03 Aug

Refusing Anti-ageing is accepting Death

All Roads Lead to Death

For life to sustain, several million things must happen in a particular order.  But death can occur in any of the million ways.  There lies the secret behind the apparent immortality of mortality.  Death doesn’t have any special status in the greater scheme of things.  We just need to jump too many hoops to avoid death.  I believe that the Universe doesn’t care if we live.  And that It doesn’t care if we die.

We all avoid death for one reason or other.  For some of us, it is the fear of the physical pain.  For some, it is the pending responsibilities.  Others can’t bear the tears of near and dear.  Some don’t want to die without seeing the wonders that the future has to offer (detour: Isn’t it interesting that many of our reasons to live are driven by what we mean to others?).  And then, there are people who continue to live because can’t find a good reason to die.  I always find it surprising as to how so many people claim that they are not scared of dying.  Whereas, these same people won’t hesitate to kill if their life is threatened.

Even though everyone is scared of dying, we always ridicule the people who went chasing after immortality.  We have stories and legends where the chasers of immortality always have sorry ends (but often, in our legends, heroes who chase the noble are gifted immortality).  These stories are not far from reality.  People who went chasing immortality, longevity or youthfulness always failed.  It is nice for us to think of them as desperate and greedy.  It probably justifies our own laziness.

When it comes to wanting immortality, vast majority among us take the defeatist attitude.  Nothing else explains why we are uncomfortable with the idea of immortality.  After all, if we have a good reason to live today, there is no good reason to not want to live tomorrow.  Or the next year.  Why should it be OK for us to accept death in fifty years from now, when it not OK to want to die today?

Granted, in our youthful swagger, it is normal for us to want not to live into the frailties of senescence.  But when senescence creeps on us slowly, it turns out that it is not such an unbearable thing after all!  Our justification of accepting death on the ground that ‘senescence is unacceptable’ appears baseless.  But given that I am one of those people who vehemently cry “keep me fit or give me death”, I can look at this group sympathetically.

Modern anti-ageing techniques, though they are far from perfected as of now, can easily add one or two additional decades of healthy living to most of us.  But surprising number of people think too low of taking it up.  It is perfectly OK for them if the death creeps on them slowly.  But wanting to jump on the anti-ageing bandwagon is too painful to them for two reasons: One, it amounts to accepting our desperation to want to live another day.  Two, reminds us that death is real.

For the people among us who avoid anti-ageing, state of default seem to be safe and non-threatening. Having taken an emotional decision not to act, we go around inventing false justifications as to why we chose default over action.

Don’t.

Take anti-ageing seriously.  It looks funny to you because it is positive healthcare.  Healthcare is usually focused fixing things that are broken.  In other words, conventional medicine is about coming from negative to zero.  Anti-ageing takes something that may or may not be broken and makes it better.  It is a process where the final destination is positive.

Anti-ageing alone can add thirty to forty years to your life, at the very least.  You can absolutely not come across any other single action that can add so many healthy years to your life. Period.

2 thoughts on “Refusing Anti-ageing is accepting Death

  1. This is an overarching philosophical defense of short cuts, which does not exists. Anti-aging is not about taking pills- somewhat implied in the article or as is generally understood. (there is an “anti-aging” industry).
    It is about the mental attitude- that is where cobwebs set in…but that is besides the point.

    For each pill one takes one should question closely the science behind it- not in a general sort of way (e.g. lower cholestrol good )but in moe specific sort of way- scientifically established boundary of the diminishing returns and when the toxicity starts to set in- e.g. in higher dosage the vitamins could become toxic.

    I think, over 99% of the multi-billion anti aging industry is snake oil. People are better off spending their time and money elsewhere than to chase this mirage.

    • Thanks Lokesh. Sincere thanks your participation here.

      //I think, over 99% of the multi-billion anti aging industry is snake oil//

      Agreed.

      //People are better off spending their time and money elsewhere than to chase this mirage//

      If this is to mean that people should invest their time and money into better food and lifestyle, I completely agree. As a matter of fact, the lifestyle changes are the foundation on which the entire anti-ageing edifice is built.

      But I might have a couple of thoughts to add here as well.

      – Many of us tend to think ‘going natural’ is the best thing to do (forget the fact that, for a philosophical point of view, they can never go ‘unnatural’). But when it comes to anti-aging, it bodes well to remember that nature wants us all dead.

      – Human race always defied nature. Sure we made a mess fighting nature. But we gained tremendously more. It is in every animal’s deeply ingrained nature to defy nature and everything else to ensure longevity. I only see the trend building momentum.

      //For each pill one takes one should question closely the science behind it//

      The ageing population doesn’t have the time to see the science evolve (though, the middle agers like you and me can afford to wait a bit longer). Whatever they get today is a gain. Whatever they might get tomorrow may have no consequence.

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