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The struggle for eternal life as depicted on the Mao Kun Map.

Immortality or eternal life was the state living indefinitely for an infinite or indeterminate amount of time. It was an ability to live forever, or put another way, an immunity from death. In religious contexts, eternal life was often stated to be among the promises by God (or other deities) to human beings who show goodness or else follow divine law (cf. resurrection). Moreover, only God was regarded as truly immortal, hence it is only through God’s resources for resurrection and salvation that human beings may transcend death and live eternally.

During the time of Ancient Greece, the boy Melikertes had to escape the wrath of Hera, the queen of the gods. He and his mother jumped off a clif into the sea for protection, becoming powerful as gods. Through his newfound powers, Malikertes learned how to drain people of their souls so he could keep himself young for all eternity. Over the next centuries, he became known as Palaimon.[1] When he he began to study alchemy, the infamous Pirate Lord Henry Morgan devised a way to live forever.[2] The treasure of Corts rendered those who stole from it as immortal skeletons until all the Aztec gold coins were returned and a blood debt repaid.[3] Under Davy Jones, the crew of the Flying Dutchman lived as immortal beings.[4][5] The Fountain of Youth was a legendary spring that restored the youth or grant immortality to anyone who drank from its waters, thereby live forver[5], though at a cost of another’s death.[6] For the Fountain, the struggle for eternal youth was depicted on the Mao Kun Map, symbolized by a tug of war between a skeleton and an angel, aligned with the symbol of the Fountainthe Chalices.[7]

In another sense, immortality can also mean being unable to be forgotten by history. For example, Jack claimed that by finding the Fountain of Youth when the legendary explorer, Juan Ponce de Len, failed to do so, he will be remebered throughout time and thus, in a way, never die.

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Immortality | Ancient Origins

AtAncient Origins, we believe that one of the most important fields of knowledge we can pursue as human beings is our beginnings. And while some people may seem content with the story as it stands, our view is that there exists countless mysteries, scientific anomalies and surprising artifacts thathave yet to be discovered and explained.

Thegoal of Ancient Origins is to highlight recent archaeological discoveries, peer-reviewed academic research and evidence, as well as offering alternative viewpoints and explanations of science, archaeology, mythology, religion and history around the globe.

Were theonlyPop Archaeology site combining scientific research with out-of-the-box perspectives.

By bringing together top experts and authors, this archaeology website explores lost civilizations, examines sacred writings, tours ancient places, investigates ancient discoveries and questions mysterious happenings. Our open community is dedicated to digging into the origins of our species on planet earth, and question wherever the discoveries might take us. We seek to retell the story of our beginnings.

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Immortality | Ancient Origins

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Vitiate, the immortal emperor of the ancient Sith Empire

Immortality was the state of a biological being living indefinitely for a seemingly infinite or indeterminate amount of time. This state was the goal of many Sith Lords throughout history, as well as something attained by some Jedi via becoming one with the Force. However, unlike their Jedi counterparts the Sith were far more obsessed with achieving physical immortality because of their fear of death and its interference with the Sith goals of power, control and self-glorification.

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Immortality – Wikipedia

Immortality is eternal life, being exempt from death, unending existence.[2] Some modern species may possess biological immortality.

Certain scientists, futurists, and philosophers have theorized about the immortality of the human body, with some suggesting that human immortality may be achievable in the first few decades of the 21st century. Other advocates believe that life extension is a more achievable goal in the short term, with immortality awaiting further research breakthroughs. The absence of aging would provide humans with biological immortality, but not invulnerability to death by disease or physical trauma; although mind uploading could solve that if it proved possible. Whether the process of internal endoimmortality is delivered within the upcoming years depends chiefly on research (and in neuron research in the case of endoimmortality through an immortalized cell line) in the former view and perhaps is an awaited goal in the latter case.[3]

In religious contexts, immortality is often stated to be one of the promises of God (or other deities) to human beings who show goodness or else follow divine law. What form an unending human life would take, or whether an immaterial soul exists and possesses immortality, has been a major point of focus of religion, as well as the subject of speculation, fantasy, and debate.

Life extension technologies promise a path to complete rejuvenation. Cryonics holds out the hope that the dead can be revived in the future, following sufficient medical advancements. While, as shown with creatures such as hydra and planarian worms, it is indeed possible for a creature to be biologically immortal, it is not known if it is possible for humans.

Mind uploading is the transference of brain states from a human brain to an alternative medium providing similar functionality. Assuming the process to be possible and repeatable, this would provide immortality to the computation of the original brain, as predicted by futurists such as Ray Kurzweil.[4]

The belief in an afterlife is a fundamental tenet of most religions, including Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, Christianity, Zoroastrianism, Islam, Judaism, and the Bah’ Faith; however, the concept of an immortal soul is not. The “soul” itself has different meanings and is not used in the same way in different religions and different denominations of a religion. For example, various branches of Christianity have disagreeing views on the soul’s immortality and its relation to the body.

Physical immortality is a state of life that allows a person to avoid death and maintain conscious thought. It can mean the unending existence of a person from a physical source other than organic life, such as a computer. Active pursuit of physical immortality can either be based on scientific trends, such as cryonics, digital immortality, breakthroughs in rejuvenation or predictions of an impending technological singularity, or because of a spiritual belief, such as those held by Rastafarians or Rebirthers.

There are three main causes of death: aging, disease and physical trauma.[5] Such issues can be resolved with the solutions provided in research to any end providing such alternate theories at present that require unification.

Aubrey de Grey, a leading researcher in the field,[6] defines aging as “a collection of cumulative changes to the molecular and cellular structure of an adult organism, which result in essential metabolic processes, but which also, once they progress far enough, increasingly disrupt metabolism, resulting in pathology and death.” The current causes of aging in humans are cell loss (without replacement), DNA damage, oncogenic nuclear mutations and epimutations, cell senescence, mitochondrial mutations, lysosomal aggregates, extracellular aggregates, random extracellular cross-linking, immune system decline, and endocrine changes. Eliminating aging would require finding a solution to each of these causes, a program de Grey calls engineered negligible senescence. There is also a huge body of knowledge indicating that change is characterized by the loss of molecular fidelity.[7]

Disease is theoretically surmountable via technology. In short, it is an abnormal condition affecting the body of an organism, something the body shouldn’t typically have to deal with its natural make up.[8] Human understanding of genetics is leading to cures and treatments for a myriad of previously incurable diseases. The mechanisms by which other diseases do damage are becoming better understood. Sophisticated methods of detecting diseases early are being developed. Preventative medicine is becoming better understood. Neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s may soon be curable with the use of stem cells. Breakthroughs in cell biology and telomere research are leading to treatments for cancer. Vaccines are being researched for AIDS and tuberculosis. Genes associated with type 1 diabetes and certain types of cancer have been discovered, allowing for new therapies to be developed. Artificial devices attached directly to the nervous system may restore sight to the blind. Drugs are being developed to treat a myriad of other diseases and ailments.

Physical trauma would remain as a threat to perpetual physical life, as an otherwise immortal person would still be subject to unforeseen accidents or catastrophes. The speed and quality of paramedic response remains a determining factor in surviving severe trauma.[9] A body that could automatically repair itself from severe trauma, such as speculated uses for nanotechnology, would mitigate this factor. Being the seat of consciousness, the brain cannot be risked to trauma if a continuous physical life is to be maintained. This aversion to trauma risk to the brain would naturally result in significant behavioral changes that would render physical immortality undesirable for some people.

Organisms otherwise unaffected by these causes of death would still face the problem of obtaining sustenance (whether from currently available agricultural processes or from hypothetical future technological processes) in the face of changing availability of suitable resources as environmental conditions change. After avoiding aging, disease, and trauma, you could still starve to death.

If there is no limitation on the degree of gradual mitigation of risk then it is possible that the cumulative probability of death over an infinite horizon is less than certainty, even when the risk of fatal trauma in any finite period is greater than zero. Mathematically, this is an aspect of achieving “actuarial escape velocity”

Biological immortality is an absence of aging. Specifically it’s the absence of a sustained increase in rate of mortality as a function of chronological age. A cell or organism that does not experience aging, or ceases to age at some point, is biologically immortal.

Biologists have chosen the word “immortal” to designate cells that are not limited by the Hayflick limit, where cells no longer divide because of DNA damage or shortened telomeres. The first and still most widely used immortal cell line is HeLa, developed from cells taken from the malignant cervical tumor of Henrietta Lacks without her consent in 1951. Prior to the 1961 work of Leonard Hayflick, there was the erroneous belief fostered by Alexis Carrel that all normal somatic cells are immortal. By preventing cells from reaching senescence one can achieve biological immortality; telomeres, a “cap” at the end of DNA, are thought to be the cause of cell aging. Every time a cell divides the telomere becomes a bit shorter; when it is finally worn down, the cell is unable to split and dies. Telomerase is an enzyme which rebuilds the telomeres in stem cells and cancer cells, allowing them to replicate an infinite number of times.[10] No definitive work has yet demonstrated that telomerase can be used in human somatic cells to prevent healthy tissues from aging. On the other hand, scientists hope to be able to grow organs with the help of stem cells, allowing organ transplants without the risk of rejection, another step in extending human life expectancy. These technologies are the subject of ongoing research, and are not yet realized.[11]

Life defined as biologically immortal is still susceptible to causes of death besides aging, including disease and trauma, as defined above. Notable immortal species include:

As the existence of biologically immortal species demonstrates, there is no thermodynamic necessity for senescence: a defining feature of life is that it takes in free energy from the environment and unloads its entropy as waste. Living systems can even build themselves up from seed, and routinely repair themselves. Aging is therefore presumed to be a byproduct of evolution, but why mortality should be selected for remains a subject of research and debate. Programmed cell death and the telomere “end replication problem” are found even in the earliest and simplest of organisms.[19] This may be a tradeoff between selecting for cancer and selecting for aging.[20]

Modern theories on the evolution of aging include the following:

There are some known naturally occurring and artificially produced chemicals that may increase the lifetime or life-expectancy of a person or organism, such as resveratrol.[23][24]

Some scientists believe that boosting the amount or proportion of telomerase in the body, a naturally forming enzyme that helps maintain the protective caps at the ends of chromosomes, could prevent cells from dying and so may ultimately lead to extended, healthier lifespans. A team of researchers at the Spanish National Cancer Centre (Madrid) tested the hypothesis on mice. It was found that those mice which were genetically engineered to produce 10 times the normal levels of telomerase lived 50% longer than normal mice.[25]

In normal circumstances, without the presence of telomerase, if a cell divides repeatedly, at some point all the progeny will reach their Hayflick limit. With the presence of telomerase, each dividing cell can replace the lost bit of DNA, and any single cell can then divide unbounded. While this unbounded growth property has excited many researchers, caution is warranted in exploiting this property, as exactly this same unbounded growth is a crucial step in enabling cancerous growth. If an organism can replicate its body cells faster, then it would theoretically stop aging.

Embryonic stem cells express telomerase, which allows them to divide repeatedly and form the individual. In adults, telomerase is highly expressed in cells that need to divide regularly (e.g., in the immune system), whereas most somatic cells express it only at very low levels in a cell-cycle dependent manner.

Technological immortality is the prospect for much longer life spans made possible by scientific advances in a variety of fields: nanotechnology, emergency room procedures, genetics, biological engineering, regenerative medicine, microbiology, and others. Contemporary life spans in the advanced industrial societies are already markedly longer than those of the past because of better nutrition, availability of health care, standard of living and bio-medical scientific advances. Technological immortality predicts further progress for the same reasons over the near term. An important aspect of current scientific thinking about immortality is that some combination of human cloning, cryonics or nanotechnology will play an essential role in extreme life extension. Robert Freitas, a nanorobotics theorist, suggests tiny medical nanorobots could be created to go through human bloodstreams, find dangerous things like cancer cells and bacteria, and destroy them.[26] Freitas anticipates that gene-therapies and nanotechnology will eventually make the human body effectively self-sustainable and capable of living indefinitely in empty space, short of severe brain trauma. This supports the theory that we will be able to continually create biological or synthetic replacement parts to replace damaged or dying ones. Future advances in nanomedicine could give rise to life extension through the repair of many processes thought to be responsible for aging. K. Eric Drexler, one of the founders of nanotechnology, postulated cell repair devices, including ones operating within cells and utilizing as yet hypothetical biological machines, in his 1986 book Engines of Creation. Raymond Kurzweil, a futurist and transhumanist, stated in his book The Singularity Is Near that he believes that advanced medical nanorobotics could completely remedy the effects of aging by 2030.[27] According to Richard Feynman, it was his former graduate student and collaborator Albert Hibbs who originally suggested to him (circa 1959) the idea of a medical use for Feynman’s theoretical micromachines (see biological machine). Hibbs suggested that certain repair machines might one day be reduced in size to the point that it would, in theory, be possible to (as Feynman put it) “swallow the doctor”. The idea was incorporated into Feynman’s 1959 essay There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom.[28]

Cryonics, the practice of preserving organisms (either intact specimens or only their brains) for possible future revival by storing them at cryogenic temperatures where metabolism and decay are almost completely stopped, can be used to ‘pause’ for those who believe that life extension technologies will not develop sufficiently within their lifetime. Ideally, cryonics would allow clinically dead people to be brought back in the future after cures to the patients’ diseases have been discovered and aging is reversible. Modern cryonics procedures use a process called vitrification which creates a glass-like state rather than freezing as the body is brought to low temperatures. This process reduces the risk of ice crystals damaging the cell-structure, which would be especially detrimental to cell structures in the brain, as their minute adjustment evokes the individual’s mind.

One idea that has been advanced involves uploading an individual’s habits and memories via direct mind-computer interface. The individual’s memory may be loaded to a computer or to a new organic body. Extropian futurists like Moravec and Kurzweil have proposed that, thanks to exponentially growing computing power, it will someday be possible to upload human consciousness onto a computer system, and exist indefinitely in a virtual environment. This could be accomplished via advanced cybernetics, where computer hardware would initially be installed in the brain to help sort memory or accelerate thought processes. Components would be added gradually until the person’s entire brain functions were handled by artificial devices, avoiding sharp transitions that would lead to issues of identity, thus running the risk of the person to be declared dead and thus not be a legitimate owner of his or her property. After this point, the human body could be treated as an optional accessory and the program implementing the person could be transferred to any sufficiently powerful computer. Another possible mechanism for mind upload is to perform a detailed scan of an individual’s original, organic brain and simulate the entire structure in a computer. What level of detail such scans and simulations would need to achieve to emulate awareness, and whether the scanning process would destroy the brain, is still to be determined.[29] Whatever the route to mind upload, persons in this state could then be considered essentially immortal, short of loss or traumatic destruction of the machines that maintained them.[clarification needed]

Transforming a human into a cyborg can include brain implants or extracting a human processing unit and placing it in a robotic life-support system. Even replacing biological organs with robotic ones could increase life span (e.g. pace makers) and depending on the definition, many technological upgrades to the body, like genetic modifications or the addition of nanobots would qualify an individual as a cyborg. Some people believe that such modifications would make one impervious to aging and disease and theoretically immortal unless killed or destroyed.

Another approach, developed by biogerontologist Marios Kyriazis, holds that human biological immortality is an inevitable consequence of evolution. As the natural tendency is to create progressively more complex structures,[30] there will be a time (Kyriazis claims this time is now[31]), when evolution of a more complex human brain will be faster via a process of developmental singularity[32] rather than through Darwinian evolution. In other words, the evolution of the human brain as we know it will cease and there will be no need for individuals to procreate and then die. Instead, a new type of development will take over, in the same individual who will have to live for many centuries in order for the development to take place. This intellectual development will be facilitated by technology such as synthetic biology, artificial intelligence and a technological singularity process.

As late as 1952, the editorial staff of the Syntopicon found in their compilation of the Great Books of the Western World, that “The philosophical issue concerning immortality cannot be separated from issues concerning the existence and nature of man’s soul.”[33] Thus, the vast majority of speculation regarding immortality before the 21st century was regarding the nature of the afterlife.

Immortality in ancient Greek religion originally always included an eternal union of body and soul as can be seen in Homer, Hesiod, and various other ancient texts. The soul was considered to have an eternal existence in Hades, but without the body the soul was considered dead. Although almost everybody had nothing to look forward to but an eternal existence as a disembodied dead soul, a number of men and women were considered to have gained physical immortality and been brought to live forever in either Elysium, the Islands of the Blessed, heaven, the ocean or literally right under the ground. Among these were Amphiaraus, Ganymede, Ino, Iphigenia, Menelaus, Peleus, and a great part of those who fought in the Trojan and Theban wars. Some were considered to have died and been resurrected before they achieved physical immortality. Asclepius was killed by Zeus only to be resurrected and transformed into a major deity. In some versions of the Trojan War myth, Achilles, after being killed, was snatched from his funeral pyre by his divine mother Thetis, resurrected, and brought to an immortal existence in either Leuce, the Elysian plains, or the Islands of the Blessed. Memnon, who was killed by Achilles, seems to have received a similar fate. Alcmene, Castor, Heracles, and Melicertes were also among the figures sometimes considered to have been resurrected to physical immortality. According to Herodotus’ Histories, the 7th century BC sage Aristeas of Proconnesus was first found dead, after which his body disappeared from a locked room. Later he was found not only to have been resurrected but to have gained immortality.

The philosophical idea of an immortal soul was a belief first appearing with either Pherecydes or the Orphics, and most importantly advocated by Plato and his followers. This, however, never became the general norm in Hellenistic thought. As may be witnessed even into the Christian era, not least by the complaints of various philosophers over popular beliefs, many or perhaps most traditional Greeks maintained the conviction that certain individuals were resurrected from the dead and made physically immortal and that others could only look forward to an existence as disembodied and dead, though everlasting, souls. The parallel between these traditional beliefs and the later resurrection of Jesus was not lost on the early Christians, as Justin Martyr argued: “when we say… Jesus Christ, our teacher, was crucified and died, and rose again, and ascended into heaven, we propose nothing different from what you believe regarding those whom you consider sons of Zeus.” (1 Apol. 21).

The goal of Hinayana is Arhatship and Nirvana. By contrast, the goal of Mahayana is Buddhahood.

According to one Tibetan Buddhist teaching, Dzogchen, individuals can transform the physical body into an immortal body of light called the rainbow body.

Christian theology holds that Adam and Eve lost physical immortality for themselves and all their descendants in the Fall of Man, although this initial “imperishability of the bodily frame of man” was “a preternatural condition”.[34] Christians who profess the Nicene Creed believe that every dead person (whether they believed in Christ or not) will be resurrected from the dead at the Second Coming, and this belief is known as Universal resurrection.[citation needed]

N.T. Wright, a theologian and former Bishop of Durham, has said many people forget the physical aspect of what Jesus promised. He told Time: “Jesus’ resurrection marks the beginning of a restoration that he will complete upon his return. Part of this will be the resurrection of all the dead, who will ‘awake’, be embodied and participate in the renewal. Wright says John Polkinghorne, a physicist and a priest, has put it this way: ‘God will download our software onto his hardware until the time he gives us new hardware to run the software again for ourselves.’ That gets to two things nicely: that the period after death (the Intermediate state) is a period when we are in God’s presence but not active in our own bodies, and also that the more important transformation will be when we are again embodied and administering Christ’s kingdom.”[35] This kingdom will consist of Heaven and Earth “joined together in a new creation”, he said.

Hindus believe in an immortal soul which is reincarnated after death. According to Hinduism, people repeat a process of life, death, and rebirth in a cycle called samsara. If they live their life well, their karma improves and their station in the next life will be higher, and conversely lower if they live their life poorly. After many life times of perfecting its karma, the soul is freed from the cycle and lives in perpetual bliss. There is no place of eternal torment in Hinduism, although if a soul consistently lives very evil lives, it could work its way down to the very bottom of the cycle.[citation needed]

There are explicit renderings in the Upanishads alluding to a physically immortal state brought about by purification, and sublimation of the 5 elements that make up the body. For example, in the Shvetashvatara Upanishad (Chapter 2, Verse 12), it is stated “When earth, water fire, air and akasa arise, that is to say, when the five attributes of the elements, mentioned in the books on yoga, become manifest then the yogi’s body becomes purified by the fire of yoga and he is free from illness, old age and death.”

Another view of immortality is traced to the Vedic tradition by the interpretation of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi:

That man indeed whom these (contacts)do not disturb, who is even-minded inpleasure and pain, steadfast, he is fitfor immortality, O best of men.[36]

To Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the verse means, “Once a man has become established in the understanding of the permanent reality of life, his mind rises above the influence of pleasure and pain. Such an unshakable man passes beyond the influence of death and in the permanent phase of life: he attains eternal life… A man established in the understanding of the unlimited abundance of absolute existence is naturally free from existence of the relative order. This is what gives him the status of immortal life.”[36]

An Indian Tamil saint known as Vallalar claimed to have achieved immortality before disappearing forever from a locked room in 1874.[37][38]

The traditional concept of an immaterial and immortal soul distinct from the body was not found in Judaism before the Babylonian Exile, but developed as a result of interaction with Persian and Hellenistic philosophies. Accordingly, the Hebrew word nephesh, although translated as “soul” in some older English Bibles, actually has a meaning closer to “living being”.[citation needed] Nephesh was rendered in the Septuagint as (psch), the Greek word for soul.[citation needed]

The only Hebrew word traditionally translated “soul” (nephesh) in English language Bibles refers to a living, breathing conscious body, rather than to an immortal soul.[39] In the New Testament, the Greek word traditionally translated “soul” () has substantially the same meaning as the Hebrew, without reference to an immortal soul.[40] Soul may refer to the whole person, the self: three thousand souls were converted in Acts 2:41 (see Acts 3:23).

