Immortality is a Waste of Time
Gray sees volition, and hence morality, as an illusion, and portrays humanity as a ravenous species engaged in wiping out other forms of life. Gray writes that 'humans ... cannot destroy the Earth, but they can easily wreck the environment that sustains them.'
Forget about immortalizing yourself. Don’t waste money. Don’t waste time. Don’t waste thought or anxiety on having yourself frozen or your brain frozen.
Don’t curtail all your everyday enjoyments for the sake of a rigorous diet which is what Kurzweil among others has written. He has in fact written a diet book with this very goal in mind and if you follow this rather radical diet you’ll live long enough to become immortal because you’ll live long enough for the Singularity in which believes, this explosion of knowledge and technology will occur. Forget about all that.
It’s a waste of time because in the meantime all kinds of contingencies will occur to you. Some of them will be welcome. Others will be less welcome, but there will be personal contingencies, changes in your life. But also history will go on and history is a great mocker of these kinds of projects because if there are wars, if there are civil upheavals, if there are great economic changes that you have no prospect at all of controlling, your best bet for a fulfilling life is to respond by creative improvisation as things occur, not to try and outwit them by escaping from history, by escaping from time. You can’t do that for the reason that the very technologies that you use to attempt to escape from history are themselves tied up with history.
I'll give one example. You might project a version of yourself into cyberspace, but as we now know, cyberspace is not a deathless realm of invulnerability. Cyberspace is a battlefield. It’s a battlefield between corporations and Wikileaks and governments and others in which they are constantly trying to get the better of each other. So you might find yourself in the middle of virtual battlefield if you end up in that world. Forget about all of that.
It makes good sense to take care of your health, to try to remain healthy for as long as possible because you can enjoy more of your life. And as new life-extension possibilities develop, make use of them, but not by obsessing with death because if you obsess with the prospect of immortality you lose your life.
That’s why I don’t want a society that is one of cryonic suspension, a freezer-centered society, a society in which we spend our thoughts, our desires, our passions, our incomes on tending freezers. That is a death obsessed society worse even than anything that happened under the ancient Egyptians. On the contrary, we should use the new technologies to enhance the mortal life we have. Beyond that, we should rely on our own animal powers of invention and resourcefulness, and if we then come to die or we grow tired of life, which is entirely possible, we can end it.
NASA astronomer Michelle Thaller is coming back to Big Think to answer YOUR questions! Here's all you need to know to submit your science-related inquiries.
Big Think's amazing audience has responded so well to our videos from NASA astronomer and Assistant Director for Science Communication Michelle Thaller that we couldn't wait to bring her back for more!
And this time, she's ready to tackle any questions you're willing to throw at her, like, "How big is the Universe?", "Am I really made of stars?" or, "How long until Elon Musk starts a colony on Mars?"
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If you want to be a better and more passionate communicator, these tips are important.
If you identify as being a socially conscious person in today's age of outrage, you've likely experienced the bewildering sensation when a conversation that was once harmless, suddenly doesn't feel that way anymore. Perhaps you're out for a quick bite with family, friends, or coworkers when the conversation takes a turn. Someone's said something that doesn't sit right with you, and you're unsure of how to respond. Navigating social situations like this is inherently stressful.
Below are five expert-approved tips on how to maintain your cool and effectively communicate.
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