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    Avalon Member Bright Garlick's Avatar
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    Default The beginning of human personhood

    When does a human begin ?

    I do not know.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beginni...man_personhood

    Much has been written by many since the dawn of writing.

    What are your thoughts on this unfathomable issue and what are the implications for the creation of human clones and hybrid species ?
    Last edited by Bright Garlick; 14th October 2013 at 03:01.

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    Default Re: The beginning of human personhood

    My absolute conviction on this is that life begins at the instant of conception - at the moment when the sperm enters the egg and sparks life into being. Everything commences from that point. There is no other point at which life sparks into being, along the entire route from conception to birth.

    There has to be a spark of life instant in time if they ever succeed in actually cloning a human (or if they have already done so.) Perhaps that spark of life (I am referring to an electrical reaction in the universe that sparks a soul into a body), happens at the instant of a cell becoming two cells in the creation process. I don't know.

    Hybridization doesn't change that electrical spark. But, it makes me sick to think about the genetic manipulation between an animal and a human creating a human animal. For instance, they've been doing it for the past 30 years to pigs. Adding human dna to pigs creates meat that "tastes better." And, as far as I know - that meat is in the public market. It has been 30 years since they started doing it, so I assume it's gone commercial. That's why I don't buy pork anymore.

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    Default Re: The beginning of human personhood

    In my opinion (yes my opinion) humanhood begins the moment the identity begins to care about something besides it's fear and comfort.
    There's nothing lacking in consciousness, it's the stupid self-identities that can't get along.
    Eventually you come to notice that you're feeling, and your thoughts become about that. And other peoples feelings presumably.
    No ones feelings are less important to them than the real human's are. You know one if you are one.

    The distance between what most people think and say, and what they feel is amazing.
    Whatever causes that numbness in the senses has to stop. Eventually it does.

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    Default Re: The beginning of human personhood

    One story is that "you" enter the foetus about 3 month after conception.
    I dont have an opinion-- enough to know that the body is not I.
    The "I" (Self) exists before and after the body comes into being according to the sages.

    Chris
    A charity to help African Children become self sufficient.

    http://www.learningtoolsforselfdevelopment.co.uk/

    Be kind to all life, including your own, no matter what!!

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    Default Re: The beginning of human personhood

    We are so naïve and primitive when it comes to cloning and GE, it would take centuries to understand the implications associated, we still know so little about the human body!
    I don’t think the general pop’ is ready for human clones and hybrids yet.. though progress is inevitable and the general consensus or commonly held views of society will no doubt change with time.


    This technology is nothing new, Just take a look at mythology from around the globe.. rife with hybrids!
    Maybe if we better understood our past we would have an entirely different view on the subject?
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    Last edited by Timreh; 14th October 2013 at 12:29.
    "The shoe that fits one person pinches another"
    Carl Jung

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    Default Re: The beginning of human personhood

    My child visited me (astrally) several months before conception. This also occurred with my mother, she met myself and my sister up to a year before conception and all her grandkids and had one little girl visit her who she guided to another suitable home and she is now a cousin of mine lol bringing children into the world is an interesting experience. About 6 weeks before conception of my child there was an occurrence where blue spirit energy integrated into my body which I put down to egg fiddling lol, it was a very busy stressful time with traveling etc and there was far to much going on so I didn't notice her coming in although I have in the past (miscarriage) experienced the moment when the souls energy enters my body (and the sad moment of death and leaving in that case), the entering I would say happens upon implantation.

    Before experiencing this I thought that the soul entered upon birth but I can say from my own experiences, it's definitely their body from creation and they are with you from the get go although physical consciousness integrates gradually, and that includes post birth too, early days they are only partially with you and drift in and out. By 3rd trimester they are responding to you by pushing against your hand, moving to music they enjoy, lol my girl used to bob around in excitement upon the sound of chocolate wrappers (not that I ate it much she just loved it). She was in NICU the day after she was born and was smiling whenever my husband talked to her and the midwife kept telling us that wasn't possible for her age but she knew him, they also tried to tell me that when she burrowed into me in total love and connection that she was just responding to the familiarity of my body sounds but it was more than that, she knew who I was. They took her away from me once and were trying to get bloods and she was crying and crying until I found where she was and she instantly went quiet and calm when I took her hand even though they were still jabbing her.

