Recently Prof. Fr. Michael Baggot, LC, (Faculty of Bioethics) participated in The Second Annual Pinckaers Chair Conference: Eschatology and the Human Person at the Angelicum Thomistic Institute.
“The Daring and Disappointing Dreams of Transhumanism’s Secular Eschatology”
Although it is a largely secular movement, contemporary transhumanism borrows heavily from both Christian orthodoxy and its heresies to construct a vision for human transformation and happiness. The presentation traces the roots of transhumanism’s pseudo-religious soteriology and eschatology and then examines the underlying anthropological problems that drive the hoped-for salvation through digital immortality. Unfortunately, the admirable desire to extend life sacrifices an appreciation for the integral harmony of the human person’s animal and spiritual dimensions. Since human actions manifest the person’s intrinsic corporeality, the notion of detaching the human personality from the body through digitalization is doomed to produce replicas without achieving true immortality. The surprising pseudo-religious thrust of contemporary transhumanism’s secular eschatology presents an opportunity to rediscover the Catholic patrimony’s reflection on authentic divinization through the transhumanizing effects of divine grace. The presentation thus concludes with a Thomistic theosiscentered reorientation of secular transhumanism’s eschatological aspirations for immanent immortality toward true human flourishing.