BIOTECHNOLOGY AND BIOETHICS
The Bodily Incorporation of Mechanical Devices: Ethical and
Religious Issues (Part 1)
, LAUREN A.
, JAMES F.
a1 Oregon State University, Corvallis,
a2 Denison University, Granville, Ohio
a3 Xavier University, Cincinnati, Ohio
a4 Boston College, Chestnut Hill,
Massachusetts, and Weston Jesuit School of Theology, Cambridge,
a5 Rice University, Houston, Texas
a6 Stanford University, Stanford,
a7 Northwestern University, Chicago,
A substantial portion of the developed world's population is
increasingly dependent on machines to make their way in the everyday
world. For certain privileged groups, computers, cell phones, PDAs,
Blackberries, and IPODs, all permitting the faster processing of
information, are commonplace. In these populations, even exercise can be
automated as persons try to achieve good physical fitness by riding
stationary bikes, running on treadmills, and working out on cross-trainers
that send information about performance and heart rate. a
a This essay is drawn from collaborative research conducted
under the auspices of the “Altering Nature: How Religious Traditions
Assess the New Biotechnologies” project at Rice University from 2002
to 2004 through the financial support of The Ford Foundation (Grant
#1010-1601). The paper is submitted with the permission and
acknowledgement of the project coordinators and The Ford Foundation. The
authors also acknowledge the research and editorial assistance of Dr.
Siobhan Baggot and Ms. Sarah Gehrke.