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People Fly A Brain-Controlled Helicopter

#7: No Form, Feelings, Perceptions, Mental Formations, Consciousness:  A Buddhist Perspective on AI

#12: Enhancing Virtues: Self-Control and Mindfulness

Alan Watts by South Park creators (All in one in HD)

#24: Cosmic Beings: Transhumanist Deism in Ted Chu’s Cosmic View

#27 Enhancing Virtues: Caring (part 1)

Engineering Enlightenment

CyBuddha Events

Hughes on “Using Neurotechnologies to Enhance Virtues”

Smith College, Northampton, MA, USA

Cyborg Buddha Resources

Altered States of Consciousness and Transcendence

  • Trans-Spirit list a transhumanist research program into religion and spirituality. It seeks to understand religion and spirituality in terms of cognitive science and evolutionary psychology, and to project the future of religion and spirituality in the dawning transhuman era.
  • "Trans-Spirit: Religion, Spirituality and Transhumanism," Michael LaTorra, Journal of Evolution and Technology 14(1) August 2005: 39-53.
  • Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies Promoting clinical research on psychedelics
  • Council on Spiritual Practices

  • Scientific Study of Consciousness and Neurotechnology

  • Association for the Scientific Study of Consciousness
  • NeuroInsights a neurotechnology consulting firm directed by Zack Lynch
  • Mind and Life Institute Works on establishing research partnerships between modern science and Buddhism, especially the Dalai Lama.
  • The "neurodharma" project of psychologist Rick Hanson and neurologist Rick Mendius, both of whom are Buddhist meditators. They teach a "Train the Brain Course" and have a many talks, slides, and articles at the site.

  • Neuroethics and Cognitive Liberty

  • Center for Cognitive Liberty and Ethics
  • Wikipedia on Cognitive Liberty
  • Neuroethics Society scholars, scientists and clinicians who share an interest in the social, legal, ethical and policy implications of advances in neuroscience.
  • Neuroethics at UPenn a source of information on neuroethics, provided by Martha Farah of the Center for Cognitive Neuroscience

  • Happiness, Positive Psychology and The Virtues

  • Positive Psychology Center at UPenn, directed by Martin Seligman
  • Character Strengths and Virtues: A Handbook and Classification by Christopher Peterson and Martin Seligman.
  • Wikipedia on Positive Psychology
  • Ethics of Mood Enhancement NY Academy of Sciences
  • The Hedonistic Imperative Advocates the development of neurotechnology to permit the elimination of all suffering
  • Abolitionist SocietyPromotes eliminating involuntary suffering and increasing lifelong individual happiness through science

  • Cyborg Buddha Project

    IEET Executive Director James Hughes - a former Buddhist monk and attenuated Buddho-Unitarian - is writing a book tentatively titled Cyborg Buddha: Using Neurotechnology to Become Better People.

    IEET Board member Mike LaTorra - a Zen priest and author of A Warrior Blends with Life: A Modern Tao - runs the Trans-Spirit list promoting discussion of neurotheology, neuroethics, techno-spirituality and altered states of consciousness.

    IEET Board member George Dvorsky - a practicing Buddhist - writes and podcasts frequently from a rationalist, transhumanist, and Buddhist point of view, winning him an award this year as one of the best Buddhist blogs.

    The three of us are launching the IEET Cyborg Buddha Project to combine our efforts and promote discussion of the impact that neuroscience and emerging neurotechnologies will have on happiness, spirituality, cognitive liberty, moral behavior and the exploration of meditational and ecstatic states of mind.

    Aug 18, 2013

    “We have a moral imperative to research moral enhancement”


    At a TEDx conference in Barcelona last month, Oxford bioethicist Julian Savulescu shared his views on using medicine and technology for “moral enhancement”. According to Savulescu, humans urgently need to develop their moral capacities if we are to solve the range of “problems we have created for ourselves” (such as high rates of murder and sexual assault). Savulescu discusses the moral enhancement brought about by drugs like Oxytocin and Ritalin—we need more of these moral medicines, he claims, if we are to survive the coming decades.


