Is Immortality a Curse?

We discussed the story “Mortal Gods” by Orson Scott Card in my class on religion and science fiction class recently. The Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal cartoon below addresses its underlying question: is subjective immortality a blessing or a curse?

There is a chapter in Time and Relative Dimensions in Faith that tackles this topic too.

"And, fermented honey, I.e. mead. Nectar of the Gods. Oldest. bears partake of it. No ..."

How Children are Led Astray into ..."
"You’re quite right that there was beer. I drink a much wider array of beverages ..."

How Children are Led Astray into ..."
"Just one last thought on what I've been talking about here. I wanted to share ..."

How Children are Led Astray into ..."
"You are right to be proud. That is lovely."

World Premiere: Alex McGrath’s Adagio for ..."

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!

What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment
  • WillBell

    I always find many of the traditional objections to immortality to be rather odd – after all society changes but we change with it, I have as much time to adapt to the changes as everybody else.

    • James F. McGrath

      I suspect you may be too young to understand the difference between learning to adapt to change and growing up with those new things and taking them for granted.

      • Norm Englund

        I’m 51 and I agree with WillBell. Over the centuries, I think I’d learn new strategies for coping with change. Perhaps one technique would be to come to change like a little child.

      • WillBell

        Perhaps, but you would have eternity to learn to adapt.

  • SelfAwarePatterns

    I tend to think involuntary immortality would be a curse, albeit one that I doubt I would have the will to turn down. Imagine after billions of years, where you’ve done everything, learned everything, and experienced everything a thousand times over. I can imagine the boredom becoming a hell worse than anything any religion has ever imagined. And saying that we’d be modified to not feel boredom only means it wouldn’t really be us. Eventually, having the ability to end our existence might be the most important mercy we could have.

    All of this is aside from having to deal with issues like the sun eventually dying or the heat death of the universe.

    All that said, I wouldn’t mind having the option to hang around until I’d decided I’d had enough.