evolution is a given.
I can imagine no more dangerous line of thinking than to abandon such questions to technicians who think Darwin got evolution right….Such people are technologists with no ability to do science right.
We will continue to discuss this further here…
Carol Ward: It seems to be a behavior that was present in some of the earliest members of our branch of the family tree. It represented what was really the initial major adaptive change from any apelike creature that came before us.
Researchers may find it a relief to just discuss the situation honestly, minus Darwinian claptrap. Maybe people would get more done.