Those Who Want To Age and Die

(From the Guardian). An odd and sometimes guarded, inward-looking lot, the folk who want to die much younger than future technology could enable. Sighing about boredom here, about approaching change there - even understanding that a longer life would be a longer span of youth, and that death by aging (left unmentioned) is a horror of frailty and suffering, they'd rather anything but live longer. "It would be like Gilbert's account in Patience of a toffee glut. 'We adore toffee; but toffee for dinner? Toffee for tea? Even toffee would become rather tedious.' ... Eternity would surely pall as readily as toffee." Oblivion is a choice of course, and one we should all be free to make. But this sort of flippancy strikes me as the cloak for twice a value judgement: first of the value they give to being alive, and second upon themselves and their merits as a sentient, living being. If you'd rather suffer and die than change and challenge to live in youth, what does that say about what you're bringing to the table? There is the echo of a fear at the bottom of all this: the fear of being offered working anti-aging medicine, using it, and of embracing life for decades more. If you fear that, what is it you really fear? Change, life, or yourself? Just asking.

Link: http://commentisfree.guardian.co.uk/edward_pearce/2007/01/post_926.html

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