Pleeblandia

Thoughts from the front lines

Is Immortality In Our Future?

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The search for immortality is something that even our society has been in search of for the last number of years. Everyone wants to live longer or to be younger. I do believe that one day, we will be immortal with the way science and technology is advancing. As it is right now, we have beauty products like anti-aging cream for women that claim to reduce the effects of wrinkles. NooSkins in Oryx and Crake strove for the same thing, the only difference was that they had more advanced technology.

There is already talk of humans actually becoming immortal. Dr. Aubrey de Grey for example, believes that people who are alive as of right now could live for much longer than any other human has ever lived. He believes it’s because of research that has constantly been going on that’s in search of repairing aging skin. Dr. de Grey himself is working towards creating treatments that could ultimately repair aging skin over and over. This could then lead to people being able to live hundreds of years longer than normal. You can read more about it here.

To me, I really can’t see how humans are going to become immortal just by repairing skin. There are still diseases and all sorts of other illnesses and cancers that are still not curable. But that’s just me. Maybe one day there will be cures for many of the sicknesses people suffer from today which will help the idea of immortality become an actual thing.

Oryx and Crake takes the concept of immortality a step further. Crake develops a whole new set of people who are immortal in a way. He claimed that immortality is the unknown knowledge of death (303).There would be no fear, so essentially, the Crakers would be immortal since they would have no concept of death…yet. As appealing as the Crakers are, they are very childish and are genetically programmed to drop dead at 30 years old, so in that sense, they do not live forever. On top of it all, Crake obliterated the rest of humanity and only left the Crakers, so as to rebuild society. It seems crazy that in order for society to become immortal, one would need to wipe out all of humanity first to be able to start over…it just doesn’t make sense.

But I think it was mentioned in class that there were jellyfish discovered that were immortal. This type of jellyfish was found at the bottom of the ocean and can pretty much transform itself back into a polyp – the earliest form of the jellyfish’s life – and continue on living. This means it can keep reverting to a younger version of itself over and over, therefore becoming immortal. I think it would be very cool if humans found a way to revert back to their childhood self, or even just a younger version of themselves. It’s much like I was talking about earlier about how they have products that try to reverse the effects of aging skin. This problem would be resolved if we were able to turn back our biological clocks.We could get what we wished for!

imortal-jellyfish-post-1

Science can only move so fast though. For now, the only humans that are immortal are the Crakers. So do you think that there is a possibility that humanity will have the option to become immortal one day? Do you agree with the concept? Let me know what you think!

References

Atwood, Margaret. Oryx and Crake. Toronto: Vintage Canada, 2003. Print.

Austin, Jon. “Key To Eternal Life?” Daily Express. 1 May 2016. Web. 18 Feb 2017.

Rich, Nathaniel. “Can a Jellyfish Unlock the Secret of Immortality?” The New York Times
Magazine. 
28 Nov 2012. Web. 18 Feb 2017.

“Turritopsis Dohrnii – Is It Really Immortal?” Strange Animals. 15 Sept 2014. Web. 19 Feb
2017.

 

 

 

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3 thoughts on “Is Immortality In Our Future?

  1. In my opinion, immortality is one of those things that as humans we will strive for but never really achieve. Immortality itself is a really difficult concept to grasp. To live immortally, to live forever, is a LONG time. I agree with what you said though – there are so many factors like disease and cancer that make it really hard to live past a certain age. I found an interesting article about why tortoises live so long (~200 years) and it seems like the secret is a slow metabolism. Maybe if we can find a way to slow down our metabolic processes, we could extend our life expectancy.

    https://www.theguardian.com/science/2004/may/13/thisweekssciencequestions2

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  2. This is definitely an interesting subject which is very present in the books. It is true that nowadays people tend to find ways to stop aging and prolong their life spans. Most people want to live as long as possible. The possibility of science finding a way to make humans immortal is therefore an extremely interesting topic. Most people would thrive at the idea of becoming immortal! However, I feel like there would be many issues associated to immortality. Stating the obvious, it is very unlikely scientists would even make immortality possible before humans end up destroying the planet. Not to sound pessimistic…but at the rate that things are going, with global warming and pollution, we might have a lot less time on this earth than we actually think we have, making the possibility of ever reaching immortality very small already. Now let’s say scientists do succeed, would’t immortality bring huge problems of overpopulation? If our world remained the same as it is today and humans were suddenly immortal, I feel like it could end up in tragedy. Now it could be different if other technological advancements were made as well like the possibility of populating other planets and if somehow the planet we are currently living in wasn’t on the verge of dying. But that’s a completely different world. So in an ideal world it would be awesome to be immortal, but realistically speaking, I would not want to be immortal. There is something about life ending which makes it worth it. If we lived forever, wouldn’t it get boring? There are definitely a lot of angles to consider and the possibilities are endless! I feel like it’s not just about wanting to live forever, it’s important to see in what kind of planet we would be living, see the bigger picture.

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  3. This is very interesting. The concept of immortality is indeed appealing, but through the concept of regeneration to heal wounds and stop diseases or by being re-born again? To me, these concepts of immortality are faulty. Being unable to die, living in suffering tormented by disease, knowing that you had a past but being unable to associate yourself to it? There are many problems with these two cases alone. Also, immortality will have to be granted through experiments, it is a sad thing. The first immortal will be a sad one, because they will be the first to see the world move on without them and see all the ones they care about leave them. In the end, we may not be ready for immortality, no matter how beautiful the fantasy.

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