Thursday, September 16, 2004

Solaris

I saw a movie tonight called Solaris. It really is a good movie. I was suprised, because the little thing on the tv that says what it is about looks horrible. It turned out to really make you think. One of those movies that makes you think about how we define ourselves as human, and what characteristics and qualities make us uniquely human. It puts forth a new hypothetical: What if there was something that was exactly like us, it could think and have memories and basically be us, but it was artificially created? i know you people are gonna start talking about cloning and no this is different. I am talking like a person off of an assembly line type thing. NOT ROBOTS. They came out at like 40 or 20 or whatever age we wanted. Many philosophers wouldn't be able to get past this hypothetical. Descartes' little 'I think therefore I am' would be destroyed.

So this is the question I ask of you and of myself, I have to ask myself because nobody ever replies to the questions I pose or the responses I look for. If you had something that was exactly like us, except it was artificially made. No we don't know how it was made, but it was made just like us. It had all the same memories and was made out of all the same stuff we are. The difference between us and it is that it didn't experience those memories, obvioiusly, and it was never actually conceived in the procreation sense of the word. Do you think that thing is human? It still has all the same emotions we do. If we prick it then it does bleed. IF we cheat on it then it gets angry. Some are lazy. Some are industrious. Some love to listen to music. Are they not human? What is it about us that sets us apart from them. Is just because they were created differently enough to say they aren't human? Is there a religious component and do they not have a soul? How exactly does one get a soul? If we decide that they aren't human does that mean that we can treat them like property? Would it be allright to have them as slaves?

I dont' know the answer to these questions. There probably is no real right answer to speak of. I am not ready to venture an opinion on this subject. I am going to think about it a little bit before I do. I would be very interested to hear your comments on this. I think it would help me look at the problem from other angles.

Anyways it is a tough thing to really get your mind around because it is hard to say what exactly makes us human.

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