Immortality, a non-religious approach
(Top Posts - Science - 010908)

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Up to now, religions have owned the immortality
promise. Their primary method, believe X (varies
from religion to religion) and get it (or at least
maximize your chances of getting it), disbelieve
or doubt X, and either don't get it -or- get it in
a very unpleasant way -or- get a chance to get
it, later, if you pass some post-death test.

What if everyone gets it, and what if immortality
is simply another natural part of a mysterious
natural adventure? What if immortality isn't neces-
sarily better or worse, but instead, is simply a
different naturalistic experience?

Certainly, selling immortality as the ultimate drug,
the ultimate high, the unltimate in pleasure, if you
jump through the 'right' religion's hoops, that has
enormous appeal. The threat side, not so much.

But, is religion really necessary for immortality?
What -if- immortality is as natural as any other
event in this particular naturalistic realm we are
familiar with, and it's not earned, and no one is
excluded from it, and everyone and everything
is a part of it? What if all that is natural is part
of some naturalistic realm in which a continua-
tion of possibilities is the ultimate reality?

Just a thought, for those of you who, like me,
find the immortality promise of religion to be
its most seductive feature, but who have been
taught that if you disbelieve or doubt, you either
get eliminated from existence forever, judged
and punished and eliminated from existence
forever, or judged and punished forever.

A naturalistic immortality, in my view, offers
a far more attractive alternative to religion than
has been posited 'til now not only by religions
and their followers which equate naturalism
with oblivion, but also by disbelievers and
doubters who've bought into the religious argu-
ment that's it's their way -or- no way, dismis-
sing any possibility that a naturalistic immor-
tality is even possible.

Just saying, within the unknown realm of the
totality of that which is natural, pondering a
naturalistic immortality is a potentially power-
ful concept, and worthy of consideration until
or unless the totality of naturalism is known
to exclude the possibility of *any* immortality.

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A naturalistic immortality would encompass
whatever naturalistic environment presented
itself.

From a physics standpoint, the universe we
live in is stock full of dynamic possibilities,
dependent in large measure on the type of
planet one happens to be born on. As for
other physics in other naturalistic environs,
the possibilities are limited only by the
ability to imagine the possibilities.

Those with limited imaginations, therein
is the limitation, although material is
available which might open their mind
to possbilities far beyond those which
they're familiar with.

Links to some possibilities:

Life and what's up after ...
  http://tinyurl.com/2r9p4x

Top Books/Videos for SHANANNAREEFERS (Immortality)
  http://prohuman.net/top_books_videos_immortality.htm

Naturalistic Immortality Postulate
  http://tinyurl.com/2jpol8

Hope for a Pleasant Religious-free Immortality
  http://tinyurl.com/2tuoh6

Fear of Oblivion?
  http://prohuman.net/disbelief/fear_of_oblivion.htm

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Someone responded:

> [...] irreligious drivel [...]

It would appear that for immortality to
have substantive import for you (or for
'all', not sure who you're trying to speak
for, there), it must fall 'neath the scope
of religion, in general.

Now, you've clearly stated that the reli-
gion of Islam is simply a political false-
hood. Would you be willing to add that
in your opinion all religions differing
from your own have futile immortality
promises, or would you prefer to adopt
the ecumenical stance that many religions
are OK (and might give its believers
immortality) so long as a religion is
practiced in the 'right' way?

If you're christian, believing Jesus came
to earth, died, rose, and lived for a while
before getting his immortality ticket is
by most christians the critical factor to
get immortality. Difficult to use the ecu-
menical stance once you've chosen the
christian exclusivity ticket, but hey, many
christians try to do it, or at least like to
act as if they're doing it when attending
ecumenical conferences or when stating
belief in God (any will do) is good.

Naturalistic immortality? You appear
unwilling to think about that. I would
suspect that your unwillingness is due
to your fear of the threat side of the
christian faith, but if not, perhaps you
can share why you feel a particular
religion's (or many religion's) offer
of immortality is real, but a natural-
istic immortality is simply impossible.

