The world is run by systems that overlap conflict and adapt to social needs over time. In dealing with the uncertainty and risk of the human condition, people seek to “control” that uncertainty (though systems can only be adapted to and not controlled). Enter the advent of transhumanism. As a society built on morality and ethics, society must respond to social movements that seek to deal with unknowns. Where there is chaos, humans seek order.

Transhumanism is associated with superwellness, superintelligence, and superlongevity, which are all activities that usurp our present capabilities. Transhumanism is one response that accepts uncomfortable risk tolerance to gain huge societal rewards. Therefore, transhumanism cannot be ignored.

The Transhumanism movement seeks to combat society’s procrastination to innovate into the unknown. Transhumanism at its core envisions, or some may say prognosticates, the future. Transhumanists have issue with the past’s failings and are said to advocate that radical actions using technology are required to affect the future.

This brings to mind Cesar Hidalgo’s discussion of the “eternal anomaly” of physical states of being. Our world will evolve no matter how much we fight or ignore its changes. In a chaotic system, entropy and turbulence are always lurking. According to Hildalgo, physical systems flirt with achieving equilibrium.

Today’s reality comes in conflict with how far transhumanists believe we can go. Watching the advent of transhumanism is a story that will continue to evolve with innovation. If we heed the Belgium physicist Ilya Prigogine’s “entropy barrier” of physical states, Hidalgo writes, “In our universe, there is no past, and no future, but only a present that is being calculated at every instant.” While Prigogine wrote in terms of physical systems, transhumanism is based on the perceptions of limitations of the present state of physicality. The entropy barrier, at its most fundamental, is an infinite number of paths that can be taken into the future.

The past happened and cannot be revisited (if only as information-based recollection). What is still unclear is what the varied paths being taken by transhumanism and its renegades will look like, as well as how far the body can evolve (if there indeed is a physical ceiling). It will be quite a ride. The point of transhumanism is that we will all be able to optimally experience the ride.

Reference: Hidalgo, Cesar. (2015.) Why Information Grows: The Evolution of Order from Atoms to Economies. New York: Basic Books.

This article originally appeared in the Orgcomplexity Journal.

Featured image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

About The Author

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Adjunct Assistant Professor, Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine

Michele Battle-Fisher is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine and the author of Application of Systems Thinking to Health Policy and Public Health Ethics: Public Health and Private Illness (Springer), a 2016 Doody's Core Title. Ms. Battle-Fisher is a Health Systems/Complexity scholar and bioethicist. She has researched and taught in the medical and policy fields, ranging from public health, science and technology, bioethics, systems theory and its application to health. She was a speaker at TEDxDartmouth 2018 where she discussed the "Paradigm Shift" of Health Systems Science curriculum in health and clinical medicine. She was selected as a finalist in the 1st annual MIT Press “Pitchfest”, the “Shark Tank” of book publishing.