Genetic Engineering – Yes or No?


In an article published in this week’s New York Times it is reported that:

 “Scientists for the first time have successfully edited genes in human embryos to repair a common and serious disease-causing mutation, producing apparently healthy embryos,…”

This news raises questions about who might control the technology that makes this possible. How can we guarantee that this knowledge will be used by conscious human beings, rather than by politicians who would turn our brave new world into Orwell’s 1984?

Here’s what Osho says about it:

“Who controls all your nuclear weapons?

“Who controls all your scientific discoveries?

“Have you raised your voice against it? Have you even thought that the whole life on the earth is now in the hands of idiotic politicians?

“And it has been always so. Anything discovered is immediately captured by the governments, so why is the question only about genetic engineering? Are you not afraid that the politicians have nuclear weapons which can destroy you seven hundred times? Although destroyed once, you will not need to be destroyed again – because you are not the only begotten son of God, you will not resurrect; and messiahs are not around who will bring you back to life.

“But you are afraid – I can understand – that if this genetic engineering is in the hands of politicians, certainly they are not going to produce the man of beauty, love, silence, intelligence, grace. They are going to create steel robots, to make all of them soldiers to fight, to kill. I know it. That’s why I have proposed there should not be nations, the world should have only one functional government. All boundaries have to be removed, all passports and green cards have to be burned. That you are a human being is enough to enter any country.

“It is a very strange thing. You don’t ask the birds, “Where is your passport? How did you dare to enter America? – you need a visa. And if you want to remain permanently here you will need a green card.” Animals seem to be more free than you, because animals don’t know anything about the boundaries that you have drawn on your map. They go on moving from one place to another place. Sometimes they travel thousands of miles.

“There are a few birds who live at the North Pole, but when it becomes absolutely impossible to live there because of the cold, they start moving toward warmer places. Three thousand miles they will travel – and they don’t care about your nations. In a new place…for example, they will travel and come to a warmer place, and when it is the time, there is the season of mating. So they give birth to eggs, but they don’t have enough time to take care of the eggs; three thousand miles have taken so much time.

“They have to go back, because now the climate at the North Pole is again ready to welcome them. So they leave their eggs and fly three thousand miles again. The eggs grow on their own, the children are born. And it is something mysterious – science has not been able to figure it out: there is no guide, there is no school to teach them, there is nobody even to tell them where their parents have gone, but these newly-born birds start moving toward the North Pole three thousand miles away. Existence is really mysterious.

“Nobody asks about them, when they cross the borders. Even if you ask, they will not understand your language. And even if you try to keep them out, it will be almost impossible. Man is not as free as birds, animals, fish. What a degradation!

“Hence, whenever I say anything, remember the whole context of it; otherwise you will misunderstand me. I want one world, so that there is no war and no need of soldiers. I want one world government. I want the president of the world government only to be president for six months, so that he cannot do any harm. And I want one person to be chosen only once. These are all precautions.

“Genetic engineering, to give birth to children in scientific labs, will be in the hands of the scientists.

“We have tried religion and it failed. We have tried politics and it has failed. Now we have to try science. Give it a chance, because in three hundred years it has made more progress than man has made in his whole history of millions of years.

“And I have proposed to you that the world should have one academy of sciences, so there is no Russian scientist, no American scientist, no Hindu scientist, no Christian scientist – all that is past. That academy will have all the geniuses of the world. And all other efforts have failed; science should be given a chance. There is no harm. At the most it can fail – the worst possibility is that science also will fail – but I don’t think it can fail.

“We have to prepare a new kind of man. Out of that new kind of man – meditative, silent, loving – will be coming scientists.

“And I am not a pessimist; nor am I an optimist. I am very much a realist. As I conceive it, all these things are possible. In fact, without them life will become impossible. The choice is yours. Give science a chance, and prepare the ground so that there are no governments – only one government, which has no desire to fight because there is nobody to fight.

“Even the politician’s character will change, because there will be no political parties. People will be choosing individually, there will be no political vested interest.”

Osho, From the False to the Truth, Talk #31