Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow | "The Last Days of Death"

2년 전

In ancient times, death was a completely different reality than it is today. Most of us do not think about death in even the remotely same way as our ancestors did. Science and modernity have conditioned us to view death in a very new light - one that is filled with the hope of ever-lasting happiness here and now on earth.



Current Book & Quotes From: "Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow" by Yuval Noah Harari



In ancient times, many people - warriors and crusaders especially - would gladly give their lives for their “higher power.” They believed that the ultimate honor was death on the battlefield and a life in some sort of “Valhalla”.

In modern times, we’ve come to despise death. We’ve come to look at death as a technical problem - a problem that can and should be fixed by scientists.

“In reality, however, humans don’t die because a figure in a black cloak taps them on the shoulder, or because God decreed it, or because mortality is an essential part of some great cosmic plan. Humans always die due to some technical glitch. The heart stops pumping blood. The main artery is clogged by fatty deposits. Cancerous cells spread in the liver. Germs multiply in the lungs. And what is responsible for all these technical problems? Other technical problems. The heart stops pumping blood because not enough oxygen reaches the heart muscle. Cancerous cells spread because a chance genetic mutation rewrote their instructions. Germs settled in my lungs because somebody sneezed on the subway. Nothing metaphysical about it. It is all technical problems.”

If death is now simply thought of as a technical problem, then where is our technical solution for this problem? Is it truly possible that we can fix all of these physical issues that our fragile flesh-and-blood bodies are exposed to?

“We can kill the cancerous cells with chemotherapy or nano-robots. We can exterminate the germs in the lungs with antibiotics. If the heart stops pumping, we can reinvigorate it with medicines and electric shocks – and if that doesn’t work, we can implant a new heart”

We don’t have a solution to every technical problem out there - otherwise we would all be living in some futuristic world where everyone lived forever and there was no disease, no death, no suffering. But these issues have come to the forefront of our minds. We spend more money, more time and more effort than ever before in our quest to fight off death and become “superhuman.”

“An increasing minority of scientists and thinkers consequently speak more openly these days, and state that the flagship enterprise of modern science is to defeat death and grant humans eternal youth. Notable examples are the gerontologist Aubrey de Grey and the polymath and inventor Ray Kurzweil”

Side Note: there are some great podcasts out there about these 2 that I highly recommend. Aubrey de Gray was on the Joe Rogan Experience not too long ago as well.


Our End Game

What is our end game in terms of the fight against death? Are we looking to simply push death further off and live for 200 years instead of 100?

Bill Maris (of the Google Ventures investment fund) said this when asked about the fight against death:

“Using an American football analogy, Maris explained that in the fight against death, ‘We aren’t trying to gain a few yards. We are trying to win the game.’ Why? Because, says Maris, ‘it is better to live than to die’.”

What are the experts saying in terms of a timeline for the technological advancements needed in the war against death?

“Some experts believe that humans will overcome death by 2200, others say 2100. Kurzweil and de Grey are even more sanguine. They maintain that anyone possessing a healthy body and a healthy bank account in 2050 will have a serious shot at immortality by cheating death a decade at a time. According to Kurzweil and de Grey, every ten years or so we will march into the clinic and receive a makeover treatment that will not only cure illnesses, but will also regenerate decaying tissues, and upgrade hands, eyes and brains. Before the next treatment is due, doctors will have invented a plethora of new medicines, upgrades and gadgets.”

A lot of people are going to come out and say that what Kurzweil and de Grey are talking about is complete science fiction. How could we just walk into a clinic every 10 years and receive some sort of "makeover treatment" that resets the clock by 10 years? That sounds like it belongs in that Justin Timberlake movie...

I think the only argument needed against that is to simply look at history. Our hunter-gatherer ancestors were running around the forest and living on average until their 40’s, maybe 50’s? And if you lived past that you were known as being the wisest of your clan and you were there not because of technology but because of an incredible combination of genetics and luck.

If our ancestors got sick - some sort of bug - they likely had no way of treating it. Those who got sick died relatively easily and there are many cultures where they would actually just leave the sick behind or even put them out of their misery.