    Aug 8, 2013

    Will the Posthuman Age be Postmoral?

    by Daryl Wennemann

    A great part of the anxiety associated with the prospect of a posthuman age arises from the possibility that a posthuman age will also be a postmoral age. Francis Fukuyama’s work Our Posthuman Future focused on the possibility that genetically altered human beings might be incapable of recognizing traditional moral boundaries. The traditional Western ideal of the equality of all human persons seems to vanish with the development of superhuman beings.

    Aug 8, 2013

    Dirty Liberals! Cleanliness Priming of Moral Cognition

    Changesurfer Radio

    Dr. J. chats with Erik Helzer (Dept of Psychology, Cornell University) co-author of the paper “Dirty Liberals!: Reminders of physical cleanliness influence moral and political attitudes” in Psychological Science. They discuss the growing literature on the ways that political attitudes are driven by disgust sensitivity, and by disgust priming such as bad smells and sticky hands.  Listen also to the 2004 Changesurfer interview with Martha Nussbaum about her book Hiding from Humanity: Disgust, Shame and the Law. (First broadcast April 5, 2011)


    Jul 31, 2013

    Morality Substitutes or Moral Enhancement?

    by Richard Stallman

    In this response to John Danaher’s piece on Moral Enhancement (Part 1, Part 2,Part 3) Richard Stallman interrogates the difference between morality substitutes and morality enhancers, and the role of cognition in moral behavior.

    Jul 31, 2013

    It’s Hard to be a Fat Transhumanist

    by J. Hughes

    It’s hard to be fat in general, but as a spokesperson for a movement purporting to advocate the evolution of humanity to greater health, ability and longevity I was always embarrassed about the weight I was carrying around.  (I have a New Yorker cartoon on my wall of a fat man telling a disappointed thin man “I’m from your future.”) Recently through cyborgification I’ve been able to get back into my recommended weight range. Knowing that some of my friends are either curious if I’m seriously ill, or how I accomplished this, I thought I’d share the story.

    Full Story...

    Jul 21, 2013

    Moral Enhancement and Superficiality (pt3)

    by John Danaher

    Suppose you are an athlete, training for the Olympic games. Your coach enters your changing room one morning and offers you a choice. You can either follow a rigorous training program for the next six months, or you can take a handful of magic pills and take the next six months off. Either way you’ll be prepared for the Olympic games. Which should you choose?

    Jul 18, 2013

    Virtue Theory and Moral Enhancement


    IEET Executive Director James Hughes discussed the relevance of virtue theory to the moral enhancement debate at the “Enhancement: Cognitive, Moral and Mood” conference May 14-16, 2013 in Belgrade Serbia.



    Jul 15, 2013

    Moral Enhancement and Superficiality: Compassion-Pills (pt2)

    by John Danaher

    As you may have observed, I’m repeatedly drawn to the enhancement debate. I can’t exactly say why. Prima facie, it doesn’t seem particularly interesting (from an intellectual perspective): after all, who could object to “enhancement”? But, of course, it’s more complicated than that. Indeed, one of the alluring aspects of the debate has to do with the terminology in which it is couched.

    Jul 14, 2013

    Moral Enhancement and Superficiality: Compassion-Pills (pt1)

    by John Danaher

    If you could take a pill that would make you more moral, would you do it? It sounds attractive. I know that I often fail to be as compassionate or as charitable as I ought to be. If there was some way for me to overcome these moral failings I would be inclined to take it. But if I took, say, a compassion-pill would my actions be tainted thereafter? Would they be less morally commendable than they might otherwise have been?

    Jul 3, 2013

    Doping, Slippery Slopes and Moral Virtues

    by John Danaher

    Mike McNamee Sports, Vices and Virtues: Morality Plays: Part one of this essay discusses SSAs in general; part two looks at McNamee’s SSA against doping; and part three looks at McNamee’s complaints about the vices of athletes who dope. Just note that although “doping” has a particular meaning in sport, one that may be thought distinct from “performance enhancement”, the terms are used interchangeably in what follows.

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