In the comments section of another post here at MoL, we’re arguing a bit about dualism and souls and brains and what an “I” is. As I read this article today about the creation of synthetic life (an interesting topic on its own), I got to thinking about it’s implications to that other conversation.

It seems scientists have sequenced the genome of Bacterium A, used synthesis machines to chemically reconstruct a copy of its DNA (from “scratch” as it were), and implanted it into the nucleus of Bacterium B. What they end up with is a fully functioning/reproducing version of A, not B.

Dr Venter likened the chromosome to new “software” for the cell.

So here is what I wonder (for those who believe humans have “souls”)—if we sequenced the human genome and created a “from scratch” copy of its DNA. Then we implanted the DNA in a non-human cell, and if that organism grew up to be a fully-functioning human being—would it have a soul? And if so, where did it come from?

Advertisements