Presentation at a preISSA consortium, also known as a TEDtalk:

Some humans wished to exchange their human bodies for that of another animal — boxer dog, Persian cat, golden eagle, fruit bat.

Has anyone asked a woodthrush if it wants to be human?

More to the point, what were the cellular issues involved?

Mary Shelley had her Frankenstein’s thought pattern described fictionally.

We have our genetic decoding, artificial intelligence and genetically-modified food sources.

We have artists and scientists clashing with ethicists and religious adherents over the possibilities of opening Pandora’s Box or letting the genie out of the bottle.

What do we really have?

We have chemical reactions.

We have observable laws of physics in motion.

We want instant gratification, answers in our lifetimes.

What do we really want?

Another moment with knowledge of ourselves interacting with the rest of the universe?

Why are we still thinking inside the box of corporeal reality?

Do we hold on to a system of beliefs, living vs. nonliving entities, because that’s all we can really understand?

Are we forever stuck in the mode of perpetuating sentience?

Is that the only condition of sets of states of energy that guarantee something of our species’ accomplishments will be remembered, carried on, ensuring survival no matter where/when it is?

If we, not just our species but any Earth-based biological forms are not the only or are even better survivors traveling the cosmos, will we put them ahead of us, ahead of our symbol sets, to venture out through and past our solar system?

Will it matter if nothing about us exists 10, 20, 50 or 100 lightyears from here or 100,000 years from now if we knew something better will?

Is it in us to make that happen in the midst of global capitalist/communist competition, wars tagged with religious overtures and the desire of a child with terminal cancer to take a trip to a foreign country for an amusement park ride?

Would we give our all to send a single bacterium to Alpha Centauri?

If not, how would we be convinced to do so, willingly or otherwise?

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