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    Thread: Fear of death - A rational fear?

    1. #251
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      No you can't, everything must come to an end if its a thing. That's the definition of a thing, as opposed to space. All structures exist in a state of flow, and if they stopped changing, they would stop existing. This flow includes the eventual cessation of that possible experience. Anything with a body must die eventually. And I don't need to prove this, it requires nothing more than contemplation on infinity.

      Everything works out in the end, sometimes even badly.


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      Alric I appreciate your optimism with prolonging life as such, but you cannot claim to live forever unless you're outside time, and you cannot be outside time unless you are outside space. Because time and space are entwined; forms in space are also forms in time.

      'Approaching' an infinite lifespan is not equal to an infinite lifespan, otherwise we are all approaching infinite life right now. The only way to be a human for eternity is to become God and control the entire universe, because the universe does not last forever either. And human cannot become God, so game over.

      However, I think I still see your point and think the above distinction (of mine and Omnis') doesn't really negate the potential for human beings to prolong their lives dramatically.

    3. #253
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      First off, no that isn't the definition of a thing. And even if things died if they stopped changing I never said the person had to stop changing. You could be constantly changing forever, which makes sense since you would probably be constantly learning and experiencing new things forever.

      Any way like I said, there is absolutely no reason a person couldn't live forever. No one has given even a single reason why it wouldn't be possible, except you said it was the definition of a thing which isn't true at all.

      Again you are just assuming things to be true, with no back up of it at all. Like I said, you would never actually reach infinity and you can't ever claim to have an infinite life, but you can live forever.

    4. #254
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      This posit is undeniable when compared to infinity. THe burden of proof is not in my corner here, because it's completely counter logical understanding of infinity to claim a form can last forever. When considering the basic qualities of infinity, it becomes abundantly clear that infinity is the only thing capable of itself, and everything else must eventually cease, as part of change is cessation. Your claim that something can live forever because it can infinitely approach infinity is nonsensical.

      Look at it this way, you said earlier nature is not a system, it contains other systems within it. Think about the Gestalt, the whole is not something itself, it is the stage which contains everything within it. Nothing other than the whole can be infinitely large because the whole is always larger, and always capable of creating infinite space around the objects within. No matter how large something is, such as the universe as a whole system, it's still surrounded by an infinitely large void of space.

      Time works the same way. Before anything began and after it ceases, there's an infinitely large space.
      Last edited by Omnis Dei; 05-28-2012 at 09:45 PM.
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    5. #255
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      I find it ironic that you made so many large posts on this thread about how you can't just assume things, and take answered for granted and all that. Then you flat out refuse to even think that a person can last forever, even though there is absolutely no evidence to suggest such a thing. The claim that everything has to cease is a baseless claim with no evidence to support it. It is a philosophical view you personally hold.

      You can't just claim it is undeniable and that everyone knows that things have to end, and then not support it at all. Your argument is basically, "Well because that is just how it is" which isn't an argument at all.

      Also you are talking about infinite size, but I am not. I didn't mention size at all. I am talking about an infinite life span. A person can have an indefinite life span and that wouldn't conflict with time also being infinite because the person is never living past the end of time. They can both continue to go on forever.

    6. #256
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      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      I find it ironic that you made so many large posts on this thread about how you can't just assume things, and take answered for granted and all that. Then you flat out refuse to even think that a person can last forever, even though there is absolutely no evidence to suggest such a thing. The claim that everything has to cease is a baseless claim with no evidence to support it. It is a philosophical view you personally hold.

      You can't just claim it is undeniable and that everyone knows that things have to end, and then not support it at all. Your argument is basically, "Well because that is just how it is" which isn't an argument at all.