In modern times, most of us can go to a nearby clinic or doctor when we get sick. And if the sickness is relatively “mild” than we can even just go to a local drug store and get some OTC (over the counter) drugs to help us with our symptoms.

We don’t view plague, sickness, famine, etc. as being some sort of almighty strike from a supernatural power, we view them as being technical issues that have a technical solution. We accepts and bear the full responsibility to make an effort to fix these problems.


“The Flagship Project of the Coming Century”

There are many projects that humanity has to work on and there are many implications that will follow. There is no doubt in my mind and in the minds of many experts that the war against death will become the most important project of our lifetime.

“Hence even if we don’t achieve immortality in our lifetime, the war against death is still likely to be the flagship project of the coming century. When you take into account our belief in the sanctity of human life, add the dynamics of the scientific establishment, and top it all with the needs of the capitalist economy, a relentless war against death seems to be inevitable. Our ideological commitment to human life will never allow us simply to accept human death. As long as people die of something, we will strive to overcome it.”

Question of the Day:

What do you think about the war against death? Is it going to be humanities greatest struggle yet? Is it a worthwhile pursuit or are we just twiddling our thumbs against the inevitable?

Let’s discuss it in the comments below!!

-Khaleel

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I read this book some months back it opened my mind to different possibilities I hav enever considered before now. it's one book I will re-read sometime in the future.
As regards man's pursuit for immorality, i believe it's inevitable in the sense that humanity has always sought ways to prolong it's existance. We've tried to achieve this covertly through various means like proper health care and upgrading our standard of living, etc these are just stepping stones to our primary pursuit-- immorality.
Is the pursuit of immorality furtile? I dont think so. This is the last battle humanity will have to fight--the battle against death. As we develop and solve most of our problems we move towards this battle against humanity's number one leveler, death. In other words, whether we're conscious about this or not we are moving towards this phase.
Will we win? Well, we can, but what's the essence of life without death? In my opinion, it's a more terrible fate to live a life without ending.

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I believe its better to live with the choice of death, than without the choice

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That's a very interesting take on this pursuit. I agree, the question of what the essence of life would be without death is a good one. We would have to redefine what it even means to be alive.

I'm more of the opinion that our bodies are just a physical manifestation of our being. I wonder about the destiny of us? What are we meant to do and meant to become? I think that the fight against death plays a significant role in answering that question.

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I wonder about the destiny of us? What are we meant to do and meant to become?

I think are all trying to answer this question in life, defining and redefining it as we progress. this is what drives innovation. our fight against death is one of such ways we as humans hope to answer the question of our destiny, which will lead to another series of questions, like what we are supposed to do after we arrive at the answer? what's the purpose of a life without death?

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Death is cool I think. Do most people worth to have endless life of eating, shitting and complaining? Death give us a way in life to othere. Big shitty businesman dies, and now smaller better businesmen have a chance to get over his business. Imagine people like Hitler got immortality

Homo Deus - Jesus Christ?

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That's an interesting take as well. I agree with you on that an endless life of eating, shitting and complaining would be a worthless pursuit but I think that we would redefine what it means to be alive should we achieve this idea of immortality. I think we would find meaning in other ways and we may not even have bodies in the same way that we do now. We are already becoming cyborgs (just look at mobile phone technology, eye technology, transplant technology, etc. etc.).

Life in 100 years will likely have little resemblance to life today. I can only imagine what it would look like 200, 500 or even 1,000 years from now!

As for your idea about people like Hitler getting immortality: I don't expect us to become truly immortal (as in nothing in existence could end us) I think that it's more likely that we will become amortal which is the idea that you could live forever if you don't die from whatever it is that you're vulnerable to.

So if someone like Hitler came along, we could get rid of them if they were causing some major issue (just in the way that we get rid of people now - imprisonment, death, war, etc.).

And to counter you on that, imagine if people like Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein and Da Vinci were immortal? Would their contributions to humanity outweigh the few negative actors that will also appear, like Hitler?