    Babies are aware, some much more than we give them credit for. And those really early experiences count too, they do have an impact on the fundamental grounding of that person, I think up until something like 8-9 months babies see what happens to them as being them, they don't know the difference between self and the world, sort of like a dream. So for example if they are ignored when they cry, they learn to ignore their emotions as they integrate that as their basic programming. I believe those first in particular 18 months decide a lot about a persons initial self.

    Forgot to say, Humans don't truly understand life yet and hybrids, clones etc seem really unwise when humanity has not yet proven itself to understand and connect with itself and other peoples of this earth. Isn't GMO food etc enough tampering to get the general idea that we need to stay away from here until we are further developed lol.
    Last edited by Rosieposie; 14th October 2013 at 12:28.
    "I don't care" is a civilizations death sentence

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    Finland Avalon Member Wind's Avatar
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    Default Re: The beginning of human personhood

    I agree with these statements and I don't have much to add to them. Personally I enjoyed my childhood a lot, because my ego was not fully developed back then. Not much worries, mostly joy even through all the hard times. We come from innocence and we will eventually return to the childlike innocent state.

    "When the spirit decides it is going to be that human, the soul begins its development then inside the fetus, even at the beginning of conception. The transformation from spirit to human is the aspect of a new soul, a new personality, a new ego being created. Though spirit is always who you are and is always with you, it is not in a conscious form as your soul is. And your soul is the makeup of your humanness.

    At some point prior to birth, the soul will carefully touch and join more fully with the impressionable, developing brain of a baby...Depending upon the inclinations of the particular soul involved, the connection may be early or late in the mother's pregnancy. I have had cases where souls timed their arrival at the last minute during delivery, but this is unusual. My findings indicate even those souls who join the baby early seem to do a lot of traveling outside the mother's womb during her term."

    — Journey of Souls: Case Studies of Life Between Lives, Michael Newton
    pg. 266-267, 1996

    http://afterlifedata.com/afterlife_t...id=196&secid=5

    Edgar Cayce on Human Origins: The Personality as a Facet of the Soul's Individuality

    "The soul may actually occupy a fetus as early as three months after conception or even as late as a month after birth. In the latter case, the soul hovers over the infants body since birth to decide whether or not to occupy it. Once the decision is made and the occupation completed, the separation between the conscious mind (i.e., personality) and subconscious mind (i.e., the soul) takes place and the soul record (i.e., memory) of the child begins. The fact that some babies are miscarried does not mean it was refused as a vehicle for a soul. Just the opposite is true. The opportunity to incarnate was taken away from the soul due to natural forces and this made the occupation of that particular body impossible.

    The personality is a facet of the soul's individuality experienced in three-dimensional consciousness (i.e., body, soul, spirit). The other facets of the soul remains in shadow - in the background. It gives tone to the personality through its urges, appreciations, tastes, avocations, and intuition.

    A particular personality of an individual is shaped by three or four incarnations. The emotions and talents of a person reflects these past incarnations. A person's dreams, visions, and meditations are reflections of the soul's experience in other dimensions (i.e., heavenly realms) of consciousness associated physically by our solar system. The human intellect was created from the stars and planets. The intellect is the mind force of the soul which is conditioned by its previous incarnations on Earth and its experiences in other dimensions and even in other solar systems. The intellect becomes dimmed or brightened by its recent experiences within the three-dimensional consciousness of the solar system and the experiences within other dimensional realms of consciousness.

    Thus, a personality is only one facet of the soul. The soul may incarnate as any facet to express that particular portion of itself. As a soul approaches its completion of the solar cycle of consciousness, the personality becomes more multi-sided and expresses greater facets of the soul. This is because each incarnation "burns off" negative karma which requires less and less attention. Finally, the personality will become a complete expression of the soul and the cycle of reincarnation is finished for the soul.