The Hebrew Bible speaks about Sheol (), originally a synonym of the grave-the repository of the dead or the cessation of existence until the resurrection of the dead. This doctrine of resurrection is mentioned explicitly only in Daniel 12:14 although it may be implied in several other texts. New theories arose concerning Sheol during the intertestamental period.

The views about immortality in Judaism is perhaps best exemplified by the various references to this in Second Temple Period. The concept of resurrection of the physical body is found in 2 Maccabees, according to which it will happen through recreation of the flesh.[41] Resurrection of the dead also appears in detail in the extra-canonical books of Enoch,[42] and in Apocalypse of Baruch.[43] According to the British scholar in ancient Judaism Philip R. Davies, there is little or no clear reference either to immortality or to resurrection from the dead in the Dead Sea scrolls texts.[44] Both Josephus and the New Testament record that the Sadducees did not believe in an afterlife,[45] but the sources vary on the beliefs of the Pharisees. The New Testament claims that the Pharisees believed in the resurrection, but does not specify whether this included the flesh or not.[46] According to Josephus, who himself was a Pharisee, the Pharisees held that only the soul was immortal and the souls of good people will be reincarnated and pass into other bodies, while the souls of the wicked will suffer eternal punishment. [47] Jubilees seems to refer to the resurrection of the soul only, or to a more general idea of an immortal soul.[48]

Rabbinic Judaism claims that the righteous dead will be resurrected in the Messianic Age with the coming of the messiah. They will then be granted immortality in a perfect world. The wicked dead, on the other hand, will not be resurrected at all. This is not the only Jewish belief about the afterlife. The Tanakh is not specific about the afterlife, so there are wide differences in views and explanations among believers.[citation needed]

It is repeatedly stated in Lshi Chunqiu that death is unavoidable.[49] Henri Maspero noted that many scholarly works frame Taoism as a school of thought focused on the quest for immortality.[50] Isabelle Robinet asserts that Taoism is better understood as a way of life than as a religion, and that its adherents do not approach or view Taoism the way non-Taoist historians have done.[51] In the Tractate of Actions and their Retributions, a traditional teaching, spiritual immortality can be rewarded to people who do a certain amount of good deeds and live a simple, pure life. A list of good deeds and sins are tallied to determine whether or not a mortal is worthy. Spiritual immortality in this definition allows the soul to leave the earthly realms of afterlife and go to pure realms in the Taoist cosmology.[52]

Zoroastrians believe that on the fourth day after death, the human soul leaves the body and the body remains as an empty shell. Souls would go to either heaven or hell; these concepts of the afterlife in Zoroastrianism may have influenced Abrahamic religions. The Persian word for “immortal” is associated with the month “Amurdad”, meaning “deathless” in Persian, in the Iranian calendar (near the end of July). The month of Amurdad or Ameretat is celebrated in Persian culture as ancient Persians believed the “Angel of Immortality” won over the “Angel of Death” in this month.[53]

Alcmaeon of Croton argued that the soul is continuously and ceaselessly in motion. The exact form of his argument is unclear, but it appears to have influenced Plato, Aristotle, and other later writers.[54]

Plato’s Phaedo advances four arguments for the soul’s immortality:[55]

Plotinus offers a version of the argument that Kant calls “The Achilles of Rationalist Psychology”. Plotinus first argues that the soul is simple, then notes that a simple being cannot decompose. Many subsequent philosophers have argued both that the soul is simple and that it must be immortal. The tradition arguably culminates with Moses Mendelssohn’s Phaedon.[56]

Theodore Metochites argues that part of the soul’s nature is to move itself, but that a given movement will cease only if what causes the movement is separated from the thing moved an impossibility if they are one and the same.[57]

Avicenna argued for the distinctness of the soul and the body, and the incorruptibility of the former.[58]

The full argument for the immortality of the soul and Thomas Aquinas’ elaboration of Aristotelian theory is found in Question 75 of the First Part of the Summa Theologica.[59]

Ren Descartes endorses the claim that the soul is simple, and also that this entails that it cannot decompose. Descartes does not address the possibility that the soul might suddenly disappear.[60]

In early work, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz endorses a version of the argument from the simplicity of the soul to its immortality, but like his predecessors, he does not address the possibility that the soul might suddenly disappear. In his monadology he advances a sophisticated novel argument for the immortality of monads.[61]

Moses Mendelssohn’s Phaedon is a defense of the simplicity and immortality of the soul. It is a series of three dialogues, revisiting the Platonic dialogue Phaedo, in which Socrates argues for the immortality of the soul, in preparation for his own death. Many philosophers, including Plotinus, Descartes, and Leibniz, argue that the soul is simple, and that because simples cannot decompose they must be immortal. In the Phaedon, Mendelssohn addresses gaps in earlier versions of this argument (an argument that Kant calls the Achilles of Rationalist Psychology). The Phaedon contains an original argument for the simplicity of the soul, and also an original argument that simples cannot suddenly disappear. It contains further original arguments that the soul must retain its rational capacities as long as it exists.[62]

The possibility of clinical immortality raises a host of medical, philosophical, and religious issues and ethical questions. These include persistent vegetative states, the nature of personality over time, technology to mimic or copy the mind or its processes, social and economic disparities created by longevity, and survival of the heat death of the universe.

Physical immortality has also been imagined as a form of eternal torment, as in Mary Shelley’s short story “The Mortal Immortal”, the protagonist of which witnesses everyone he cares about dying around him. Jorge Luis Borges explored the idea that life gets its meaning from death in the short story “The Immortal”; an entire society having achieved immortality, they found time becoming infinite, and so found no motivation for any action. In his book Thursday’s Fictions, and the stage and film adaptations of it, Richard James Allen tells the story of a woman named Thursday who tries to cheat the cycle of reincarnation to get a form of eternal life. At the end of this fantastical tale, her son, Wednesday, who has witnessed the havoc his mother’s quest has caused, forgoes the opportunity for immortality when it is offered to him.[63] Likewise, the novel Tuck Everlasting depicts immortality as “falling off the wheel of life” and is viewed as a curse as opposed to a blessing. In the anime Casshern Sins humanity achieves immortality due to advances in medical technology; however, the inability of the human race to die causes Luna, a Messianic figure, to come forth and offer normal lifespans because she believed that without death, humans could not live. Ultimately, Casshern takes up the cause of death for humanity when Luna begins to restore humanity’s immortality. In Anne Rice’s book series The Vampire Chronicles, vampires are portrayed as immortal and ageless, but their inability to cope with the changes in the world around them means that few vampires live for much more than a century, and those who do often view their changeless form as a curse.

In his book Death, Yale philosopher Shelly Kagan argues that any form of human immortality would be undesirable. Kagan’s argument takes the form of a dilemma. Either our characters remain essentially the same in an immortal afterlife, or they do not. If our characters remain basically the samethat is, if we retain more or less the desires, interests, and goals that we have nowthen eventually, over an infinite stretch of time, we will get bored and find eternal life unbearably tedious. If, on the other hand, our characters are radically changede.g., by God periodically erasing our memories or giving us rat-like brains that never tire of certain simple pleasuresthen such a person would be too different from our current self for us to care much what happens to them. Either way, Kagan argues, immortality is unattractive. The best outcome, Kagan argues, would be for humans to live as long as they desired and then to accept death gratefully as rescuing us from the unbearable tedium of immortality.[64]

If human beings were to achieve immortality, there would most likely be a change in the worlds’ social structures. Sociologist argue that human beings’ awareness of their own mortality shapes their behavior.[65] With the advancements in medical technology in extending human life, there may need to be serious considerations made about future social structures. The world is already experiencing a global demographic shift of increasingly ageing populations with lower replacement rates.[66] The social changes that are made to accommodate this new population shift may be able to offer insight on the possibility of an immortal society.

Although some scientists state that radical life extension, delaying and stopping aging are achievable,[67] there are no international or national programs focused on stopping aging or on radical life extension. In 2012 in Russia, and then in the United States, Israel and the Netherlands, pro-immortality political parties were launched. They aimed to provide political support to anti-aging and radical life extension research and technologies and at the same time transition to the next step, radical life extension, life without aging, and finally, immortality and aim to make possible access to such technologies to most currently living people.[68]

There are numerous symbols representing immortality. The ankh is an Egyptian symbol of life that holds connotations of immortality when depicted in the hands of the gods and pharaohs, who were seen as having control over the journey of life. The Mbius strip in the shape of a trefoil knot is another symbol of immortality. Most symbolic representations of infinity or the life cycle are often used to represent immortality depending on the context they are placed in. Other examples include the Ouroboros, the Chinese fungus of longevity, the ten kanji, the phoenix, the peacock in Christianity,[69] and the colors amaranth (in Western culture) and peach (in Chinese culture).

Immortality is a popular subject in fiction, as it explores humanity’s deep-seated fears and comprehension of its own mortality. Immortal beings and species abound in fiction, especially fantasy fiction, and the meaning of “immortal” tends to vary. The Epic of Gilgamesh, one of the first literary works, is primarily a quest of a hero seeking to become immortal.[6]

Some fictional beings are completely immortal (or very nearly so) in that they are immune to death by injury, disease and age. Sometimes such powerful immortals can only be killed by each other, as is the case with the Q from the Star Trek series. Even if something can’t be killed, a common plot device involves putting an immortal being into a slumber or limbo, as is done with Morgoth in J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Silmarillion and the Dreaming God of Pathways Into Darkness. Storytellers often make it a point to give weaknesses to even the most indestructible of beings. For instance, Superman is supposed to be invulnerable, yet his enemies were able to exploit his now-infamous weakness: Kryptonite. (See also Achilles’ heel.)

Many fictitious species are said to be immortal if they cannot die of old age, even though they can be killed through other means, such as injury. Modern fantasy elves often exhibit this form of immortality. Other creatures, such as vampires and the immortals in the film Highlander, can only die from beheading. The classic and stereotypical vampire is typically slain by one of several very specific means, including a silver bullet (or piercing with other silver weapons), a stake through the heart (perhaps made of consecrated wood), or by exposing them to sunlight.[70][71]

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Immortality – Wikipedia

Immortality | Superpower Wiki | FANDOM powered by Wikia

ImmortalityPower/Ability to:

Never die.

The power to never die. Opposite to Mortality.

User possesses an infinite life span, as they can never die, never age, and can shrug off virtually any kind of physical damage. Some users are the defensive type, simply preventing all damages, to appear physically invulnerable, while others are the regenerative type, surviving and quickly recovering from anything you throw at them while at the same time they are capable of resurrecting themselves instantly after death and completely self-sustaining, free from all bodily necessities.

Some may only possess the power of:

Semi-Immortality

Reliant Immortality (Concept-Dependent Immortality, Self-Puppetry)

Immortality (Immortality via Regenerative Healing Factor)

Unfettered Body

Absolute Immortality

It is highly likely that various kinds of Immortality can become a curse because whoever is close to them or even their friends had past away, the user would be left behind, unless the user is also gifted the ability to teleport to both Earth and Heaven, or alternatively Meta Teleportation to keep the curse of being immortal at bay.

See Also: Immortality and Complete Immortality.

Zeus (Greek mythology) is immortal Father of Gods and ruler of Olympus.

Sun Wukong (Journey Into The West) become unable to die or be harmed in any way after eating both the food of the heavens and erasing his name off death’s register.

Teitoku Kakine (A Certain Magical Index) achieved a form of immortality by creating a human tissues (and a new body) out of his Dark Matter.

Ladylee (A Certain Magical Index) is an immortal, in that when she grew weary of living, she sought to use powerful magic to kill her, which did not work.

Tenzen Yakushiji (Basilisk) having his symbiote “eat” away his wounds and restoring any ravages of time or battle, even reattaching his head by sealing the cut.

Behelits (Berserk) are stone fetishes of unknown supernatural origin said to govern the fate of humanity. They are used primarily for summoning the angels of the God Hand, at which point their owners are granted a wish in exchange for a sacrifice.

Creed Diskenth (Black Cat) possesses the God’s Breath nano-machines within his body, regenerating even fatal wounds in seconds and maintaining his youth, thus granting him immortality aside from any brain damage being irreparable.

Ssuke Aizen (Bleach) gained immortality after fusing with the Hgyoku.

C.C (Code Geass) is immortal.

V.V (Code Geass) is immortal.

Due to the contradiction caused by the fusion of the absolutely immortal Zamasu and the mortal Goku Black, Merged Zamasu (Dragon Ball) has imperfect immortality.

Zeref (Fairy Tail) was cursed by Ankhseram with his contradiction curse which gives him uncontrollable Death Magic and Immortality.

Kager (Flame of Recca) using a forbidden spell that opens a time portal, but it traps her outside of space-time, rendering her completely immortal.

The Truth (Fullmetal Alchemist) is invincible, immortal and invulnerable.

Utsuro (Gintama) possesses immortality by harnessing the Altana energy of Earth to prevent aging and recover from wounds and diseases.

Kouka (Gintama) possessed immortality by harnessing the Altana energy of Kouan to prevent aging and recover from wounds and diseases. However, when she left the planet for good, she weakened overtime and died.

China (Hetalia) is the only nation stated to be truly immortal.

Yta (Mermaid Saga) is a 500 years old immortal since unwittingly eating mermaid’s flesh.

Mana (Mermaid Saga) is a 15 years old immortal since being fed mermaid’s flesh.

Masato (Mermaid Saga) is an 800 years old immortal since eating mermaid’s flesh.

Ban, the Undead (Nanatsu no Taizai) acquired immortality after drinking the Fountain of Youth.

Meliodas (Nanatsu no Taizai) was cursed with the immortality by the Demon King.

Orochimaru (Naruto) considers himself immortal with his Living Corpse Reincarnation to transfer his soul to another body and his Cursed Seals as anchors of his conscious.

Hidan’s (Naruto) main advantage is his inability to die by physical damage, though he is vulnerable to death by lack of nutrient.

Kakuzu (Naruto) attained a form of immortality (though he denies to think of it as such) by tearing hearts out of others and integrating them into himself, extending his lifespan. He kept five inside him at all times.

Madara Uchiha (Naruto) claims he has achieved complete immortality due to hosting the Shinju, as he regenerated form his torso being blown apart. Only when the tailed beasts were all pulled out of him did he die.

Kaguya tsutsuki (Naruto) is immortal, in that she has tremendous regenerative powers, and that the only way to defeat her is to seal her person away by splitting her chakra into the nine tailed beasts.

Gemma Himuro (Ninja Scroll) putting his severed body parts back together, even his head is possible, rendering him immortal.

Due to her race, Jibril (No Game No Life) has reached 6407 years of age, she also has incredibly vast knowledge and high magical abilities, in two words; she gathers many old and new knowledge, in other words; she can no longer age or die.

Yume Hasegawa (Pupa) is an immortal monster incarnated into human form, possessing regenerative abilities that rendered her very difficult to kill.

Utsutsu Hasegawa (Pupa) has been fed the flesh of her immortal “sister”, giving him tremendous regenerative powers that made him more or less immortal.

Rin Asogi (RIN ~Daughters of Mnemosyne~) is immortal, due to a magic spore from Yggdrasil. she can even handle more alcohol than a normal person.

Free (Soul Eater) is a werewolf from the Immortal Clan, and therefore, immortal. He can only be harmed and killed by the “Witch-Hunt”.

Koj Akatsuki (Strike the Blood) is revealed to be immortal, even by vampire standards after regenerating from complete decapitation.

Tta Konoe (UQ Holder) cannot regrow limbs unless they are completely destroyed, but otherwise is immortal and can reattach any of it, including his head.

Karin Yki (UQ Holder) has one of the highest ranked forms of immortality, stating that she’s “not permitted to get hurt or die”

Elder Toguro (Yu Yu Hakusho) stated that his regenerative powers enables him from dying. This prevented him from dying from Kurama’s torturous Sinning Tree.

Dio Brando (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure) become a vampire and gain immortality by using the Stone Mask.

Through the unknown power of his Stand or since merging with DIO’s flesh bud, Nijimura’s Father (Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure Part IV Diamonds Are Unbreakable) is effectively immortal and possess extraordinary healing capabilities.

The Stone Mask (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Parts I Phantom Blood and II Battle Tendency).

Setsuna F. Seiei (Mobile Suit Gundam 00 The Movie – A wakening of the Trailblazer)

Porky Minch (Earthbound) has abused Time Travel so much that his body is stuck in the current timeline and cannot age nor die.

It is believed that Ganondorf (The Legend of Zelda) is immortal due to the Triforce of Power.

Clockwerk (Sly Cooper) has kept himself alive for millennia thanks to his cybernetic body and his jealousy and hatred of the Cooper Clan.

The Darkness (Skylanders) can only be killed by the Core of Light.

Shadow the Hedgehog (Sonic the Hedgehog)

Chip/Light Gaia (Sonic the Hedgehog)

Solaris (Sonic the Hedgehog) is a super-dimensional life form and the Sun God of Solenna, and exists in all timelines that he is immortal unless he is killed simultaneously in every temporal point.

Presea Combatir (Tales of Symphonia) is immortal and invulnerable because of a combination of her exsphere and her special ability Suppress

Kaguya Houraisan (Touhou Project) drank the Hourai Elixir, which grants her immortal in every sense of the word: she does not age, is immune to disease, and can regenerate from even being completely disintegrated.

Though he can be imprisoned and sealed away, Grima (Fire Emblem) can only be truly and permanently killed by his own hand.

Snow White (Valkyrie Crusade) is a immortal princess that is always trying to die, but nothing works.

Guardians (Destiny) are considered immortal due to being empowered by the Light and coming back from death every time.

Dominus Ghaul (Destiny) after stealing the Light has become Immortal as he can resurrect himself.

Doomsday (DC Comics), being immune to all that once killed him.

Ra’s al Ghl (DC Comics) is granted immortality by the Lazarus Pit’s effects.

Lobo (DC Comics) possessing regenerative powers of such a level that he can recreate his entire body from nothing more than a puddle of his blood, as he is banned from Death.

Resurrection Man (DC Comics) is immortal, and will return to life no matter how many times he is killed, returning with a new power associated to how he was killed.

Hercules (Marvel Comics) an Olympic half God.

Deadpool (Marvel Comics) is in the same boat as Thanos, both banished from death.

Gaea (Marvel Comics), the Elder Goddess of Nature.

Loki (Marvel Comics), the God of Mischief, is immortal.

Zeus (Marvel Comics), the King of the Olympic Gods.

Atlas (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Adam Destine (Marvel Comics) is immortal and invulnerable to physical harm.

Mr. Immortal (Marvel Comics) having evolved beyond death cannot be killed permanently, and will always come back to life without so much as a scar.

Count Nefaria (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Wonder Man (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Garokk (Marvel Comics) The Petrified Man

Dr. Manhattan (Watchmen) is immortal due to his physiology.

Joshua Foley/Elixir (Marvel Comics) although Josh can die he is able to resurrect himself

Ananke (The Wicked + The Divine)

Pariah Dark (Danny Phantom) is the powerful immortal, former king of ghosts.

Peter Griffin (Family Guy) Peter Griffin has survived many life threatening situations and came back unscathed.

Ernie the Giant Chicken (Family Guy) always comes back for a rematch despite Peter Griffin always dealing a fatal blow on Ernie.

The Dog Talisman (Jackie Chan Adventures) grants its master invincibility.

General Immortus (Teen Titans) knows the strategy of every battle in history because he was there to see it.

Diagon (Ben 10: Ultimate Alien) does not age and cannot be killed.

The Eternals (Marvel Comics) a race of immortal beings that live alongside humanity for centuries.

Nightcrawler (Marvel Comics) cannot return to the afterlife due to sacrificing his soul in order to resurrect himself. This means Kurt cannot die by any natural means

Lord Voldemort (Harry Potter) acquired immortality by splitting his soul and hiding the fragments in various objects as anchors, though when his body was destroyed, he existed as a spectral form that many others would prefer death over.

Fawkes (Harry Potter) is a phoenix, who will be reborn with all of his memories intact upon death, and thus immortal, being the only known creatures in the wizarding world to have natural immortality.

Adam Monroe (Heroes) possessed immortality due to his tremendously advanced regeneration ability, though once the ability is taken away from him, he died within seconds.

Nathan Young (MisFits) is immortal.

Starscream (Transformers G1) possesses an immortal Spark, soul energy, meaning even if his physical vessel is destroyed he will live on.

Jason Voorhees (Friday the 13th) can only be truly and permanently killed by his own family members.

