“Why is it judged incredible with you, if God doth raise the dead?”
I think of this question, presented by Luke in Acts, often.
The Bible mentions resurrection numerous times, and not only associated with Jesus. Much of what it says, however, strikes me as unclear, possibly contradictory — always a sign that we have not yet developed our knowledge and technologies sufficient to understanding.
The Bible is a makers guide.
Keep working towards.
The longest a human has ever lived, according to our modern records, is 122 years.
What if that truly is the limit?
What if the only way possible to live beyond 122 is to change ourselves so much, say through bionic limbs, artificial organs, embedded computer processors, electronics usurping our nerve endings, extending our brain matter, that we are no longer who we are?
Living past 122 but not as our self strikes me as a pyrrhic victory.
Resurrection may be the better path.
The problem with resurrection, however, is that as soon as it becomes possible it’s not nearly enough. We don’t want to be resurrected as our self, but as our self, better: stronger, fitter, taller, smarter. We want to be more than who we are.
This is built into our code.
There are other concerns which likewise must be addressed, not all technical.
Which of our selves gets to pick the age of return? Ninety year old self may choose fifty, thirty-four year old self may choose sixteen. And if we can only be brought back to life as an infant, say, we are then an infant in a new world, and this new world will profoundly shape us, direct us, limit us — new us.
Additionally, we will need to make sure that before we die, we put our affairs in order. That is, make sure Giant Computer knows everything about us, knows how important each one of those bits is, contains every memory, every decision, an analysis of their good and bad, and relays it to us — the new us — in a timely manner.
Our own Bible.
Do this, don’t do that, do more of this, do less of that, trust me, this is right, trust me, this is good, trust me, this will lead to misery.
Faith is a necessary requirement of the future.
Without faith, you evaporate.
Faith is also required because temptations will never be stronger, nor more plentiful than they are soon to be. Understand: the ability to resurrect our self brings with it also the ability to not be our self, and this is a constantly tantalizing prospect, believe me.
Some of us are descendants of tall, fierce warriors, men capable of taking down a woolly mammoth with little more than a hand-fashioned spear.
Men from Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Netherlands, Croatia, and Montenegro are, on average, the tallest in the world, according to new research that helps to explain why such individuals often grow to six feet and more in height.
Their stature appears to be at least partly a genetic legacy of the Upper Paleolithic Gravettian culture (the culture of mammoth hunters).
Remains of Gravettian men suggest that they stood between 5 feet 10 inches and 6 feet 2 inches on average, which was an extraordinary size for the time. In contrast, men among the ancient Maya who lived several thousand years later were 5 feet 2 inches tall on average. Mayan women were about 4 feet tall on average.
Know this: you will never be presented with resurrection as a sole option but may be presented with resurrection plus options.
Imagine this: You have lived a good, long life, been successful in your endeavors, in your relationships and now, we will usher you through the resurrection transition. Soon, you will be born again, but do not fear, we have retained all your memories, all your actions, and a literal three-dimensional avatar of yourself will guide the new you — but still you — into the new world. Oh! But before we proceed, would you like us to edit your genes so that you become the equivalent of great, tall, proud mammoth-killing warriors?
Most men have a difficult time turning down potato chips.
Choice is made worse because — without faith — it’s often impossible to know what is right and best.
Was the past more right or less?
Contrary to popular opinion, humans didn’t shed a harsh existence as hunter-gatherers and herders for the good life of stay-in-place farming.
Year-round farming villages and early agricultural states, such as those that cropped up in Mesopotamia, exchanged mobile groups’ healthy lifestyles for the back-breaking drudgery of cultivating crops, exposure to infectious diseases, inadequate diets, taxes and conscription into armies.
Which would you choose?
Incremental changes to the body’s aging process are not achieved in isolation, ever. So, too, will it be with profound changes. The closer we get to literal resurrection, the more we understand all that shapes us, enhances us, limits us. Which of these enhancing-limiting factors should we accept when we possess the power to change each of them?
We will not end Alzheimers, as one example, without also gaining the ability to edit other base elements of our brain and body — and thus our self.
Radical longevity demands a casting off of the self. There is no other way.
Exactly as Christ told us.