Enhancements: Being a (Super)Hero

Question

I want to know whether or not it is moral/ethical to “enhance” or “augment” human’s beyond what is considered to be “normal.”
Should we be able to “augment” or “enhance” human beings beyond that which we consider “normal” (as in, superstrength, super-intelligence, etc)?
What is the Torah view on this? What are the sources?
Thank you!

4 months

Answers

  1. What a fascinating question!

    Although I am not familiar with any sources that deal with the issue directly I think that the Sages actually do touch on the subject – just from a spiritual point of view and not a physical one. The Sages teach in Ethics of the Fathers that the Jewish definition of true strength is someone who overcomes his desires to sin. I know that that is not the kind of augmentation or enhancement that you were referring to, but the Sages are teaching us something of the most fundamental value: “super” anything can be implemented by utilizing the strengths that are found within the Torah, because they can trigger off within us strengths that we never knew we had.

    For example, our Sages teach that a person who is not blessed with a high IQ does not have to be restricted in their ability to understand Torah. If they show a true love for Torah knowledge and an absolute desire to learn it in purity they can be granted the ability to understand the depths of the Torah – concepts that are often beyond others who have been blessed with a much more obvious intellect – despite their intellectual “handicap”.

    Best wishes from the AskTheRabbi.org Team