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    View Poll Results: Should humans be able to live forever?

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    • Yes, I think it's a good idea

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    • No, definitely not

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    Thread: Should we strive to live forever?

    1. #1
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      Should we strive to live forever?

      As part of my A-levels, I'm doing an extended project qualification on whether or not it would be possible to extend the human lifespan indefinitely. I'm not talking about the kind of immortality where you literally cannot die. If you had your head cut off or something along those lines, your life would come to an end.
      Instead I'm focusing on whether or not in the future we will have the ability to halt the aging process and maybe even reverse the effects of aging. Another area I'm looking at is to do with resistance to infections and other things such as cancer so they would no longer be a threat.

      From my research so far, it looks very promising and we could theoretically have a world of humans that could potentially live thousands of years until they meet a sticky end from some kind of fatal accident or choose to end their own life. However, I also have to think about the possible consequences of possessing this ability such as sustainability of an immortal civilization, religious and ethical arguments against it, which classes would have access, psychological arguments etc.

      I'm hoping to gain a form of primary research by asking for the opinion of members on this forum because I know there are quite a few deep thinkers on here that may propose ideas that I had never even considered to write about and including the opinions of others in my project so it's not entirely my own opinion.

      What is your opinion on an immortal civilzation? Good or bad idea?
      Any replies will be appreciated as it may be included in my project
      Cheers.

      Last edited by Raen; 07-31-2014 at 03:14 AM.

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      nah, i think its stupid. if even 25% of the population were to live for thousands of years the world will become waaay to overcrowded which will cause more suffering. (i would feel sorry for those sentence to life in prison lol) i personally wouldn't want to live for thousands of years. i would probably be bored out of my mind after 50yrs. it is the fact of my death and that i'm aging that brings intensity to my life.
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      Of course we should strive to live forever. Human life has value. If you believe that, than we should strive to protect human life. A person doesn't lose their value as a human being because they happen to get old. People are not old shoes that should be thrown away and replaced when the soles wear down.

      Also, why do people say it is the fault of people wanting to live forever that there is overpopulation? If 100% of the population was immortal and never died, and they didn't have children, there wouldn't be overpopulation. The population would remain constant forever. It isn't the fault of people wanting to live forever, it is the fault of people having children. Also, if you live forever you can afford to wait until we are exploring space and have access to more resources before having children. Instead of having a child when your 20, wait until your 500. If everyone did that, there wouldn't be any overpopulation because we would increase at a slower rate and technology would easily advanced fast enough for us to provide for everyone.

      There is no ethical reason not to seek immortally. In fact, it is ethically wrong to allow people to die. What we are talking about is basically medical services that aid old people. If I were to ask you, "Should we research medicine to help the elderly, or should we let them die off because their old?" would there be any question to what the correct responsible would be? That is literally what you are asking. If we should research medicine that helps elderly people live longer. It is just plain fucked up for a person to say we should let old people die just because they are old. Who is anyone here to decide that a person is 'too' old at 60, or 70, or 80, or 500? Who gets to decide at what age we should stop giving medical care to people because they have 'lived long enough'.

      I don't believe in that shit. Human life is valuable and we should continue trying to cure all diseases and illnesses. I don't believe in such a thing as an 'old people's disease'. We are all humans and we should treat diseases that harm old people just as much as we treat diseases that harm babies. A baby, a kid, an adult, an elderly person, they are all humans. You don't lose value as a human being just because you happen to be old.

      Heck, the older you get the more experiences you gain through your life. The loss of an entire life time worth of experiences is a crime against nature. Dying is a horrible thing. I am not sure how a person can be okay with death and still value human life.
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      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      Also, why do people say it is the fault of people wanting to live forever that there is overpopulation? If 100% of the population was immortal and never died, and they didn't have children, there wouldn't be overpopulation. The population would remain constant forever. It isn't the fault of people wanting to live forever, it is the fault of people having children. Also, if you live forever you can afford to wait until we are exploring space and have access to more resources before having children. Instead of having a child when your 20, wait until your 500. If everyone did that, there wouldn't be any overpopulation because we would increase at a slower rate and technology would easily advanced fast enough for us to provide for everyone.
      This is a topic that really gets me psyched to think about. On the one hand, I think about the possibilities of having humans that have lived through so much. The older you get, the more experienced you would be and the wiser you would become. You would pick up more and more skills and be able to master them all just by putting in time and imagine the kind of creations we would be seeing from a collaborative team of true masters in fields like engineering and sciences. Tropicalbreeze says that it is death that brings intensity to his life and I get why a lot of people would say that. But to me, it's life that brings intensity to life.

      In terms of the ethical arguments: should we make it a responsibility of those who want to have children? In a sense, I suppose messing with human lifespan is tampering with the natural order that has been around since the dawn of time. Birth - Survival - Reproduction - Death. For a lot of people, it's a natural desire to want to have children and I don't think it's something that should be deprived of them which is why it gets a lot more complicated when you analyse who should have access to eternal life.

      Then there's the growth of our society. A lot of changes that are made in our society come from younger generations. With new generations comes new ideas, new ways of thinking about ideas and people. Look at the early 1900s. Rampant sexism, homophobia, racism and general intolerance. Would it not limit us in the growth of our society to have people that may be stuck in their own way of thinking?

      And without people having more children, maybe we are depriving the future generations of this planet of the next Leonardo Da Vinci or Albert Einstein.

