The concept of death has been a topic of contemplation for centuries. One of the most famous musings on the subject comes from the Roman Emperor and philosopher Marcus Aurelius, who wrote in his Meditations, "since it is possible that thou mayst depart from life this very moment, regulate every act and thought accordingly." This passage highlights the importance of living in the present and making the most of our time, as we never know when our time will come.
A similar concept can be found in the field of cryonics, the practice of preserving a person's body or brain after death in the hope that technology will one day be able to revive them. While the idea of cryonics may seem far-fetched to some, it is based on the same principle as Marcus Aurelius's musings: we never know when our time will come, and it is important to consider the potential future consequences of our actions.
In this article, we will explore why cryonics still makes sense even in the event that we are all going to die, and how it can help us see life as something precious. We will also examine why Marcus Aurelius would likely choose to sign up for cryonics if it were available in his time, and how cryonics aligns with the Stoic philosophy.
One of the most compelling arguments for cryonics is that it helps us see life as something precious. By preserving our bodies or brains after death, we are acknowledging the importance of our existence and holding on to the hope that we may one day be able to continue our lives in a different form.
This perspective can also help us live our lives more fully in the present. If we know that our time is limited and that we have the potential to continue living in the future, we may be more inclined to make the most of the time we have. We may be more likely to take risks, pursue our passions, and make amends with loved ones, knowing that there is the potential for a future in which we can continue to grow and change.
The philosophy of Stoicism, espoused by Marcus Aurelius and others, teaches that we must accept the things we cannot change and focus on the things we can. Cryonics, with its emphasis on preserving the body or brain for future revival, aligns with this philosophy in several ways.
First, cryonics allows us to accept that death is an inevitable part of life, while still holding on to the hope that we may one day be able to continue living. This is similar to the Stoic belief that we must accept death without fear, as the gods will not involve us in evil.
Second, cryonics allows us to focus on the things we can change. While we cannot change the fact that we will die, we can choose to preserve our bodies or brains for future revival. This allows us to take control of our own destiny and make a proactive decision to potentially extend our lives.
Finally, cryonics aligns with the Stoic belief that we must live in the present. If we are focused on preserving our bodies or brains for the future, we may be more inclined to live our lives fully and make the most of the time we have.
In conclusion, the philosophy of death espoused by Marcus Aurelius in his Meditations aligns with the concept of cryonics in several ways. Both emphasize the preciousness of life and the importance of making the most of the time we have. Cryonics offers a way for us to accept death and hold on to the hope of future revival, aligning with the Stoic philosophy of accepting the things we cannot change and focusing on the things we can. Signing up for Cryonics is not denying death, instead, it is an act to give a chance to life.