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The Future of Human Evolution - Nick Bostrom

It is significant is that all of these new paradigms and scientific theories are versions of a dynamic, interdependent, whole systems worldview, just as the New Physics is. In medicine and health care, new notions of health, healing and treating the whole person are fast gaining ground. (Chopra, 1992) In environmental science, the Gaia hypothesis presents a new paradigm where the Earth as a whole is seen as a living entity, a self-regulating system of which we humans are a part. (Lovelock, 1991) In the life sciences, new thinking is challenging traditional notions of biological evolution and developing new interdependent conceptions of what constitutes a person and a society. (Watson, 1988) In each of these cases, as well as in many other examples of the development of new thinking in areas such as management and economics, (Wheatley, 1992; Hawley, 1993) the relationship and interaction between parts and the whole has been reconceptualized. Holistic paradigms, where the overall pattern of interaction between the parts is as important as the parts themselves, have emerged across a broad spectrum of disciplines and issues.

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The problem is that all of the NCSE's examples are scientists who promoted thoroughly materialist accounts of evolution, and that even materialists have indicated it is politically "dangerous" to challenge neo-Darwinism as they risk "becom[ing] a target of orthodox evolutionary biology." Those who do challenge the orthodoxy must be careful to pledge allegiance to materialistic explanations of evolution.

Academic paper with two dystopian evolutionary scenarios for humanity

The Laboratory of Nanotechnology at George Mason University focuses on the synthesis and applications of a wide range of carriers at the nano and micron-size scale including polymeric and metallic particles, micelles, liposomes, carbon nanotubes and metal-organic frameworks. At the fundamental level, we aim to understand the mechanisms involved in the formation of such carriers to acquire high control in their physicochemical properties. At the applied level, we use those carriers in drug delivery, vaccines, imaging, biodefense, agriculture, medical devices and microelectronics projects. Because the development of carriers has been greatly accelerated in recent years, many multi-hybrid carriers have been emerged. Such development in carriers opens up new scientific, technical and clinical opportunities while posing challenges at different levels. For example, we are able to perform multiple tasks at the same time using multi-hybrid carriers. Also, using multi-hybrid systems we are able to accomplish tasks that could not been possible to achieve using monophasic carriers. However, the complexity of the morphology, physical and chemical properties of such carriers presents challenges in synthesis and batch control. Our lab aims to address carefully these issues to be able to use these carriers effectively in medical and industrial settings. Since our research projects are highly translational we collaborate closely with hospitals, industries, federal research laboratories and FDA in the Washington metropolitan area. Our research projects are funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), Multidisciplinary Research Provost Award, Jeffress Award, National Institute of Health (NIH) and Commonwealth Research Commercialization Fund (CIT).

The characteristics of this new paradigm--which in physics exists especially on the very macro level of the whole universe and on the very micro subatomic levels--are as follows. The New Physics (according to Capra, Davies and others) includes a dynamic, interdependent, whole systems worldview, where matter is concentrated energy and there are no ultimate building blocs of matter to find. In addition, one cannot predict an absolute relationship between A and B, and one cannot predict ahead of time whether something will, for example, be a particle or a wave. Unlike the old paradigm where the scientist was a pure, theoretically objective, outside observer, the new paradigm admits that the scientists' presence in the situation, in making a scientific measurement, can affect the outcome of the measurement, and thus there is no such thing as a purely detached objective, scientific observer anymore, instead one's mere presence in a situation can effect the outcome. The new paradigm is thus holistic, dynamic, and interdependent; there are no separate parts, only relationships; and reality is not totally predictable, except in terms of statistical probabilities. The old paradigm focuses on analysis of separate parts and either/or thinking (beginning with Aristotle), while the new paradigm focuses on synthesis and dynamic interrelationships, as well as both/and thinking.

Population and Environment | Annual Review of …

Table 3 details how each culture mentality affects what is meant by "self" and what is defined as knowledge in each type of culture mentality. Both the sensate and ideational types are highly integrated around completely different reality definitions. The sensate culture is associated with a view of the self as a material entity dissolved (or living totally) in the immediate physical reality. Under this view the material world provides the basis for everything, and materialistic models of reality are likely to be dominant in all compartments of culture. Mechanistic models of the universe and materialistic biochemical models of health are typical examples of the sensate view of reality, a view that stresses caring for the physical body, sensual liberty (for example, sexual freedom) and sensual egotism (for example, cultivating the body beautiful). Such a worldview will naturally develop physical and biological sciences that study and manipulate the external world, and in so doing will develop technology for this purpose. In contrast, the ideational culture type searches for the inner self, which is experienced as dissolved (or existing totally) in the ultimate spiritual reality. The external material world is seen as an illusion, and knowledge of the spiritual, psychical and immaterial reality becomes the basis for knowledge. Using meditation and other self exploration approaches, knowledge of the inner self, including inner peace, becomes central. As in the case of Table 2, the idealistic culture mentality attempts to balance both approaches.

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