    5. #5
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      Oh yes I love this topic. I have had many of these discussions/idea sharings before and hope to continue to have them in the future

      Let me start with this interesting idea:

      When people think about overpopulation they often think that we already have too many people. And that eventually we will have so many people that we cannot support them all. Both of which I believe not to be true. At this point in time, even though there are a lot of countries that cannot support their inhabitants, technically we should be more than able to provide a decent standard of living for every living person. Even with more growth, it will take a while before we can't support the entire human race. And when we get to that point, by then there will be more technology to provide us with more supplies.

      Then there is that part about the ever growing population. The problem with that is, that it is not growing forever. Or at least, it is believed not to be growing forever. This is, of course, not something that we can know for sure. But estimates predict a very different future then a lot might think. A higher life span basically comes from a higher standard of living. You need more medicine, better medical machines, better houses, trained doctors. All together you just need a higher standard. Ironically, with a higher standard of living, there is a trend among people. The higher the standard, the less children people have. One example is Japan. They have one of the highest standards in the world and they actually have a population that is declining instead of rising. With a higher standard, the population growth also staggers.

      So how can we have a growing population in the world, when the standard is only growing? Well that is mostly the effect of a country that goes from a very low standard to a very high standard. They are still in the mindset that they have to have a lot of children to survive. It is a custom to have a lot of children there. And customs don't fade over day. However, you do see those countries slowly grow less and less in population. In 50 years, the countries that are now making that great growth, will have a same population growth as other 1st world countries with high standards. India is a good example of a country where they are rapidly having less and less children. They just need some time to adjust to the idea that you can choose to have less kids. You can use protection nowadays, which sadly a lot of countries still do not have access to. In 50 years, the extreme growth that India now experiences will stop.

      So does that mean that in 50 years the world population will stop growing? No. Sadly we still have a lot of African countries that have not even started any raise in standard. Africa is believed to be the last continent to raise their standard to that same level. Not every country in Africa of course, but they have a lot of very poor countries there. In time, though, they too will have access to medicine and protection and all the stuff needed to have a decent standard. And they will bring about the biggest population growth with them, when they do. But they too will finally stop growing, the same way we see India do right now and have seen other first world countries do.

      The final estimate of population is that is will come to a complete stop at around 11-12 billion. A number unbelievably high. Yet not so high that we will not have enough resources. We can sustain that amount, if we choose to make the appropriate changes necessary.

      To place this, way too long story, into context: I believe we do not have to fear overpopulation, now or in the future. I believe that in 50-100 years we will have a lot more people on this earth, sure. But with the increase in technology, I think most first world countries will have to start worrying about a decline in population by then. Also, I believe that the trend will continue if we increase our life-span. The longer we live, the less kids we feel inclined to have.

      By the time we can live forever, we will barely have kids at all. And then there is the solution of space travel of course. But I'll leave that subject for another time
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    6. #6
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      That's a really interesting trend. I'd have thought that with a higher standard of living people would be more comfortable with starting a family and having children but now that I think about it, the people who tend to have the most children are from areas in poverty and such. I wonder if, like in the case of Japan, people are waiting longer before they have children and committing to serious relationships and by the time they do decide they want to settle down they have changed their mind about having kids. I know that women there are more career orientated.

      The problem I'm seeing though is not to do with how many kids people are having because even if every couple in the world only had 1 child, and that child has 1 child and so on and so forth, the age of maturity and legal age for sex is relatively low if you consider how long I am proposing humans would be able to live for (potentially thousands of years). It wouldn't be a case of replacing those who die anymore as the population would slowly but surely climb.
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      I would like to say that I respect peoples opinions in this subject. But I personally believe that death is what gives a life it's value. Just to take a simple example as material "stuff". What to me seem like the most valuable lesson in life, is that we should take care and respect any living thing. There is no point in being nice to a rock. Because what we know, a rock cant die. And a rocks value when it comes to compassion. Is that we dont care for rocks in a compassionate way. But they still have other values, and that is, that we can use them or have something to walk on, etc.

      When it comes to something living, then we usually have compassion in different levels. I personally dont crush bugs and insects for fun, how ever smal they are. Because there is a knowing that they want live too. But if a mosquito is trying to bite me, then I usually kill it fast for the reason that I know that the mosquito just will come back to me. And I want to kill it properly so it wont suffer a slow death even if it's "only" a mosquito.

      How ever. I dont think that our egoic and often deluded minds. Can outsmart universe itself. Because we are as much the universe as any planet and star. And as I have come to believe. The whole universe is made out of consciousness. Or rather is consciousness manifested in different forms, but from the same source. So we basically are the universe, and we can learn and play and think anything we feel like. If we are free and have the opportunity for that in our daily life of course.

      So.. Since every living thing have this "disease" called mortality. Why not just trying to accept that? If the universe wich IS the life most of us really love and want to hold on to. Then I believe that the universe is love and acceptans itself. Because of how it works. Any living thing that isnt fully suffering, will often still want to live. And still is this loving universe not letting any living thing slip away death. And eventually all living things will die. But since nothing can vanish, but merely change it's form in the universe. Then I will be so "extream" in my logic, and say that there might maybe be a even more pleasant life, in what many people call "an after life".

      If you find your self a bit allergic about what I just mentioned--> "an after life". Then give this example some thought as well. How impossible would the concept of seeing be to imagine, for someone who been blind all their life?.. Pretty much nothing else than impossible I would say. Since a person who unfortunately never been able to see with their eyes. Can only imagine visible sight, through all the other senses that isnt even comparable with seeing. That is pretty much the problem I believe that we have now, towards something so "impossible" as being conscious without a body.

