Human head transplanting - which one's spirit is it? Of the head or of the body?


(Oyunbold Shine) #1

Just saw a news that the first human head transplanting surgery went successful.

Head of a person with bone cancer, and body of a person whose brain was dead (?) because of accident.
So, the new person is alive.
Which side is the spirit from?
If this surgery goes normal in the future, people can choose either to change their heads or bodies? Which one’s spirit would it have?


(SeanO) #2

@Oyunbold_Shine It looks like the person who volunteered to have the surgery backed out and that most medical experts still question whether this is even possible. So there has not been a successful head transplant and may never be… The video you shared is from 2016 and the news that he backed out is from 2017, so it looks like the surgery never happened and there is great skepticism from the medical community that it is possible.

Regarding the spirit of the person, I would suppose the brain is the seat of control in the body, so it would be logical to me that the brain is the crucial organ. But who knows if this procedure is even possible?

Most medical experts around the world say his theories are ‘science fiction’ and a head transplant is simply not possible.


(Oyunbold Shine) #3

Seems like it was a fake news.
And, yeah, I was just curious about the spirit thing. :slight_smile:
Thanks


(Warner Joseph Miller) #4

Wowsers!!! What an awesome and uniquely 21 century question! I was on the edge of my seat wanting to know the response to that one! Great question @Oyunbold_Shine!! And great response, @SeanO. Who knows…in a couple of years, this may be revisited…:man_shrugging:t6:


(Kathleen) #5

This is such an interesting question, @Oyunbold_Shine! Where the spirit/soul/consciousness resides was literally our class discussion a couple of weeks ago. (I am studying theology and counselling.) Except our question revolved around a brain transplant and the concept of embodiment. If my brain was to be successfully transplanted into someone else’s body, would I cease to be me? I suppose a similar idea is at work with your question.

I am of the mind that the spirit/soul of a person does not reside in a particular section of the body, but in the body in general. It remains to be seen if a person can truly survive severance from it’s original packaging, so to speak. I am of the mind that we cannot!


(Matt Western) #6

This also raises a question which I’ve pondered sometimes.

I wonder if there are limits and boundaries that God has put in place that humans won’t be able to cross?

Where is the line in which God says ‘enough’ - is this not what happened at the tower of Babel? It seems man got so proud in his heart and said ‘let’s build a tower so we are not scattered over the face of the earth’. Or perhaps the fact of Babel was it was a direct disobedience to God’s command to Adam to spread out and multiply and have dominion over the earth.

As the BibleProject says in a number of it’s videos, Babel (Babylon) is a picture of all of the earth’s kingdoms which become brutal and we are like beasts without God.


(Robert Anderson) #7

I might need a brain transplant after thinking about this question. From a theological perspective, I think it’s safe to say that our bodies matter to God as Jesus was bodily resurrected and promises to raise our bodies up as well. He also calls our bodies temples. So with that being said, I don’t think God would allow us to simply swap bodies via brain or head transplant.

Whether it is logically possible I do not know. But fortunately I think it is impossible from a practical standpoint. I don’t think a brain and body could be perfectly connected. The transplanted brain would be tuned to a different body as it developed in a different body. To me that would be like putting an F150 computer in a Toyota Camry and expecting the Camry to function properly. The Camry would drive so wacky, if at all, due to having a computer tuned for a full size truck with totally different specs and dimensions than a small car. So how could my brain, which grew and developed together with my body, be placed in a totally different body and be expected to function perfectly?


(Oyunbold Shine) #8

Yes. That’s so true. All these bioethics issues should be addressed more during this bio tech era.


(Joshua Spare) #9

An amusing factoid to add to this conversation is that Decartes believed that the the soul connected to the body at the pineal gland in the brain. If I remember correctly, the pineal gland tapers off at the tail end of the gland, and Descartes believed that at the very tip of the taper, at the smallest point of the pineal gland, that was the point of connection between the body and the soul.