Antinatalism (continued)

[Excerpt from my ANTINATALISMUS, translated into English by Dr Alexander Reynolds]

Antinatalism, Cosmic

The cosmic antinatalist reckons with the possibility – a terrible one from his or her viewpoint – that sentient or even intelligent beings might have come into existence also on other planets. Such cosmic antinatalists dearly hope, of course, that this is not the case and that sentient or intelligent entities have not in fact arisen on any planet but our own. Each new discovery, therefore, of a planet on which there exist conditions similar to those on Earth causes a quiver of apprehension in these antinatalists, since any one of these new worlds might prove to be inhabited by beings capable of suffering.


Antinatalism, Misanthropic

Can there be such a thing as misanthropic antinatalism? We read in Kant’s Metaphysics of Morals: “The man who feels happy only when others are suffering is called a ‘hater of Man’ (or ‘misanthrope’); the man to whom it is a matter of indifference how badly or how well others are doing, provided only that he himself is content, is called an egomaniac (or ‘solipsist’)”. If the misanthrope feels happy only when others are suffering then the misanthrope cannot possibly wish that these others should cease to exist. With the ebbing away of humanity the ills that beset humanity would likewise be constantly on the ebb and misanthropes would find less and less occasion to be happy.


Antinatalism, Ecological

One essential reason why an end should be put to the bringing into existence of new human beings is that human beings the primary guilty parties are in such things as: the extinction of other species, the mass slaughter of animals, and the destruction of eco-systems. Many people are already aware that there are very few decisions that an individual can take which will so help to spare the world’s natural resources and make such an important contribution to the protection of the environment as will the decision not to procreate.[1] This was surely the basic meaning of the Dalai Lama’s remark: “I have said that I sometimes feel that the Earth would be better off without humanity”  (The Dalai Lama’s Appeal to the World)

Ecological antinatalism can be divided up into at least three sub-types: a suffering-oriented (pathocentric) type, a value-oriented type and a teleological type.

The position of suffering-oriented ecological antinatalism is that human beings should cease to procreate because other animals undergo unspeakable suffering at the hands of human beings.

That of value-oriented ecological antinatalism is that humanity needs to ebb away because the role of Man in the world is inevitably that of a destroyer of values, human beings tending to cause the extinction of animal species or the destruction of ecosystems.

Finally, that of teleological ecological antinatalism is that there are certain ends or purposes inherent in plants, animals, species and ecosystems which, as a result of human presence and intervention in the world, are failing to achieve development.

[1] „Some people now feel that remaining childless, or adopting, is the single most effective environmental decision they can ever make.“ (Leo Hickman, A life stripped bare)