How to Be Less Human

How to be Less Human

How to Be Less Human

How to be Less Human is a concept that has been the subject of philosophical speculations for centuries, but it has never had a real scientific theory until now. This book explores five themes that, taken together, can help us get a better handle on what makes us human. It first surveys our relation to other living things, then considers our relation to technology, and finally observes human behavior in the face of apparently dangerous circumstances. These themes are developed in a logical order, and each chapter concludes with a conclusion examining one of the themes in light of current research. The ten chapters do not all follow this same pattern, but I found that they did connect to one another, and that some of the chapter topics applied certain theories to my own thinking.

The theme of the second chapter is how we relate to technology. In this regard, we must remember that we are the creators of technology, and that its great potential does indeed trump our imperfections. Still, we tend to forget that we use technology to make ourselves less human by forcing our relationships with each other and the world around us to be more impersonal and less meaningful. In this way, we create a void in our lives, a void that technology simply can’t fill. With a little imagination and effort, however, we can fill this void by affirming that we have our place in the world and that we are not doomed to a pointless existence of conformity.

The third chapter looks at how we relate to technology in the present day. In doing so, it has become clear that we are deeply affected by the electronic media that shape our culture and our lives today. We are also deeply affected by the way in which technology shapes our emotions and our self-destructive impulses. When we consider these factors and how to be less human, it becomes clear that the fear of the unknown is no longer justified.