The Beast (Doctor Who) claims to have existed before our universe was created

Candyman (Candyman) has lived for centuries

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Immortality | Superpower Wiki | FANDOM powered by Wikia

536. Ode. Intimations of Immortality. William Wordsworth …

THERE was a time when meadow, grove, and stream,The earth, and every common sight,To me did seemApparell’d in celestial light,The glory and the freshness of a dream.5It is not now as it hath been of yore;Turn wheresoe’er I may,By night or day,The things which I have seen I now can see no more.The rainbow comes and goes,10And lovely is the rose;The moon doth with delightLook round her when the heavens are bare;Waters on a starry nightAre beautiful and fair;15The sunshine is a glorious birth;But yet I know, where’er I go,That there hath pass’d away a glory from the earth.Now, while the birds thus sing a joyous song,And while the young lambs bound20As to the tabor’s sound,To me alone there came a thought of grief:A timely utterance gave that thought relief,And I again am strong:The cataracts blow their trumpets from the steep;25No more shall grief of mine the season wrong;I hear the echoes through the mountains throng,The winds come to me from the fields of sleep,And all the earth is gay;Land and sea30Give themselves up to jollity,And with the heart of MayDoth every beast keep holiday;Thou Child of Joy,Shout round me, let me hear thy shouts, thou happy35Shepherd-boy!Ye blessd creatures, I have heard the callYe to each other make; I seeThe heavens laugh with you in your jubilee;My heart is at your festival,40My head hath its coronal,The fulness of your bliss, I feelI feel it all.O evil day! if I were sullenWhile Earth herself is adorning,This sweet May-morning,45And the children are cullingOn every side,In a thousand valleys far and wide,Fresh flowers; while the sun shines warm,And the babe leaps up on his mother’s arm:50I hear, I hear, with joy I hear!But there’s a tree, of many, one,A single field which I have look’d upon,Both of them speak of something that is gone:The pansy at my feet55Doth the same tale repeat:Whither is fled the visionary gleam?Where is it now, the glory and the dream?Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting:The Soul that rises with us, our life’s Star,60Hath had elsewhere its setting,And cometh from afar:Not in entire forgetfulness,And not in utter nakedness,But trailing clouds of glory do we come65From God, who is our home:Heaven lies about us in our infancy!Shades of the prison-house begin to closeUpon the growing Boy,But he beholds the light, and whence it flows,70He sees it in his joy;The Youth, who daily farther from the eastMust travel, still is Nature’s priest,And by the vision splendidIs on his way attended;75At length the Man perceives it die away,And fade into the light of common day.Earth fills her lap with pleasures of her own;Yearnings she hath in her own natural kind,And, even with something of a mother’s mind,80And no unworthy aim,The homely nurse doth all she canTo make her foster-child, her Inmate Man,Forget the glories he hath known,And that imperial palace whence he came.85Behold the Child among his new-born blisses,A six years’ darling of a pigmy size!See, where ‘mid work of his own hand he lies,Fretted by sallies of his mother’s kisses,With light upon him from his father’s eyes!90See, at his feet, some little plan or chart,Some fragment from his dream of human life,Shaped by himself with newly-learnd art;A wedding or a festival,A mourning or a funeral;95And this hath now his heart,And unto this he frames his song:Then will he fit his tongueTo dialogues of business, love, or strife;But it will not be long100Ere this be thrown aside,And with new joy and prideThe little actor cons another part;Filling from time to time his ‘humorous stage’With all the Persons, down to palsied Age,105That Life brings with her in her equipage;As if his whole vocationWere endless imitation.Thou, whose exterior semblance doth belieThy soul’s immensity;110Thou best philosopher, who yet dost keepThy heritage, thou eye among the blind,That, deaf and silent, read’st the eternal deep,Haunted for ever by the eternal mind,Mighty prophet! Seer blest!115On whom those truths do rest,Which we are toiling all our lives to find,In darkness lost, the darkness of the grave;Thou, over whom thy ImmortalityBroods like the Day, a master o’er a slave,120A presence which is not to be put by;To whom the graveIs but a lonely bed without the sense or sightOf day or the warm light,A place of thought where we in waiting lie;125Thou little Child, yet glorious in the mightOf heaven-born freedom on thy being’s height,Why with such earnest pains dost thou provokeThe years to bring the inevitable yoke,Thus blindly with thy blessedness at strife?130Full soon thy soul shall have her earthly freight,And custom lie upon thee with a weight,Heavy as frost, and deep almost as life!O joy! that in our embersIs something that doth live,135That nature yet remembersWhat was so fugitive!The thought of our past years in me doth breedPerpetual benediction: not indeedFor that which is most worthy to be blest140Delight and liberty, the simple creedOf childhood, whether busy or at rest,With new-fledged hope still fluttering in his breast:Not for these I raiseThe song of thanks and praise;145But for those obstinate questioningsOf sense and outward things,Fallings from us, vanishings;Blank misgivings of a CreatureMoving about in worlds not realized,150High instincts before which our mortal NatureDid tremble like a guilty thing surprised:But for those first affections,Those shadowy recollections,Which, be they what they may,155Are yet the fountain-light of all our day,Are yet a master-light of all our seeing;Uphold us, cherish, and have power to makeOur noisy years seem moments in the beingOf the eternal Silence: truths that wake,160To perish never:Which neither listlessness, nor mad endeavour,Nor Man nor Boy,Nor all that is at enmity with joy,Can utterly abolish or destroy!165Hence in a season of calm weatherThough inland far we be,Our souls have sight of that immortal seaWhich brought us hither,Can in a moment travel thither,170And see the children sport upon the shore,And hear the mighty waters rolling evermore.Then sing, ye birds, sing, sing a joyous song!And let the young lambs boundAs to the tabor’s sound!175We in thought will join your throng,Ye that pipe and ye that play,Ye that through your hearts to-dayFeel the gladness of the May!What though the radiance which was once so bright180Be now for ever taken from my sight,Though nothing can bring back the hourOf splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower;We will grieve not, rather findStrength in what remains behind;185In the primal sympathyWhich having been must ever be;In the soothing thoughts that springOut of human suffering;In the faith that looks through death,190In years that bring the philosophic mind.And O ye Fountains, Meadows, Hills, and Groves,Forebode not any severing of our loves!Yet in my heart of hearts I feel your might;I only have relinquish’d one delight195To live beneath your more habitual sway.I love the brooks which down their channels fret,Even more than when I tripp’d lightly as they;The innocent brightness of a new-born DayIs lovely yet;200The clouds that gather round the setting sunDo take a sober colouring from an eyeThat hath kept watch o’er man’s mortality;Another race hath been, and other palms are won.Thanks to the human heart by which we live,205Thanks to its tenderness, its joys, and fears,To me the meanest flower that blows can giveThoughts that do often lie too deep for tears.

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536. Ode. Intimations of Immortality. William Wordsworth …

Immortality | Superpower Wiki | FANDOM powered by Wikia

ImmortalityPower/Ability to:

Never die.

The power to never die. Opposite to Mortality.

User possesses an infinite life span, as they can never die, never age, and can shrug off virtually any kind of physical damage. Some users are the defensive type, simply preventing all damages, to appear physically invulnerable, while others are the regenerative type, surviving and quickly recovering from anything you throw at them while at the same time they are capable of resurrecting themselves instantly after death and completely self-sustaining, free from all bodily necessities.

Some may only possess the power of:

Semi-Immortality

Reliant Immortality (Concept-Dependent Immortality, Self-Puppetry)

Immortality (Immortality via Regenerative Healing Factor)

Unfettered Body

Absolute Immortality

It is highly likely that various kinds of Immortality can become a curse because whoever is close to them or even their friends had past away, the user would be left behind, unless the user is also gifted the ability to teleport to both Earth and Heaven, or alternatively Meta Teleportation to keep the curse of being immortal at bay.

See Also: Immortality and Complete Immortality.

Zeus (Greek mythology) is immortal Father of Gods and ruler of Olympus.

Sun Wukong (Journey Into The West) become unable to die or be harmed in any way after eating both the food of the heavens and erasing his name off death’s register.

Teitoku Kakine (A Certain Magical Index) achieved a form of immortality by creating a human tissues (and a new body) out of his Dark Matter.

Ladylee (A Certain Magical Index) is an immortal, in that when she grew weary of living, she sought to use powerful magic to kill her, which did not work.

Tenzen Yakushiji (Basilisk) having his symbiote “eat” away his wounds and restoring any ravages of time or battle, even reattaching his head by sealing the cut.

Behelits (Berserk) are stone fetishes of unknown supernatural origin said to govern the fate of humanity. They are used primarily for summoning the angels of the God Hand, at which point their owners are granted a wish in exchange for a sacrifice.

Creed Diskenth (Black Cat) possesses the God’s Breath nano-machines within his body, regenerating even fatal wounds in seconds and maintaining his youth, thus granting him immortality aside from any brain damage being irreparable.

Ssuke Aizen (Bleach) gained immortality after fusing with the Hgyoku.

C.C (Code Geass) is immortal.

V.V (Code Geass) is immortal.

Due to the contradiction caused by the fusion of the absolutely immortal Zamasu and the mortal Goku Black, Merged Zamasu (Dragon Ball) has imperfect immortality.

Zeref (Fairy Tail) was cursed by Ankhseram with his contradiction curse which gives him uncontrollable Death Magic and Immortality.

Kager (Flame of Recca) using a forbidden spell that opens a time portal, but it traps her outside of space-time, rendering her completely immortal.

The Truth (Fullmetal Alchemist) is invincible, immortal and invulnerable.

Utsuro (Gintama) possesses immortality by harnessing the Altana energy of Earth to prevent aging and recover from wounds and diseases.

Kouka (Gintama) possessed immortality by harnessing the Altana energy of Kouan to prevent aging and recover from wounds and diseases. However, when she left the planet for good, she weakened overtime and died.

China (Hetalia) is the only nation stated to be truly immortal.

Yta (Mermaid Saga) is a 500 years old immortal since unwittingly eating mermaid’s flesh.

Mana (Mermaid Saga) is a 15 years old immortal since being fed mermaid’s flesh.

Masato (Mermaid Saga) is an 800 years old immortal since eating mermaid’s flesh.

Ban, the Undead (Nanatsu no Taizai) acquired immortality after drinking the Fountain of Youth.

Meliodas (Nanatsu no Taizai) was cursed with the immortality by the Demon King.

Orochimaru (Naruto) considers himself immortal with his Living Corpse Reincarnation to transfer his soul to another body and his Cursed Seals as anchors of his conscious.

Hidan’s (Naruto) main advantage is his inability to die by physical damage, though he is vulnerable to death by lack of nutrient.

Kakuzu (Naruto) attained a form of immortality (though he denies to think of it as such) by tearing hearts out of others and integrating them into himself, extending his lifespan. He kept five inside him at all times.

Madara Uchiha (Naruto) claims he has achieved complete immortality due to hosting the Shinju, as he regenerated form his torso being blown apart. Only when the tailed beasts were all pulled out of him did he die.

Kaguya tsutsuki (Naruto) is immortal, in that she has tremendous regenerative powers, and that the only way to defeat her is to seal her person away by splitting her chakra into the nine tailed beasts.

Gemma Himuro (Ninja Scroll) putting his severed body parts back together, even his head is possible, rendering him immortal.

Due to her race, Jibril (No Game No Life) has reached 6407 years of age, she also has incredibly vast knowledge and high magical abilities, in two words; she gathers many old and new knowledge, in other words; she can no longer age or die.

Yume Hasegawa (Pupa) is an immortal monster incarnated into human form, possessing regenerative abilities that rendered her very difficult to kill.

Utsutsu Hasegawa (Pupa) has been fed the flesh of her immortal “sister”, giving him tremendous regenerative powers that made him more or less immortal.

Rin Asogi (RIN ~Daughters of Mnemosyne~) is immortal, due to a magic spore from Yggdrasil. she can even handle more alcohol than a normal person.

Free (Soul Eater) is a werewolf from the Immortal Clan, and therefore, immortal. He can only be harmed and killed by the “Witch-Hunt”.

Koj Akatsuki (Strike the Blood) is revealed to be immortal, even by vampire standards after regenerating from complete decapitation.

Tta Konoe (UQ Holder) cannot regrow limbs unless they are completely destroyed, but otherwise is immortal and can reattach any of it, including his head.

Karin Yki (UQ Holder) has one of the highest ranked forms of immortality, stating that she’s “not permitted to get hurt or die”

Elder Toguro (Yu Yu Hakusho) stated that his regenerative powers enables him from dying. This prevented him from dying from Kurama’s torturous Sinning Tree.

Dio Brando (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure) become a vampire and gain immortality by using the Stone Mask.

Through the unknown power of his Stand or since merging with DIO’s flesh bud, Nijimura’s Father (Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure Part IV Diamonds Are Unbreakable) is effectively immortal and possess extraordinary healing capabilities.

The Stone Mask (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Parts I Phantom Blood and II Battle Tendency).

Setsuna F. Seiei (Mobile Suit Gundam 00 The Movie – A wakening of the Trailblazer)

Porky Minch (Earthbound) has abused Time Travel so much that his body is stuck in the current timeline and cannot age nor die.

It is believed that Ganondorf (The Legend of Zelda) is immortal due to the Triforce of Power.

Clockwerk (Sly Cooper) has kept himself alive for millennia thanks to his cybernetic body and his jealousy and hatred of the Cooper Clan.

The Darkness (Skylanders) can only be killed by the Core of Light.

Shadow the Hedgehog (Sonic the Hedgehog)

Chip/Light Gaia (Sonic the Hedgehog)

Solaris (Sonic the Hedgehog) is a super-dimensional life form and the Sun God of Solenna, and exists in all timelines that he is immortal unless he is killed simultaneously in every temporal point.

Presea Combatir (Tales of Symphonia) is immortal and invulnerable because of a combination of her exsphere and her special ability Suppress

Kaguya Houraisan (Touhou Project) drank the Hourai Elixir, which grants her immortal in every sense of the word: she does not age, is immune to disease, and can regenerate from even being completely disintegrated.

Though he can be imprisoned and sealed away, Grima (Fire Emblem) can only be truly and permanently killed by his own hand.

Snow White (Valkyrie Crusade) is a immortal princess that is always trying to die, but nothing works.

Guardians (Destiny) are considered immortal due to being empowered by the Light and coming back from death every time.

Dominus Ghaul (Destiny) after stealing the Light has become Immortal as he can resurrect himself.

Doomsday (DC Comics), being immune to all that once killed him.

Ra’s al Ghl (DC Comics) is granted immortality by the Lazarus Pit’s effects.

Lobo (DC Comics) possessing regenerative powers of such a level that he can recreate his entire body from nothing more than a puddle of his blood, as he is banned from Death.

Resurrection Man (DC Comics) is immortal, and will return to life no matter how many times he is killed, returning with a new power associated to how he was killed.

Hercules (Marvel Comics) an Olympic half God.

Deadpool (Marvel Comics) is in the same boat as Thanos, both banished from death.

Gaea (Marvel Comics), the Elder Goddess of Nature.

Loki (Marvel Comics), the God of Mischief, is immortal.

Zeus (Marvel Comics), the King of the Olympic Gods.

Atlas (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Adam Destine (Marvel Comics) is immortal and invulnerable to physical harm.

Mr. Immortal (Marvel Comics) having evolved beyond death cannot be killed permanently, and will always come back to life without so much as a scar.

Count Nefaria (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Wonder Man (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Garokk (Marvel Comics) The Petrified Man

Dr. Manhattan (Watchmen) is immortal due to his physiology.

Joshua Foley/Elixir (Marvel Comics) although Josh can die he is able to resurrect himself

Ananke (The Wicked + The Divine)

Pariah Dark (Danny Phantom) is the powerful immortal, former king of ghosts.

Peter Griffin (Family Guy) Peter Griffin has survived many life threatening situations and came back unscathed.

Ernie the Giant Chicken (Family Guy) always comes back for a rematch despite Peter Griffin always dealing a fatal blow on Ernie.

The Dog Talisman (Jackie Chan Adventures) grants its master invincibility.

General Immortus (Teen Titans) knows the strategy of every battle in history because he was there to see it.

Diagon (Ben 10: Ultimate Alien) does not age and cannot be killed.

The Eternals (Marvel Comics) a race of immortal beings that live alongside humanity for centuries.

Nightcrawler (Marvel Comics) cannot return to the afterlife due to sacrificing his soul in order to resurrect himself. This means Kurt cannot die by any natural means

Lord Voldemort (Harry Potter) acquired immortality by splitting his soul and hiding the fragments in various objects as anchors, though when his body was destroyed, he existed as a spectral form that many others would prefer death over.

Fawkes (Harry Potter) is a phoenix, who will be reborn with all of his memories intact upon death, and thus immortal, being the only known creatures in the wizarding world to have natural immortality.

Adam Monroe (Heroes) possessed immortality due to his tremendously advanced regeneration ability, though once the ability is taken away from him, he died within seconds.

Nathan Young (MisFits) is immortal.

Starscream (Transformers G1) possesses an immortal Spark, soul energy, meaning even if his physical vessel is destroyed he will live on.

Jason Voorhees (Friday the 13th) can only be truly and permanently killed by his own family members.

The Beast (Doctor Who) claims to have existed before our universe was created

Candyman (Candyman) has lived for centuries

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Immortality | philosophy and religion | Britannica.com

Immortality, in philosophy and religion, the indefinite continuation of the mental, spiritual, or physical existence of individual human beings. In many philosophical and religious traditions, immortality is specifically conceived as the continued existence of an immaterial soul or mind beyond the physical death of the body.

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Christianity: The immortality of the soul

Human beings seem always to have had some notion of a shadowy double that survives the death of the body. But the idea of the soul as a mental entity, with intellectual and moral qualities, interacting with a physical organism but

The earlier anthropologists, such as Sir Edward Burnett Tylor and Sir James George Frazer, assembled convincing evidence that the belief in a future life was widespread in the regions of primitive culture. Among most peoples the belief has continued through the centuries. But the nature of future existence has been conceived in very different ways. As Tylor showed, in the earliest known times there was little, often no, ethical relation between conduct on earth and the life beyond. Morris Jastrow wrote of the almost complete absence of all ethical considerations in connection with the dead in ancient Babylonia and Assyria.

In some regions and early religious traditions, it came to be declared that warriors who died in battle went to a place of happiness. Later there was a general development of the ethical idea that the afterlife would be one of rewards and punishments for conduct on earth. So in ancient Egypt at death the individual was represented as coming before judges as to that conduct. The Persian followers of Zoroaster accepted the notion of Chinvat peretu, or the Bridge of the Requiter, which was to be crossed after death and which was broad for the righteous and narrow for the wicked, who fell from it into hell. In Indian philosophy and religion, the steps upwardor downwardin the series of future incarnated lives have been (and still are) regarded as consequences of conduct and attitudes in the present life (see karma). The idea of future rewards and punishments was pervasive among Christians in the Middle Ages and is held today by many Christians of all denominations. In contrast, many secular thinkers maintain that the morally good is to be sought for itself and evil shunned on its own account, irrespective of any belief in a future life.

That the belief in immortality has been widespread through history is no proof of its truth. It may be a superstition that arose from dreams or other natural experiences. Thus, the question of its validity has been raised philosophically from the earliest times that people began to engage in intelligent reflection. In the Hindu Katha Upanishad, Naciketas says: This doubt there is about a man departedsome say: He is; some: He does not exist. Of this would I know. The Upanishadsthe basis of most traditional philosophy in Indiaare predominantly a discussion of the nature of humanity and its ultimate destiny.

Immortality was also one of the chief problems of Platos thought. With the contention that reality, as such, is fundamentally spiritual, he tried to prove immortality, maintaining that nothing could destroy the soul. Aristotle conceived of reason as eternal but did not defend personal immortality, as he thought the soul could not exist in a disembodied state. The Epicureans, from a materialistic standpoint, held that there is no consciousness after death, and it is thus not to be feared. The Stoics believed that it is the rational universe as a whole that persists. Individual humans, as the Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius wrote, simply have their allotted periods in the drama of existence. The Roman orator Cicero, however, finally accepted personal immortality. St. Augustine of Hippo, following Neoplatonism, regarded human beings souls as being in essence eternal.

The Islamic philosopher Avicenna declared the soul immortal, but his coreligionist Averros, keeping closer to Aristotle, accepted the eternity only of universal reason. St. Albertus Magnus defended immortality on the ground that the soul, in itself a cause, is an independent reality. John Scotus Erigena contended that personal immortality cannot be proved or disproved by reason. Benedict de Spinoza, taking God as ultimate reality, as a whole maintained his eternity but not the immortality of individual persons within him. The German philosopher Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz contended that reality is constituted of spiritual monads. Human beings, as finite monads, not capable of origination by composition, are created by God, who could also annihilate them. However, because God has planted in humans a striving for spiritual perfection, there may be faith that he will ensure their continued existence, thus giving them the possibility to achieve it.

The French mathematician and philosopher Blaise Pascal argued that belief in the God of Christianityand accordingly in the immortality of the soulis justified on practical grounds by the fact that one who believes has everything to gain if he is right and nothing to lose if he is wrong, while one who does not believe has everything to lose if he is wrong and nothing to gain if he is right. The German Enlightenment philosopher Immanuel Kant held that immortality cannot be demonstrated by pure reason but must be accepted as an essential condition of morality. Holiness, the perfect accordance of the will with the moral law, demands endless progress only possible on the supposition of an endless duration of the existence and personality of the same rational being (which is called the immortality of the soul). Considerably less-sophisticated arguments both before and after Kant attempted to demonstrate the reality of an immortal soul by asserting that human beings would have no motivation to behave morally unless they believed in an eternal afterlife in which the good are rewarded and the evil are punished. A related argument held that denying an eternal afterlife of reward and punishment would lead to the repugnant conclusion that the universe is unjust.

In the late 19th century, the concept of immortality waned as a philosophical preoccupation, in part because of the secularization of philosophy under the growing influence of science.

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Immortality | philosophy and religion | Britannica.com

Immortality – Wikipedia

Immortality is eternal life, being exempt from death, unending existence.[2] Some modern species may possess biological immortality.

