Re: Desirability of Immortality

Thu, 19 Feb 1998 10:28:47 -0500

Michael Lorrey wrote:

> But if people are young in mind and body forever, or at least for a much
> period, would they not retain this youthfull imagination and enlightened

I interpret "young in mind" as being open-minded and memetically malleable.
Aged people are generally not young in mind. This is not because they are not
young in body though. I do not see any basis for correlating a person's
to their apparent physiological age. A correlation does appear to exist because
of the way our bodies age but in an age of immortality, that correlation would
longer be present.

My concern was what would be the effect on society and the pace at which new
ideas are
adopted by society if there were extremely ancient (not in body) individuals
walking about?
Progress has often come when some particularly strong leader or group has died
out. That
may no longer be an option in a future where people could be immortal. Think
of the advantage
someone who has had a thousand years to establish contacts, networks, and a
power base
would have over someone just arriving on the "scene". Imagine if someone like
Lenin or Stalin
or Roosevelt or Genghis Khan had been immortal? What effect would that have on
the course
of history? My first impulse is to say it would impede progress. That may be
oversimplifying the
effects, but I think its an important issue to look at.

Doug Bailey