      Also you are talking about infinite size, but I am not. I didn't mention size at all. I am talking about an infinite life span. A person can have an indefinite life span and that wouldn't conflict with time also being infinite because the person is never living past the end of time. They can both continue to go on forever.
      But your argument makes no sense whatsoever. And an object in space is a perfect example to explain why. I'm using space to explain to you how infinity works. Trying to argue that someone can live forever, you may as well argue a star can increase its size to infinity. Can you really claim there's a difference between a space of time existing before and after everything just as space surrounds all objects? You keep using this stupid argument that I can't prove something can't live forever, but it counters the very concept of infinity. Time didn't even exist forever, did you know that? Time exists based on the reactions of the earliest processes of the universe, which developed physical laws and encompassed the illusion of time to make it possible to experience reality. Time is not an inert function. In fact, it doesn't even exist at all in reality, in reality the universe is like the number 0. It contains every single possible equation within it, and we happen to notice a specific piece of the equation due to an illusory phenomenon.

      But I'll tell you what, since you decided I'm making assumptions about the basic rules of reality, which I guess I am (I'm making the same assumption that 2+2=4) I'll approach this differently. I can't prove 2+2=4, I can only prove it logically, not experientially. Logic, however, is not the same thing as truth, logic is just a language we utilize in our conceptualization of reality and our conceptualization of reality is not the same as the experience of reality. Because of this, I cannot claim that experientially, someone wouldn't experience themselves forever. But even if I can't control that, I have 99.999999999999% of the statistical advantage here, meaning I'm placing a far better bet by throwing my lot with the "all forms cease" concept, just as I would cast my bet with the 2+2=4 concept.

      This conceptualization vs experiential dilemma is good for another purpose, too, because you were approaching death by trying to conceptualize death and then compare it with your conceptualization of life. But you cannot conceptualize death, you can only experience it. You cannot even attempt to conceptualize it and be slightly inaccurate, death itself ends all possible conceptualization.

      Everything works out in the end, sometimes even badly.


    7. #257
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      Quote Originally Posted by Omnis Dei View Post
      You cannot even attempt to conceptualize it and be slightly inaccurate, death itself ends all possible conceptualization.
      So the question stands, is that which cannot be conceptualized worthy of fear?

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      Quote Originally Posted by Phion View Post
      So the question stands, is that which cannot be conceptualized worthy of fear?
      That which cannot yet be conceptualised or understood is what we fear most: the unknown - in any situation.

      Who looks outside, dreams;
      who looks inside, awakes.

      - Carl Jung

    9. #259
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      Your argument doesn't have any logical bases either. I am fully aware time hasn't always existed, just like a person may not have always existed. That is totally irrelevant however. You are not claiming 2+2=4. You are claiming 2+2=5 and then giving no evidence.

      You are claiming its a natural law but no such law actually exists that says everything will eventually end. There just isn't one and there is no logical reason to conclude that is the natural state of things.

      A person living forever is totally different than a star expanding out forever. Though ironically enough a star could expand out forever if there was nothing stopping its atoms from continually traveling outwards for the rest of time. In fact a lot of people think that the universe may end that way, with everything spreading outwards forever.

      You seem to be failing to make that connection. While you can never have an infinite size you can be forever increase if the space between atoms continually increase. It will never stop unless something stops it. Just like a persons life. They can live forever as long as nothing stops them from doing it. You are claiming something automatically stops them though, which isn't true. You can't know that, and its just an assumption on your part.

      Let me ask this, is it possible to count forever? Yes it is. You could continually count forever with no end. What you are saying is that a person can't count forever because eventually the numbers would run out. No the numbers do not run out. The counter could die or something and thus they would stop but you can't make the claim that it is impossible for count forever, because there is obviously no upper limit on numbers.
      Last edited by Alric; 05-28-2012 at 11:11 PM.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Wolfwood View Post
      That which cannot yet be conceptualised or understood is what we fear most: the unknown - in any situation.
      Hey, speak for yourself. I don't understand the popular act of associating fear with the unknown by default, I'm quite the opposite actually.