Certain scientists, futurists, and philosophers have theorized about the immortality of the human body, with some suggesting that human immortality may be achievable in the first few decades of the 21st century. Other advocates believe that life extension is a more achievable goal in the short term, with immortality awaiting further research breakthroughs. The absence of aging would provide humans with biological immortality, but not invulnerability to death by disease or physical trauma; although mind uploading could solve that if it proved possible. Whether the process of internal endoimmortality is delivered within the upcoming years depends chiefly on research (and in neuron research in the case of endoimmortality through an immortalized cell line) in the former view and perhaps is an awaited goal in the latter case.[3]

In religious contexts, immortality is often stated to be one of the promises of God (or other deities) to human beings who show goodness or else follow divine law. What form an unending human life would take, or whether an immaterial soul exists and possesses immortality, has been a major point of focus of religion, as well as the subject of speculation, fantasy, and debate.

Life extension technologies promise a path to complete rejuvenation. Cryonics holds out the hope that the dead can be revived in the future, following sufficient medical advancements. While, as shown with creatures such as hydra and planarian worms, it is indeed possible for a creature to be biologically immortal, it is not known if it is possible for humans.

Mind uploading is the transference of brain states from a human brain to an alternative medium providing similar functionality. Assuming the process to be possible and repeatable, this would provide immortality to the computation of the original brain, as predicted by futurists such as Ray Kurzweil.[4]

The belief in an afterlife is a fundamental tenet of most religions, including Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, Christianity, Zoroastrianism, Islam, Judaism, and the Bah’ Faith; however, the concept of an immortal soul is not. The “soul” itself has different meanings and is not used in the same way in different religions and different denominations of a religion. For example, various branches of Christianity have disagreeing views on the soul’s immortality and its relation to the body.

Physical immortality is a state of life that allows a person to avoid death and maintain conscious thought. It can mean the unending existence of a person from a physical source other than organic life, such as a computer. Active pursuit of physical immortality can either be based on scientific trends, such as cryonics, digital immortality, breakthroughs in rejuvenation or predictions of an impending technological singularity, or because of a spiritual belief, such as those held by Rastafarians or Rebirthers.

There are three main causes of death: aging, disease and physical trauma.[5] Such issues can be resolved with the solutions provided in research to any end providing such alternate theories at present that require unification.

Aubrey de Grey, a leading researcher in the field,[6] defines aging as “a collection of cumulative changes to the molecular and cellular structure of an adult organism, which result in essential metabolic processes, but which also, once they progress far enough, increasingly disrupt metabolism, resulting in pathology and death.” The current causes of aging in humans are cell loss (without replacement), DNA damage, oncogenic nuclear mutations and epimutations, cell senescence, mitochondrial mutations, lysosomal aggregates, extracellular aggregates, random extracellular cross-linking, immune system decline, and endocrine changes. Eliminating aging would require finding a solution to each of these causes, a program de Grey calls engineered negligible senescence. There is also a huge body of knowledge indicating that change is characterized by the loss of molecular fidelity.[7]

Disease is theoretically surmountable via technology. In short, it is an abnormal condition affecting the body of an organism, something the body shouldn’t typically have to deal with its natural make up.[8] Human understanding of genetics is leading to cures and treatments for a myriad of previously incurable diseases. The mechanisms by which other diseases do damage are becoming better understood. Sophisticated methods of detecting diseases early are being developed. Preventative medicine is becoming better understood. Neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s may soon be curable with the use of stem cells. Breakthroughs in cell biology and telomere research are leading to treatments for cancer. Vaccines are being researched for AIDS and tuberculosis. Genes associated with type 1 diabetes and certain types of cancer have been discovered, allowing for new therapies to be developed. Artificial devices attached directly to the nervous system may restore sight to the blind. Drugs are being developed to treat a myriad of other diseases and ailments.

Physical trauma would remain as a threat to perpetual physical life, as an otherwise immortal person would still be subject to unforeseen accidents or catastrophes. The speed and quality of paramedic response remains a determining factor in surviving severe trauma.[9] A body that could automatically repair itself from severe trauma, such as speculated uses for nanotechnology, would mitigate this factor. Being the seat of consciousness, the brain cannot be risked to trauma if a continuous physical life is to be maintained. This aversion to trauma risk to the brain would naturally result in significant behavioral changes that would render physical immortality undesirable for some people.

Organisms otherwise unaffected by these causes of death would still face the problem of obtaining sustenance (whether from currently available agricultural processes or from hypothetical future technological processes) in the face of changing availability of suitable resources as environmental conditions change. After avoiding aging, disease, and trauma, you could still starve to death.

If there is no limitation on the degree of gradual mitigation of risk then it is possible that the cumulative probability of death over an infinite horizon is less than certainty, even when the risk of fatal trauma in any finite period is greater than zero. Mathematically, this is an aspect of achieving “actuarial escape velocity”

Biological immortality is an absence of aging. Specifically it’s the absence of a sustained increase in rate of mortality as a function of chronological age. A cell or organism that does not experience aging, or ceases to age at some point, is biologically immortal.

Biologists have chosen the word “immortal” to designate cells that are not limited by the Hayflick limit, where cells no longer divide because of DNA damage or shortened telomeres. The first and still most widely used immortal cell line is HeLa, developed from cells taken from the malignant cervical tumor of Henrietta Lacks without her consent in 1951. Prior to the 1961 work of Leonard Hayflick, there was the erroneous belief fostered by Alexis Carrel that all normal somatic cells are immortal. By preventing cells from reaching senescence one can achieve biological immortality; telomeres, a “cap” at the end of DNA, are thought to be the cause of cell aging. Every time a cell divides the telomere becomes a bit shorter; when it is finally worn down, the cell is unable to split and dies. Telomerase is an enzyme which rebuilds the telomeres in stem cells and cancer cells, allowing them to replicate an infinite number of times.[10] No definitive work has yet demonstrated that telomerase can be used in human somatic cells to prevent healthy tissues from aging. On the other hand, scientists hope to be able to grow organs with the help of stem cells, allowing organ transplants without the risk of rejection, another step in extending human life expectancy. These technologies are the subject of ongoing research, and are not yet realized.[11]

Life defined as biologically immortal is still susceptible to causes of death besides aging, including disease and trauma, as defined above. Notable immortal species include:

As the existence of biologically immortal species demonstrates, there is no thermodynamic necessity for senescence: a defining feature of life is that it takes in free energy from the environment and unloads its entropy as waste. Living systems can even build themselves up from seed, and routinely repair themselves. Aging is therefore presumed to be a byproduct of evolution, but why mortality should be selected for remains a subject of research and debate. Programmed cell death and the telomere “end replication problem” are found even in the earliest and simplest of organisms.[19] This may be a tradeoff between selecting for cancer and selecting for aging.[20]

Modern theories on the evolution of aging include the following:

There are some known naturally occurring and artificially produced chemicals that may increase the lifetime or life-expectancy of a person or organism, such as resveratrol.[23][24]

Some scientists believe that boosting the amount or proportion of telomerase in the body, a naturally forming enzyme that helps maintain the protective caps at the ends of chromosomes, could prevent cells from dying and so may ultimately lead to extended, healthier lifespans. A team of researchers at the Spanish National Cancer Centre (Madrid) tested the hypothesis on mice. It was found that those mice which were genetically engineered to produce 10 times the normal levels of telomerase lived 50% longer than normal mice.[25]

In normal circumstances, without the presence of telomerase, if a cell divides repeatedly, at some point all the progeny will reach their Hayflick limit. With the presence of telomerase, each dividing cell can replace the lost bit of DNA, and any single cell can then divide unbounded. While this unbounded growth property has excited many researchers, caution is warranted in exploiting this property, as exactly this same unbounded growth is a crucial step in enabling cancerous growth. If an organism can replicate its body cells faster, then it would theoretically stop aging.

Embryonic stem cells express telomerase, which allows them to divide repeatedly and form the individual. In adults, telomerase is highly expressed in cells that need to divide regularly (e.g., in the immune system), whereas most somatic cells express it only at very low levels in a cell-cycle dependent manner.

Technological immortality is the prospect for much longer life spans made possible by scientific advances in a variety of fields: nanotechnology, emergency room procedures, genetics, biological engineering, regenerative medicine, microbiology, and others. Contemporary life spans in the advanced industrial societies are already markedly longer than those of the past because of better nutrition, availability of health care, standard of living and bio-medical scientific advances. Technological immortality predicts further progress for the same reasons over the near term. An important aspect of current scientific thinking about immortality is that some combination of human cloning, cryonics or nanotechnology will play an essential role in extreme life extension. Robert Freitas, a nanorobotics theorist, suggests tiny medical nanorobots could be created to go through human bloodstreams, find dangerous things like cancer cells and bacteria, and destroy them.[26] Freitas anticipates that gene-therapies and nanotechnology will eventually make the human body effectively self-sustainable and capable of living indefinitely in empty space, short of severe brain trauma. This supports the theory that we will be able to continually create biological or synthetic replacement parts to replace damaged or dying ones. Future advances in nanomedicine could give rise to life extension through the repair of many processes thought to be responsible for aging. K. Eric Drexler, one of the founders of nanotechnology, postulated cell repair devices, including ones operating within cells and utilizing as yet hypothetical biological machines, in his 1986 book Engines of Creation. Raymond Kurzweil, a futurist and transhumanist, stated in his book The Singularity Is Near that he believes that advanced medical nanorobotics could completely remedy the effects of aging by 2030.[27] According to Richard Feynman, it was his former graduate student and collaborator Albert Hibbs who originally suggested to him (circa 1959) the idea of a medical use for Feynman’s theoretical micromachines (see biological machine). Hibbs suggested that certain repair machines might one day be reduced in size to the point that it would, in theory, be possible to (as Feynman put it) “swallow the doctor”. The idea was incorporated into Feynman’s 1959 essay There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom.[28]

Cryonics, the practice of preserving organisms (either intact specimens or only their brains) for possible future revival by storing them at cryogenic temperatures where metabolism and decay are almost completely stopped, can be used to ‘pause’ for those who believe that life extension technologies will not develop sufficiently within their lifetime. Ideally, cryonics would allow clinically dead people to be brought back in the future after cures to the patients’ diseases have been discovered and aging is reversible. Modern cryonics procedures use a process called vitrification which creates a glass-like state rather than freezing as the body is brought to low temperatures. This process reduces the risk of ice crystals damaging the cell-structure, which would be especially detrimental to cell structures in the brain, as their minute adjustment evokes the individual’s mind.

One idea that has been advanced involves uploading an individual’s habits and memories via direct mind-computer interface. The individual’s memory may be loaded to a computer or to a new organic body. Extropian futurists like Moravec and Kurzweil have proposed that, thanks to exponentially growing computing power, it will someday be possible to upload human consciousness onto a computer system, and exist indefinitely in a virtual environment. This could be accomplished via advanced cybernetics, where computer hardware would initially be installed in the brain to help sort memory or accelerate thought processes. Components would be added gradually until the person’s entire brain functions were handled by artificial devices, avoiding sharp transitions that would lead to issues of identity, thus running the risk of the person to be declared dead and thus not be a legitimate owner of his or her property. After this point, the human body could be treated as an optional accessory and the program implementing the person could be transferred to any sufficiently powerful computer. Another possible mechanism for mind upload is to perform a detailed scan of an individual’s original, organic brain and simulate the entire structure in a computer. What level of detail such scans and simulations would need to achieve to emulate awareness, and whether the scanning process would destroy the brain, is still to be determined.[29] Whatever the route to mind upload, persons in this state could then be considered essentially immortal, short of loss or traumatic destruction of the machines that maintained them.[clarification needed]

Transforming a human into a cyborg can include brain implants or extracting a human processing unit and placing it in a robotic life-support system. Even replacing biological organs with robotic ones could increase life span (e.g. pace makers) and depending on the definition, many technological upgrades to the body, like genetic modifications or the addition of nanobots would qualify an individual as a cyborg. Some people believe that such modifications would make one impervious to aging and disease and theoretically immortal unless killed or destroyed.

Another approach, developed by biogerontologist Marios Kyriazis, holds that human biological immortality is an inevitable consequence of evolution. As the natural tendency is to create progressively more complex structures,[30] there will be a time (Kyriazis claims this time is now[31]), when evolution of a more complex human brain will be faster via a process of developmental singularity[32] rather than through Darwinian evolution. In other words, the evolution of the human brain as we know it will cease and there will be no need for individuals to procreate and then die. Instead, a new type of development will take over, in the same individual who will have to live for many centuries in order for the development to take place. This intellectual development will be facilitated by technology such as synthetic biology, artificial intelligence and a technological singularity process.

As late as 1952, the editorial staff of the Syntopicon found in their compilation of the Great Books of the Western World, that “The philosophical issue concerning immortality cannot be separated from issues concerning the existence and nature of man’s soul.”[33] Thus, the vast majority of speculation regarding immortality before the 21st century was regarding the nature of the afterlife.

Immortality in ancient Greek religion originally always included an eternal union of body and soul as can be seen in Homer, Hesiod, and various other ancient texts. The soul was considered to have an eternal existence in Hades, but without the body the soul was considered dead. Although almost everybody had nothing to look forward to but an eternal existence as a disembodied dead soul, a number of men and women were considered to have gained physical immortality and been brought to live forever in either Elysium, the Islands of the Blessed, heaven, the ocean or literally right under the ground. Among these were Amphiaraus, Ganymede, Ino, Iphigenia, Menelaus, Peleus, and a great part of those who fought in the Trojan and Theban wars. Some were considered to have died and been resurrected before they achieved physical immortality. Asclepius was killed by Zeus only to be resurrected and transformed into a major deity. In some versions of the Trojan War myth, Achilles, after being killed, was snatched from his funeral pyre by his divine mother Thetis, resurrected, and brought to an immortal existence in either Leuce, the Elysian plains, or the Islands of the Blessed. Memnon, who was killed by Achilles, seems to have received a similar fate. Alcmene, Castor, Heracles, and Melicertes were also among the figures sometimes considered to have been resurrected to physical immortality. According to Herodotus’ Histories, the 7th century BC sage Aristeas of Proconnesus was first found dead, after which his body disappeared from a locked room. Later he was found not only to have been resurrected but to have gained immortality.

The philosophical idea of an immortal soul was a belief first appearing with either Pherecydes or the Orphics, and most importantly advocated by Plato and his followers. This, however, never became the general norm in Hellenistic thought. As may be witnessed even into the Christian era, not least by the complaints of various philosophers over popular beliefs, many or perhaps most traditional Greeks maintained the conviction that certain individuals were resurrected from the dead and made physically immortal and that others could only look forward to an existence as disembodied and dead, though everlasting, souls. The parallel between these traditional beliefs and the later resurrection of Jesus was not lost on the early Christians, as Justin Martyr argued: “when we say… Jesus Christ, our teacher, was crucified and died, and rose again, and ascended into heaven, we propose nothing different from what you believe regarding those whom you consider sons of Zeus.” (1 Apol. 21).

The goal of Hinayana is Arhatship and Nirvana. By contrast, the goal of Mahayana is Buddhahood.

According to one Tibetan Buddhist teaching, Dzogchen, individuals can transform the physical body into an immortal body of light called the rainbow body.

Christian theology holds that Adam and Eve lost physical immortality for themselves and all their descendants in the Fall of Man, although this initial “imperishability of the bodily frame of man” was “a preternatural condition”.[34] Christians who profess the Nicene Creed believe that every dead person (whether they believed in Christ or not) will be resurrected from the dead at the Second Coming, and this belief is known as Universal resurrection.[citation needed]

N.T. Wright, a theologian and former Bishop of Durham, has said many people forget the physical aspect of what Jesus promised. He told Time: “Jesus’ resurrection marks the beginning of a restoration that he will complete upon his return. Part of this will be the resurrection of all the dead, who will ‘awake’, be embodied and participate in the renewal. Wright says John Polkinghorne, a physicist and a priest, has put it this way: ‘God will download our software onto his hardware until the time he gives us new hardware to run the software again for ourselves.’ That gets to two things nicely: that the period after death (the Intermediate state) is a period when we are in God’s presence but not active in our own bodies, and also that the more important transformation will be when we are again embodied and administering Christ’s kingdom.”[35] This kingdom will consist of Heaven and Earth “joined together in a new creation”, he said.

Hindus believe in an immortal soul which is reincarnated after death. According to Hinduism, people repeat a process of life, death, and rebirth in a cycle called samsara. If they live their life well, their karma improves and their station in the next life will be higher, and conversely lower if they live their life poorly. After many life times of perfecting its karma, the soul is freed from the cycle and lives in perpetual bliss. There is no place of eternal torment in Hinduism, although if a soul consistently lives very evil lives, it could work its way down to the very bottom of the cycle.[citation needed]

There are explicit renderings in the Upanishads alluding to a physically immortal state brought about by purification, and sublimation of the 5 elements that make up the body. For example, in the Shvetashvatara Upanishad (Chapter 2, Verse 12), it is stated “When earth, water fire, air and akasa arise, that is to say, when the five attributes of the elements, mentioned in the books on yoga, become manifest then the yogi’s body becomes purified by the fire of yoga and he is free from illness, old age and death.”

Another view of immortality is traced to the Vedic tradition by the interpretation of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi:

That man indeed whom these (contacts)do not disturb, who is even-minded inpleasure and pain, steadfast, he is fitfor immortality, O best of men.[36]

To Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the verse means, “Once a man has become established in the understanding of the permanent reality of life, his mind rises above the influence of pleasure and pain. Such an unshakable man passes beyond the influence of death and in the permanent phase of life: he attains eternal life… A man established in the understanding of the unlimited abundance of absolute existence is naturally free from existence of the relative order. This is what gives him the status of immortal life.”[36]

An Indian Tamil saint known as Vallalar claimed to have achieved immortality before disappearing forever from a locked room in 1874.[37][38]

The traditional concept of an immaterial and immortal soul distinct from the body was not found in Judaism before the Babylonian Exile, but developed as a result of interaction with Persian and Hellenistic philosophies. Accordingly, the Hebrew word nephesh, although translated as “soul” in some older English Bibles, actually has a meaning closer to “living being”.[citation needed] Nephesh was rendered in the Septuagint as (psch), the Greek word for soul.[citation needed]

The only Hebrew word traditionally translated “soul” (nephesh) in English language Bibles refers to a living, breathing conscious body, rather than to an immortal soul.[39] In the New Testament, the Greek word traditionally translated “soul” () has substantially the same meaning as the Hebrew, without reference to an immortal soul.[40] Soul may refer to the whole person, the self: three thousand souls were converted in Acts 2:41 (see Acts 3:23).

The Hebrew Bible speaks about Sheol (), originally a synonym of the grave-the repository of the dead or the cessation of existence until the resurrection of the dead. This doctrine of resurrection is mentioned explicitly only in Daniel 12:14 although it may be implied in several other texts. New theories arose concerning Sheol during the intertestamental period.

The views about immortality in Judaism is perhaps best exemplified by the various references to this in Second Temple Period. The concept of resurrection of the physical body is found in 2 Maccabees, according to which it will happen through recreation of the flesh.[41] Resurrection of the dead also appears in detail in the extra-canonical books of Enoch,[42] and in Apocalypse of Baruch.[43] According to the British scholar in ancient Judaism Philip R. Davies, there is little or no clear reference either to immortality or to resurrection from the dead in the Dead Sea scrolls texts.[44] Both Josephus and the New Testament record that the Sadducees did not believe in an afterlife,[45] but the sources vary on the beliefs of the Pharisees. The New Testament claims that the Pharisees believed in the resurrection, but does not specify whether this included the flesh or not.[46] According to Josephus, who himself was a Pharisee, the Pharisees held that only the soul was immortal and the souls of good people will be reincarnated and pass into other bodies, while the souls of the wicked will suffer eternal punishment. [47] Jubilees seems to refer to the resurrection of the soul only, or to a more general idea of an immortal soul.[48]

Rabbinic Judaism claims that the righteous dead will be resurrected in the Messianic Age with the coming of the messiah. They will then be granted immortality in a perfect world. The wicked dead, on the other hand, will not be resurrected at all. This is not the only Jewish belief about the afterlife. The Tanakh is not specific about the afterlife, so there are wide differences in views and explanations among believers.[citation needed]

It is repeatedly stated in Lshi Chunqiu that death is unavoidable.[49] Henri Maspero noted that many scholarly works frame Taoism as a school of thought focused on the quest for immortality.[50] Isabelle Robinet asserts that Taoism is better understood as a way of life than as a religion, and that its adherents do not approach or view Taoism the way non-Taoist historians have done.[51] In the Tractate of Actions and their Retributions, a traditional teaching, spiritual immortality can be rewarded to people who do a certain amount of good deeds and live a simple, pure life. A list of good deeds and sins are tallied to determine whether or not a mortal is worthy. Spiritual immortality in this definition allows the soul to leave the earthly realms of afterlife and go to pure realms in the Taoist cosmology.[52]

Zoroastrians believe that on the fourth day after death, the human soul leaves the body and the body remains as an empty shell. Souls would go to either heaven or hell; these concepts of the afterlife in Zoroastrianism may have influenced Abrahamic religions. The Persian word for “immortal” is associated with the month “Amurdad”, meaning “deathless” in Persian, in the Iranian calendar (near the end of July). The month of Amurdad or Ameretat is celebrated in Persian culture as ancient Persians believed the “Angel of Immortality” won over the “Angel of Death” in this month.[53]

Alcmaeon of Croton argued that the soul is continuously and ceaselessly in motion. The exact form of his argument is unclear, but it appears to have influenced Plato, Aristotle, and other later writers.[54]

Plato’s Phaedo advances four arguments for the soul’s immortality:[55]

Plotinus offers a version of the argument that Kant calls “The Achilles of Rationalist Psychology”. Plotinus first argues that the soul is simple, then notes that a simple being cannot decompose. Many subsequent philosophers have argued both that the soul is simple and that it must be immortal. The tradition arguably culminates with Moses Mendelssohn’s Phaedon.[56]

Theodore Metochites argues that part of the soul’s nature is to move itself, but that a given movement will cease only if what causes the movement is separated from the thing moved an impossibility if they are one and the same.[57]

Avicenna argued for the distinctness of the soul and the body, and the incorruptibility of the former.[58]

The full argument for the immortality of the soul and Thomas Aquinas’ elaboration of Aristotelian theory is found in Question 75 of the First Part of the Summa Theologica.[59]

Ren Descartes endorses the claim that the soul is simple, and also that this entails that it cannot decompose. Descartes does not address the possibility that the soul might suddenly disappear.[60]

In early work, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz endorses a version of the argument from the simplicity of the soul to its immortality, but like his predecessors, he does not address the possibility that the soul might suddenly disappear. In his monadology he advances a sophisticated novel argument for the immortality of monads.[61]

Moses Mendelssohn’s Phaedon is a defense of the simplicity and immortality of the soul. It is a series of three dialogues, revisiting the Platonic dialogue Phaedo, in which Socrates argues for the immortality of the soul, in preparation for his own death. Many philosophers, including Plotinus, Descartes, and Leibniz, argue that the soul is simple, and that because simples cannot decompose they must be immortal. In the Phaedon, Mendelssohn addresses gaps in earlier versions of this argument (an argument that Kant calls the Achilles of Rationalist Psychology). The Phaedon contains an original argument for the simplicity of the soul, and also an original argument that simples cannot suddenly disappear. It contains further original arguments that the soul must retain its rational capacities as long as it exists.[62]

The possibility of clinical immortality raises a host of medical, philosophical, and religious issues and ethical questions. These include persistent vegetative states, the nature of personality over time, technology to mimic or copy the mind or its processes, social and economic disparities created by longevity, and survival of the heat death of the universe.