      So to summarize all this. Life remains at is peak of it's beauty and appreciation, as long as there is mortality in the life we living now. So by accepting death, is to accepting life.
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      Quote Originally Posted by DreamyBear View Post
      When it comes to something living, then we usually have compassion in different levels. I personally dont crush bugs and insects for fun, how ever smal they are. Because there is a knowing that they want live too. But if a mosquito is trying to bite me, then I usually kill it fast for the reason that I know that the mosquito just will come back to me. And I want to kill it properly so it wont suffer a slow death even if it's "only" a mosquito.
      I believe that is to do more with empathy for living things rather than this being a problem with its mortality. Life is a sacred thing and by respecting the insect's right to live, you are showing compassion. Even when you put an end to its life, you do it in the most humane way possible due to empathy. But isn't that the same with having an essentially endless lifespan? Death comes for us all eventually, no matter what fancy technology we will use to fight it off as long as possible but if you had the option to put your life in your own hands rather than leaving it to chance, would that not be a better solution? And rather than solely thinking about death, what about the quality of life you would receive? Your body would be at its prime until you decide to stop taking certain medication or performing certain practices to maintain it. It'd prevent human suffering tremendously, just like you putting a quick end to the mosquito's life.

      Quote Originally Posted by DreamyBear View Post
      How ever. I dont think that our egoic and often deluded minds. Can outsmart universe itself. Because we are as much the universe as any planet and star. And as I have come to believe. The whole universe is made out of consciousness. Or rather is consciousness manifested in different forms, but from the same source. So we basically are the universe, and we can learn and play and think anything we feel like. If we are free and have the opportunity for that in our daily life of course.
      I like that idea of consciousness. But if that upholds, if we are the universe, why would we not be able to improve upon ourselves? Humans have been changing the way the world works since the first human discovered fire. We've used tools, built shelters, fashioned technologies to make our lives much better and with inventions such as antibiotics, we are extending the average lifespan as we speak

      Quote Originally Posted by DreamyBear View Post
      So.. Since every living thing have this "disease" called mortality. Why not just trying to accept that? If the universe wich IS the life most of us really love and want to hold on to. Then I believe that the universe is love and acceptans itself. Because of how it works. Any living thing that isnt fully suffering, will often still want to live. And still is this loving universe not letting any living thing slip away death. And eventually all living things will die. But since nothing can vanish, but merely change it's form in the universe. Then I will be so "extream" in my logic, and say that there might maybe be a even more pleasant life, in what many people call "an after life".
      Yes, I think death is something that people shouldn't really be concerned about because you aren't going to experience it. You can only experience while living (as far as we know) so there is no use worrying about no longer experiencing anything. You think of consciousness as a form of energy by the sounds of things and so by the law most of us are familiar with, conservation of energy, it would make sense that that consciousness would be manifested as something else. However, that does not mean to say that choosing when you wish to die would affect this cycle of your beliefs.

      Quote Originally Posted by DreamyBear View Post
      So to summarize all this. Life remains at is peak of it's beauty and appreciation, as long as there is mortality in the life we living now. So by accepting death, is to accepting life.
      Mortality definitely adds to the appreciation factor of life, but it sort of makes you want to rush things and you will die having not experienced everything you want to experience. So maybe if you had more time to learn the things you wished to learn, see the things you wished to see and gather as many experiences as you can, you would have a much more satisfying life, and death.
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    9. #9
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      The human mind isnīt meant to exist forever. The amount of memories we can accumulate is large but still finite. Imagine if you had lived for 100 or 200 years and your mind cannot contain any more memories. In such a scenario I can only see two options.

      - You sacrifice your future and live only with your past memory, thus making every new day practically meaningless.

      - You sacrifice your past and forget your earlier memories to make room for new ones. But even then what is the point of living if you cannot keep your life and all past experiences will just disappear.

      Both of these options donīt really expand your “life” only the duration in which your body can function.

      Another thing Iīd like to mention is that I consider life valuable because itīs finite. If you want to accomplish something in life you know that if hesitate too long one day it could be too late to follow your lifetime goals. But if people would grow accustomed to the thought of having seemingly infinite time they may never see the need to do something in the present. Having infinite lifetime would sooner or later just inflate your time. Living for another year would seem less and less meaningful after you had lived for a couple centuries.

      I can approve of technology which tries to guarantee that every single being can have a long and fruitful life, but I see no point in technology which attempts to expand the human lifespan to ridiculous amounts.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Creation View Post
      The human mind isnīt meant to exist forever. The amount of memories we can accumulate is large but still finite. Imagine if you had lived for 100 or 200 years and your mind cannot contain any more memories. In such a scenario I can only see two options.

      - You sacrifice your future and live only with your past memory, thus making every new day practically meaningless.

      - You sacrifice your past and forget your earlier memories to make room for new ones. But even then what is the point of living if you cannot keep your life and all past experiences will just disappear.

      Both of these options donīt really expand your “life” only the duration in which your body can function.
      As far as I know, there is no agreed upon limit to the capacity of the human brain to hold information. And even if there was a limit, how would we know how much memory a brain had used in a lifetime? It may not be all that much compared to its total capacity. Now, if it turned out that there was a limit of how much information the brain could store and after the average lifetime, we are close to filling the limit, I see no reason why extensions of the mind cannot be built. There has long been talk of modifying the brain and inserting microchips which could hold information and maybe even act as some kind of processing unit if by the time this technology is built we had a large understanding of the human brain.
      It's a good point though and I'll definitely talk about it in my project.