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I believe in Jesus Christ and he offers the prospect of eternal life, so yeah Christ is an example of a homo deus.
For those who don't believe in Him, their way of achieving immortality is through science. I would not go into the ethical aspect of this discuss. However, I will like to state that a lot of bad things still happen in this life, so whatever it is good or not, people are still going to strive for immorality. A lot of big companies are already investing heavily in it

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Immortality has a lot of problems - neurons degeneration, heart strength ... It's close to impossible to solve all those problems in 40 years. Thanks for your feed back

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I read your reply on this subject and I concluded we have things in common. Could you follow as I have done and upvoted??

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no problem if you have interesting content(s)

beautiful

Hi @khaleelkazi! Great to see you talking about this book! Was one of the best books I've read in a while. I am hoping to do a video review of it soon, but there's so much to cover.

Thanks for bringing this to the attention of more people

@kabir88

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There's SO much good stuff in this book, I could see how you'd have trouble making a video covering it!! You'd have to probably do a whole video series!

This book before this was a massive hit. Author was invited to davos to talk to the elites.

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Yeah Sapiens was a massive hit. Homo Deus is an interesting segway from Sapiens where Yuval examines the future rather than the past

It clarifies that cash is the most pluralistic arrangement of common trust at any point conceived; that private enterprise is the best religion at any point developed; that the treatment of creatures in current horticulture is likely the most exceedingly awful wrongdoing ever, And that despite the fact that we are significantly more intense than our old, we aren't substantially more joyful.

Thought probing treatise on DEATH.!!

Nevertheless, I couldn't help but reinterate the posser: " IF DEATH IS A TECHNICAL PROBLEM, WHY IS THERE NO TECHNICAL SOLUTION TO IT ???

If the heart stopped to pump; why did it stop??

If Gene mutation caused a cancerous tumour; why the mutation?? Why did it occur where it occurred??

Similar posers abound without appropriate answers suggestive that DEATH IS NOT DEATH as Death!!!

The above thus addressed the posser of the day that while the immediate future shalldevote more effort toward immortality of life; it WILL be a FUTILE exercise because nature is designed by an INFINITE inteligentia to be TEMPORAL. A cursory observation of Nature will confirm this!!

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But khalil, do you know the theory stating end of the world developed by mayans proved wrong in 2012?
This is not the only thing, 3 more theories developed by ancestars proved wrong yet and the world is still alive.

If really, science believe that we die because of a technical glitch, where is the place of accidents and people killing people which also leads to death?

In ancient times, many people - warriors and crusaders especially - would gladly give their lives for their “higher power.” They believed that the ultimate honor was death on the battlefield and a life in some sort of “Valhalla”.

I thought this was perculiar to Vikings alone?

i really loved this blog
i find this is really intersting
all the best for ur next blogs

I think they will make advancements that will extend people's lives, I don't know about 2050 being the "cure all" date, it doesn't seem we are that close yet to a lot of the answers. With the world increasingly over populated already and if cures were found for every conceivable illness or replacement parts were abound there'd be a price ceiling placed so high no one but the ultra rich could afford it. When you think about it that would probably be the only way government would allow it, there's no conceivable way there would eventually be room for everyone to live forever on earth. If science also found a way for humans to live on other planets then it may be a more realistic expectation that cost factors wouldn't be prohibitive to the vast majority.

Very interesting!

Death has to be put in proper place as natural cycle of life. I do believe it more important to fight for the life we have than wage ware to conquer death.

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Bro you have brought this point of death , technical problem , I wish this could be fixed by scientist , however I feel death is reality and this technical problem will remain as it is till this world exits , on the other hand if this technical problem is fixed then we will have worst and bad people in this world . Today everyone know that death is reality hence these bad people does exists

I've never read this book, i'll try. Tanks

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every beginning will have an end. we may not know it is the end, but it will happen unexpectedly.

the beauty of life is a sense of purpose induced in us because of its evanescent nature. a purposeless life is as good as death. so we will stop living and it is upto us to call it death or not

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Hello, interesting topic that has kept philosophers, religious and scientists in suspense. For some, immortality is achieved by crossing the kingdom of heaven, for historians what the human being does and transcends time. But none of this manages to pacify the human being, since death represents a void space, a question without a response and therefore seeks immortality.
But, do we really want to live forever? Science fiction has given us good samples of how we can do it, but do we really want to live forever?