Do you feel that a supernatural force
is required to bring about immortality,
and by defnition, supernatural -and-
natural are at odds with one another?

Do you feel that promises (aka, seduc-
tions) treating a pleasant immortality
as reality are required to change the
immortality from a mere possibility
to an attractive or likely one?

Do you feel you understand all there
is to know about the natural universe
(or universes) that exist? If so, your
position differs from that of the scien-
tific community, which by and large
is still searching to discover all there
is to know about the natural universe
(or universes, opinions differ on that).

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What does immortality mean to me? That
we all want more time; and we want it to
be quality time.

-Joan D. Vinge

I don't want to achieve immortality through
my work. I want to achieve it through not
dying.

-Woody Allen

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Someone responded, in reply to a poster
who was critical regarding the religion of
Islam:

> What truly gets me is the way Islam is condemned for its
> ridiculousness by people who believe the earth was created
> in six days, that the most powerful and ominpotent being in
> the entire universe had to rest after six days of work, that
> trees were on the earth before there was a sun

That poster's condemnation of Islam is
based in large part on his rejection of
incitement to violence that is present
throughout the Quran and which con-
tinues to be used in an anti-human way
by many Islamic teachers/preachers in
Islamic cultures.

The guilt regarding christian and judaic
incitement to violence is not present in
many of the religious simply because, in
the secular societies prevalent throughout
the west, most live in denial regarding the
more violent aspects of their ancient foun-
dational texts.

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Someone responded:

> No religion that I have ever observed has any type of empirical
> basis for its belief system; if you want to believe, then by all
> means go ahead, it is your right; just don't try to sell your beliefs
> as science or get mad at me when I laugh when you say your
> ridiculous beliefs are less ridiculous than Islam's

Not sure what you're referring to, there, as
the naturalistic possibilities for immortality
are not a belief, but are simply a reflection
of possibilities within what we know regard-
ing the scope of what we don't yet know.

Concepts like quantum consciousness and
multiple dimensions and big bang causality
transpiring in a pre-big-bang naturalism are
naturalistically grounded, as are theories
involving the particular universe we happen
to inhabit being cyclic in nature.

On a much easier to grasp level, simply en-
tailing near-immortality in this particular
instance of existence, the following is one
of many expositions regarding what may
soon be a much much longer life for up-
coming generations:

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Born: Immortal baby?
30 Dec 2007

Times of India
  http://tinyurl.com/2rcxpy
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Complete article:

There is a good chance that therapies to
extend lifespans will be available to those
born in 2008. Aubrey de Grey, a Cambridge
researcher who has been working on anti-
ageing therapies, says that there is a 50%
chance that rejuvenation therapies - that
can delay ageing - would be developed
by 2040.

Which means that those born in 2008, who
would be in their 30s by then, can utilise
these therapies to stay one step ahead of
ageing.

Eventually there would come a time, says
de Grey, when ageing would become a
dispensable act and finally, it would be
possible to eliminate ageing from the
human system altogether.

Although researchers are working to make
that day a reality, immortality, as and when
it happens, won't be an overnight process.
Instead, it will be a step-by-step process.

For instance, initially there will be treat-
ments that repair molecular and cellular
damage so that we can continue to live
another decade or two, following which
we get the treatment again to remove the
new damage, and so on.

With new advances, these treatments will
become more effective and lifespans will
continually get elongated. However, im-
mortality would not necessarily denote
invulnerability.

Disease, accidents and natural disasters
would all take their toll. Also, a future
where death is indefinitely delayed would
bring its own set of problems, like over-
population, for instance. In spite of all this,
the promise of beating death is one that is
greatly alluring, and one that is propelling
anti-ageing researchers towards their goal.

If scientists are able to manage a break-
through, even a few decades from now, it
would clearly mean that children of the
future would be born with a definite ad-
vantage - of being in a position to delay
death as long as they want to.

And be almost immortal.

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