      Quote Originally Posted by Creation View Post
      Another thing Iīd like to mention is that I consider life valuable because itīs finite. If you want to accomplish something in life you know that if hesitate too long one day it could be too late to follow your lifetime goals. But if people would grow accustomed to the thought of having seemingly infinite time they may never see the need to do something in the present. Having infinite lifetime would sooner or later just inflate your time. Living for another year would seem less and less meaningful after you had lived for a couple centuries.
      I believe this would differ from person to person. You have people in this day and age that still take life for granted and act as if they will never die or grow old. And as you said, if you hesitate too long, one day it could be too late to follow your lifetime goals. With an extended lifespan, I think it'd mean that it's never too late to change your mind about something or accomplish something you never thought possible when you were younger. As for life eventually becoming meaningless, there'd definitely need to be some kind of euthanasia law changes wouldn't there? Maybe you don't want to have to live another 50 or so years so you can wait for your biological clock to naturally stop. Maybe after a few centuries you've had enough and are quite content to put your life to a stop. Another great point for me to write about, thanks

    11. #11
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      Quote Originally Posted by Araishu View Post
      That's a really interesting trend. I'd have thought that with a higher standard of living people would be more comfortable with starting a family and having children but now that I think about it, the people who tend to have the most children are from areas in poverty and such. I wonder if, like in the case of Japan, people are waiting longer before they have children and committing to serious relationships and by the time they do decide they want to settle down they have changed their mind about having kids. I know that women there are more career orientated.

      The problem I'm seeing though is not to do with how many kids people are having because even if every couple in the world only had 1 child, and that child has 1 child and so on and so forth, the age of maturity and legal age for sex is relatively low if you consider how long I am proposing humans would be able to live for (potentially thousands of years). It wouldn't be a case of replacing those who die anymore as the population would slowly but surely climb.
      My main point I was trying to make was, that most people say overpopulation as the first objection to eternal life. However I feel it is important to know, that overpopulation will only start to become a problem once we reach actual immortality or something close to that. It will take quite some time before we have the tools to become immortal and even more before every single person on the world will have access to immortality.

      I guess what this comes down to is: In my opinion overpopulation is a long term problem, rather than the first problem we will encounter. There are many more social problems, that are way more interesting in my opinion. I believe we will encounter a lot of problems like that, before we even really have to worry about overpopulation.

      I have also heard several rumors of an expedition to mars in 2025. It will be a one way ticket for a couple hundred man/women to colonize mars and live there. I am not sure if they will actually do it though. NASA has a longer term plan to inhabit Mars. I believe they want to "capture" an asteroid and make it orbit the moon. Then send long term missions there, to experiment with better ways to protect ourselves from the many dangers in space. They believe they should be able to go to mars by 2050. Though I personally believe they will make it there sooner. Either way, this is coming within most of our lifetimes. I'd say it is highly unlikely that we overpopulate the earth before we inhabit the other planets and space itself of course.
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    12. #12
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      Death comes for us all eventually, no matter what fancy technology we will use to fight it off as long as possible but if you had the option to put your life in your own hands rather than leaving it to chance, would that not be a better solution? And rather than solely thinking about death, what about the quality of life you would receive? Your body would be at its prime until you decide to stop taking certain medication or performing certain practices to maintain it. It'd prevent human suffering tremendously, just like you putting a quick end to the mosquito's life.
      I see your point, and it sounds like a good idea since we often want to be in control of things that happen to us. But If we had the power to decide when we should pass away, then I believe that our ability to learn to accept certain things in life would taken so long or never happen, that we wouldnt be able to live at it's peak of life. And by not knowing when you are about to die, also motivates you to do something with your life. There is acctually so many benefits by being mortal, that it's quite hard to grasp or maybe impossible to understand how, important mortality really is.

      I like that idea of consciousness. But if that upholds, if we are the universe, why would we not be able to improve upon ourselves? Humans have been changing the way the world works since the first human discovered fire. We've used tools, built shelters, fashioned technologies to make our lives much better and with inventions such as antibiotics, we are extending the average lifespan as we speak
      I dont disagree with with anything you say here. But as I see it, the universe are everything there is, and that includes every one. And since every living thing eventually dies, then that dying process would probably make most sense as an important function in the universe like anything else there is. I believe that everything that happens in the universe and here on earth what ever it is. Has to much logic in it, to simply be random events. I wont go into to much detail about that though. Because I feel it will be way to long to discuss that doesnt belong to this thread.

      Yes, I think death is something that people shouldn't really be concerned about because you aren't going to experience it. You can only experience while living (as far as we know) so there is no use worrying about no longer experiencing anything. You think of consciousness as a form of energy by the sounds of things and so by the law most of us are familiar with, conservation of energy, it would make sense that that consciousness would be manifested as something else. However, that does not mean to say that choosing when you wish to die would affect this cycle of your beliefs.
      The concern about death is what I believe one of the greates learning process to deal with. And just like you say. that death is really a non-problem really. Is true as well, but that doesnt change the fact that we stil feel death as one of our biggest problem. So if we could put death on a hold for as long as we would feel like. Then I believe that our learning progress would take a turn in a complete wrong direction since that change the rules we live by now. Compassion would pretty much cease to be of importance to only mention one thing.

      Mortality definitely adds to the appreciation factor of life, but it sort of makes you want to rush things and you will die having not experienced everything you want to experience. So maybe if you had more time to learn the things you wished to learn, see the things you wished to see and gather as many experiences as you can, you would have a much more satisfying life, and death.
      Wanting to rush thing in life is also of importance to handle, as a part of the learning process. And I completely know what you are talking about. This feeling of rushing thru life will eventually vanish, but not until one can learn to acccept what is. So with that knowledge, your sense of creativity and curiousness will have an infinitive amount of time to blossom without the stress until one dies. And who knows what happen after that. Will one cease to be, or maybe take all that learning process to another place? The mystery of life is what make it so exciting to live. At least in my opinion.
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      Saying life only has value because it ends, is like saying a computer only has a use because it ends up in a land filled. Umm no a computer has value because it runs programs, can surf the net, play games, hold information and do all sort of stuff. Once it is broken and longer works, it has practically no value at all. The same thing for humans. A corpse, a dead human has no value other than perhaps being fertilizer. Given the value a living human has, compared to a dead corpse, it is obvious that living humans are far, far more valuable.