      If you can conceptualize a future, you can conceptualize never being able to get there because of death. Is that worthy of fear? If it motivates you to use your time the best you can, then maybe. I usually lean toward the view of fear being unnecessary though, like salty said.
      Last edited by Wayfaerer; 05-28-2012 at 11:10 PM.

    11. #261
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      The logical process involved in talking about fear and death ending up about mathematics eludes me. We talk about logic a lot here, but no one ever seems to practice logic. Understanding concepts through analogy and metaphor can be archaic and cryptic (viz. crafting original concepts from the ground up isn't easy but it beats being intellectually lazy); being aware of your mortality is healthy, but the value of the discussion isn't in the meaning of death, it's in the discernment of when one should value life and listen to their fears above all else.

    12. #262
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      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      Your argument doesn't have any logical bases either. I am fully aware time hasn't always existed, just like a person may not have always existed. That is totally irrelevant however. You are not claiming 2+2=4. You are claiming 2+2=5 and then giving no evidence.

      You are claiming its a natural law but no such law actually exists that says everything will eventually end. There just isn't one and there is no logical reason to conclude that is the natural state of things.

      A person living forever is totally different than a star expanding out forever. Though ironically enough a star could expand out forever if there was nothing stopping its atoms from continually traveling outwards for the rest of time. In fact a lot of people think that the universe may end that way, with everything spreading outwards forever.

      You seem to be failing to make that connection. While you can never have an infinite size you can be forever increase if the space between atoms continually increase. It will never stop unless something stops it. Just like a persons life. They can live forever as long as nothing stops them from doing it. You are claiming something automatically stops them though, which isn't true. You can't know that, and its just an assumption on your part.

      Let me ask this, is it possible to count forever? Yes it is. You could continually count forever with no end. What you are saying is that a person can't count forever because eventually the numbers would run out. No the numbers do not run out. The counter could die or something and thus they would stop but you can't make the claim that it is impossible for count forever, because there is obviously no upper limit on numbers.
      Actually that's not what I'm claiming, I'm claiming that no matter how large a single object gets, it's always imbedded in infinite and can never actually be infinite itself. We can claim numbers go on for infinity but we cannot claim a single number goes on for infinity, and after each number, there is space on either side.

      In much the same way there is space on either side of a life-form's existence. There is the space before it arose and the space after it ceases. This is not some unproven physical law, it's logic at its most basic level. The stage surrounds the object, both in space and time.

      No matter how many 9s you put in 0.999999999999999, 1 proceeds it. There is always something after.
      Last edited by Omnis Dei; 05-29-2012 at 01:29 AM.

      Everything works out in the end, sometimes even badly.


    13. #263
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      Quote Originally Posted by Wayfaerer View Post
      Hey, speak for yourself. I don't understand the popular act of associating fear with the unknown by default, I'm quite the opposite actually.

      If you can conceptualize a future, you can conceptualize never being able to get there because of death. Is that worthy of fear? If it motivates you to use your time the best you can, then maybe. I usually lean toward the view of fear being unnecessary though, like salty said.
      lol, well, not necessarily in that sense. But people 'fear' interviews, or say, going down a dark alley for that reason: the unknown. Unless I'm missing something here.

      I agree with the second part though, wholeheartedly. Emotions would be of utmost necessity if we didn't have a decent reasoning capacity. Though we do, and so motivation can be derived from goal-directed reasoning - that being laden with 'fear' is unnecessary...not to mention then making it erratic, and mostly beyond volition.
      Last edited by Wolfwood; 05-29-2012 at 12:00 AM.

      Who looks outside, dreams;
      who looks inside, awakes.

      - Carl Jung

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      That isn't actually true though. You can have two things that are growing forever with one being larger than the other.

      For example if you have two people counting to infinity, one counting by 10's and one counting by 1s. The first one is always going to be larger than the second but they are both going towards infinity and will continue on forever.

