Re: Immortality: Avoiding Religious Persecution For Pursuing It.

Thu, 10 Apr 1997 15:54:05 -0400 (EDT) (Mike C.)

>Ben Best writes:
>> I am an ardent life extensionist and atheist, but if someone asked
>>me if I wanted to be "Immortal", I think I would say "No".

>Not very ardent, how about some dynamic optimism?

Dynamic optimism leading to just wishful thinking is useless (or worse).
Dynamic optimism is useful only insofar as believing it gets you to do
things that help you acheive your goals. I should point out that Mr. Best is
one of the most assiduous (but sensible) practitioners on the calorie
restriction list, so his actions reflect a dynamic optimism and a real value
on extended life.

>> It is sometimes
>>hard to remember that FOREVER includes 10exp10exp1000 years from now.
>>Do I want to be alive in 10exp10exp1000 years?

>I do.

Nobody *knows* what they will want in even 200 years, never mind
10exp10exp1000 years. Nobody's ever lived that long. People change over
time, and we are, after all, only designed to go about 100 years max. Over
periods longer than the existence of the human race, who knows what you'll
become? At some point, you may want to check out.

I'm quite confident I want a very extended lifespan, but not so arrogant as
to assume I want to live forever. I describe my current goal as "500 years
with an option to extend".

I'll also point out that normal human existance is about 80 years with
significant deterioration towards the end. There is, as yet, no *proof* that
we can do better than that. Plausible ideas, yes. Wild speculation, yes.
But even saying that you will make it to 120 in full possession of your
faculties is optimistic.