      What you saying is basically, your friends don't have value because they keep you company, your parents don't have value because they took care of you, your siblings don't have value because they shared experiences with you, your marriage partners don't have value for having a connection from you. No, none of that has value. The only value they have is that one day they will die and leave your missing them? That is messed up. That kind of view on life basically makes you a masochist. Life has no value for you unless your feel pain and suffering from losses.

      On a side note, why do people need to die? If I meet a good friend, and they decide to move to another country, I might never see them ever again. To me it is like they died. They don't actually have to die however. They can be happy and just move away and live on. There is no reason anyone ever has to actually die and be erased from the universe, forever. If they want a new start, then they can do something dramatic to start a new life. Go back to school, learn an entirely new field, and move to another country, learn a new language and practice that new field. Cut all your old connections if you want. That way you can be reborn in a new life. There is no actual reason you need to get yourself killed.

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      Hi Alric! I assume that you are referring your opinions based about what I have been stating above. Since you think Im a Masochist based of what I have said. Does for me, only show that you actually dont know what I am talking about. So I have nothing much to say about your opinions about me more than.. OK! If that's what you feel and think about me, then go ahead if it does you any good. I wont try to change your mind about me. Take care!

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      @Alric
      I think DreamyBear and the others who have said the same are trying to say that life doesn't have meaning just because it is temporary, but that the temporary nature of life enhances its quality. It creates a form of sacredness that it should not be taken for granted and rather than focusing on longevity, they'd rather have a relatively short life jam packed full of experiences and emotion. If you know that you and the person you love will one day cease to exist, maybe it'd make you appreciate each other more than if you knew that they'd be around virtually forever.
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      I just find that idea silly, for several reason. Firstly because that simply isn't true. People already live long enough on average that most of us don't think about death all that often. Most of us don't have any real need to rush out and do stuff because our time is limited. We don't commonly think about our love ones dying or anything like that. In fact, that is one of the most common things people say when a loved one suddenly dies, that they didn't think the person would be go so soon. They never even really considered the idea that they would be gone so soon. Usually it is small events that cause people to remember that life is short and people soon go back to their usual routines. So that theory is nonsense to me, human brains don't work like that.

      Maybe you are one of the few who thinks about death constantly, but 99% of all people don't think about it all, put off thinking about it and procrastinate all the time. Secondly just because someone lives forever doesn't mean they will be with you forever. Even if you need the threat of losing someone to appreciate them, you can lose them in many ways besides them dying. Like I mentioned before, they can just move away. People drift apart, that is a natural part of life. You don't need to go around killing people to have the feeling your talking about, just knowing you might never see them again is more than sufficient.

      Is seems idiotic to me, that you want people to die because 'maybe' 'some' people will appreciate life more. Yeah if a flu kills off 90% of the population yearly, it would make every person sacred, but in that situation we would all try to cure the flu wouldn't we? It is insane to kill people off because you think it some how adds value to life.

      Honestly, I truly don't believe any sane person can truly believe those sort of things. Not that I think any of you are insane. I think it is common for people to be so afraid of death that they have to tell them self it isn't so bad. They have to comfort them self and go into a state of denial because the idea of death is overwhelming. The only way to cope is through denial. To tell yourself that it is some how a good thing. Because if it is a good thing, then there is no reason to fear it right? That is the only reason people think we shouldn't live forever, because they are scared of death. It is a coping mechanism.

      It is absurd to stop advancing medicine because of people's fear of death. That just makes it a self fulfilling prophecy, where because we think immortality is impossible, we never reach it, because we never truly try. There is no reason not to aim for immortality. You lose nothing by trying to gain it. In the end if you die then your life has no meaning for you no longer exist. All your memories good or bad are entirely irrelevant because they no longer exist. What we do on earth have a short term impact but after time that soon ceases to exist as well.

      The only way your life will ever have mattered is if humans in some form reach immortality. For every person who ever died, they were a stepping stone for us to reach the future. As long as the human race continues, their sacrifice will have had meaning for they helped the survivors become what they are. However, once the last human has died and the last land mark, last piece of technology is gone, nothing anyone has ever done will have mattered. It will all cease to exist and be meaningless.

      However, with immortality that is not true. With immortality all life will have mattered, all life will have shaped the future. For the sake of all of us, we need to reach immortality. It is the only moral and ethical thing to do. Otherwise none of our lives meant a single damn thing, and that is perhaps the worst possible outcome there is. For all of lives precious gifts to forever vanish from this world.

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      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      I just find that idea silly, for several reason. Firstly because that simply isn't true. People already live long enough on average that most of us don't think about death all that often. Most of us don't have any real need to rush out and do stuff because our time is limited. We don't commonly think about our love ones dying or anything like that. In fact, that is one of the most common things people say when a loved one suddenly dies, that they didn't think the person would be go so soon. They never even really considered the idea that they would be gone so soon. Usually it is small events that cause people to remember that life is short and people soon go back to their usual routines. So that theory is nonsense to me, human brains don't work like that.
      I honestly don't think we live long enough to achieve everything I'd want to achieve if I had the time to achieve it. I'd like to live in most of the major countries in the world, learn the languages, delve deep into the history and rich culture of them all and that's just a fraction of the things I'd want to do. I'd want to master different trades and professions, sciences, arts and music etc. There's a lot out there that people don't get to experience within one lifetime. Maybe if money wasn't an object and people didn't have to work for things in some kind of ideal world, you'd achieve a lot more. But even then, you'd still age and become too old to do certain things that you may have wanted to do.