      What you are saying is that the first can go on for infinity but the second can't because it is smaller. That is incorrect. You can have different sizes and speeds of growth and if they both continue on forever that those sizes and speeds don't matter at all.

      Also you are incorrect with there always being a space on either side of something. You can have something going off to infinity in only one direction. Such as time, since time has a beginning and we yet don't know that it has a end(it really might not), time is going on forever in one direction only.

      Think about it like this. For the sake of picturing this lets assume for the moment that the universe is expanding out forever, which a lot of people believe. If you were to start at the center of the universe and fly out towards the edge at slower than the rate of the universe expanding you could travel forever and never hit the edge. There will always be more universe created before you can get to the edge. You would effectively be traveling forever.

      Now if you change that idea to your life span, you can easily see that you can continue to live forever without issue. You never reach the end of time, so there is no stopping point.

    15. #265
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      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      That isn't actually true though. You can have two things that are growing forever with one being larger than the other.

      For example if you have two people counting to infinity, one counting by 10's and one counting by 1s. The first one is always going to be larger than the second but they are both going towards infinity and will continue on forever.

      What you are saying is that the first can go on for infinity but the second can't because it is smaller. That is incorrect. You can have different sizes and speeds of growth and if they both continue on forever that those sizes and speeds don't matter at all.
      No I'm not, I'm saying there's infinite numbers but that doesn't mean I'm saying one object is larger than another. See my argument on life and death, it's the same basic idea. I'm labeling infinity with the word only for the sake of argument, just as I label death as death for the sake of argument. In reality, it's not that, it's not a thing. It's the stage. The stage already exists, only it doesn't exist in a measurable way. In fact once you take infinity into account, things become immeasurable.

      Also you are incorrect with there always being a space on either side of something. You can have something going off to infinity in only one direction. Such as time, since time has a beginning and we yet don't know that it has a end(it really might not), time is going on forever in one direction only.
      Actually time probably will end, just as an equation ends. We experience an illusory hiccup in the equation. See my argument on the number 0. 0 is the universe's natural state, but that doesn't mean nothing, it means every single possible equation contained within the number 0. This means there are multiple incarnations of existence but they are not happening one after another, they are all happening at the same time. Think of the equation (2+3)4=20. Technically 4 must come after 2+3 in order to get 5*4 but that doesn't mean that time is anything existing in reality, it simply means the order events are written down in are important toward solving the equation correctly. The universe is the same way, it all goes back to 0.

      Think about it like this. For the sake of picturing this lets assume for the moment that the universe is expanding out forever, which a lot of people believe. If you were to start at the center of the universe and fly out towards the edge at slower than the rate of the universe expanding you could travel forever and never hit the edge. There will always be more universe created before you can get to the edge. You would effectively be traveling forever.
      And now you are truly revealing you have no idea what infinity means. More space does not need to be created for the universe to continue expanding. The space is already infinite. It is not some object being counted by 10 while the universe is only being counted by 1. It's already all the potential numbers that could be counted.

      Now if you change that idea to your life span, you can easily see that you can continue to live forever without issue. You never reach the end of time, so there is no stopping point.
      There is something afterwards. This is the stage. Just as there is infinite, immeasurable space surrounding the universe, the time remaining until after something ends is also infinite and immeasurable. Even if something can continue forever (which it can't) it has a beginning and it has an end, the point it's reached so far right now. This makes it measurable. This makes it separate from infinity.
      Last edited by Omnis Dei; 05-29-2012 at 04:24 AM.

      Everything works out in the end, sometimes even badly.


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      Actually that is your misunderstanding of the universe. The universe isn't an infinite size, most people think it is an actual measurable size across, though they also believe it is growing.

      Infinity is a concept not an amount. Nothing can have an infinite amount but things can be extended out forever, or continually gain forever, or increase forever. A person can live forever without having an infinitely long life span. There are two concepts you seem to be confusing with each other.

