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The love hate relationship with health and life extension

immortality life extension longevity philosophy meaning of life existentialism aging

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#1 TheVP

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 06:25 AM


I have had these thoughts for awhile and although I primaily associate this site for it's nootropics discussion, I know that health and longevity are big parts of the community here and I was listening to a youtube discussion about this community. I figure it is time for me to ask the people here who are in for long lives

 

Do you really want to live 30-40 years above the average human lifespan? Getting mentally jaded while watching everyone you know passing away and the world you knew becoming obsolete?

 

I have the genes to live into my 90's while doing whatever I want to do and with an already healthy lifestyle along with a few great health supplements and vitamins and I am certain to live above the average in my family line. On top of that it is projected that most of us (younger generations) will live well past the current life expectancy as well. That is horrifying me for a few reasons. A big part of working on my health is because I generally believe in being the best I can be and I do not like the idea of watching myself get old, deteriorate, and become weak. Once all that happens inevitably, I would be hindered on actually experiencing life and most likely stuck alone and old with the lifespan I am in for just trapped with my own mind and memories. Right now, that sounds like solitary confinement and my mind is addicted to exploring.

 

I am only 26 now but my lifestyle has involved so much research and experience exploring that my insight already impresses and amazes people well beyond my own years. I feel like I am in that intellectual rabbit hole where the more I know, the more I realize I do not know and I am addicted to knowing why. I feel like a different person every year as I just mentally evolve at a rate others do not. The best way I can describe it is kids start off knowing nothing and they just connect with each other over the smallest things because they are learning it together. Their interest shape around their peers. Everyone becomes adults and they all diverge from each other and become rocks who are no longer malleable. It feels like I am still evolving when that is not supposed to be anymore.

 

It's become very existential. I don't have the slightest of suicidal tendencies which scares me more because I am just going to have to deal with those decades of excessive age. I naturally absorb existential topics but the way I cope with the anxiety it gives most people is by distracting myself and I am able to stay very happy compared to the average joe luckily. But I just see the scale tipping in the other direction as if the hour glass is weighing down the other end.

 

 

Cool story bro, tl;dr.

 

How do some people here cope with this, and what makes some people here want to achieve immortality or incredibly long lives?



#2 sthira

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 06:53 AM

Good post, thanks. I share many of your concerns and worries. But for me, if a healthy, strong body and mind do not accompany the journey ahead into the years and decades, then you're right: who wants it? Who wants the pains and indignities we often seen in the aged?

Be healthy, stay healthy, and watch the numbers of the years of your life increase while you remain healthy. Hopefully as time passes, the applicable science intensifies, we'll access them. But science is slow, especially this one, but it appears to be picking up momentum. It feels like a race of science against nature, entropy, and time.

I often think about suicide, ironically. I think, well, if I was born too damned soon to ever be allowed to access these incoming regenerative therapies, and if I'm doomed to suffer, wtf, why not just end it all before I get too crabby and arthritic and demented?

Then I think about cryonics. Maybe instead of suicide vitrifying my body is a better plan.

Meanwhile, I'm convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that regenerative medicine will arrive, and it will dramatically increase both human health span and lifespan. But the question remains will we make it? There are many great posts about this topic here on this site, and fresh voices into the conversation are very welcome indeed.

Edited by sthira, 10 January 2017 - 07:08 AM.


#3 TheVP

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 07:17 AM

Good post, thanks. I share many of your concerns and worries. But for me, if a healthy, strong body and mind do not accompany the journey ahead into the years and decades ahead, then you're right: who wants the pains and indignities often seen in old age? Be healthy, stay healthy, watch the numbers in the years of your life increase, as slowly technology to limit then ultimately reverse the spiraling pities of advanced aging.

I often think about suicide, ironically. I think, well, if I was born too damned soon to ever be allowed to access regenerative therapies, and if I'm doomed to suffer, wtf, why not just end it all now? Then I think about cryonics. Maybe instead of suicide vitrifying my body is a better plan. I'm convinced beyond a shadow of a doubt that regenerative medicine will increase both our health spans and lifespans. But the question remains will we make it? There are many great posts about this topic here on this site, and fresh voices into the conversation are very welcome indeed.