Physical immortality has also been imagined as a form of eternal torment, as in Mary Shelley’s short story “The Mortal Immortal”, the protagonist of which witnesses everyone he cares about dying around him. Jorge Luis Borges explored the idea that life gets its meaning from death in the short story “The Immortal”; an entire society having achieved immortality, they found time becoming infinite, and so found no motivation for any action. In his book Thursday’s Fictions, and the stage and film adaptations of it, Richard James Allen tells the story of a woman named Thursday who tries to cheat the cycle of reincarnation to get a form of eternal life. At the end of this fantastical tale, her son, Wednesday, who has witnessed the havoc his mother’s quest has caused, forgoes the opportunity for immortality when it is offered to him.[63] Likewise, the novel Tuck Everlasting depicts immortality as “falling off the wheel of life” and is viewed as a curse as opposed to a blessing. In the anime Casshern Sins humanity achieves immortality due to advances in medical technology; however, the inability of the human race to die causes Luna, a Messianic figure, to come forth and offer normal lifespans because she believed that without death, humans could not live. Ultimately, Casshern takes up the cause of death for humanity when Luna begins to restore humanity’s immortality. In Anne Rice’s book series The Vampire Chronicles, vampires are portrayed as immortal and ageless, but their inability to cope with the changes in the world around them means that few vampires live for much more than a century, and those who do often view their changeless form as a curse.

In his book Death, Yale philosopher Shelly Kagan argues that any form of human immortality would be undesirable. Kagan’s argument takes the form of a dilemma. Either our characters remain essentially the same in an immortal afterlife, or they do not. If our characters remain basically the samethat is, if we retain more or less the desires, interests, and goals that we have nowthen eventually, over an infinite stretch of time, we will get bored and find eternal life unbearably tedious. If, on the other hand, our characters are radically changede.g., by God periodically erasing our memories or giving us rat-like brains that never tire of certain simple pleasuresthen such a person would be too different from our current self for us to care much what happens to them. Either way, Kagan argues, immortality is unattractive. The best outcome, Kagan argues, would be for humans to live as long as they desired and then to accept death gratefully as rescuing us from the unbearable tedium of immortality.[64]

If human beings were to achieve immortality, there would most likely be a change in the worlds’ social structures. Sociologist argue that human beings’ awareness of their own mortality shapes their behavior.[65] With the advancements in medical technology in extending human life, there may need to be serious considerations made about future social structures. The world is already experiencing a global demographic shift of increasingly ageing populations with lower replacement rates.[66] The social changes that are made to accommodate this new population shift may be able to offer insight on the possibility of an immortal society.

Although some scientists state that radical life extension, delaying and stopping aging are achievable,[67] there are no international or national programs focused on stopping aging or on radical life extension. In 2012 in Russia, and then in the United States, Israel and the Netherlands, pro-immortality political parties were launched. They aimed to provide political support to anti-aging and radical life extension research and technologies and at the same time transition to the next step, radical life extension, life without aging, and finally, immortality and aim to make possible access to such technologies to most currently living people.[68]

There are numerous symbols representing immortality. The ankh is an Egyptian symbol of life that holds connotations of immortality when depicted in the hands of the gods and pharaohs, who were seen as having control over the journey of life. The Mbius strip in the shape of a trefoil knot is another symbol of immortality. Most symbolic representations of infinity or the life cycle are often used to represent immortality depending on the context they are placed in. Other examples include the Ouroboros, the Chinese fungus of longevity, the ten kanji, the phoenix, the peacock in Christianity,[69] and the colors amaranth (in Western culture) and peach (in Chinese culture).

Immortality is a popular subject in fiction, as it explores humanity’s deep-seated fears and comprehension of its own mortality. Immortal beings and species abound in fiction, especially fantasy fiction, and the meaning of “immortal” tends to vary. The Epic of Gilgamesh, one of the first literary works, is primarily a quest of a hero seeking to become immortal.[6]

Some fictional beings are completely immortal (or very nearly so) in that they are immune to death by injury, disease and age. Sometimes such powerful immortals can only be killed by each other, as is the case with the Q from the Star Trek series. Even if something can’t be killed, a common plot device involves putting an immortal being into a slumber or limbo, as is done with Morgoth in J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Silmarillion and the Dreaming God of Pathways Into Darkness. Storytellers often make it a point to give weaknesses to even the most indestructible of beings. For instance, Superman is supposed to be invulnerable, yet his enemies were able to exploit his now-infamous weakness: Kryptonite. (See also Achilles’ heel.)

Many fictitious species are said to be immortal if they cannot die of old age, even though they can be killed through other means, such as injury. Modern fantasy elves often exhibit this form of immortality. Other creatures, such as vampires and the immortals in the film Highlander, can only die from beheading. The classic and stereotypical vampire is typically slain by one of several very specific means, including a silver bullet (or piercing with other silver weapons), a stake through the heart (perhaps made of consecrated wood), or by exposing them to sunlight.[70][71]

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Immortality – Wikipedia

Immortality | Superpower Wiki | FANDOM powered by Wikia

ImmortalityPower/Ability to:

Never die.

The power to never die. Opposite to Mortality.

User possesses an infinite life span, as they can never die, never age, and can shrug off virtually any kind of physical damage. Some users are the defensive type, simply preventing all damages, to appear physically invulnerable, while others are the regenerative type, surviving and quickly recovering from anything you throw at them while at the same time they are capable of resurrecting themselves instantly after death and completely self-sustaining, free from all bodily necessities.

Some may only possess the power of:

Semi-Immortality

Reliant Immortality (Concept-Dependent Immortality, Self-Puppetry)

Immortality (Immortality via Regenerative Healing Factor)

Unfettered Body

Absolute Immortality

It is highly likely that various kinds of Immortality can become a curse because whoever is close to them or even their friends had past away, the user would be left behind, unless the user is also gifted the ability to teleport to both Earth and Heaven, or alternatively Meta Teleportation to keep the curse of being immortal at bay.

See Also: Immortality and Complete Immortality.

Zeus (Greek mythology) is immortal Father of Gods and ruler of Olympus.

Sun Wukong (Journey Into The West) become unable to die or be harmed in any way after eating both the food of the heavens and erasing his name off death’s register.

Teitoku Kakine (A Certain Magical Index) achieved a form of immortality by creating a human tissues (and a new body) out of his Dark Matter.

Ladylee (A Certain Magical Index) is an immortal, in that when she grew weary of living, she sought to use powerful magic to kill her, which did not work.

Tenzen Yakushiji (Basilisk) having his symbiote “eat” away his wounds and restoring any ravages of time or battle, even reattaching his head by sealing the cut.

Behelits (Berserk) are stone fetishes of unknown supernatural origin said to govern the fate of humanity. They are used primarily for summoning the angels of the God Hand, at which point their owners are granted a wish in exchange for a sacrifice.

Creed Diskenth (Black Cat) possesses the God’s Breath nano-machines within his body, regenerating even fatal wounds in seconds and maintaining his youth, thus granting him immortality aside from any brain damage being irreparable.

Ssuke Aizen (Bleach) gained immortality after fusing with the Hgyoku.

C.C (Code Geass) is immortal.

V.V (Code Geass) is immortal.

Due to the contradiction caused by the fusion of the absolutely immortal Zamasu and the mortal Goku Black, Merged Zamasu (Dragon Ball) has imperfect immortality.

Zeref (Fairy Tail) was cursed by Ankhseram with his contradiction curse which gives him uncontrollable Death Magic and Immortality.

Kager (Flame of Recca) using a forbidden spell that opens a time portal, but it traps her outside of space-time, rendering her completely immortal.

The Truth (Fullmetal Alchemist) is invincible, immortal and invulnerable.

Utsuro (Gintama) possesses immortality by harnessing the Altana energy of Earth to prevent aging and recover from wounds and diseases.

Kouka (Gintama) possessed immortality by harnessing the Altana energy of Kouan to prevent aging and recover from wounds and diseases. However, when she left the planet for good, she weakened overtime and died.

China (Hetalia) is the only nation stated to be truly immortal.

Yta (Mermaid Saga) is a 500 years old immortal since unwittingly eating mermaid’s flesh.

Mana (Mermaid Saga) is a 15 years old immortal since being fed mermaid’s flesh.

Masato (Mermaid Saga) is an 800 years old immortal since eating mermaid’s flesh.

Ban, the Undead (Nanatsu no Taizai) acquired immortality after drinking the Fountain of Youth.

Meliodas (Nanatsu no Taizai) was cursed with the immortality by the Demon King.

Orochimaru (Naruto) considers himself immortal with his Living Corpse Reincarnation to transfer his soul to another body and his Cursed Seals as anchors of his conscious.

Hidan’s (Naruto) main advantage is his inability to die by physical damage, though he is vulnerable to death by lack of nutrient.

Kakuzu (Naruto) attained a form of immortality (though he denies to think of it as such) by tearing hearts out of others and integrating them into himself, extending his lifespan. He kept five inside him at all times.

Madara Uchiha (Naruto) claims he has achieved complete immortality due to hosting the Shinju, as he regenerated form his torso being blown apart. Only when the tailed beasts were all pulled out of him did he die.

Kaguya tsutsuki (Naruto) is immortal, in that she has tremendous regenerative powers, and that the only way to defeat her is to seal her person away by splitting her chakra into the nine tailed beasts.

Gemma Himuro (Ninja Scroll) putting his severed body parts back together, even his head is possible, rendering him immortal.

Due to her race, Jibril (No Game No Life) has reached 6407 years of age, she also has incredibly vast knowledge and high magical abilities, in two words; she gathers many old and new knowledge, in other words; she can no longer age or die.

Yume Hasegawa (Pupa) is an immortal monster incarnated into human form, possessing regenerative abilities that rendered her very difficult to kill.

Utsutsu Hasegawa (Pupa) has been fed the flesh of her immortal “sister”, giving him tremendous regenerative powers that made him more or less immortal.

Rin Asogi (RIN ~Daughters of Mnemosyne~) is immortal, due to a magic spore from Yggdrasil. she can even handle more alcohol than a normal person.

Free (Soul Eater) is a werewolf from the Immortal Clan, and therefore, immortal. He can only be harmed and killed by the “Witch-Hunt”.

Koj Akatsuki (Strike the Blood) is revealed to be immortal, even by vampire standards after regenerating from complete decapitation.

Tta Konoe (UQ Holder) cannot regrow limbs unless they are completely destroyed, but otherwise is immortal and can reattach any of it, including his head.

Karin Yki (UQ Holder) has one of the highest ranked forms of immortality, stating that she’s “not permitted to get hurt or die”

Elder Toguro (Yu Yu Hakusho) stated that his regenerative powers enables him from dying. This prevented him from dying from Kurama’s torturous Sinning Tree.

Dio Brando (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure) become a vampire and gain immortality by using the Stone Mask.

Through the unknown power of his Stand or since merging with DIO’s flesh bud, Nijimura’s Father (Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure Part IV Diamonds Are Unbreakable) is effectively immortal and possess extraordinary healing capabilities.

The Stone Mask (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Parts I Phantom Blood and II Battle Tendency).

Setsuna F. Seiei (Mobile Suit Gundam 00 The Movie – A wakening of the Trailblazer)

Porky Minch (Earthbound) has abused Time Travel so much that his body is stuck in the current timeline and cannot age nor die.

It is believed that Ganondorf (The Legend of Zelda) is immortal due to the Triforce of Power.

Clockwerk (Sly Cooper) has kept himself alive for millennia thanks to his cybernetic body and his jealousy and hatred of the Cooper Clan.

The Darkness (Skylanders) can only be killed by the Core of Light.

Shadow the Hedgehog (Sonic the Hedgehog)

Chip/Light Gaia (Sonic the Hedgehog)

Solaris (Sonic the Hedgehog) is a super-dimensional life form and the Sun God of Solenna, and exists in all timelines that he is immortal unless he is killed simultaneously in every temporal point.

Presea Combatir (Tales of Symphonia) is immortal and invulnerable because of a combination of her exsphere and her special ability Suppress

Kaguya Houraisan (Touhou Project) drank the Hourai Elixir, which grants her immortal in every sense of the word: she does not age, is immune to disease, and can regenerate from even being completely disintegrated.

Though he can be imprisoned and sealed away, Grima (Fire Emblem) can only be truly and permanently killed by his own hand.

Snow White (Valkyrie Crusade) is a immortal princess that is always trying to die, but nothing works.

Guardians (Destiny) are considered immortal due to being empowered by the Light and coming back from death every time.

Dominus Ghaul (Destiny) after stealing the Light has become Immortal as he can resurrect himself.

Doomsday (DC Comics), being immune to all that once killed him.

Ra’s al Ghl (DC Comics) is granted immortality by the Lazarus Pit’s effects.

Lobo (DC Comics) possessing regenerative powers of such a level that he can recreate his entire body from nothing more than a puddle of his blood, as he is banned from Death.

Resurrection Man (DC Comics) is immortal, and will return to life no matter how many times he is killed, returning with a new power associated to how he was killed.

Hercules (Marvel Comics) an Olympic half God.

Deadpool (Marvel Comics) is in the same boat as Thanos, both banished from death.

Gaea (Marvel Comics), the Elder Goddess of Nature.

Loki (Marvel Comics), the God of Mischief, is immortal.

Zeus (Marvel Comics), the King of the Olympic Gods.

Atlas (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Adam Destine (Marvel Comics) is immortal and invulnerable to physical harm.

Mr. Immortal (Marvel Comics) having evolved beyond death cannot be killed permanently, and will always come back to life without so much as a scar.

Count Nefaria (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Wonder Man (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Garokk (Marvel Comics) The Petrified Man

Dr. Manhattan (Watchmen) is immortal due to his physiology.

Joshua Foley/Elixir (Marvel Comics) although Josh can die he is able to resurrect himself

Ananke (The Wicked + The Divine)

Pariah Dark (Danny Phantom) is the powerful immortal, former king of ghosts.

Peter Griffin (Family Guy) Peter Griffin has survived many life threatening situations and came back unscathed.

Ernie the Giant Chicken (Family Guy) always comes back for a rematch despite Peter Griffin always dealing a fatal blow on Ernie.

The Dog Talisman (Jackie Chan Adventures) grants its master invincibility.

General Immortus (Teen Titans) knows the strategy of every battle in history because he was there to see it.

Diagon (Ben 10: Ultimate Alien) does not age and cannot be killed.

The Eternals (Marvel Comics) a race of immortal beings that live alongside humanity for centuries.

Nightcrawler (Marvel Comics) cannot return to the afterlife due to sacrificing his soul in order to resurrect himself. This means Kurt cannot die by any natural means

Lord Voldemort (Harry Potter) acquired immortality by splitting his soul and hiding the fragments in various objects as anchors, though when his body was destroyed, he existed as a spectral form that many others would prefer death over.

Fawkes (Harry Potter) is a phoenix, who will be reborn with all of his memories intact upon death, and thus immortal, being the only known creatures in the wizarding world to have natural immortality.

Adam Monroe (Heroes) possessed immortality due to his tremendously advanced regeneration ability, though once the ability is taken away from him, he died within seconds.

Nathan Young (MisFits) is immortal.

Starscream (Transformers G1) possesses an immortal Spark, soul energy, meaning even if his physical vessel is destroyed he will live on.

Jason Voorhees (Friday the 13th) can only be truly and permanently killed by his own family members.

The Beast (Doctor Who) claims to have existed before our universe was created

Candyman (Candyman) has lived for centuries

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Immortality | Superpower Wiki | FANDOM powered by Wikia

Immortality – Wikipedia

Immortality is eternal life, being exempt from death, unending existence.[2] Some modern species may possess biological immortality.

Certain scientists, futurists, and philosophers have theorized about the immortality of the human body, with some suggesting that human immortality may be achievable in the first few decades of the 21st century. Other advocates believe that life extension is a more achievable goal in the short term, with immortality awaiting further research breakthroughs. The absence of aging would provide humans with biological immortality, but not invulnerability to death by disease or physical trauma; although mind uploading could solve that if it proved possible. Whether the process of internal endoimmortality is delivered within the upcoming years depends chiefly on research (and in neuron research in the case of endoimmortality through an immortalized cell line) in the former view and perhaps is an awaited goal in the latter case.[3]

In religious contexts, immortality is often stated to be one of the promises of God (or other deities) to human beings who show goodness or else follow divine law. What form an unending human life would take, or whether an immaterial soul exists and possesses immortality, has been a major point of focus of religion, as well as the subject of speculation, fantasy, and debate.

Life extension technologies promise a path to complete rejuvenation. Cryonics holds out the hope that the dead can be revived in the future, following sufficient medical advancements. While, as shown with creatures such as hydra and planarian worms, it is indeed possible for a creature to be biologically immortal, it is not known if it is possible for humans.

Mind uploading is the transference of brain states from a human brain to an alternative medium providing similar functionality. Assuming the process to be possible and repeatable, this would provide immortality to the computation of the original brain, as predicted by futurists such as Ray Kurzweil.[4]

The belief in an afterlife is a fundamental tenet of most religions, including Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, Christianity, Zoroastrianism, Islam, Judaism, and the Bah’ Faith; however, the concept of an immortal soul is not. The “soul” itself has different meanings and is not used in the same way in different religions and different denominations of a religion. For example, various branches of Christianity have disagreeing views on the soul’s immortality and its relation to the body.

Physical immortality is a state of life that allows a person to avoid death and maintain conscious thought. It can mean the unending existence of a person from a physical source other than organic life, such as a computer. Active pursuit of physical immortality can either be based on scientific trends, such as cryonics, digital immortality, breakthroughs in rejuvenation or predictions of an impending technological singularity, or because of a spiritual belief, such as those held by Rastafarians or Rebirthers.

There are three main causes of death: aging, disease and physical trauma.[5] Such issues can be resolved with the solutions provided in research to any end providing such alternate theories at present that require unification.

Aubrey de Grey, a leading researcher in the field,[6] defines aging as “a collection of cumulative changes to the molecular and cellular structure of an adult organism, which result in essential metabolic processes, but which also, once they progress far enough, increasingly disrupt metabolism, resulting in pathology and death.” The current causes of aging in humans are cell loss (without replacement), DNA damage, oncogenic nuclear mutations and epimutations, cell senescence, mitochondrial mutations, lysosomal aggregates, extracellular aggregates, random extracellular cross-linking, immune system decline, and endocrine changes. Eliminating aging would require finding a solution to each of these causes, a program de Grey calls engineered negligible senescence. There is also a huge body of knowledge indicating that change is characterized by the loss of molecular fidelity.[7]

Disease is theoretically surmountable via technology. In short, it is an abnormal condition affecting the body of an organism, something the body shouldn’t typically have to deal with its natural make up.[8] Human understanding of genetics is leading to cures and treatments for a myriad of previously incurable diseases. The mechanisms by which other diseases do damage are becoming better understood. Sophisticated methods of detecting diseases early are being developed. Preventative medicine is becoming better understood. Neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s may soon be curable with the use of stem cells. Breakthroughs in cell biology and telomere research are leading to treatments for cancer. Vaccines are being researched for AIDS and tuberculosis. Genes associated with type 1 diabetes and certain types of cancer have been discovered, allowing for new therapies to be developed. Artificial devices attached directly to the nervous system may restore sight to the blind. Drugs are being developed to treat a myriad of other diseases and ailments.

