- Genius often is accompanied by madness.
- Stories promising “eternal life” through technology are great click-bait.
I‘m not denying that Aubrey de Grey or Ray Kurzweil, for instance, aren’t a bona fide scientists or geniuses. But I’m skeptical that either will find a way for any of us to match Methuselah’s 969 years, let alone live forever. And if macrobiotics or Ray Kurzweil’s 250 pills per day is the price, who would want it?
Anyway, haven’t we learned that scientists know no more about what’s true, good and beautiful than Hollywood stars and starlots before Congress know about, say, the global warming they’re so passionate about that they private-jetted over from the coast to testify?
I’ll not bloviate on Adam and Eve “dying” on the day they ate of the tree, how their death infects us, or how “eternal life” differs from “immortality,” but I’ll volunteer this much personal opinion: were I on a downward trend spiritually, becoming more self-centered, irascible, grasping and just generally evil, my death would be a blessing to the world and maybe to me; on the other hand, if I were on an upward trend spiritually, conforming more and more to the image of Jesus Christ and becoming a partaker of the divine nature, I’d welcome either His second coming or death to seal the deal.
John Gray, a british philosopher who has his very own Wikipedia link that I just gave you (and about whom I know nothing more) has said apropos of Ray Kurzweil a sensible thing: that contemporary science is what magic was for ancient civilizations. It gives a sense of hope for those who are willing to do almost anything in order to achieve eternal life. He quotes Kurzweil’s Singularity as another example of a trend which has almost always been present in the history of mankind.
That’s one of a number of critiques of Kurzweil at the always-reliable Wikipedia, some of them, like Bill Joy’s, pretty plausible: that Kurzweil’s right, but his paradise is really a dystopia.
In the Church’s funeral service, Saint John of Damascus asks, “What earthly sweetness remaineth unmixed with grief? What glory standeth immutable on earth?” Then comes this answer, “All things are but feeble shadows, all things are most deluding dreams: yet one moment only, and death shall supplant them all.”
My “family” Facebook feed sure had a lot of Indianapolis mini-marathon postings yesterday. I’m pleased to report that so far as I know, none of them thinks this means they’ll live forever.
If perchance you took Episcopal Bishop V. Gene Robinson half seriously as a Christian clergyman, you should critically read his banal, self-aborbed and disingenuous press release about his impending “divorce” from his “husband” Mark.
Easy self-justification is much of why I do not find Christian-and-actively-gay writers very interesting.
(H/T Rod Dreher)
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“The remarks made in this essay do not represent scholarly research. They are intended as topical stimulations for conversation among intelligent and informed people.” (Gerhart Niemeyer)