 

Being in a good enough condition to live out a decant life after old age is better than being a conscious vegetable, but it is still not enough to solve the problem. I just do not believe our minds are able to handle that much age. Regardless of brain health we psychologically change with age. As we know more our belief systems are much more cemented. I don't think that biohacking a brain to be young can truly make an old soul and brain open the way a younger one can be. If you could lets say open the window for childhood like neuroplasticity, than you would have a bunch of adults experiencing what I am right now where I am just absorbing stuff and assimilating it all with everything I already have like a forever evolving consensus. It's not all it's cracked up to be.

 

Evolutionary we are designed to just carry the species. Procreate, and survive enough to procreate more. In some cases protect the pack. These instincts will persist no matter how good or bad life is. Only reason people do not procreate uncontrolably is this modern age sense of responsibility and humans have overpopulated and advanced our technology at such rate that evolution and natural selection is generations behind balancing us out into our current society, and that society is not done growing and changing yet. Do you really believe that the human mind can truly handle immortality?

 

I'm more than certain going to let nature take its course instead of taking regenerative therapies. Only way I would join the immortality is if I was in some position the affect the direction of humanity or if I am fortunate enough to have the perfect one true love fairytale. In a world where I seem to mentally evolve and change faster than those around me, divergence from others is something I am beginning to know to well. 



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#4 seivtcho

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 09:11 AM

Living longer is always better, because the medicine develops,and the longer you live, the higher the chance for you to regain back your mental state, or whatever hesitates you. 

 

Noone knows when the age related dementia will become treatable. 

 

All the people dying arround you is not an argument. Everyone makes his choices for the health. Plus when you die, you loose them anyways. 



#5 TheVP

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 11:01 AM

Living longer is always better, because the medicine develops,and the longer you live, the higher the chance for you to regain back your mental state, or whatever hesitates you. 

 

Noone knows when the age related dementia will become treatable. 

 

All the people dying arround you is not an argument. Everyone makes his choices for the health. Plus when you die, you loose them anyways. 

 

I study cognitive science and did lots of researching outside of my academics. It's not simple as medicine giving us our old mental state. It's not dementia that I am describing. Thing with The Matrix for example is people mention the whole concept of being in a simulation, or the philosophy in everything they say and do. Nobody thinks about the psychology in it. If you pay attention to The Matrix, you will see that they usually don't unplug people past a certain age because there comes a point where you can't accept the reality of it. That is the example of how a kid is open to the world in a way that a young adult is not. The effect would be more dramatic as you expand the age. For the thought experiment in The Matrix, it's not so much about having a physiologically young brain as it is simply that between the younger and older that the older have more grounded schemas to how they perceive everything in front of them. We can speculate that neuroplasticity is a factor but it's still a cognitive perceptual factor I am describing. Medicine doesn't treat that like a magic pill and neither will some future fountain of youth live forever treatment will.

 

Experiences will change me with a long life and my consensus will very well just get more complex. I don't think that is a good disposition for a sharp and active well cared for mind when living 30 years over the average life span of your generation. I'm not convinced that the human mind is meant to exist for that long while being kept sharp through good health



#6 seivtcho

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 11:28 AM

 

 

 

... It's not dementia that I am describing. ... If you pay attention to The Matrix, you will see that they usually don't unplug people past a certain age because there comes a point where you can't accept the reality of it. ... the older have more grounded schemas to how they perceive everything in front of them. We can speculate that neuroplasticity is a factor but it's still a cognitive perceptual factor I am describing. Medicine doesn't treat that like a magic pill and neither will some future fountain of youth live forever treatment will.

 

Experiences will change me with a long life and my consensus will very well just get more complex. I don't think that is a good disposition for a sharp and active well cared for mind when living 30 years over the average life span of your generation. I'm not convinced that the human mind is meant to exist for that long while being kept sharp through good health

 

 

Whatever your human body problems are, the longer you live the higher the chance they to become treatable. 