Physical trauma would remain as a threat to perpetual physical life, as an otherwise immortal person would still be subject to unforeseen accidents or catastrophes. The speed and quality of paramedic response remains a determining factor in surviving severe trauma.[9] A body that could automatically repair itself from severe trauma, such as speculated uses for nanotechnology, would mitigate this factor. Being the seat of consciousness, the brain cannot be risked to trauma if a continuous physical life is to be maintained. This aversion to trauma risk to the brain would naturally result in significant behavioral changes that would render physical immortality undesirable for some people.

Organisms otherwise unaffected by these causes of death would still face the problem of obtaining sustenance (whether from currently available agricultural processes or from hypothetical future technological processes) in the face of changing availability of suitable resources as environmental conditions change. After avoiding aging, disease, and trauma, you could still starve to death.

If there is no limitation on the degree of gradual mitigation of risk then it is possible that the cumulative probability of death over an infinite horizon is less than certainty, even when the risk of fatal trauma in any finite period is greater than zero. Mathematically, this is an aspect of achieving “actuarial escape velocity”

Biological immortality is an absence of aging. Specifically it’s the absence of a sustained increase in rate of mortality as a function of chronological age. A cell or organism that does not experience aging, or ceases to age at some point, is biologically immortal.

Biologists have chosen the word “immortal” to designate cells that are not limited by the Hayflick limit, where cells no longer divide because of DNA damage or shortened telomeres. The first and still most widely used immortal cell line is HeLa, developed from cells taken from the malignant cervical tumor of Henrietta Lacks without her consent in 1951. Prior to the 1961 work of Leonard Hayflick, there was the erroneous belief fostered by Alexis Carrel that all normal somatic cells are immortal. By preventing cells from reaching senescence one can achieve biological immortality; telomeres, a “cap” at the end of DNA, are thought to be the cause of cell aging. Every time a cell divides the telomere becomes a bit shorter; when it is finally worn down, the cell is unable to split and dies. Telomerase is an enzyme which rebuilds the telomeres in stem cells and cancer cells, allowing them to replicate an infinite number of times.[10] No definitive work has yet demonstrated that telomerase can be used in human somatic cells to prevent healthy tissues from aging. On the other hand, scientists hope to be able to grow organs with the help of stem cells, allowing organ transplants without the risk of rejection, another step in extending human life expectancy. These technologies are the subject of ongoing research, and are not yet realized.[11]

Life defined as biologically immortal is still susceptible to causes of death besides aging, including disease and trauma, as defined above. Notable immortal species include:

As the existence of biologically immortal species demonstrates, there is no thermodynamic necessity for senescence: a defining feature of life is that it takes in free energy from the environment and unloads its entropy as waste. Living systems can even build themselves up from seed, and routinely repair themselves. Aging is therefore presumed to be a byproduct of evolution, but why mortality should be selected for remains a subject of research and debate. Programmed cell death and the telomere “end replication problem” are found even in the earliest and simplest of organisms.[19] This may be a tradeoff between selecting for cancer and selecting for aging.[20]

Modern theories on the evolution of aging include the following:

There are some known naturally occurring and artificially produced chemicals that may increase the lifetime or life-expectancy of a person or organism, such as resveratrol.[23][24]

Some scientists believe that boosting the amount or proportion of telomerase in the body, a naturally forming enzyme that helps maintain the protective caps at the ends of chromosomes, could prevent cells from dying and so may ultimately lead to extended, healthier lifespans. A team of researchers at the Spanish National Cancer Centre (Madrid) tested the hypothesis on mice. It was found that those mice which were genetically engineered to produce 10 times the normal levels of telomerase lived 50% longer than normal mice.[25]

In normal circumstances, without the presence of telomerase, if a cell divides repeatedly, at some point all the progeny will reach their Hayflick limit. With the presence of telomerase, each dividing cell can replace the lost bit of DNA, and any single cell can then divide unbounded. While this unbounded growth property has excited many researchers, caution is warranted in exploiting this property, as exactly this same unbounded growth is a crucial step in enabling cancerous growth. If an organism can replicate its body cells faster, then it would theoretically stop aging.

Embryonic stem cells express telomerase, which allows them to divide repeatedly and form the individual. In adults, telomerase is highly expressed in cells that need to divide regularly (e.g., in the immune system), whereas most somatic cells express it only at very low levels in a cell-cycle dependent manner.

Technological immortality is the prospect for much longer life spans made possible by scientific advances in a variety of fields: nanotechnology, emergency room procedures, genetics, biological engineering, regenerative medicine, microbiology, and others. Contemporary life spans in the advanced industrial societies are already markedly longer than those of the past because of better nutrition, availability of health care, standard of living and bio-medical scientific advances. Technological immortality predicts further progress for the same reasons over the near term. An important aspect of current scientific thinking about immortality is that some combination of human cloning, cryonics or nanotechnology will play an essential role in extreme life extension. Robert Freitas, a nanorobotics theorist, suggests tiny medical nanorobots could be created to go through human bloodstreams, find dangerous things like cancer cells and bacteria, and destroy them.[26] Freitas anticipates that gene-therapies and nanotechnology will eventually make the human body effectively self-sustainable and capable of living indefinitely in empty space, short of severe brain trauma. This supports the theory that we will be able to continually create biological or synthetic replacement parts to replace damaged or dying ones. Future advances in nanomedicine could give rise to life extension through the repair of many processes thought to be responsible for aging. K. Eric Drexler, one of the founders of nanotechnology, postulated cell repair devices, including ones operating within cells and utilizing as yet hypothetical biological machines, in his 1986 book Engines of Creation. Raymond Kurzweil, a futurist and transhumanist, stated in his book The Singularity Is Near that he believes that advanced medical nanorobotics could completely remedy the effects of aging by 2030.[27] According to Richard Feynman, it was his former graduate student and collaborator Albert Hibbs who originally suggested to him (circa 1959) the idea of a medical use for Feynman’s theoretical micromachines (see biological machine). Hibbs suggested that certain repair machines might one day be reduced in size to the point that it would, in theory, be possible to (as Feynman put it) “swallow the doctor”. The idea was incorporated into Feynman’s 1959 essay There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom.[28]

Cryonics, the practice of preserving organisms (either intact specimens or only their brains) for possible future revival by storing them at cryogenic temperatures where metabolism and decay are almost completely stopped, can be used to ‘pause’ for those who believe that life extension technologies will not develop sufficiently within their lifetime. Ideally, cryonics would allow clinically dead people to be brought back in the future after cures to the patients’ diseases have been discovered and aging is reversible. Modern cryonics procedures use a process called vitrification which creates a glass-like state rather than freezing as the body is brought to low temperatures. This process reduces the risk of ice crystals damaging the cell-structure, which would be especially detrimental to cell structures in the brain, as their minute adjustment evokes the individual’s mind.

One idea that has been advanced involves uploading an individual’s habits and memories via direct mind-computer interface. The individual’s memory may be loaded to a computer or to a new organic body. Extropian futurists like Moravec and Kurzweil have proposed that, thanks to exponentially growing computing power, it will someday be possible to upload human consciousness onto a computer system, and exist indefinitely in a virtual environment. This could be accomplished via advanced cybernetics, where computer hardware would initially be installed in the brain to help sort memory or accelerate thought processes. Components would be added gradually until the person’s entire brain functions were handled by artificial devices, avoiding sharp transitions that would lead to issues of identity, thus running the risk of the person to be declared dead and thus not be a legitimate owner of his or her property. After this point, the human body could be treated as an optional accessory and the program implementing the person could be transferred to any sufficiently powerful computer. Another possible mechanism for mind upload is to perform a detailed scan of an individual’s original, organic brain and simulate the entire structure in a computer. What level of detail such scans and simulations would need to achieve to emulate awareness, and whether the scanning process would destroy the brain, is still to be determined.[29] Whatever the route to mind upload, persons in this state could then be considered essentially immortal, short of loss or traumatic destruction of the machines that maintained them.[clarification needed]

Transforming a human into a cyborg can include brain implants or extracting a human processing unit and placing it in a robotic life-support system. Even replacing biological organs with robotic ones could increase life span (e.g. pace makers) and depending on the definition, many technological upgrades to the body, like genetic modifications or the addition of nanobots would qualify an individual as a cyborg. Some people believe that such modifications would make one impervious to aging and disease and theoretically immortal unless killed or destroyed.

Another approach, developed by biogerontologist Marios Kyriazis, holds that human biological immortality is an inevitable consequence of evolution. As the natural tendency is to create progressively more complex structures,[30] there will be a time (Kyriazis claims this time is now[31]), when evolution of a more complex human brain will be faster via a process of developmental singularity[32] rather than through Darwinian evolution. In other words, the evolution of the human brain as we know it will cease and there will be no need for individuals to procreate and then die. Instead, a new type of development will take over, in the same individual who will have to live for many centuries in order for the development to take place. This intellectual development will be facilitated by technology such as synthetic biology, artificial intelligence and a technological singularity process.

As late as 1952, the editorial staff of the Syntopicon found in their compilation of the Great Books of the Western World, that “The philosophical issue concerning immortality cannot be separated from issues concerning the existence and nature of man’s soul.”[33] Thus, the vast majority of speculation regarding immortality before the 21st century was regarding the nature of the afterlife.

Immortality in ancient Greek religion originally always included an eternal union of body and soul as can be seen in Homer, Hesiod, and various other ancient texts. The soul was considered to have an eternal existence in Hades, but without the body the soul was considered dead. Although almost everybody had nothing to look forward to but an eternal existence as a disembodied dead soul, a number of men and women were considered to have gained physical immortality and been brought to live forever in either Elysium, the Islands of the Blessed, heaven, the ocean or literally right under the ground. Among these were Amphiaraus, Ganymede, Ino, Iphigenia, Menelaus, Peleus, and a great part of those who fought in the Trojan and Theban wars. Some were considered to have died and been resurrected before they achieved physical immortality. Asclepius was killed by Zeus only to be resurrected and transformed into a major deity. In some versions of the Trojan War myth, Achilles, after being killed, was snatched from his funeral pyre by his divine mother Thetis, resurrected, and brought to an immortal existence in either Leuce, the Elysian plains, or the Islands of the Blessed. Memnon, who was killed by Achilles, seems to have received a similar fate. Alcmene, Castor, Heracles, and Melicertes were also among the figures sometimes considered to have been resurrected to physical immortality. According to Herodotus’ Histories, the 7th century BC sage Aristeas of Proconnesus was first found dead, after which his body disappeared from a locked room. Later he was found not only to have been resurrected but to have gained immortality.

The philosophical idea of an immortal soul was a belief first appearing with either Pherecydes or the Orphics, and most importantly advocated by Plato and his followers. This, however, never became the general norm in Hellenistic thought. As may be witnessed even into the Christian era, not least by the complaints of various philosophers over popular beliefs, many or perhaps most traditional Greeks maintained the conviction that certain individuals were resurrected from the dead and made physically immortal and that others could only look forward to an existence as disembodied and dead, though everlasting, souls. The parallel between these traditional beliefs and the later resurrection of Jesus was not lost on the early Christians, as Justin Martyr argued: “when we say… Jesus Christ, our teacher, was crucified and died, and rose again, and ascended into heaven, we propose nothing different from what you believe regarding those whom you consider sons of Zeus.” (1 Apol. 21).

The goal of Hinayana is Arhatship and Nirvana. By contrast, the goal of Mahayana is Buddhahood.

According to one Tibetan Buddhist teaching, Dzogchen, individuals can transform the physical body into an immortal body of light called the rainbow body.

Christian theology holds that Adam and Eve lost physical immortality for themselves and all their descendants in the Fall of Man, although this initial “imperishability of the bodily frame of man” was “a preternatural condition”.[34] Christians who profess the Nicene Creed believe that every dead person (whether they believed in Christ or not) will be resurrected from the dead at the Second Coming, and this belief is known as Universal resurrection.[citation needed]

N.T. Wright, a theologian and former Bishop of Durham, has said many people forget the physical aspect of what Jesus promised. He told Time: “Jesus’ resurrection marks the beginning of a restoration that he will complete upon his return. Part of this will be the resurrection of all the dead, who will ‘awake’, be embodied and participate in the renewal. Wright says John Polkinghorne, a physicist and a priest, has put it this way: ‘God will download our software onto his hardware until the time he gives us new hardware to run the software again for ourselves.’ That gets to two things nicely: that the period after death (the Intermediate state) is a period when we are in God’s presence but not active in our own bodies, and also that the more important transformation will be when we are again embodied and administering Christ’s kingdom.”[35] This kingdom will consist of Heaven and Earth “joined together in a new creation”, he said.

Hindus believe in an immortal soul which is reincarnated after death. According to Hinduism, people repeat a process of life, death, and rebirth in a cycle called samsara. If they live their life well, their karma improves and their station in the next life will be higher, and conversely lower if they live their life poorly. After many life times of perfecting its karma, the soul is freed from the cycle and lives in perpetual bliss. There is no place of eternal torment in Hinduism, although if a soul consistently lives very evil lives, it could work its way down to the very bottom of the cycle.[citation needed]

There are explicit renderings in the Upanishads alluding to a physically immortal state brought about by purification, and sublimation of the 5 elements that make up the body. For example, in the Shvetashvatara Upanishad (Chapter 2, Verse 12), it is stated “When earth, water fire, air and akasa arise, that is to say, when the five attributes of the elements, mentioned in the books on yoga, become manifest then the yogi’s body becomes purified by the fire of yoga and he is free from illness, old age and death.”

Another view of immortality is traced to the Vedic tradition by the interpretation of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi:

That man indeed whom these (contacts)do not disturb, who is even-minded inpleasure and pain, steadfast, he is fitfor immortality, O best of men.[36]

To Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the verse means, “Once a man has become established in the understanding of the permanent reality of life, his mind rises above the influence of pleasure and pain. Such an unshakable man passes beyond the influence of death and in the permanent phase of life: he attains eternal life… A man established in the understanding of the unlimited abundance of absolute existence is naturally free from existence of the relative order. This is what gives him the status of immortal life.”[36]

An Indian Tamil saint known as Vallalar claimed to have achieved immortality before disappearing forever from a locked room in 1874.[37][38]

The traditional concept of an immaterial and immortal soul distinct from the body was not found in Judaism before the Babylonian Exile, but developed as a result of interaction with Persian and Hellenistic philosophies. Accordingly, the Hebrew word nephesh, although translated as “soul” in some older English Bibles, actually has a meaning closer to “living being”.[citation needed] Nephesh was rendered in the Septuagint as (psch), the Greek word for soul.[citation needed]

The only Hebrew word traditionally translated “soul” (nephesh) in English language Bibles refers to a living, breathing conscious body, rather than to an immortal soul.[39] In the New Testament, the Greek word traditionally translated “soul” () has substantially the same meaning as the Hebrew, without reference to an immortal soul.[40] Soul may refer to the whole person, the self: three thousand souls were converted in Acts 2:41 (see Acts 3:23).

The Hebrew Bible speaks about Sheol (), originally a synonym of the grave-the repository of the dead or the cessation of existence until the resurrection of the dead. This doctrine of resurrection is mentioned explicitly only in Daniel 12:14 although it may be implied in several other texts. New theories arose concerning Sheol during the intertestamental period.

The views about immortality in Judaism is perhaps best exemplified by the various references to this in Second Temple Period. The concept of resurrection of the physical body is found in 2 Maccabees, according to which it will happen through recreation of the flesh.[41] Resurrection of the dead also appears in detail in the extra-canonical books of Enoch,[42] and in Apocalypse of Baruch.[43] According to the British scholar in ancient Judaism Philip R. Davies, there is little or no clear reference either to immortality or to resurrection from the dead in the Dead Sea scrolls texts.[44] Both Josephus and the New Testament record that the Sadducees did not believe in an afterlife,[45] but the sources vary on the beliefs of the Pharisees. The New Testament claims that the Pharisees believed in the resurrection, but does not specify whether this included the flesh or not.[46] According to Josephus, who himself was a Pharisee, the Pharisees held that only the soul was immortal and the souls of good people will be reincarnated and pass into other bodies, while the souls of the wicked will suffer eternal punishment. [47] Jubilees seems to refer to the resurrection of the soul only, or to a more general idea of an immortal soul.[48]

Rabbinic Judaism claims that the righteous dead will be resurrected in the Messianic Age with the coming of the messiah. They will then be granted immortality in a perfect world. The wicked dead, on the other hand, will not be resurrected at all. This is not the only Jewish belief about the afterlife. The Tanakh is not specific about the afterlife, so there are wide differences in views and explanations among believers.[citation needed]

It is repeatedly stated in Lshi Chunqiu that death is unavoidable.[49] Henri Maspero noted that many scholarly works frame Taoism as a school of thought focused on the quest for immortality.[50] Isabelle Robinet asserts that Taoism is better understood as a way of life than as a religion, and that its adherents do not approach or view Taoism the way non-Taoist historians have done.[51] In the Tractate of Actions and their Retributions, a traditional teaching, spiritual immortality can be rewarded to people who do a certain amount of good deeds and live a simple, pure life. A list of good deeds and sins are tallied to determine whether or not a mortal is worthy. Spiritual immortality in this definition allows the soul to leave the earthly realms of afterlife and go to pure realms in the Taoist cosmology.[52]

Zoroastrians believe that on the fourth day after death, the human soul leaves the body and the body remains as an empty shell. Souls would go to either heaven or hell; these concepts of the afterlife in Zoroastrianism may have influenced Abrahamic religions. The Persian word for “immortal” is associated with the month “Amurdad”, meaning “deathless” in Persian, in the Iranian calendar (near the end of July). The month of Amurdad or Ameretat is celebrated in Persian culture as ancient Persians believed the “Angel of Immortality” won over the “Angel of Death” in this month.[53]

Alcmaeon of Croton argued that the soul is continuously and ceaselessly in motion. The exact form of his argument is unclear, but it appears to have influenced Plato, Aristotle, and other later writers.[54]

Plato’s Phaedo advances four arguments for the soul’s immortality:[55]

Plotinus offers a version of the argument that Kant calls “The Achilles of Rationalist Psychology”. Plotinus first argues that the soul is simple, then notes that a simple being cannot decompose. Many subsequent philosophers have argued both that the soul is simple and that it must be immortal. The tradition arguably culminates with Moses Mendelssohn’s Phaedon.[56]

Theodore Metochites argues that part of the soul’s nature is to move itself, but that a given movement will cease only if what causes the movement is separated from the thing moved an impossibility if they are one and the same.[57]

Avicenna argued for the distinctness of the soul and the body, and the incorruptibility of the former.[58]

The full argument for the immortality of the soul and Thomas Aquinas’ elaboration of Aristotelian theory is found in Question 75 of the First Part of the Summa Theologica.[59]

Ren Descartes endorses the claim that the soul is simple, and also that this entails that it cannot decompose. Descartes does not address the possibility that the soul might suddenly disappear.[60]

In early work, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz endorses a version of the argument from the simplicity of the soul to its immortality, but like his predecessors, he does not address the possibility that the soul might suddenly disappear. In his monadology he advances a sophisticated novel argument for the immortality of monads.[61]

Moses Mendelssohn’s Phaedon is a defense of the simplicity and immortality of the soul. It is a series of three dialogues, revisiting the Platonic dialogue Phaedo, in which Socrates argues for the immortality of the soul, in preparation for his own death. Many philosophers, including Plotinus, Descartes, and Leibniz, argue that the soul is simple, and that because simples cannot decompose they must be immortal. In the Phaedon, Mendelssohn addresses gaps in earlier versions of this argument (an argument that Kant calls the Achilles of Rationalist Psychology). The Phaedon contains an original argument for the simplicity of the soul, and also an original argument that simples cannot suddenly disappear. It contains further original arguments that the soul must retain its rational capacities as long as it exists.[62]

The possibility of clinical immortality raises a host of medical, philosophical, and religious issues and ethical questions. These include persistent vegetative states, the nature of personality over time, technology to mimic or copy the mind or its processes, social and economic disparities created by longevity, and survival of the heat death of the universe.

Physical immortality has also been imagined as a form of eternal torment, as in Mary Shelley’s short story “The Mortal Immortal”, the protagonist of which witnesses everyone he cares about dying around him. Jorge Luis Borges explored the idea that life gets its meaning from death in the short story “The Immortal”; an entire society having achieved immortality, they found time becoming infinite, and so found no motivation for any action. In his book Thursday’s Fictions, and the stage and film adaptations of it, Richard James Allen tells the story of a woman named Thursday who tries to cheat the cycle of reincarnation to get a form of eternal life. At the end of this fantastical tale, her son, Wednesday, who has witnessed the havoc his mother’s quest has caused, forgoes the opportunity for immortality when it is offered to him.[63] Likewise, the novel Tuck Everlasting depicts immortality as “falling off the wheel of life” and is viewed as a curse as opposed to a blessing. In the anime Casshern Sins humanity achieves immortality due to advances in medical technology; however, the inability of the human race to die causes Luna, a Messianic figure, to come forth and offer normal lifespans because she believed that without death, humans could not live. Ultimately, Casshern takes up the cause of death for humanity when Luna begins to restore humanity’s immortality. In Anne Rice’s book series The Vampire Chronicles, vampires are portrayed as immortal and ageless, but their inability to cope with the changes in the world around them means that few vampires live for much more than a century, and those who do often view their changeless form as a curse.

