At 11 years old I stood by my father in a hospital bed and held his hand and arm as he died. I don’t remember the details but other than the emptiness that doesn’t have words. But it was slow, similar to the article describes. Not lingering for weeks, thankfully, but not like the movies where someone says his final words and sorta gasps his last breath.
Both are sobering experiences and seeing children die is the absolute worst. I would be having the same debates the author has had.
None of this makes it any easier to face / accept my own mortality either.
While I don't believe in God, I think we shouldn't fuck with the way nature works.
Not true! Widespread fear of being buried alive (due to stories of seemingly dead people waking up from time to time) led to the invention of safety coffins, for example...
"The "saved by the bell" expression is actually well established to have come from boxing, where a boxer who is still on their feet but close to being knocked down can be saved from losing by the bell ringing to indicate the end of the round."
But, still, there would still be no 'fucking', seems like a total nonsense to me.
The Gift We Give To Tomorrow https://www.lesswrong.com/posts/pGvyqAQw6yqTjpKf4/the-gift-w...
Meditations on Moloch https://slatestarcodex.com/2014/07/30/meditations-on-moloch/
You get a lot of flack for your comment, but you point to the fork in the road where we will eventually have to make a choice: either to press forward and extend our lifespan indefinitely, or learn to accept that life is temporal. Or in other words; the choice between the trans-humanist project against laws that have governed life since life began.
Maybe well see a fork in humanity as a consequence: a section of humanity (a subset of those that can afford it) will take the life eternal pill, at which point they cease to be humans, or even alive in the normal sense, while the rest of humanity continues on the age-old cycle of birth, life and death.
When it comes to this choice I'm firmly on your side, and not because of any religious conviction either, but we are not there yet. The choice is on the horizon however.
We might have made some huge strides in the simple cause and effect in single processes in the body and be able to manipulate them in weird and wonderful ways, but our understanding of how they all interact to produce a functioning human is basically non-existent.
The treatment of my condition (MS) and the development of drugs to try and control it is basically just throwing spaghetti at the wall...
The immortality you talk about requires either:
understanding what consciousness is and how we could move it from one physical entity to another without destroying it.
Keeping the body that the consciousness exists in alive indefinitely.
I think we're about as close to either of those as we are to visiting another star.
I think that’s an unfair description of the dichotomy.
I’m as transhuman as they come — I want to help build the von Neumann machines that build a Dyson swarm that starlifts to extend the life of Sol and I want to benefit from those extra trillions of years — yet I know life is still temporary and will eventually cease.
Even with biological immortality and cures for all ills, there are accidents that give us a half-life of around one thousand years; even with mind backups, there is entropy; even if the expansion of the universe can be turned into a truly endless power source, there is Heisenberg uncertainty.