 

Everything is treatable. You simply need to live to the moment when. 

 

The human mind can exist as much as you wish, if you find a way to periodically replace the neurons with new ones. 



#7 N.T.M.

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Posted 10 January 2017 - 08:22 PM

It sounds to me like you're describing the Tithonus error. Extending your life span doesn't mean that you're extending the morbidity period. Furthermore, it doesn't really make sense why you would describe your own fascination with life and then question others' motivation for extending their life spans. 

 

 



#8 TheVP

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Posted 11 January 2017 - 02:04 AM

It sounds to me like you're describing the Tithonus error. Extending your life span doesn't mean that you're extending the morbidity period. Furthermore, it doesn't really make sense why you would describe your own fascination with life and then question others' motivation for extending their life spans. 

 

Now I know what that is called

 

Reason I mention my own fascination with life is because I think it is relevent. Our young interest in life will not be the same when older. Your outlook may change more or less than other people but it will change over time and eventually you will be faced with living well past everyone you knew as they all pass on. For anybody who wants to keep extending their life, exactly how do you picture life at 110 years old even if you are in good physical and mental health?



#9 seivtcho

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Posted 11 January 2017 - 07:04 PM

... For anybody who wants to keep extending their life, exactly how do you picture life at 110 years old even if you are in good physical and mental health?

 

And how do you picture yourself now, in good physical and mental health? 

 

 

 

"Your outlook may change"

And the plastic surgery may give you back your outlook. 

 

"everyone you knew as they all pass on"

if they make the choice not to live longer. Who are you to question their will? 



#10 TheVP

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Posted 11 January 2017 - 09:47 PM

 

... For anybody who wants to keep extending their life, exactly how do you picture life at 110 years old even if you are in good physical and mental health?

 

And how do you picture yourself now, in good physical and mental health? 

 

 

 

"Your outlook may change"

And the plastic surgery may give you back your outlook. 

 

"everyone you knew as they all pass on"

if they make the choice not to live longer. Who are you to question their will? 

 

 

It's not about me questioning their will not to live longer than the norm. What I'm talking about is coping with everyone being gone while you continue on.

 

Something I am noticing is that I am basing this more on the mentality that we won't be in a society where doing a Jone Rivers is the norm looks wise for elderly plastic surgery and that that for the most part regular medicine advances will extend life a decade or 2 from where it is now. I'm not looking far as telemore extension and the end of cancer.

 

 



#11 seivtcho

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Posted 11 January 2017 - 10:00 PM

The coping with everyone being gone while you continue on is valid for the shorter lifespan we have currently. 

 

Your parents will die before you. In the today's contemprorary conditions. How will you come with that? 



#12 N.T.M.

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Posted 12 January 2017 - 01:01 AM

 

It sounds to me like you're describing the Tithonus error. Extending your life span doesn't mean that you're extending the morbidity period. Furthermore, it doesn't really make sense why you would describe your own fascination with life and then question others' motivation for extending their life spans. 

 

Now I know what that is called

 

Reason I mention my own fascination with life is because I think it is relevent. Our young interest in life will not be the same when older. Your outlook may change more or less than other people but it will change over time and eventually you will be faced with living well past everyone you knew as they all pass on. For anybody who wants to keep extending their life, exactly how do you picture life at 110 years old even if you are in good physical and mental health?

 

 

I'm not an emotional person, so seeing other people succumb to age wouldn't really affect me. As for boredom: that also wouldn't be an issue. The more I learn, the more ignorant I feel (the more I realize how much I don't know). I remember back when I was in calculus. At that time I thought I knew quite a bit about math. Now I've taken the full calculus sequence, ordinary differential equations, and I have had some exposure to Fourier analysis and partial differential equations, and I feel like I know less. And what about statistics, differential geometry, linear algebra, number theory, tensor calculus... ? You could spend a lifetime just exploring math, and that's just one subject. 







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: immortality, life extension, longevity, philosophy, meaning of life, existentialism, aging

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