      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      Maybe you are one of the few who thinks about death constantly, but 99% of all people don't think about it all, put off thinking about it and procrastinate all the time. Secondly just because someone lives forever doesn't mean they will be with you forever. Even if you need the threat of losing someone to appreciate them, you can lose them in many ways besides them dying. Like I mentioned before, they can just move away. People drift apart, that is a natural part of life. You don't need to go around killing people to have the feeling your talking about, just knowing you might never see them again is more than sufficient.
      I'm not talking about constantly thinking about the death of loved ones and myself. I'm talking about appreciating the fact that they have a temporary existence in which they chose to spend it with me. And that brings me to my next point: relationships at the moment tend to be finding that special someone and living out your days with them. Immortality would bring up some issues with that structure. Maybe eventually you'd end up fed up of each other because eternity is a long time. Heck, 100 years is a long time to spend with somebody. Eventually maybe you'd just give up on the idea of love because it is no longer appealing to you.

      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      Is seems idiotic to me, that you want people to die because 'maybe' 'some' people will appreciate life more. Yeah if a flu kills off 90% of the population yearly, it would make every person sacred, but in that situation we would all try to cure the flu wouldn't we? It is insane to kill people off because you think it some how adds value to life.

      It is absurd to stop advancing medicine because of people's fear of death. That just makes it a self fulfilling prophecy, where because we think immortality is impossible, we never reach it, because we never truly try. There is no reason not to aim for immortality. You lose nothing by trying to gain it. In the end if you die then your life has no meaning for you no longer exist. All your memories good or bad are entirely irrelevant because they no longer exist. What we do on earth have a short term impact but after time that soon ceases to exist as well.
      This isn't about stopping the advancement of medicine. I think reaching this point will be an inevitability for our society. To free people from disease and cancers and reverse the effects of aging. Different people think in different ways. Some may be satisfied with leading a life of regular longevity. It would be a personal choice on their part whether or not they'd want to live forever. But on a global scale, who should have access to this option and what consequences would it bring? That's what I'm interested in.

      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      The only way your life will ever have mattered is if humans in some form reach immortality. For every person who ever died, they were a stepping stone for us to reach the future. As long as the human race continues, their sacrifice will have had meaning for they helped the survivors become what they are. However, once the last human has died and the last land mark, last piece of technology is gone, nothing anyone has ever done will have mattered. It will all cease to exist and be meaningless.

      However, with immortality that is not true. With immortality all life will have mattered, all life will have shaped the future. For the sake of all of us, we need to reach immortality. It is the only moral and ethical thing to do. Otherwise none of our lives meant a single damn thing, and that is perhaps the worst possible outcome there is. For all of lives precious gifts to forever vanish from this world.
      Mattered to who exactly? Are you saying that because you will die one day, your life means nothing to you or those around you? Living is not a sacrifice to keep people going until we reach immortality. It's a morbid way of thinking to say that because nothing lasts forever, nothing will ever matter. The universe loves entropy and no matter whether we become immortal or not, eventually we will cease to exist. Whether it be from the big crunch or big freeze, and end to our universe will one day come and wipe away everything that has ever happened. But that does not mean that it was all for nothing. You have lived, you have observed beautiful things, you have felt deep emotion and joy and you have made lasting relationships and impressions on those around you. It all matters.
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      Quote Originally Posted by Araishu View Post
      I'm not talking about constantly thinking about the death of loved ones and myself. I'm talking about appreciating the fact that they have a temporary existence in which they chose to spend it with me. And that brings me to my next point: relationships at the moment tend to be finding that special someone and living out your days with them. Immortality would bring up some issues with that structure. Maybe eventually you'd end up fed up of each other because eternity is a long time. Heck, 100 years is a long time to spend with somebody. Eventually maybe you'd just give up on the idea of love because it is no longer appealing to you.
      That isn't true. Just look at divorce rates. Your idea of love isn't what a huge group of people think of as love. You might think life ending makes it more precious or that love is about spending what time you have with people but clearly that isn't what the majority of people think at all. I am all for giving people choices, but if you die you have no choice. Your just dead, end of story. Even if you don't think immortality is good, I think you should support finding immortality since it gives people a choice. We should all support it so we can all decide as individuals which paths to take. It sucks that we are all stuck with options most of us hate.


      Quote Originally Posted by Araishu View Post
      This isn't about stopping the advancement of medicine. I think reaching this point will be an inevitability for our society. To free people from disease and cancers and reverse the effects of aging. Different people think in different ways. Some may be satisfied with leading a life of regular longevity. It would be a personal choice on their part whether or not they'd want to live forever. But on a global scale, who should have access to this option and what consequences would it bring? That's what I'm interested in.
      This is absolutely about stopping the advancement of medicine. If you improve medicine until it cures and heals everything, then you never die. If the medicine is there to save people, there is always going to be people that will live forever. So really, this is a talk about improvement medicine to the point we can keep people alive forever. That seems like a noble task to me. If someone wants to die, that is their choice but we should have the medicine available to help people if we can.


