February 26, 2024

Pope skeptical about life extension projects

Not an easy convert to transhumanism

The leader of the world’s Catholics, Pope
Benedict XVI, has been inundated by attacks over Catholic response to clergy
sex abuse. But in the middle of the hubbub he had enough mental space to touch
upon the bioethical theme of immortality in his Easter
Vigil address
. He is not optimistic about indefinite life extension,
a key plank in the transhumanist agenda:

“Man’s resistance to death becomes evident…
Surely the medicine of immortality must exist. Today too, the search for a
source of healing continues. Modern medical science strives, if not exactly to
exclude death, at least to eliminate as many as possible of its causes, to
postpone it further and further, to prolong life more and more.

“But let us reflect for a moment: what
would it really be like if we were to succeed, perhaps not in excluding death
totally, but in postponing it indefinitely, in reaching an age of several
hundred years? Would that be a good thing?

“Humanity would become extraordinarily old,
there would be no more room for youth. Capacity for innovation would die, and
endless life would be no paradise, if anything a condemnation. The true cure
for death must be different. It cannot lead simply to an indefinite
prolongation of this current life. It would have to transform our lives from
within. ~ National
Catholic Register, Apr 4

Michael Cook
Benedict XVI
Catholic Church