Let’s be honest here. Most of us don’t want to die. Nor do we want to look old, which is associated with immortality. This is a large reason why people try to find some way to attain it.
Immortality is a subject found most often in literature and movies, so you are probably wondering why this is the subject of discussion today. There was an article on MSN that is looking for the “Anti-Aging Pill.” They state: “. . . imagine if there were a drug that would slow down the aging process itself . . .” (Voiland). It may be a little far-fetched, but slowing down the aging process is trying to get us to live longer. Living longer even sounds appealing when you just say it. The farther they go with this research, they come closer to at least giving us the illusion of immortality. If we were to live to 200 years old, we may lose even more quality of life.
I will admit it myself. Would it really be so bad to live to 100 years old? I guess not. I entertain the thought that I may be one of those people. There are a few things that worry me about living for a long time:
- Will anyone I care about still be around with me?
- Will I be trapped in an endless, poor quality of life?
- Will I be treated as a child–my thoughts and desires becoming ignored by the people who I will be living with?
There are worries I have, but these are important to me.
We constantly see in movies and literature that immortality comes at a price. One is that you will constantly lose the people you care for. Another is that you would have to move around every so many years, because people would start to question why you were young while they were aging. Finally, you would only be allowed to be famous once (“Death Becomes Her”) because people would recognize your face afterward, especially in the times of relying on photography not paintings.
There is actually one other negative thing that may come up. Some people believe that this would involve selling you soul to the devil, if you believe in that being. Of course, this would be a price that is worse than death, in my opinion.
Some people believe that it is possible to live hundreds of years. They cite the Bible as a reference, because the people in Genesis are recorded as living hundreds of years. This makes them believe that the people of Genesis were doing something right. Understandable reasoning, especially if you believe the Bible is the Word of God.
From a biological stand point: if everyone was immortal, then what is the purpose of reproduction? What reason is needed to believe in some kind of afterlife if everyone lives forever.
To move on, there is also the belief that if you are immortal, then you are young. What if you’re that one person who has the body of an older person and lives forever? That would be the bittersweet manifestation of a wish that a genie would give.
One of the movie quotes I think of is from The Green Mile. It’s toward the end of the movie. Old Paul Edgecomb says:
We each owe a death – there are no exceptions – but, oh God, sometimes the Green Mile seems so long.
This is very true. We each owe a death. There is no such thing as immortality. What would be the purpose of living for eternity? There would be none. It is even said that you know when your mission is complete when you are no longer living. If one were to live forever, they would obviously never complete the mission they were put on Earth to do.
Instead of worrying about our looks and death, we should be concerned about living life to the fullest. If we live life to the fullest, we don’t need to worry about our appearance, nor when we will die. Embrace the life you have. Even though life is short, it’s better that we enjoy it. That’s what will make all of the difference.
Death Becomes Her. Dir. Robert Zemeckis. Prod. Robert Zemeckis and Steve Starkey. By Martin Donovan and David Koepp. Perf. Goldie Hawn, Bruce Willis, and Meryl Streep. Universal, 1992. Seen on Television.
The Green Mile. Dir. Frank Darabont. Perf. Tom Hanks, Michael Clarke Duncan, and David Morse. Warner Bros., 1999. Seen on Television.
Voiland, Adam. “The Hunt for an Anti-Aging Pill Is on.” MSN Health. MSN. Web. 14 May 2012. <http://health.msn.com/health-topics/anti-aging/the-hunt-for-an-anti-aging-pill-is-on>.