      Quote Originally Posted by Araishu View Post
      Mattered to who exactly? Are you saying that because you will die one day, your life means nothing to you or those around you? Living is not a sacrifice to keep people going until we reach immortality. It's a morbid way of thinking to say that because nothing lasts forever, nothing will ever matter. The universe loves entropy and no matter whether we become immortal or not, eventually we will cease to exist. Whether it be from the big crunch or big freeze, and end to our universe will one day come and wipe away everything that has ever happened. But that does not mean that it was all for nothing. You have lived, you have observed beautiful things, you have felt deep emotion and joy and you have made lasting relationships and impressions on those around you. It all matters.
      It might be kind of morbid but it is true. For example, if humans never left earth and eventually all humans died, then what did human life matter? Eventually the sun would engulf and destroy all of earth and everything on it. At that point, in this universe, there would be basically no difference if you were never born or not. Your impact on the universe is basically zero. All your memories and all your accomplishments result in nothing changing at all.

      Your life matters to you, and that is why you should do what you enjoy in life. However, once you die whatever is left of you is gone forever. What once mattered to you no longer matters in the slightest. Once you are dead, you are basically a rock. Does anyone care what a rock thinks, or experiences? Does the enjoyment a rock has effect anything at all, add anything to the universe? No because a rock in an unaware object. Just like a dead person.

      Only living people have value, which is why any time a living person dies it is a crime against humanity.
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      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      That isn't true. Just look at divorce rates. Your idea of love isn't what a huge group of people think of as love. You might think life ending makes it more precious or that love is about spending what time you have with people but clearly that isn't what the majority of people think at all. I am all for giving people choices, but if you die you have no choice. Your just dead, end of story. Even if you don't think immortality is good, I think you should support finding immortality since it gives people a choice. We should all support it so we can all decide as individuals which paths to take. It sucks that we are all stuck with options most of us hate.
      The divorce rate is only at about 42% currently. While that seems like a huge number, people seem to get married too hastily these days and for the wrong reasons. A lot of marriages aren't about love. Then you have another 58% that don't end in divorce so that's pretty good in my eyes.
      I am impartial to the view of whether or not immortality is good, I kind of would like to have it because as I said before, there's a lot of stuff I want to see, achieve and experience that may not be possible in my lifetime. However, if we gave everybody the choice of having immortality, there may be issues of sustainability. If we got to a point where we could support an exponentially growing population with no problems or had hundreds of space colonies that we could send people to, it wouldn't be that big of an issue to me. But if it's not available to everyone, that's going to create some huge class boundaries, don't you think?

      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      This is absolutely about stopping the advancement of medicine. If you improve medicine until it cures and heals everything, then you never die. If the medicine is there to save people, there is always going to be people that will live forever. So really, this is a talk about improvement medicine to the point we can keep people alive forever. That seems like a noble task to me. If someone wants to die, that is their choice but we should have the medicine available to help people if we can.
      From my idea of medicine, it is a tool we use to cure disease. The biological clock is not a disease. At least, not in how we think of diseases right now. The lifespan would be extended ridiculously just by eliminating cancer and invading pathogens. That doesn't necessarily mean that it would be inhumane to stop there and give people the longest life possible without tinkering with the biological clock. There are already those who live among us in my generation and the next generation that are going to live well into their 150s. That's a tremendous increase if you ask me. But yeah, I still think preventing aging is a really cool idea. It's just whether or not it is practical.

      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      It might be kind of morbid but it is true. For example, if humans never left earth and eventually all humans died, then what did human life matter? Eventually the sun would engulf and destroy all of earth and everything on it. At that point, in this universe, there would be basically no difference if you were never born or not. Your impact on the universe is basically zero. All your memories and all your accomplishments result in nothing changing at all.

      Your life matters to you, and that is why you should do what you enjoy in life. However, once you die whatever is left of you is gone forever. What once mattered to you no longer matters in the slightest. Once you are dead, you are basically a rock. Does anyone care what a rock thinks, or experiences? Does the enjoyment a rock has effect anything at all, add anything to the universe? No because a rock in an unaware object. Just like a dead person.

      Only living people have value, which is why any time a living person dies it is a crime against humanity.
      That seems more like a personal issue that you have with obliteration rather than a reasonable suggestion. I agree that it would be a shame if humans didn't spread out across the cosmos and become an advanced space faring race because that has literally been my vision since I was a little kid. But even if this planet was consumed by the giant inferno that was the sun right his second, it doesn't mean it was all for naught. Think of how many people have lived on this planet, how many have suffered and felt pain, how many have loved
      and felt joy. Think about the history that it contains. Thousands of years of civilization and development. Despite all the warring and inhumanity of the past, you should be proud of your race. It does not matter if it were all to disappear because right now, we are the only ones in the known universe that can appreciate it. There is no certainty that we will ever be able to contact the other lifeforms in this universe, or that they will even be interested in our progress and way of life.

      Life only has meaning if you assign it meaning. There are many of those who are no longer with us that still have a profound effect on the world around us. Look at Martin Luther King Jr., Albert Einstein, Nikola Tesla, Mahatma Gandhi, Nelson Mandella, Oskar Schindler, Leonardo Da Vinci.

      We are the only ones who will appreciate our lives and one day, even if we escape the supernova of a sun that threatens to engulf the Earth, there will be an end to everything.
      Obliteration does not mean it was all for nothing.

    20. #20
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      I have to agree with Alric here. If we all die right now because the sun burns out then all was for nothing. The reason why dead people still have their meaning is because people who are alive give meaning to them. They themselves don't know meaning anymore. They don't know anything, they are just dead. For them it doesn't matter whether you still think of them or not. They are no more, they can't think anyome, they can't feel anymore. They are now nothing. And nothing cares for nothing and does nothing because it is nothing. The only thing left, lives within the people that live, or the creations they made. If all people and all creations get obliterated by the sun, then everybody and everything on this earth will become nothing.

      Without thoughts, or feelings, or really just about anything. How can there be meaning if there is nothing left to give it that.

