Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Life, Eureka and Transumanism : Guest post by Cassia Cassitas, author of Riding

Life, Eureka and Transumanism

Discuting about ways to overcome limitations, I create the doctor Eureka to talk about Transumanism:

“Everybody thinks I work with prosthetics, implants, technology… Let me tell you: I work with lives. I restore part of the opportunities people have lost. They think I’m helping them, which I find rather amusing. I can’t take steps for them, nor can I remove the obstacles along the way as they adapt themselves to their electronic limbs and artificial organs controlled via Bluetooth. They are the ones who decided that they are ‘normal’ and stop looking at what they don’t have to focus on what they want to do with their lives.
That is the secret that transhumanism depends upon. Science isn’t everything; otherwise, androids could be super humans, when in fact the opposite happens: A disabled individual gives life to a technological apparatus. Literally, they must choose to continue living, to fight organ or prosthetics rejection. Their choices aren’t a solution. And I only support what they’ve already decided to do, by adjusting the software inside a microprocessor. How could I ever withstand my own existence if I told them they couldn’t live theirs?”

He knows what he's talking about and want to make himself understood:

“Have you ever heard of Neil Harbisson?”
- The boy who developed the Eyeborg?
“The one and only. Harbisson was born in a black-and-white world due to a disease called achromatopsia. He developed the Eyeborg so he could ‘hear’ colors. In 2004, he had a microchip implanted into his cranium to translate into sounds the frequency of light contained in an image. To him, London is red and yellow. São Paulo is blue and red. Isn’t that wonderful?”
- Yes, it is. As far as I remember, he is considered the first ‘cyborg’ in the planet.
“So, Mario, he is a poet who said ‘no’ to death. He decided to live, my friend.”

His words defend the right of everyone to a happier life:

“How is it possible to see these children crossing the streets at the community, in a hurry to do things, to arrive at places, and to live, then try to stop them?”
(...)
 “I face the end every day, as death does its rounds in the operating room, Mario. It often gets so close that it takes a lot of effort to keep death at bay. You must face it and say, ‘Not today!’ It stops, listens, and takes a few steps back, but it never goes away. It’s always there.”
(…)
“There’s no safe place, Mario. I have patients who only showed any improvement because they started practicing sports. Others have complications when trying to use their prosthetics, but they aren’t defeated because they’ve decided that it’s time to live. Listen to your son - he only wants to exist. Believe me, there isn’t a more powerful way to protect yourself from death than to follow your dream.”

So his name must be ”Eureka.”

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