When, if ever, should we intentionally shorten our lives? Programming our own deaths is not a subject many people seem to have thought much about. But think about it we must. For biotechnologies continue to advance, our psychological identities continue to depend on our being embodied, and more and more of us spend our last days in debilitated confused states. Were we to find a means of safely and effectively cutting short the suffering and frustration of older and older age, wouldn’t it be unethical not to use it?
Continue reading Whole-Body Apoptosis and the Meanings of Lives
Professor Les Kaufman
Slow news days send hungry journalists back to the old springheads of mystery and metamorphosis: dark matter, how the brain really works, human cyborgs, life on other worlds. The nature of humanity’s relationship with Nature — the oldest campfire subject on the books, and kissing cousin to the meaning of life —
Continue reading Loaves, Fishes, and the Human Side of Ecosystems
Would the controlled extinction of carnivorous species be a good thing?
Viewed from a distance, the natural world often presents a vista of sublime, majestic placidity. Yet beneath the foliage and hidden from the distant eye, a vast, unceasing slaughter rages. Wherever there is animal life, predators are stalking, chasing, capturing, killing, and devouring their
Continue reading The Meat Eaters
It is now something of a commonplace that we think about our lives in story form. According to a recent article in the New York Times, psychological research into the personal narratives we tell supports the idea that we are natural storytellers.  “The human brain,” the article reports, “has a natural affinity for narrative
Continue reading Narrative and Personal Good