      The point at which you are measuring a persons life isn't an end point if that person is still alive. Think of it like this. If you have a line that goes on forever you can pick two points and always measure them. That is what you are doing when you are picking an arbitrary end point(right now) instead of the actual end point(which you would never reach).

    17. #267
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      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      Actually that is your misunderstanding of the universe. The universe isn't an infinite size, most people think it is an actual measurable size across, though they also believe it is growing.

      Infinity is a concept not an amount. Nothing can have an infinite amount but things can be extended out forever, or continually gain forever, or increase forever. A person can live forever without having an infinitely long life span. There are two concepts you seem to be confusing with each other.

      The point at which you are measuring a persons life isn't an end point if that person is still alive. Think of it like this. If you have a line that goes on forever you can pick two points and always measure them. That is what you are doing when you are picking an arbitrary end point(right now) instead of the actual end point(which you would never reach).
      The universe may be finite but it's surrounded by infinity. Do you get it yet?

      Everything works out in the end, sometimes even badly.


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      That is just another assumption, we can't know that. It seems you are making a lot of assumptions and claiming them as hard facts.

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      I'll tell you what, how about you just believe whatever nonsense about reality you want to believe and I'll make this more directly related to the OP

      Would you rather live forever or live for 100 years and be happy?

      Everything works out in the end, sometimes even badly.


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      You can have any opinions you want. Like I said, we don't know a lot of stuff so we can't make those judgement. Just need to realize that without any facts backing it up, its just that, an opinion.

      To answer your question though, I would live forever. You didn't say anything about me being in extreme pain or suffering the entire time so there is no reason I wouldn't pick forever.

      If it was a choice of being happy all the time for 100 years or having a normal life with up and downs but living forever, I would take living forever.

      If it was happy all the time or being content, not too happy not too bad, forever. I would take forever.

      If it was happy all the time or being fairly content with a lot of sad times, I would still take forever.

      Only when you get to horrible pain and suffering for all times might I consider dying being better than living forever.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      You can have any opinions you want. Like I said, we don't know a lot of stuff so we can't make those judgement. Just need to realize that without any facts backing it up, its just that, an opinion.

      To answer your question though, I would live forever. You didn't say anything about me being in extreme pain or suffering the entire time so there is no reason I wouldn't pick forever.

      If it was a choice of being happy all the time for 100 years or having a normal life with up and downs but living forever, I would take living forever.

      If it was happy all the time or being content, not too happy not too bad, forever. I would take forever.

      If it was happy all the time or being fairly content with a lot of sad times, I would still take forever.

      Only when you get to horrible pain and suffering for all times might I consider dying being better than living forever.
      What if you reach the point where any emotions at all, being physiological/organic artifacts, are superfluous?
      Last edited by IndieAnthias; 05-29-2012 at 12:40 PM.

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      I don't know what's blocking the understanding... Alric, you said it yourself:

      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      You could never claim to have ever lived forever because you would never actually reach that point, but you can just keep going on and on.
      Not because 'you would never actually reach that point', but because if there ever is a point, it is not forever. Not only could you not claim to live forever because it is unreachable, but because if it was reached it would contradict itself. Therefore you can never say such things and attribute it to a physicality that is bound by the laws of change.

      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      As for not living forever, that is just an assumption you made. There is no reason a person couldn't live forever, if they were able to survive the death of the universe.
      Can you tell me why you think surviving the death of the universe is trivial?

      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      Like I said, you would never actually reach infinity and you can't ever claim to have an infinite life, but you can live forever.
      Here is another contradiction. If you cannot claim it, why say you can live forever? You must say instead: I am living as long as I possibly can.

      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      Think about it like this. For the sake of picturing this lets assume for the moment that the universe is expanding out forever, which a lot of people believe. If you were to start at the center of the universe and fly out towards the edge at slower than the rate of the universe expanding you could travel forever and never hit the edge. There will always be more universe created before you can get to the edge. You would effectively be traveling forever.
      It is equally unrealistic as your other examples. Must you give an example of an infinite amount of fuel, or is that just another triviality not to worry about?

