Friday, June 16, 2017

Mortality

"Death has become an imposition on the human race and is no longer acceptable." -Alan Harrington, 'The Immortalist'

Well, I think my opinion on grief

can be summed up in the words of Alan Harrington

from The Immortalist when he says, "any philosophy that

accepts death must itself be considered dead-- its questions

meaningless, its constellations worn out."

I agree with him.

I don't think there's any way to make peace

with death, with mortality, with the human condition.

The fact that we can ponder the infinite cosmos,

yet we're ultimately food for worms

I find heartwrenchingly, paralyzing, depressing, sad

beyond all measurable limits.

The idea that everything and everyone you love

is going to be taken away from you is unacceptable to me.

I think it's just unacceptable being

OK with those terms imposed on us by said universe.

If the cosmos is comfortable with entropy, that's one thing.

It doesn't mean I have to be comfortable with entropy.

In fact, I'm a member of the kingdom of life.

And life is anti-entropic.

Life moves towards greater complexity and organization.

As Kurzweil says, more knowledge, more science, more,

more, more sprouting possibilities.

And some people say that maybe death is an evolutionary design

meant to get rid of the old in order to make room for the new.

That may have been a stepping stone, a necessary rehearsal,

a way of spreading the diversity of information.

Sex and death-- genes mixed together creates something new,

kill off the old shells.

But what if we're able to create new rules?

What if we master biotechnology?

We create software that writes its own hardware.

We start to change the rules of life.

We start creating that diversity.

We start to be the sort of mind at work here.

It would be intelligent design at last.

But the point being, death would no longer be necessary.

And we could create a world without loss

and without those encounters with grief.

And that may sound like a sort of manic fantasy of sorts.

But I think that's what mankind has always

done through his art, is articulate his desire

to be external, to be infinite.

Even Miguel De Unamuno wrote, "nothing

is real that is not eternal."

That's why we write poetry and we

build cathedrals that try to create transcendence

as a topographical statement.

That's why we eternalize beautific moments,

and make gorgeous statues, and write amazing songs.

We love to eternalize ourselves.

We want to say, as Alain de Botton said,

we want to carve our names.

We want to say, I was here.

I exist.

I felt something and I matter.

And we matter.

And that's why death has become an imposition on the human race

and no longer acceptable, in my words.