I think, and I know how arrogant this sounds, that many people have their ideas on life and death all wrong. If I would propose eternal life to just about anyone in town, there’s a very good chance they would refuse it. Which means that they insist, one time or other, on dying.
I understand why they would say that, too. “Who wants to live forever,” right? Look at the examples: a large part of the vampire legend is based around the curse of eternal life. The so-called gift that leads to an acute and growing sense of boredom, eventually leading to insanity.
I don’t think of it that way. I’d like to point out that these examples, and any other you can think of, are entirely fictional. Cooked up by humans, for humans, neither of which have any clue about it whatsoever. The opposite might as well be true, that eternal life is in fact, a gift, and allows you to collect awesomesauce for eternity and eventually become the sickest thing on earth since the velociraptor. And just like with religion: If all signs point to one conclusion, why decide on the other?
They say eternal life is boring, that nothing excites or interests you anymore. I think they couldn’t be further from the truth. There’s few things I wouldn’t give to see the future of mankind. There’s so much we missed already: Real revolutions, unlike the brand-sponsored skirmishes of today, the fall of dynasties, inventions that changed the world. No, I for one, would love to see what’s in stall for us.
Surely I can’t be the only one to admit he is terrified of dying? Every moment of happiness is so important to me, that I dread the day I would go without. And yes yes, I wouldn’t even realize, but that’s just another thing to be afraid of. You’d make me the happiest man alive if you told me I have forever to live. I think people say they are not afraid of dying or accept it as a part of life, to suppress their fear of death and to put themselves above it. To claim that not only can they not make the choice, but they don’t need to- they’d just keep things as they are, with the worst possible outcome for them.
One might claim that this thinking is also irrelevant, because it’s not our choice to make. But that too, is a mistake.
We age because our cells deteriorate as they divide, something that doesn’t necessarily need to happen. In fact, there’s a type of jellyfish out there with cells that don’t have this quality (this is still being discussed, though), and they do, in fact, live forever. We age because we’re supposed to, to make room for newer generations and speed up our evolution and thus chance of survival as a race. Put simply: We live because we die.
Scientists are figuring out ways to stop this process, freezing us in our age. This would also greatly reduce the risk of cancer and other cell age-related diseases, drastically improving our chance of survival until they manage to beat those altogether.
They’re getting close, and soon, we, as a race and as an individual, will have important choices to make. And while I realize it’s “playing god” and unnatural and in some ways unethical, I don’t have anyone to answer to and my choice, depending on the drawbacks, will be pretty easy- if that’s even possible with these things.
When I say “alien” to you, meaning creatures from another planet, you’ll immediately think of little green men or grey hominids with almond eyes. Usually somewhat human.
Lately there’s been this hype about how wrong that is, and alien species just might be in all sorts of shapes, sizes or colors. New ideas consist of jellyfish-like creatures, upside down mooncows or even gaseous forms.
To me, this amusingly proves how difficult we have it to think outside the box. When provoked to really use our imaginations, we cut loose and cough up the most illogical, unfound ideas. This is another planet we’re talking about, not another dimension.
Here’s a hint: Gases don’t live. They can’t live, they’re gases.
Life is created when the right chemicals are brought together and energy is added, in the form of heat and light. A self-replicating molecule forms, attracts and binds with different molecules and forms a cell. And we’re off.
If that new race of single-cellular life would evolve randomly, it would only manage to form different colors of goo and never get anyplace. For that, the weakest must be taken away and the strongest must survive. And voila- Natural selection.
on earth or on any other planet, this process is the same. If there was any other, I’m quite sure we would have stumbled across it by now.
What another planet would have is another shot at this thing called life, under different circumstances and in different environments. What it does not have, people, is different laws of physics. The chemicals on that planet are the same as ours- perhaps in different quantities but otherwise identical. Since planets revolve around stars, there will be one sun, warm enough to melt ice but not too hot to evaporate it altogether. There will be a process of natural selection and eventually one race will pretty much go haywire and take over the world.
This means that this species had to have the edge on others. They will most likely be omnivores, making them adaptable. They will have at least two eyes, so they can see depth. Their response to light frequencies might be very different, but light is an abundant source of energy and it wouldn’t make sense not to evolve senses for it especially since it’s a relatively simple procedure. Same goes for testing chemical structure, like we have taste and smell. Hearing might work somewhat differently, since it’s little more than a measurement for kinetic energy, which is all around us in many different forms.
If there is high gravity, the creatures will be short and strongly built, likely with some sort of bone structure- internal (like us) or external (like crabs). If there’s low gravity, falling over will cause far less damage and they will be higher, and thinner.
Two arms seems reasonable. Two legs logical, perhaps more. All in all, I really don’t think, if their planet looks anything like ours (as opposed to a water planet, which is highly unlikely), they will be so terribly different from us.
What will be far more shocking, I believe, is any sort of cultural difference. Hell, it causes war on our own little speck of dirt, who knows what it will lead to when the men are literally from mars?
Try to list the things that we do, that would seem unusual and unpractical to an alien. You could probably write a book about it, from the very concept of music over clothing to religion- none of those really make sense, if you think about it.
What would those aliens come up with, then? I bet they sit in their little ship every other Thursday, staring at a bright source of ultraviolet light while touching tentacle tips to each other, going “Ohhh yeah baby” in Martian. Or use their newborns as a renewable form of energy despite the presence of other kinds- who says their ethical code would remotely resemble ours? They just might not be curious about us at all, naturally insensitive bastards, and wipe us out before you can ask why your brain is bleeding.
Here’s another little thing to consider:
Formation of the earth: 4.5 billion years ago.
First signs of life: 3 to 4 billion years ago.
Multicellular life: 1 billion years ago.
Mammals: 200 million years ago.
25,000 years since we learned to hold more than our genitals.
That means we humans have been around about 0.0008333…% of life on earth, which in turn is unsightly short compared to the age of the universe. We are a very young species, even in our own juvenile evolution. We may think we’ve got it all figured out but we’ve only begun to understand what’s going on around us.
If, in that scale, those aliens would be just slightly older than us, that might result in hundreds, thousands of years of difference. Imagine where we will be in 500 years, or 5,000? Hard to imagine, isn’t it? Those alien assholes, with their intricate knowledge of alternate realities (hell, they’ll make them if they turned out not to exist) can fuck us up before we can even comprehend the possibility of it. We think our newest technology is so advance because it has lasers on it? Their primates used lasers. They’ll laugh at it like we laugh with kittens playing with wool.
It’s not a matter of us discovering them, it’s a matter of them discovering us. And the only reason why they haven’t (if they haven’t) is because we’ve only been around for such a short time, and our planet happens to be an exceptionally insignificant one, orbiting around an exceptionally insignificant star, in a boring, everyday galaxy.
And now for something completely different:
I am so horny I could fuck a shower drain.
There, I feel better now.