In his book Death, Yale philosopher Shelly Kagan argues that any form of human immortality would be undesirable. Kagan’s argument takes the form of a dilemma. Either our characters remain essentially the same in an immortal afterlife, or they do not. If our characters remain basically the samethat is, if we retain more or less the desires, interests, and goals that we have nowthen eventually, over an infinite stretch of time, we will get bored and find eternal life unbearably tedious. If, on the other hand, our characters are radically changede.g., by God periodically erasing our memories or giving us rat-like brains that never tire of certain simple pleasuresthen such a person would be too different from our current self for us to care much what happens to them. Either way, Kagan argues, immortality is unattractive. The best outcome, Kagan argues, would be for humans to live as long as they desired and then to accept death gratefully as rescuing us from the unbearable tedium of immortality.[64]

If human beings were to achieve immortality, there would most likely be a change in the worlds’ social structures. Sociologist argue that human beings’ awareness of their own mortality shapes their behavior.[65] With the advancements in medical technology in extending human life, there may need to be serious considerations made about future social structures. The world is already experiencing a global demographic shift of increasingly ageing populations with lower replacement rates.[66] The social changes that are made to accommodate this new population shift may be able to offer insight on the possibility of an immortal society.

Although some scientists state that radical life extension, delaying and stopping aging are achievable,[67] there are no international or national programs focused on stopping aging or on radical life extension. In 2012 in Russia, and then in the United States, Israel and the Netherlands, pro-immortality political parties were launched. They aimed to provide political support to anti-aging and radical life extension research and technologies and at the same time transition to the next step, radical life extension, life without aging, and finally, immortality and aim to make possible access to such technologies to most currently living people.[68]

There are numerous symbols representing immortality. The ankh is an Egyptian symbol of life that holds connotations of immortality when depicted in the hands of the gods and pharaohs, who were seen as having control over the journey of life. The Mbius strip in the shape of a trefoil knot is another symbol of immortality. Most symbolic representations of infinity or the life cycle are often used to represent immortality depending on the context they are placed in. Other examples include the Ouroboros, the Chinese fungus of longevity, the ten kanji, the phoenix, the peacock in Christianity,[69] and the colors amaranth (in Western culture) and peach (in Chinese culture).

Immortality is a popular subject in fiction, as it explores humanity’s deep-seated fears and comprehension of its own mortality. Immortal beings and species abound in fiction, especially fantasy fiction, and the meaning of “immortal” tends to vary. The Epic of Gilgamesh, one of the first literary works, is primarily a quest of a hero seeking to become immortal.[6]

Some fictional beings are completely immortal (or very nearly so) in that they are immune to death by injury, disease and age. Sometimes such powerful immortals can only be killed by each other, as is the case with the Q from the Star Trek series. Even if something can’t be killed, a common plot device involves putting an immortal being into a slumber or limbo, as is done with Morgoth in J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Silmarillion and the Dreaming God of Pathways Into Darkness. Storytellers often make it a point to give weaknesses to even the most indestructible of beings. For instance, Superman is supposed to be invulnerable, yet his enemies were able to exploit his now-infamous weakness: Kryptonite. (See also Achilles’ heel.)

Many fictitious species are said to be immortal if they cannot die of old age, even though they can be killed through other means, such as injury. Modern fantasy elves often exhibit this form of immortality. Other creatures, such as vampires and the immortals in the film Highlander, can only die from beheading. The classic and stereotypical vampire is typically slain by one of several very specific means, including a silver bullet (or piercing with other silver weapons), a stake through the heart (perhaps made of consecrated wood), or by exposing them to sunlight.[70][71]

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Immortality – Wikipedia

Immortality (novel) – Wikipedia

Immortality (Czech: Nesmrtelnost) is a novel in seven parts, written by Milan Kundera in 1988 in Czech. First published 1990 in French. English edition 345 p., translation by Peter Kussi.[1] This novel springs from a casual gesture of a woman, seemingly to her swimming instructor. Immortality is the last of a trilogy that includes The Book Of Laughter And Forgetting, and The Unbearable Lightness Of Being.

Divided into seven parts, Immortality centers on Agnes, her husband Paul and her sister Laura. Part One: the Face establishes these characters. Part Two: Immortality depicts Goethe’s fraught relationship with Bettina, a young woman who aspires to create a place for herself in the pantheon of history by controlling Goethe’s legacy after his death. Part Three: Agnes and Laura fight, while focusing on the deteriorating state of Laura’s relationship with Bernard Bertrand. Part Four: Homo Sentimentalis chronicles Goethe’s afterlife and postmortem friendship with Ernest Hemingway. Part Five: Chance sees Agnes’ death, and intersects these fictional events with Kundera’s seemingly autobiographical account of a conversation with Professor Avenarius. Part Six: the Dial introduces a new character, Rubens, who had an affair with Agnes years prior to the onset of the main events in the plot. Part Seven: the Celebration concludes the novel in the same health club where Kundera first observed the inspirational wave gesture.

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Immortality (novel) – Wikipedia

Immortality | Superpower Wiki | FANDOM powered by Wikia

ImmortalityPower/Ability to:

Never die.

The power to never die. Opposite to Mortality.

User possesses an infinite life span, as they can never die, never age, and can shrug off virtually any kind of physical damage. Some users are the defensive type, simply preventing all damages, to appear physically invulnerable, while others are the regenerative type, surviving and quickly recovering from anything you throw at them while at the same time they are capable of resurrecting themselves instantly after death and completely self-sustaining, free from all bodily necessities.

Some may only possess the power of:

Semi-Immortality

Reliant Immortality (Concept-Dependent Immortality, Self-Puppetry)

Immortality (Immortality via Regenerative Healing Factor)

Unfettered Body

Absolute Immortality

It is highly likely that various kinds of Immortality can become a curse because whoever is close to them or even their friends had past away, the user would be left behind, unless the user is also gifted the ability to teleport to both Earth and Heaven, or alternatively Meta Teleportation to keep the curse of being immortal at bay.

See Also: Immortality and Complete Immortality.

Zeus (Greek mythology) is immortal Father of Gods and ruler of Olympus.

Sun Wukong (Journey Into The West) become unable to die or be harmed in any way after eating both the food of the heavens and erasing his name off death’s register.

Teitoku Kakine (A Certain Magical Index) achieved a form of immortality by creating a human tissues (and a new body) out of his Dark Matter.

Ladylee (A Certain Magical Index) is an immortal, in that when she grew weary of living, she sought to use powerful magic to kill her, which did not work.

Tenzen Yakushiji (Basilisk) having his symbiote “eat” away his wounds and restoring any ravages of time or battle, even reattaching his head by sealing the cut.

Behelits (Berserk) are stone fetishes of unknown supernatural origin said to govern the fate of humanity. They are used primarily for summoning the angels of the God Hand, at which point their owners are granted a wish in exchange for a sacrifice.

Creed Diskenth (Black Cat) possesses the God’s Breath nano-machines within his body, regenerating even fatal wounds in seconds and maintaining his youth, thus granting him immortality aside from any brain damage being irreparable.

Ssuke Aizen (Bleach) gained immortality after fusing with the Hgyoku.

C.C (Code Geass) is immortal.

V.V (Code Geass) is immortal.

Due to the contradiction caused by the fusion of the absolutely immortal Zamasu and the mortal Goku Black, Merged Zamasu (Dragon Ball) has imperfect immortality.

Zeref (Fairy Tail) was cursed by Ankhseram with his contradiction curse which gives him uncontrollable Death Magic and Immortality.

Kager (Flame of Recca) using a forbidden spell that opens a time portal, but it traps her outside of space-time, rendering her completely immortal.

The Truth (Fullmetal Alchemist) is invincible, immortal and invulnerable.

Utsuro (Gintama) possesses immortality by harnessing the Altana energy of Earth to prevent aging and recover from wounds and diseases.

Kouka (Gintama) possessed immortality by harnessing the Altana energy of Kouan to prevent aging and recover from wounds and diseases. However, when she left the planet for good, she weakened overtime and died.

China (Hetalia) is the only nation stated to be truly immortal.

Yta (Mermaid Saga) is a 500 years old immortal since unwittingly eating mermaid’s flesh.

Mana (Mermaid Saga) is a 15 years old immortal since being fed mermaid’s flesh.

Masato (Mermaid Saga) is an 800 years old immortal since eating mermaid’s flesh.

Ban, the Undead (Nanatsu no Taizai) acquired immortality after drinking the Fountain of Youth.

Meliodas (Nanatsu no Taizai) was cursed with the immortality by the Demon King.

Orochimaru (Naruto) considers himself immortal with his Living Corpse Reincarnation to transfer his soul to another body and his Cursed Seals as anchors of his conscious.

Hidan’s (Naruto) main advantage is his inability to die by physical damage, though he is vulnerable to death by lack of nutrient.

Kakuzu (Naruto) attained a form of immortality (though he denies to think of it as such) by tearing hearts out of others and integrating them into himself, extending his lifespan. He kept five inside him at all times.

Madara Uchiha (Naruto) claims he has achieved complete immortality due to hosting the Shinju, as he regenerated form his torso being blown apart. Only when the tailed beasts were all pulled out of him did he die.

Kaguya tsutsuki (Naruto) is immortal, in that she has tremendous regenerative powers, and that the only way to defeat her is to seal her person away by splitting her chakra into the nine tailed beasts.

Gemma Himuro (Ninja Scroll) putting his severed body parts back together, even his head is possible, rendering him immortal.

Due to her race, Jibril (No Game No Life) has reached 6407 years of age, she also has incredibly vast knowledge and high magical abilities, in two words; she gathers many old and new knowledge, in other words; she can no longer age or die.

Yume Hasegawa (Pupa) is an immortal monster incarnated into human form, possessing regenerative abilities that rendered her very difficult to kill.

Utsutsu Hasegawa (Pupa) has been fed the flesh of her immortal “sister”, giving him tremendous regenerative powers that made him more or less immortal.

Rin Asogi (RIN ~Daughters of Mnemosyne~) is immortal, due to a magic spore from Yggdrasil. she can even handle more alcohol than a normal person.

Free (Soul Eater) is a werewolf from the Immortal Clan, and therefore, immortal. He can only be harmed and killed by the “Witch-Hunt”.

Koj Akatsuki (Strike the Blood) is revealed to be immortal, even by vampire standards after regenerating from complete decapitation.

Tta Konoe (UQ Holder) cannot regrow limbs unless they are completely destroyed, but otherwise is immortal and can reattach any of it, including his head.

Karin Yki (UQ Holder) has one of the highest ranked forms of immortality, stating that she’s “not permitted to get hurt or die”

Elder Toguro (Yu Yu Hakusho) stated that his regenerative powers enables him from dying. This prevented him from dying from Kurama’s torturous Sinning Tree.

Dio Brando (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure) become a vampire and gain immortality by using the Stone Mask.

Through the unknown power of his Stand or since merging with DIO’s flesh bud, Nijimura’s Father (Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure Part IV Diamonds Are Unbreakable) is effectively immortal and possess extraordinary healing capabilities.

The Stone Mask (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Parts I Phantom Blood and II Battle Tendency).

Setsuna F. Seiei (Mobile Suit Gundam 00 The Movie – A wakening of the Trailblazer)

Porky Minch (Earthbound) has abused Time Travel so much that his body is stuck in the current timeline and cannot age nor die.

It is believed that Ganondorf (The Legend of Zelda) is immortal due to the Triforce of Power.

Clockwerk (Sly Cooper) has kept himself alive for millennia thanks to his cybernetic body and his jealousy and hatred of the Cooper Clan.

The Darkness (Skylanders) can only be killed by the Core of Light.

Shadow the Hedgehog (Sonic the Hedgehog)

Chip/Light Gaia (Sonic the Hedgehog)

Solaris (Sonic the Hedgehog) is a super-dimensional life form and the Sun God of Solenna, and exists in all timelines that he is immortal unless he is killed simultaneously in every temporal point.

Presea Combatir (Tales of Symphonia) is immortal and invulnerable because of a combination of her exsphere and her special ability Suppress

Kaguya Houraisan (Touhou Project) drank the Hourai Elixir, which grants her immortal in every sense of the word: she does not age, is immune to disease, and can regenerate from even being completely disintegrated.

Though he can be imprisoned and sealed away, Grima (Fire Emblem) can only be truly and permanently killed by his own hand.

Snow White (Valkyrie Crusade) is a immortal princess that is always trying to die, but nothing works.

Guardians (Destiny) are considered immortal due to being empowered by the Light and coming back from death every time.

Dominus Ghaul (Destiny) after stealing the Light has become Immortal as he can resurrect himself.

Doomsday (DC Comics), being immune to all that once killed him.

Ra’s al Ghl (DC Comics) is granted immortality by the Lazarus Pit’s effects.

Lobo (DC Comics) possessing regenerative powers of such a level that he can recreate his entire body from nothing more than a puddle of his blood, as he is banned from Death.

Resurrection Man (DC Comics) is immortal, and will return to life no matter how many times he is killed, returning with a new power associated to how he was killed.

Hercules (Marvel Comics) an Olympic half God.

Deadpool (Marvel Comics) is in the same boat as Thanos, both banished from death.

Gaea (Marvel Comics), the Elder Goddess of Nature.

Loki (Marvel Comics), the God of Mischief, is immortal.

Zeus (Marvel Comics), the King of the Olympic Gods.

Atlas (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Adam Destine (Marvel Comics) is immortal and invulnerable to physical harm.

Mr. Immortal (Marvel Comics) having evolved beyond death cannot be killed permanently, and will always come back to life without so much as a scar.

Count Nefaria (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Wonder Man (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Garokk (Marvel Comics) The Petrified Man

Dr. Manhattan (Watchmen) is immortal due to his physiology.

Joshua Foley/Elixir (Marvel Comics) although Josh can die he is able to resurrect himself

Ananke (The Wicked + The Divine)

Pariah Dark (Danny Phantom) is the powerful immortal, former king of ghosts.

Peter Griffin (Family Guy) Peter Griffin has survived many life threatening situations and came back unscathed.

Ernie the Giant Chicken (Family Guy) always comes back for a rematch despite Peter Griffin always dealing a fatal blow on Ernie.

The Dog Talisman (Jackie Chan Adventures) grants its master invincibility.

General Immortus (Teen Titans) knows the strategy of every battle in history because he was there to see it.

Diagon (Ben 10: Ultimate Alien) does not age and cannot be killed.

The Eternals (Marvel Comics) a race of immortal beings that live alongside humanity for centuries.

Nightcrawler (Marvel Comics) cannot return to the afterlife due to sacrificing his soul in order to resurrect himself. This means Kurt cannot die by any natural means

Lord Voldemort (Harry Potter) acquired immortality by splitting his soul and hiding the fragments in various objects as anchors, though when his body was destroyed, he existed as a spectral form that many others would prefer death over.

Fawkes (Harry Potter) is a phoenix, who will be reborn with all of his memories intact upon death, and thus immortal, being the only known creatures in the wizarding world to have natural immortality.

Adam Monroe (Heroes) possessed immortality due to his tremendously advanced regeneration ability, though once the ability is taken away from him, he died within seconds.

Nathan Young (MisFits) is immortal.

Starscream (Transformers G1) possesses an immortal Spark, soul energy, meaning even if his physical vessel is destroyed he will live on.

Jason Voorhees (Friday the 13th) can only be truly and permanently killed by his own family members.

The Beast (Doctor Who) claims to have existed before our universe was created

Candyman (Candyman) has lived for centuries

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China (Axis Powers Hetalia) is 4000+ years old, but appears much younger due to being the only country that is truly immortal.

Washio (Buso Renkin) is a homunculus, which makes him an ageless life-form, with immunity from diseases, making him very hard to kill.

Papillon (Buso Renkin) is a homunculus, which stops him from aging, and even prevents him from dying from his mortal disease, making him very hard to kill.

Kinjo (Buso Renkin) is a homunculus, which stops him from aging and immune to any mortal diseases and very hard to kill.

The Four Founders of Eden (Code:Breaker) are all Dignified Power users, and thus mastered their life force to the point of ceasing their aging.

Kouji (Code:Breaker) is a Dignified Power user, and has ceased aging for a long time.

Prime Minister Fujiwara (Code:Breaker) has mastered his life force like the Dignified Power users, and stopped aging.

Road Kamelot (D.Gray-man) hasn’t aged in 35 years, keeping her preteen appearance forever.

Shinigami (Death Note) will remain eternal, so long as they continuously use their Death Notes to extend their own lifespan when necessary.

Artificial Humans (Dragon Ball) such as 17 and 18 ceased to age since they are altered at a cellular level, while 16 is synthetic from the start.

Artificial Human 19 (Dragon Ball) is a synthetic creation of Dr. Gero who will not age.

Dr. Gero (Dragon Ball) converted himself into an Artificial Human, thus escaping old age for the sake of eternal life.

Master Roshi (Dragon Ball) eats constantly Paradise Grass, which prevents him from dying of old age.

Tomiko Asahina (From the New World) restores the length of her telomeres, allowing her to extend her life indefinitely.

As one of the first generation of Angels, Michael (Highschool DxD) is over 10,000 years old , having lived since the time of the Biblical God.

As one of the first generation of Angels, Gabriel (Highschool DxD) has lived for over 10,000 years.

Kakuzu (Naruto) tears still-beating hearts out of his victims and integrates them into his own body, extending his lifespan so long as he continues this process when necessary.

Hidan (Naruto) is the successful product of the Jashin religion’s experiments of immortality, and cannot die of injuries, but can die of hunger; in essence, he’s the inverse of a typical semi-immortal.

Sasori (Naruto) converted himself into a puppet, escaping old age and sustenance intake necessity; the only way to kill him is to attack his core of living flesh.

Madara Uchiha (Naruto) linked himself to the Gedo Mazo, extending his lifespan indefinitely so long as he remains hooked up to this life support. However, this did not stop him from aging.

Zetsu (Naruto) are ageless, as Black Zetsu is an artificial human created from Kaguya’s materialized will, while White Zetsu are mutated humans.

Brook (One Piece) possesses eternal youth since his second life is supported by his Devil Fruit ability, and his living cell tissues have already rotted off before he came back to life.

The power of the Hobi Hobi no Mi has given Sugar (One Piece) eternal youth. Despite her appearance, she is actually 22 years old.

Archie (Pokemon Adventures) wearing the armor Eternity, which grants him eternal life as the inside has its own timezone.

Kurousagi (Problem Children are Coming from Another World, Aren’t They?) is no longer aging and has lived for over 200 years and still has the appearance of a 18 years old.

Younger Toguro (Yu Yu Hakusho) and his older brother wished to become demons, preventing them from aging.

Elder Toguro (Yu Yu Hakusho) and his younger brother wished to become demons, preventing them from aging.

As the incarnation of the natural world, Lala-Ru (Now and Then, Here and There) hasn’t aged in over 600,000 years.

Muromi (Muromi-san) is completely ageless, having been alive since Pangaea over 300 million years ago.

The Golden Tyrant/Judas Iscariot (Seikon no Qwaser) has lived for over two thousand years since the time of Jesus Christ.

The Ancient Dragon (Seiken Tsukai no World Break) is the most ancient metaphysical of them all, as he has lived completely unchanged by the passage of time for countless ages.

Demi-goddess Rory Mercury (GATE) retains the appearance of a 12 years old girl, despite being 964 years old.

