Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 33 n° 335

Churches, scientists, and politicians discuss human enhancement

Posted by fidest press agency su lunedì, 23 aprile 2012

The building of the European Parliament in Bru...

The building of the European Parliament in Brussels, Espace Léopold (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

From 25-27 April 2012, around 50 representatives mainly from European churches but also from other religions and the fields of politics, ethics, and science, will meet in Brussels to discuss the pros and cons of human enhancement. The conference is organized by the Church and Society Commission (CSC) of the Conference of European Churches (CEC), a platform in which a range of Christian denominations in Europe work together. A visit to the European Parliament, including a discussion with representatives of different political parties, is included.Through the use of nanotechnology, genetic screening and engineering, implanted computer devices, and other techniques, human beings can now live longer, more comfortably, and can perform better. Part of the expectations on this so called “human enhancement” may be too pretentious, but even so, human enhancement does exist and develops rapidly. Should we be happy about these techniques? Will they contribute to better relationships, happier people, and more humane societies? Do they lead to a blurred distinction between humans and machines – and if so, is this good or bad? What about the financial costs? And will human enhancement lead to a new anthropology and a changed view on God and religion? Does it challenge traditional religious views?
The aim of the conference is to listen, discuss, and to explore possible points of moral agreement and concern. The aim is not to formulate final normative statements. Participants from 18 countries will take home both up to date factual information and normative insights. Within the context of the CEC, a task force of church representatives will continue to discuss questions of biotechnology in the year to come and help member churches and other stakeholders to form their own opinions. Directly after the conference, on Friday at 14.00, a bulletin will be issued containing conclusions and recommendations.

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