Sun, 26 Jul 1998 07:55:56 EDT

In a message dated 98-07-25 23:33:03 EDT, Damien Broderick wrote:

> >Transhumanists do not see mankind as a fallen angel, somehow divorced and

> >alienated from a romanticized "nature", but rather as merely the current
> >leading edge of a process of progressive evolution in the natural world.
> >The

> >transhumanist world view is a redemption of the optimism of the
> >Enlightenment
> >of the 18th Century, a New Enlightenment reinvigorated by a deeper
> >understanding of consciousness as an integral part of natural evolution.
> This flies in the face of almost every accepted technical understanding of
> evolution. `Progressive evolution' is *exactly* the prime instance of `a
> romanticized "nature" ', I'd argue. It sounds more like Theosophy than
> science. (Sorry.)

Don't be sorry. Thanks for reading so closely: If you got the wrong impression, anyone would. In that one particular instance, my intent in the use of the word "progress" was to convey the meaning "one thing after another" as in "the progress of events", but because of it's more powerful teleological connotation, the word has to go. (As I re-read this with your comment in mind, I don't know how I could have written this -- other than under the influence of an overabundance of coffee: Coupled with the phrase "leading edge", the teleological sense of "progress" seems the obvious interpretation.).

Nicholas, consider my offering as modified to read as follows:

	Transhumanists do not see mankind as a fallen angel, somehow divorced and
	alienated from a romanticized "nature", but rather as merely one instance of 
	the process of evolution's continuing action in the natural world, and thus
	very much a part of nature.. 

Thanks, Damien.

	Greg Burch     <>----<>
	   Attorney  :::  Director, Extropy Institute  :::  Wilderness Guide   -or-
	           "Good ideas are not adopted automatically.  They must
	              be driven into practice with courageous impatience."