    As the soul succumbs to worldly desires by abandoning its intellect for sensuality, it becomes more and more one-sided."

    http://www.near-death.com/experiences/cayce03.html
    "Through our eyes, the universe is perceiving itself. Through our ears, the universe is listening to its harmonies.
    We are the witnesses through which the universe becomes conscious of its glory, of its magnificence." ~ Alan Watts

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    Default Re: The beginning of human personhood

    I feel that life is a continuum. If spirituality is an aspect of reality, that is.
    Death is like the blink of an eye in the big scheme of things, if you believe that the human spirit endures.
    I don't know how I feel about reincarnation and such, but if it is the truth, as many believe, then being born, dying, or being conceived is like getting on a bus and going somewhere.
    What is important is that each soul has the chance to take a ride.
    I am sure that Rosa Parks would have something to say about this concept. She refused to ride in the back even though that was the place society relegated to her.
    The soul is the fountain of freedom. It's the thing that can't be caged, even when the body is in prison.

    "There's no beginning, there's no end; there is no self, no fortress to defend." ~Journey

    As humans we should be responsible, as far as we are able, for the physical well-being of other humans. Regardless of their capacity to return the favor.
    And it is not the value of previous lives and accomplishments that drives this morality, but the chance being given in regards to the future of others.

    Frank Herbert, God rest his soul, talked about the randomness of love and procreation being the basis of evolutionary strength.
    From an evolutionary standpoint, the wise choice then seems to be tolerance of diversity, and that includes tolerating the less powerful along with the more powerful.
    On the basis of human potential.

    All life is an expression of God and should be valued, if not worshiped.
    That's why I don't call dolphins "fish" and I try not to call humans "trash".

    There is potential hidden in all beings that only God or the universe can see.
    We can catch a glimpse, take a stab in the dark, but what we know will never challenge what is possible.

    I feel that life endures long after the body is gone, and by the same token, who can define the beginning of such a life?
    In a continuum "beginning" loses its meaning, because there is always something before and after, and it's all connected.

    And there we are approaching the realm of quantum physics, which many modern scientists do not believe excludes the idea of a Higher Power.
    People who deny the potential of the Universe are fundamentally bitter, and wounded, for personal selfish reasons.

    That's not the same as not being able to handle the sight of suffering, but it does cast such things in a new light.

    Rather than condemn the less fortunate, we should follow examples of people like Buddha and Christ, and give life a chance before judging it harshly.
    "I hear the horses thunder down in the valley below
    I'm waiting for the angels of Avalon, waiting for the eastern glow" ~ Led Zeppelin

    Frank Herbert - The concept of progress acts as a protective mechanism to shield us from the terrors of the future.

    John 1:5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

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    Default Re: The beginning of human personhood

    'Human' is a robe that you put on. You can take it off at any time.

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    Default Re: The beginning of human personhood

    Thank you everyone for your well considered answers.

    As I said previously, I don't know when a human person begins but I would like to suggest a couple of other points of view.

    It seems that the vast majority of people (certainly if you consider the wiki page I included and the NDE material which our friend Wind provided a link to) believe that human personhood (or person) begins at some point between conception and birth (and some even suggest after to by pass the trauma of birth - what a strange idea ?). All of those ideas come with the assumption that at some point the soul joins the body. So I want to ask, what if this idea that the soul (you may also call it subtle consciousness as Buddhism would suggest) is part of the body (and subsequently joins and leaves the body) is all wrong ? Personally I believe that the body is a manifestation of the soul (just one aspect). And so the from this perspective, perhaps pesonhood begins with the creation of a body - at fertilisation ? Or perhaps personhood always exists while the soul or consciousness exists.

    So most assumptions are that the soul joins the body. What if this assumption is wrong in another way. What if inbuilt in this assumption is the assumption that there is no consciousness until the soul enters the body. I believe this is wrong. What if instead each cell has it's own consciousness, each organelle has it's own consciousness and all matter that makes up every part of the cell is consciousness. In short, I believe that all matter is conscious. Based on this belief we could then argue that the moment a body exists on any scale, consciousness exists and personhood exists. This of course raises another set of issues - what is the soul, what is consciousness and what is personhood ?

    So in summary, there may be at least 6 possibilities for when personhood begins :
    • When the soul joins the body (at any point during gestation period or after)
    • When the soul manifests the body
    • When the body arises from the fusion of sperm and ova
    • When consciousness arises within the developing zygote, embryo, foetus or child.
    • When the being develops a sense of self and a sense of recognises other.
    • When the being develops feelings for other.

