Here’s the post that kicked it all off. This is chapter 3 of 12, to give interested readers the chance to take on the free ebook chapter by chapter over the weekend, debate it amongst themselves, or even challenge the author who’s keeping tabs.
by Greg Swann
Chapter 3. Speaking in tongues.
I told you I use the words “human being” as a term of art. Here is why: Because there is a valid and valuable distinction to be made between a genetic Homo sapiens (the surviving issue of the recombination of genes) and a human being (a genetic Homo sapiens within whom has been cultivated the gift of mind). A genetic Homo sapiens can have the potential to become a human being – although this capacity or its existential realization can have been damaged or destroyed by disease, injury or birth defect. But until the mind has been cultivated within a particular genetic Homo sapiens, that entity will not be a human being.
A human life is an artifact, a man-made thing. The existence of a genetic Homo sapiens is a manifestation of nature, just as with any tree or reptile or kitten. But the existence of your life as a human being is a consequence of a vast number of conceptually-conscious choices made by your parents and other human beings when you were just a baby. Had they failed to cultivate the gift of mind within you, you might have survived as a genetic Homo sapiens, but you would never have become a human being. You owe your biological life to nature, but you owe your life as a human being to choices made by other human beings.