A gentleman trying to help me get past my recent pain of my father’s passing, was explaining to me that everything has timeline, a season, a beginning and ending. I think this might be how he dealt with the passing of loved ones, and that may work for him. I thanked him and restated that I am sticking with my plan to live to 150 or more.
Because he was being kind, I didn’t want to debate him or remove his comforting thoughts. But I wonder if he has ever really examined what it means to believe that everything comes to an end. Or rather, has he examined the cultural paradigm and dared to see life differently?
What if humans didn’t have to die? What if we were made in the image of God and so we never died, even physically? What kind of blessings might we experience from wiser and and more numerous elders? What kind of diversity might a bunch of elders allow us? How many careers and degrees might we be able to blend together in one life? What if a critical mass of people lived past the time where their efforts were primarily to protect their ego, their attachments and illusions about who they are?
What if, instead of seeing all life forms as passing in a linear or cyclical way, we human beings understood the world around us as passing and renewing (as our own cells drop off only to be replaced by new ones) but we ourselves were infinite? And what if we discovered the way to keep those cells replacing indefinitely without degrading? Or we had a way to maintain our personality and memories while replacing organs with digital models? It’s going to happen and we might as well get used to it.
The reason we will eventually live forever is because humankind has longed for this- at least as long as there has been history to be recorded. Humans have yearned for life forever with stories of human becoming gods, with stories of eternal life in heaven, in legacies established, in passing names and fortunes down family lines, in building empires, in stardom and political reforms that last for generations…these have all been ways that humans reach for eternal consequence.
And just as humans reached for mastery of their health, their environment, their food supplies, flight, quicker and easier transportation, flight to the solar system, more knowledge of how our bodies work, more harmony between neighbors… we will finally reach our ultimate dream of never dying. It’s just a matter of time…seen differently.