Throughout the existence of human life, we have always been trying to stop other humans from dying, whether it comes through innovation, food, shelter or water. This has drastically increased in the last hundred years. Now, most expect to die from old age, not infection or disease. However, the ultimate killer that makes us fail seems to be ignored in today’s culture: Aging. We seem to focus more on hiding that you are aging than curing it.
For some reason, we seem to shrug it off as something that we have no control over. We don’t just shrug it off, we embrace it as a force of “good” and a source of “meaning.” That, if we don’t die at 80 years, we won’t utilize our time so we will have no meaning.
I could imagine a caveman philosopher say the same thing about dying at 30 or a medieval doctor about dying at 40. Curing aging does not cure death itself. We still have a choice of when to die. Getting rid of a lifespan ceiling and getting rid of involuntary death is inherently good.
The notion that death is good coming from philosophers and society sounds ultimately flawed and absurd. How can something that kills so many innocent every day be considered good? We should be focusing on curing aging to prevent the extreme genocide that has plagued humans for eons.
Instead, we are trying to cure health conditions that come as an effect of aging in almost all cases. As we age our health deteriorates rapidly and we acquire terrible health conditions that are hailed as the “great” killers in our generation. Not aging itself?
It honestly sounds to me like a bunch of scientists are running around avoiding the reasoning and blaming the death on these health conditions. Similar to those in the 1950’s when it came to smoking.
Prevention is the best way to save lives. We saw this with smoking so why don’t we approach aging the same way?
The markets are driven by supply and demand, everyone knows that. But today we all run around screaming that time is our most valuable resource and that we can never get it back. Before this century, money, food, and safety were our most valuable resources and being great humans, we fixed these shortages in the developed world. And now we feel that we should not solve this new demand because it is “inherently” good???
Curing aging is not something that comes without side-effects. Humans will reproduce at higher rates, less space will be available and shortages might come into effect in the short-term.
But let me make a case based on history. Before the Industrial Revolution, a countries economy was fixed on the amount of agriculture it produced which was linked to the amount of land it had. War’s were common because the land was the deciding factor in the countries economy and strength.
Now imagine if you told the Kings and Queens at the time that population would double in the next 10 years. They, not knowing the power of machines, would assume that they will never be able to support that many people as they do not have that much land and exclaim that they are good and that it will cause mass hysteria, starvation, and overall havoc.
We are always oblivious to the future and so we fear change as we only account for that change in the present, not the future. Scientist says that our planet can only support 10 Billion people in total. Kings three hundred years ago said the same about their Kingdoms (at smaller scales).
Singapore, a small chunk of land almost completely filled with buildings still maintains a strong population growth even if their land is limited.
We always have to account for future innovations and assume that, as has happened throughout history, the number of people that we can support will increase.
A good argument against overpopulation is Cholera. A great way to limit the populations in overpopulated cities! But we aren’t going to bring Cholera back because we want to lower the population. We know better. Rather we strive to increase the number of people that can live in our cities. We built vertical buildings to fit more people in less land. Humans are a great species and we adapt to almost any environment when given enough time. Luckily for us, if we cure aging. Time won’t be an issue.
Space, ultimately, is endless in our Universe. Resources are almost unlimited and real estate abundant. Once we have the problems caused by curing aging, the market will see a huge demand and will react almost as quickly as the problem appears.
Elon Musk is ahead of a full generation and can possibly provide us with a new planet to work with. No guarantee that he will, but a guarantee that someone else will. Realistically, an increase so drastic in population will speed up the process of space colonization exponentially and the human race will be able to innovate on a scale never seen before.
It feels very primal for us to treat aging the way we treat it. The benefits far outweigh the negatives that come with it.
The greatest argument against curing aging is that it is “not possible” and therefore a futile argument. And I do not disagree that it is not possible today. But if we pool our resources toward the creation of an aging cure we can achieve such a reality in our lifespan.
Let me propose you a scenario, how would you feel, if you were the last person to die before humans achieve the goal of curing aging? To be the one that falls of the chasm and never live again while everyone else lives forever?
The lost generation. Never to be brought back?
Those that died will be dead.
To be left, as the last generation scares the living shit out of me. And it should scare everyone. We can’t cure death or bring people back alive, at least not in the near future. But we can create, a society that is not plagued by aging. That can live for as long as it desires.
Well not as long as we desire, 8% of deaths are unnatural which can pull our total lifespan up to 1000 years. But that is without accounting the medical advancements that can lower that mortality rate in the future.
The beauty of curing aging vs. curing death is that we still have a choice. We aren’t obligated to live 1,000 years or even 200 years. One can leave when he wants, not when the reaper tells him to.
Have I made my case?