      This is of course my personal opinion. It all comes from my own idea that there is nothing after death. I of course respect anyone, who has a different opinion on the matter, since I don't think anyone really knows what lies beyond death. It would be foolish of me to think that my personal opinion on the matter can be the only correct one.
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      What biological clock? It isn't like people live to some set period then fall over dead because their clock ran out. It is some kind of disease that kills everyone. If we eliminate all diseases and problems with the human body then people will not die anymore. There is no such thing as a biological clock. People's body just wear out and become more susceptible to disease and failing until it eventually kills you. If you cure those things then you don't die, simple as that.

      Let me ask you this. If the sun exploded and killed everything in the solar system and reached all the probes and stuff in space(even the one trying to leave the solar system), in a billion years from now, how is the universe any different than if the human race never existed in the first place? No one would remember the human race and there would be no signs we ever existed. No humans will remain and so no memories of anything we have done will remain. In effect, the human race had no impact and so was meaningless. There is no difference is if were here or not. No one would know if we ever existed or not.

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      The biggest problem is not that we are mortal. The biggest problem is that we always seems to striving to much towards some kind of future. Or spend to much time thinking of the past. Past and future are mereley an illusion. There is nothing else than now. Thats why it's so important to appritiate all things around you now, because everything that happen will always be the now. And if you recalling some memories, they will also be now. There is no old memories, because you are always recalling them now. So the past are just reconstructed memories that appears to you now.

      So if you want a nice future that matters to you. Then make sure you start to appritiate things now. Because now is all there is. Enjoy everything now, and you will have some good memories to look "back" on. And probably a less problematic "future".
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      Quote Originally Posted by Alric View Post
      What biological clock? It isn't like people live to some set period then fall over dead because their clock ran out. It is some kind of disease that kills everyone. If we eliminate all diseases and problems with the human body then people will not die anymore. There is no such thing as a biological clock. People's body just wear out and become more susceptible to disease and failing until it eventually kills you. If you cure those things then you don't die, simple as that.

      Let me ask you this. If the sun exploded and killed everything in the solar system and reached all the probes and stuff in space(even the one trying to leave the solar system), in a billion years from now, how is the universe any different than if the human race never existed in the first place? No one would remember the human race and there would be no signs we ever existed. No humans will remain and so no memories of anything we have done will remain. In effect, the human race had no impact and so was meaningless. There is no difference is if were here or not. No one would know if we ever existed or not.
      I've had a little bit to drink right now but I think I should make enough sense to answer you:
      There literally is a biological clock. It literally is like people live to some set period then fall over dead because their clock ran out. That is literally how it works. Each cell in your body has pretty much what youi can view as a self destruct sequence and after a certain amount of time, the cell dies. Now when they are replicated over and ovcer, you have your telomeres which get shorter and shorter. When they become too short, therei s damage to the DNA or some shit so yeah, you have until that time. You can slow down your biological clock by eating well and exercising well, but when it comes odwn to it, we literlaly have a biological clock the determines when we will die. Part of my research is to do with finding ways to stop aging and that was a big part of it: replenishing the telomeres.

      As far the second part of your question, I'll give a little bit of an anecdote. When I was younger, I wanted to be a great scientist. I wanted my name to be a household name like Einstein and I wanted to be recorded in history books for all to respect and revere me. However, somewhere along the way I realised that that is total bullshit. There is literally no need to seek the approval of anybody but your close friends, family and yourself. Those are the things that matter. Your life, your experience, your increase in understanding about the universe, that's what makes life worth living. Not potential alien races or any shit like that that may say "oh look at those humans aren't they clever". It does not matter that our progress will have faded into nothing because we got to experience it. In my head, remembering that something happened is not as important as it happening. Having an impact that will last is impossible becuase as I keep saying, the universe will end one day and everything you have ever known will completely vanish into nothing. But if you wanna go ahead and quit life right now because of that inevitable truth, because it is all meaningless, because nobody will remember you after the end of the universe, then be my guest.

      EDIT: And what Dreamybear just said brought up a great point about experiences. Once you have them, they are over. They may have an effect on you in your memory but once you've experienced them, they are gone. Ephemeral, if you will. They are committed to memory as soon as they happen and then the experience is gone forever. But that doesn't make it not worth having.
      Last edited by Raen; 08-02-2014 at 04:13 AM.
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      That isn't a literal biological clock. That is the accumulation of damage to cells over time. If it was an actual 'biological clock' then eating healthy and exercise wouldn't slow it down would it? The fact that those thing play a factor, shows that it isn't really a clock but just damage to cells that accumulate and grow worse over time. Your body is constantly trying to repair it self, and eventually the damage grows and grows until it is irreparable and that is when your body starts to fail. It has nothing to do with a biological clock.

      Also, you seem to just be making the assumption that the universe will end one day. That seems like an absurd and silly assumption. Given how much advancements humans have made in a little time, there is no telling what we can do in the future. It is way to early in the history of life to be giving up on the idea of continuing survive and move forward.

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      So maybe a better way to look at it is a timer then. Like a bomb waiting to go off. Maybe if you rewire it a little you can give yourself a little more time until it explodes. Unless of course, we find a way to defuse it. But yes, that is what the biological clock is.

      And assuming the universe will end is a logical assumption. We just don't know in which way it will "end" first. Some of the possibilities allow the universe to continue existing but nothing would occur, and it would be devoid of life. Others suggest it would just return to the singularity. But nobody has all the answers so I suppose it would be possible that the universe would continue as it does right now for the rest of eternity. Even if it only had a small possibility of happening.

      But even so, there is more to life and consciousness than leaving a legacy. But that's just my opinion
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