Re: Thoughts on death

From: J. R. Molloy (
Date: Mon Dec 17 2001 - 03:50:12 MST

From: "Ken Clements" <>
> He was a great lover of literature, philosophy, and classical music, and I
will dearly miss the time I spent trying to help him understand the meaning of
the advancement of science and technology.

Ken -- It saddens me to hear that your father has recently died. At times of
such loss we often feel that there must be something we can do to assuage the
sorrow, and we try to comfort each other to lessen the sadness. I don't know
if you are familiar with any zen teachings about the benefits of
desirelessness, but though our grief may cause us to imagine that science and
technology may somehow conquer death, and though it may seem insensitive to
speak of science in the same paragraph with bereavement, nevertheless I think
you can grasp the truth that birth and death are the two opposite poles of a
single process called life.

"It seems to me that I have been but as a child upon a beach running from one
brightly coloured pebble to another whilst the great ocean of truth lay
stretched out before me."
--Isaac Newton (last words )

--- --- --- --- ---

Useless hypotheses, etc.:
 consciousness, phlogiston, philosophy, vitalism, mind, free will, qualia,
analog computing, cultural relativism, GAC, Cyc, Eliza, cryonics, individual
uniqueness, ego, human values, scientific relinquishment, malevolent AI,
non-sensory experience, SETI

We move into a better future in proportion as science displaces superstition.

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