Genetically-modified foods and cloning started the ball rolling and there’s no stopping it now: artificial life is on the way.

In the December 17th edition of the Washington Post, Rick Weiss reports that “researchers are poised to cross a dramatic barrier: the creation of life forms driven by completely artificial DNA.” According to Weiss, this ability will force a “rethinking of what it means for a thing to be alive.” He quotes anthropologist Paul Rabinow as saying, “This raises a range of big questions about what nature is and what it could be.”

Weiss quotes M.I.T. researcher Drew Endy as saying, “We’re heading into an era where people will be writing DNA programs like the early days of computer programming, but who will own these programs?”

We are entering ethical territory that humans have never grappled with before. For instance, could someone hold the patent to a newly created creature’s soul?

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The key to understanding the future comes from deciphering the mysteries of the past and this week for subscribers, our present to you is a chance to listen as William Henry reads the tarot cards for Whitley. Last week our subscribers got to learn all about Whitley’s past lives, so Merry Christmas!

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