      I don't think you realize how over-simplified and bold your statements are. At times they might sound convincing on their own, but they are just hypothetical concepts that are lost of wisdom.


      Here are some great quotes by Taosaur, who posted in one of my old threads. I think he described it well, and it's something that isn't easy to do. He was actually debating with somebody with different ideas of 'infinity', but of which seemed too theoretical. I hope you can visualize that there is actually a paradigm difference here.

      Quote Originally Posted by Taosaur View Post
      Eternity is not a limitless amount of time--that usage is a bastardization deriving from a failure to grasp the concept. Eternity is outside or beyond time, the dualistic opposite of linear time. It is beginningless as well as endless. It is the fixed background against which time moves, the still pool upon which our reality reflects. Taken differently, eternity is the view on reality from which everything is accomplished and nothing changes, from which what we take for change is merely a reflection of the perpetual state of being.
      Quote Originally Posted by Taosaur View Post
      Again, you simply don't seem to know what we're talking about when we discuss the all-encompassing, boundless, infinite, eternal aspect of existence. It's neither mystical nor "comes from nowhere," but arises naturally from an understanding that all boundaries are artificial, including the boundaries between each of us as an object/entity and the air, the sun, or the kitchen table, as well as the boundaries between past and present, causes and effects. This understanding is at once counter-intuitive, defying the conceptual construct we take for reality, and self-evident: whatever we take for a thing unto itself, an object, is in fact interpenetrating, exchanging substance with, and mutually co-defining everything in its surroundings. We're all somewhat aware of the material exchange, but close examination of time, cause and effect reveals the same interdependence and interpenetration.

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      Because of the nature of infinity you can never actually reach it. That does not mean you can not travel down the path towards it forever. In fact if you did have an infinate life span then that is exactly how it would work, you forever traveling down that path but never reaching an end. Also I never said that was trivial. Escaping the universe is a huge things. It may not be possible for all we know. What I am saying is that even with a slim chance, its better then guaranteed death.

      Any way, let me paint two possible futures you could have. These are futures you personally could have, which is better?

      Eighty years from now you are laying in a bed. You are sick and dying and you know you time is short in this world. You look back at one hundred years of memories, about all the friends you had, your family, all the things you successful done with your life, and all the stuff you wish you had more time to do. It was a good life, but you know it all has to come to an end, and you will cease to exist. You will be gone forever, never to feel the wonders of this world again. Then you die, everything is over.

      Or

      Eight hundred billion years from now you watch the universe itself coming to an end. The process is slow, it will take billions of years more before the universe is no longer livable but it will happen soon. You look back at your eight hundred billion years of experiences. You are not alone, within you are the hopes and dreams, and memories of a million species that traveled the stars, all merged within your mind. The old you, the one that lived on earth so long ago would look at the current you as a god.

      Though you know that isn't true, despite your vast knowledge, and experience and technology you know that you have only taken your very first steps. You are but a child, and today you are taking your first step, a step into the great beyond, to another universe, a younger universe where things may be vastly different from anything you ever seen before. You look to the future and you know you may travel to billions of new universes, but this is a great moment. The moment you take your first step out of your tiny corner you have lived in all your life. Then you do it, you do what seemed like an impossibility and you leave this universe to forever continue your exploration of the unknown.

    24. #274
      D.V. Editor-in-Chief Original Poster's Avatar
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      Let me put the question another way

      Is it more important to enjoy something or extend it?

      Everything works out in the end, sometimes even badly.


    25. #275
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      Quote Originally Posted by Omnis Dei View Post
      Is it more important to enjoy something or extend it?
      I suppose I'd rather live a life without fear on a 'definite' timeline, than live with fear infinitely into the future on the backdrop of eternity.

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