    Despite the possibilities, I do not know the answer to this question and I am comfortable with do not know. But I recognize that this is a critical isssue which will play a prominent role in our collective future – espacially when it comes to cloning humans, creating human body parts and creating hybrid species. Not only will it become a hot question for societies at large to decide and for individuals to have an opinion on, at some point governments themselves will have to define what personhood is and decide when it begins. When they do that they will create legislation and policies addressing the issue(s). I can even see a day coming when the United Nations have clear definitions and policies in relation to when personhood begins.

    I am intrigued by markpierrés use of the word humanhood instead of human personhood. For me aliens are also persons or people. This is a perspective I used to argue against but now I see them as people bearing all the same qualities of mind and body as us. But the word humanhood, implies something very specific and raises all kind of questions about “what is a human ?”. I think the difference between human personhood and humanhood is profound and has equally profound implications for ethical decision making and policy development.

    Ultimately perhaps the answer to the question “when does a human / human personhood begin” (and equally fascinating “when does a human / human personhood end ?”), may depend on our interpretation of language, how language shapes perception, our individual and cultural values and our subjective interpretations of human and personhood, which in turn depend on perception and the many different layers of conditioning.

    It is unlikely that we will ever reach a shared understanding about what human personhood is, let alone when human personhood begins. But others may make that decision for us.

    When it comes to the creation of clones, how will we define their existence and how will we treat them ? Especially when there will be some people who argue that they do not have souls. This could lead to all kinds of hostility (as it will with human like robots). Equally uncomfortable will be the day when we develop intelligent hybrid species. How will we define their existence and how will we treat them ? Any evolved species will have to at some point deal compassionately and wisely with the issue of the rights of all forms of life. We are yet to address the basic rights of humans, let alone plants and animals and forms of apparently innate matter ! God knows how we will grow enough to care about clones, artificial life forms and hybrid species.

    For me in the the end there is but one question. What is life ?

    This in itself is a self referential question that can lead us nowhere ad infinitum. But it is a question that begs for some deeper understanding from the human race.

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    Default Re: The beginning of human personhood

    Bright. You have am interesting talent for open questions. I suck at it. I can't think up any.

    That term I used with a little irony. I prefer the 'idea' of human-adulthood. It's maybe more descriptive.
    I'm only still learning the depth of the real responsibility that 'humanness' is. People want to find their joy,
    but they don't want to be responsible for anything.
    Without the awareness of that responsibility and the development of the skills that are required to behave responsibly,
    what are we doing here? Pretending to be humans? Looks good. Everybody looks like humans. Well done.
    The stuff about at what moment Spirit assumes the position (sorry) is fine. But it enters as Spirit. It doesn't become something else.

    Consciousness doesn't evolve, it's redefined. The thing that defines it as ??? is the problem. 'Self' consciousness.
    If a guy comes here and knows he has to build stuff, and he just got on with building stuff, he'd be free.
    When all of your attention is on something that presents you with no conflict, so are you. You're not aware of 'yourself'
    as distinct from what you're doing.
    You have those moments. Those moments are what 'human life' is. Kind of like what life is everywhere. You know who you are.
    Everything else is the ego generating a place for itself to act out the fantasy that it's who you are.
    Associating with things that you think aren't you is conflictual. They're a threat. 'Self conscious' is your best friend when you're in danger,
    and you're best friend when you want to manage your 'awakening'. It doesn't wake up. It's woken up from.

    People who believe they can distinguish what of their thoughts are their ego and what are not,
    don't understand what it is that makes distinctions.

    Is any part of struggle life? Is any of it eternal? Moments of joy maybe if things are going right.
    Is it 'human' the 'physical experience'? Or 'human' the attitude. Is 'human' an outcome that needs to be considered at all?
    If it's a personalized 'self', then lets get straight, it's been personalized by you. If you don't like it, it's up to you to sort it.
    I think maybe that moment of alarm is the start of the birthing process. Birthing to what? must remain a surprise or it couldn't be new.

    Otherwise, when does toadness begin? At tadpole or croaking? When does 'housefly' begin? Horse? Dog? Raccoon?
    Spirit doesn't have a body, it's borrowing yours.
    Last edited by markpierre; 16th October 2013 at 04:03.

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