@khaleelkazi
I dont know why we are looking for a solution to conquer death. What would be the value of life,if there is no death.Just imagine a world where there is no death, everybody will be living purposelessly.In the absence of the fear of death there will be no concept of time .people will keep postponing things ,productivity and competitiveness will diappear .In fact it is impossible to imagine the kind of life people will live in the absence of Death. Life and death are the two faces of the same coin and they will always coexist .In fact they derive their meaning from eachother. The absence of one is the presence of other.

It is expected that humans will be able to upload consciousness into machines by much of the bio-tech industry scientists by the year 2029. Does that mean we will defeat death?

The entire idea is based on fear. It is the propagation of the monotheistic cultures that have created the separation of science and spirituality, the dualism of heaven and hell, and the hierarchy of beings...

When you have no fear, whether of death or unfulfilled life, you become uninhibited and thus may experience a fulfilling life in which one need not attach material possession or quantity of years to be content.

Observe your inner world.
Bless!

@naadantranatha
@worldistro
@therainbowlodge
@hajijah36

It is better to live than death but some people demand death.

Death is a big issue in almost all cultures!
For many of us death is the end! Most of the anerucans indigenous tribes consider death as simple transition to other plane, becasue the body is just a box - Holmecas, teotihuacanos, mayas, aztecas, incas, Caribs, pemones and other manage a similar concept ant pratices death-associated.
I think that modern civilization, in general, don't be focus on understand what death can be...but pregessively its meaning will change and the way how we recieve it!
Thank you very much for share this material, I did not know!

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I think in modern society, many individuals suffer from from a existential problems. Many have a lack of purpose, and question why they're here, and what's the point. This leads to a lot of irrational anxiety and fears over things, such as death. Things that are largely out of the control of most individuals. In historical times, first off, the life expectancy was much lower. When you're surrounded death, you become indifferent when it happens, and you're not all that worried if it happens to you. Secondly people in historical times had a lot less distractions, and most peoples lives were made up of core activities and goals. Such as: Providing shelter, food, clothing, protection for ones family. People had more singular focuses and didn't really have time to dwell on uncertainty. Thirdly, most of the world in historical times were highly devoted to god and the afterlife, thus they really didn't fear death because they were convinced a better place was awaiting them upon it happening.

Good stuff!

I loved your post, I just wrote an idea of ​​the book Sapien. I speak of imagined reality and I make analogies about venezuela, bitcoin and the law of gravity. I hope you go through my post and you can read it. These are the topics that I love in steemit.

A very interesting subject. We've been fighting against death since we were a single cell organism. Infinite life is not worth even considering, but extension of life is. It's hard for a 25 year old to know what a 60 year old understands. Therefore, the longer the lifespan, the more capacity to collect knowledge and mastery of the our world and the wisdom to use it.
If I understand correctly there's a strong correlation between a low average age and the likelihood of a failed state. At the other end of the spectrum, older populations are much more stable, cooperative, and less violent. An older planet may be a calmer, wiser planet...of course there's also the fact that few will be working to support the many...many sociological changes will need to happen to ameliorate that. Reduction of what we currently call quality of life? Extension of working years?

It may sound like science fiction but, to me, it's what is going to happen in the near future. That's my vision and hope to see it comes true in my life time.

Then, we have to think about, if we're souls in a human experience, and this human experience will last forever, how the learning experience will be committed?? That's the only doubt I have about it.

In my opinion, we're indeed souls in a human experience so, my thoughts about this two topics aren't agree yet. What do you think?

  ·  작년

Why do you want to live forever? [Then keep asking “Why?” for each answer you get] #ThoughtExperiment

It is absolutly a worthless we'll the loseres for sure because something mandatory