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536. Ode. Intimations of Immortality. William Wordsworth …

THERE was a time when meadow, grove, and stream,The earth, and every common sight,To me did seemApparell’d in celestial light,The glory and the freshness of a dream.5It is not now as it hath been of yore;Turn wheresoe’er I may,By night or day,The things which I have seen I now can see no more.The rainbow comes and goes,10And lovely is the rose;The moon doth with delightLook round her when the heavens are bare;Waters on a starry nightAre beautiful and fair;15The sunshine is a glorious birth;But yet I know, where’er I go,That there hath pass’d away a glory from the earth.Now, while the birds thus sing a joyous song,And while the young lambs bound20As to the tabor’s sound,To me alone there came a thought of grief:A timely utterance gave that thought relief,And I again am strong:The cataracts blow their trumpets from the steep;25No more shall grief of mine the season wrong;I hear the echoes through the mountains throng,The winds come to me from the fields of sleep,And all the earth is gay;Land and sea30Give themselves up to jollity,And with the heart of MayDoth every beast keep holiday;Thou Child of Joy,Shout round me, let me hear thy shouts, thou happy35Shepherd-boy!Ye blessd creatures, I have heard the callYe to each other make; I seeThe heavens laugh with you in your jubilee;My heart is at your festival,40My head hath its coronal,The fulness of your bliss, I feelI feel it all.O evil day! if I were sullenWhile Earth herself is adorning,This sweet May-morning,45And the children are cullingOn every side,In a thousand valleys far and wide,Fresh flowers; while the sun shines warm,And the babe leaps up on his mother’s arm:50I hear, I hear, with joy I hear!But there’s a tree, of many, one,A single field which I have look’d upon,Both of them speak of something that is gone:The pansy at my feet55Doth the same tale repeat:Whither is fled the visionary gleam?Where is it now, the glory and the dream?Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting:The Soul that rises with us, our life’s Star,60Hath had elsewhere its setting,And cometh from afar:Not in entire forgetfulness,And not in utter nakedness,But trailing clouds of glory do we come65From God, who is our home:Heaven lies about us in our infancy!Shades of the prison-house begin to closeUpon the growing Boy,But he beholds the light, and whence it flows,70He sees it in his joy;The Youth, who daily farther from the eastMust travel, still is Nature’s priest,And by the vision splendidIs on his way attended;75At length the Man perceives it die away,And fade into the light of common day.Earth fills her lap with pleasures of her own;Yearnings she hath in her own natural kind,And, even with something of a mother’s mind,80And no unworthy aim,The homely nurse doth all she canTo make her foster-child, her Inmate Man,Forget the glories he hath known,And that imperial palace whence he came.85Behold the Child among his new-born blisses,A six years’ darling of a pigmy size!See, where ‘mid work of his own hand he lies,Fretted by sallies of his mother’s kisses,With light upon him from his father’s eyes!90See, at his feet, some little plan or chart,Some fragment from his dream of human life,Shaped by himself with newly-learnd art;A wedding or a festival,A mourning or a funeral;95And this hath now his heart,And unto this he frames his song:Then will he fit his tongueTo dialogues of business, love, or strife;But it will not be long100Ere this be thrown aside,And with new joy and prideThe little actor cons another part;Filling from time to time his ‘humorous stage’With all the Persons, down to palsied Age,105That Life brings with her in her equipage;As if his whole vocationWere endless imitation.Thou, whose exterior semblance doth belieThy soul’s immensity;110Thou best philosopher, who yet dost keepThy heritage, thou eye among the blind,That, deaf and silent, read’st the eternal deep,Haunted for ever by the eternal mind,Mighty prophet! Seer blest!115On whom those truths do rest,Which we are toiling all our lives to find,In darkness lost, the darkness of the grave;Thou, over whom thy ImmortalityBroods like the Day, a master o’er a slave,120A presence which is not to be put by;To whom the graveIs but a lonely bed without the sense or sightOf day or the warm light,A place of thought where we in waiting lie;125Thou little Child, yet glorious in the mightOf heaven-born freedom on thy being’s height,Why with such earnest pains dost thou provokeThe years to bring the inevitable yoke,Thus blindly with thy blessedness at strife?130Full soon thy soul shall have her earthly freight,And custom lie upon thee with a weight,Heavy as frost, and deep almost as life!O joy! that in our embersIs something that doth live,135That nature yet remembersWhat was so fugitive!The thought of our past years in me doth breedPerpetual benediction: not indeedFor that which is most worthy to be blest140Delight and liberty, the simple creedOf childhood, whether busy or at rest,With new-fledged hope still fluttering in his breast:Not for these I raiseThe song of thanks and praise;145But for those obstinate questioningsOf sense and outward things,Fallings from us, vanishings;Blank misgivings of a CreatureMoving about in worlds not realized,150High instincts before which our mortal NatureDid tremble like a guilty thing surprised:But for those first affections,Those shadowy recollections,Which, be they what they may,155Are yet the fountain-light of all our day,Are yet a master-light of all our seeing;Uphold us, cherish, and have power to makeOur noisy years seem moments in the beingOf the eternal Silence: truths that wake,160To perish never:Which neither listlessness, nor mad endeavour,Nor Man nor Boy,Nor all that is at enmity with joy,Can utterly abolish or destroy!165Hence in a season of calm weatherThough inland far we be,Our souls have sight of that immortal seaWhich brought us hither,Can in a moment travel thither,170And see the children sport upon the shore,And hear the mighty waters rolling evermore.Then sing, ye birds, sing, sing a joyous song!And let the young lambs boundAs to the tabor’s sound!175We in thought will join your throng,Ye that pipe and ye that play,Ye that through your hearts to-dayFeel the gladness of the May!What though the radiance which was once so bright180Be now for ever taken from my sight,Though nothing can bring back the hourOf splendour in the grass, of glory in the flower;We will grieve not, rather findStrength in what remains behind;185In the primal sympathyWhich having been must ever be;In the soothing thoughts that springOut of human suffering;In the faith that looks through death,190In years that bring the philosophic mind.And O ye Fountains, Meadows, Hills, and Groves,Forebode not any severing of our loves!Yet in my heart of hearts I feel your might;I only have relinquish’d one delight195To live beneath your more habitual sway.I love the brooks which down their channels fret,Even more than when I tripp’d lightly as they;The innocent brightness of a new-born DayIs lovely yet;200The clouds that gather round the setting sunDo take a sober colouring from an eyeThat hath kept watch o’er man’s mortality;Another race hath been, and other palms are won.Thanks to the human heart by which we live,205Thanks to its tenderness, its joys, and fears,To me the meanest flower that blows can giveThoughts that do often lie too deep for tears.

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536. Ode. Intimations of Immortality. William Wordsworth …

Immortality | Superpower Wiki | FANDOM powered by Wikia

ImmortalityPower/Ability to:

Never die.

The power to never die. Opposite to Mortality.

User possesses an infinite life span, as they can never die, never age, and can shrug off virtually any kind of physical damage. Some users are the defensive type, simply preventing all damages, to appear physically invulnerable, while others are the regenerative type, surviving and quickly recovering from anything you throw at them while at the same time they are capable of resurrecting themselves instantly after death and completely self-sustaining, free from all bodily necessities.

Some may only possess the power of:

Semi-Immortality

Reliant Immortality (Concept-Dependent Immortality, Self-Puppetry)

Immortality (Immortality via Regenerative Healing Factor)

Unfettered Body

Absolute Immortality

It is highly likely that various kinds of Immortality can become a curse because whoever is close to them or even their friends had past away, the user would be left behind, unless the user is also gifted the ability to teleport to both Earth and Heaven, or alternatively Meta Teleportation to keep the curse of being immortal at bay.

See Also: Immortality and Complete Immortality.

Zeus (Greek mythology) is immortal Father of Gods and ruler of Olympus.

Sun Wukong (Journey Into The West) become unable to die or be harmed in any way after eating both the food of the heavens and erasing his name off death’s register.

Teitoku Kakine (A Certain Magical Index) achieved a form of immortality by creating a human tissues (and a new body) out of his Dark Matter.

Ladylee (A Certain Magical Index) is an immortal, in that when she grew weary of living, she sought to use powerful magic to kill her, which did not work.

Tenzen Yakushiji (Basilisk) having his symbiote “eat” away his wounds and restoring any ravages of time or battle, even reattaching his head by sealing the cut.

Behelits (Berserk) are stone fetishes of unknown supernatural origin said to govern the fate of humanity. They are used primarily for summoning the angels of the God Hand, at which point their owners are granted a wish in exchange for a sacrifice.

Creed Diskenth (Black Cat) possesses the God’s Breath nano-machines within his body, regenerating even fatal wounds in seconds and maintaining his youth, thus granting him immortality aside from any brain damage being irreparable.

Ssuke Aizen (Bleach) gained immortality after fusing with the Hgyoku.

C.C (Code Geass) is immortal.

V.V (Code Geass) is immortal.

Due to the contradiction caused by the fusion of the absolutely immortal Zamasu and the mortal Goku Black, Merged Zamasu (Dragon Ball) has imperfect immortality.

Zeref (Fairy Tail) was cursed by Ankhseram with his contradiction curse which gives him uncontrollable Death Magic and Immortality.

Kager (Flame of Recca) using a forbidden spell that opens a time portal, but it traps her outside of space-time, rendering her completely immortal.

The Truth (Fullmetal Alchemist) is invincible, immortal and invulnerable.

Utsuro (Gintama) possesses immortality by harnessing the Altana energy of Earth to prevent aging and recover from wounds and diseases.

Kouka (Gintama) possessed immortality by harnessing the Altana energy of Kouan to prevent aging and recover from wounds and diseases. However, when she left the planet for good, she weakened overtime and died.

China (Hetalia) is the only nation stated to be truly immortal.

Yta (Mermaid Saga) is a 500 years old immortal since unwittingly eating mermaid’s flesh.

Mana (Mermaid Saga) is a 15 years old immortal since being fed mermaid’s flesh.

Masato (Mermaid Saga) is an 800 years old immortal since eating mermaid’s flesh.

Ban, the Undead (Nanatsu no Taizai) acquired immortality after drinking the Fountain of Youth.

Meliodas (Nanatsu no Taizai) was cursed with the immortality by the Demon King.

Orochimaru (Naruto) considers himself immortal with his Living Corpse Reincarnation to transfer his soul to another body and his Cursed Seals as anchors of his conscious.

Hidan’s (Naruto) main advantage is his inability to die by physical damage, though he is vulnerable to death by lack of nutrient.

Kakuzu (Naruto) attained a form of immortality (though he denies to think of it as such) by tearing hearts out of others and integrating them into himself, extending his lifespan. He kept five inside him at all times.

Madara Uchiha (Naruto) claims he has achieved complete immortality due to hosting the Shinju, as he regenerated form his torso being blown apart. Only when the tailed beasts were all pulled out of him did he die.

Kaguya tsutsuki (Naruto) is immortal, in that she has tremendous regenerative powers, and that the only way to defeat her is to seal her person away by splitting her chakra into the nine tailed beasts.

Gemma Himuro (Ninja Scroll) putting his severed body parts back together, even his head is possible, rendering him immortal.

Due to her race, Jibril (No Game No Life) has reached 6407 years of age, she also has incredibly vast knowledge and high magical abilities, in two words; she gathers many old and new knowledge, in other words; she can no longer age or die.

Yume Hasegawa (Pupa) is an immortal monster incarnated into human form, possessing regenerative abilities that rendered her very difficult to kill.

Utsutsu Hasegawa (Pupa) has been fed the flesh of her immortal “sister”, giving him tremendous regenerative powers that made him more or less immortal.

Rin Asogi (RIN ~Daughters of Mnemosyne~) is immortal, due to a magic spore from Yggdrasil. she can even handle more alcohol than a normal person.

Free (Soul Eater) is a werewolf from the Immortal Clan, and therefore, immortal. He can only be harmed and killed by the “Witch-Hunt”.

Koj Akatsuki (Strike the Blood) is revealed to be immortal, even by vampire standards after regenerating from complete decapitation.

Tta Konoe (UQ Holder) cannot regrow limbs unless they are completely destroyed, but otherwise is immortal and can reattach any of it, including his head.

Karin Yki (UQ Holder) has one of the highest ranked forms of immortality, stating that she’s “not permitted to get hurt or die”

Elder Toguro (Yu Yu Hakusho) stated that his regenerative powers enables him from dying. This prevented him from dying from Kurama’s torturous Sinning Tree.

Dio Brando (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure) become a vampire and gain immortality by using the Stone Mask.

Through the unknown power of his Stand or since merging with DIO’s flesh bud, Nijimura’s Father (Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure Part IV Diamonds Are Unbreakable) is effectively immortal and possess extraordinary healing capabilities.

The Stone Mask (JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure Parts I Phantom Blood and II Battle Tendency).

Setsuna F. Seiei (Mobile Suit Gundam 00 The Movie – A wakening of the Trailblazer)

Porky Minch (Earthbound) has abused Time Travel so much that his body is stuck in the current timeline and cannot age nor die.

It is believed that Ganondorf (The Legend of Zelda) is immortal due to the Triforce of Power.

Clockwerk (Sly Cooper) has kept himself alive for millennia thanks to his cybernetic body and his jealousy and hatred of the Cooper Clan.

The Darkness (Skylanders) can only be killed by the Core of Light.

Shadow the Hedgehog (Sonic the Hedgehog)

Chip/Light Gaia (Sonic the Hedgehog)

Solaris (Sonic the Hedgehog) is a super-dimensional life form and the Sun God of Solenna, and exists in all timelines that he is immortal unless he is killed simultaneously in every temporal point.

Presea Combatir (Tales of Symphonia) is immortal and invulnerable because of a combination of her exsphere and her special ability Suppress

Kaguya Houraisan (Touhou Project) drank the Hourai Elixir, which grants her immortal in every sense of the word: she does not age, is immune to disease, and can regenerate from even being completely disintegrated.

Though he can be imprisoned and sealed away, Grima (Fire Emblem) can only be truly and permanently killed by his own hand.

Snow White (Valkyrie Crusade) is a immortal princess that is always trying to die, but nothing works.

Guardians (Destiny) are considered immortal due to being empowered by the Light and coming back from death every time.

Dominus Ghaul (Destiny) after stealing the Light has become Immortal as he can resurrect himself.

Doomsday (DC Comics), being immune to all that once killed him.

Ra’s al Ghl (DC Comics) is granted immortality by the Lazarus Pit’s effects.

Lobo (DC Comics) possessing regenerative powers of such a level that he can recreate his entire body from nothing more than a puddle of his blood, as he is banned from Death.

Resurrection Man (DC Comics) is immortal, and will return to life no matter how many times he is killed, returning with a new power associated to how he was killed.

Hercules (Marvel Comics) an Olympic half God.

Deadpool (Marvel Comics) is in the same boat as Thanos, both banished from death.

Gaea (Marvel Comics), the Elder Goddess of Nature.

Loki (Marvel Comics), the God of Mischief, is immortal.

Zeus (Marvel Comics), the King of the Olympic Gods.

Atlas (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Adam Destine (Marvel Comics) is immortal and invulnerable to physical harm.

Mr. Immortal (Marvel Comics) having evolved beyond death cannot be killed permanently, and will always come back to life without so much as a scar.

Count Nefaria (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Wonder Man (Marvel Comics) no longer ages and is functionally immortal because of the ionic energy that empowers him.

Garokk (Marvel Comics) The Petrified Man

Dr. Manhattan (Watchmen) is immortal due to his physiology.

Joshua Foley/Elixir (Marvel Comics) although Josh can die he is able to resurrect himself

Ananke (The Wicked + The Divine)

Pariah Dark (Danny Phantom) is the powerful immortal, former king of ghosts.

Peter Griffin (Family Guy) Peter Griffin has survived many life threatening situations and came back unscathed.

Ernie the Giant Chicken (Family Guy) always comes back for a rematch despite Peter Griffin always dealing a fatal blow on Ernie.

The Dog Talisman (Jackie Chan Adventures) grants its master invincibility.

General Immortus (Teen Titans) knows the strategy of every battle in history because he was there to see it.

Diagon (Ben 10: Ultimate Alien) does not age and cannot be killed.

The Eternals (Marvel Comics) a race of immortal beings that live alongside humanity for centuries.

Nightcrawler (Marvel Comics) cannot return to the afterlife due to sacrificing his soul in order to resurrect himself. This means Kurt cannot die by any natural means

Lord Voldemort (Harry Potter) acquired immortality by splitting his soul and hiding the fragments in various objects as anchors, though when his body was destroyed, he existed as a spectral form that many others would prefer death over.

Fawkes (Harry Potter) is a phoenix, who will be reborn with all of his memories intact upon death, and thus immortal, being the only known creatures in the wizarding world to have natural immortality.

Adam Monroe (Heroes) possessed immortality due to his tremendously advanced regeneration ability, though once the ability is taken away from him, he died within seconds.

Nathan Young (MisFits) is immortal.

Starscream (Transformers G1) possesses an immortal Spark, soul energy, meaning even if his physical vessel is destroyed he will live on.

Jason Voorhees (Friday the 13th) can only be truly and permanently killed by his own family members.

The Beast (Doctor Who) claims to have existed before our universe was created

Candyman (Candyman) has lived for centuries

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Immortality (novel) – Wikipedia

Immortality (Czech: Nesmrtelnost) is a novel in seven parts, written by Milan Kundera in 1988 in Czech. First published 1990 in French. English edition 345 p., translation by Peter Kussi.[1] This novel springs from a casual gesture of a woman, seemingly to her swimming instructor. Immortality is the last of a trilogy that includes The Book Of Laughter And Forgetting, and The Unbearable Lightness Of Being.

Divided into seven parts, Immortality centers on Agnes, her husband Paul and her sister Laura. Part One: the Face establishes these characters. Part Two: Immortality depicts Goethe’s fraught relationship with Bettina, a young woman who aspires to create a place for herself in the pantheon of history by controlling Goethe’s legacy after his death. Part Three: Agnes and Laura fight, while focusing on the deteriorating state of Laura’s relationship with Bernard Bertrand. Part Four: Homo Sentimentalis chronicles Goethe’s afterlife and postmortem friendship with Ernest Hemingway. Part Five: Chance sees Agnes’ death, and intersects these fictional events with Kundera’s seemingly autobiographical account of a conversation with Professor Avenarius. Part Six: the Dial introduces a new character, Rubens, who had an affair with Agnes years prior to the onset of the main events in the plot. Part Seven: the Celebration concludes the novel in the same health club where Kundera first observed the inspirational wave gesture.

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Immortality (novel) – Wikipedia

Immortality: God’s Gift To The Saints The Church of God …

No question about it, the Bible clearly reveals that immortality is God’s gracious gift to His saints. But if immortality is a gift that is given only to the saints, why do millions believe that it is an inherent quality of the human soul? What does the Bible say about this subject?

There is no single doctrine which commands such universal acceptance among religious adherents over so vast a span of time. Indeed, this doctrine has been almost synonymous with religion itself. Not one major religion disputes it and every religious tradition affirms it in one form or another.

In the ancient Near East, it dominated religious thought. In African and Asian tribal religions it is prominent and religions of all civilizations have endorsed it. It is an important relic of Platonic thought. In the world of professing Christianity, only a few sects question it. Seventy-one percent of Americans believe it.

It is the doctrine of the immortality of the soul, the view that the human soul has a conscious existence immediately after death.

Yet the Bible, reputedly the authoritative document of the Christian faith, nowhere teaches this doctrine. It is nothing less than astounding that the Old Testament, a document of the ancient Near East, roundly rejects the teaching that the soul consciously survives death when that teaching was commonplace then, and that the New Testament equally rejects this doctrine, believed by the vast majority in the first century.

Amazingly, the Bible as a religious document is almost unique in its utter refutation of the view that the real person is the soul inside, which goes into another world upon the death of the body. This is no minor issue to be mistaken about. Granted there are some doctrines which are inconsequential, and no church has all truth and no error. We all know in part and prophecy (preach) in part. But the true church, the church divinely commissioned to take the gospel to the world, must know the fundamental doctrine of what man really is.

Could God have started a church and continue to actively lead that church when it does not even know what man is and what happens to him after death? Is this a minor doctrine?

The implications for any church which is wrong on this issue are profound. Immortality of the soul defender John W. Cooper, in his book Body, Soul and Life Everlasting, says that if the doctrine is not true then “a doctrine affirmed by most of the church since its beginning is false. A second consequence is more personal and existentialwhat millions of Christians believe will happen when they die is an illusion.” Would God have led so many believers into error, or would He not rescue them from that error, if He were, in fact, the Founder of those churches which believe in the immortality of the soul?

We need to dispassionately and without bias examine this critical subject.

One respected theologian came to what was a startling conclusion for him: that his church had misled him on this critical issue. Church of Christ elder Edward Fudge explains in the book which he finally wrote to show the results of his study, The Fire That Consumes: The Biblical Case for Conditional Immortality: “I was reared on traditionalist teaching. I accepted it because it was said to rest on Scripture. Closer investigation has shown this claim to be mistaken. Careful study has shown that both Old and New Testaments teach instead a resurrection of the wicked for the purpose of divine judgment….so my beliefs have changed-as a result of careful study.”

So have the views of an even more well-known and renowned theologian and evangelical apologist, Clark Pinnock. In his chapter on “The Conditional View” in the well-researched book, Four Views on Hell, Pinnock, after showing a number of scriptures disproving the immortality of the soul, wonders aloud why so many churches should have adopted what would appear an obviously unbiblical view. An explanation for this, he offers, “exists in a Hellenistic belief about human nature that has dominated Christian thinking about eschatology from the beginning. There has been a virtual consensus that the soul survives death because it is by nature an incorporeal substance. This assumption goes back to Plato’s view of the soul as metaphysically indestructible, a view shared by Augustine, Aquinas, and Calvin. The Greek doctrine of the immortality of the soul has affected theology unduly on this point-a good example of the occasional Hellenization of Christian doctrine.”

It is time we get back to the Bible, especially in light of the fact that the Protestant Reformation was ostensibly based on sola ScripturaScripture alone! If this claim is true, then why should nonbiblical sources be more influential than Scripture in the formation of Christian doctrine? Yet defenders of the immortal soul doctrine will protest that Scripture itself is clear that the soul is immortal. There are some scriptures which do, indeed, seem to clearly teach an eternal conscious existence in hell. We can’t ignore these scriptures, if we accept all biblical texts as the Word of Godbut we must seek to understand them without reading foreign ideas into them.

Revelation 14:10 refers to people who “will be tormented with fire and brimstone.” Verse 11 says that the “smoke of their torment goes up for even and ever; and they have no rest, day or night, these worshipers of the beast and its image.” Now if they don’t have immortal souls, how will that be possible? Will God give them immortal souls to facilitate their everlasting punishment? In any event, those who believe in conditional immortality, like the Church of God International, reject the notion of everlasting conscious punishment. So what do we do with a text like Revelation 14:10,11, which was not smuggled into the Scriptures by Plato? These verses seem devastating to our view.

In Matthew 25:41, Jesus refers to those who will depart into “eternal fire.” Verse 46 has been especially appealed to by defenders of the immortal soul view. It says the wicked will go away into “eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.” If “eternal life” means unending life and conscious existence, then why in the same passage doesn’t “eternal punishment” mean unending conscious existence as well?

Matthew 18:8 says that “it is better for you to enter eternal life maimed or lame than…to be thrown into the eternal fire.” Why would the fire be eternal if it has nothing to burn and if the wicked are annihilated, as we teach?

We need to answer all these texts.

Surprising as it might seem, “eternal” and “everlasting” do not always mean never-ending, but can actually mean “agelasting,” that is, lasting for a limited period. It is important to bear in mind that what we have are English translations of the Bible and that the Scriptures were originally inspired in Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic. To study to show ourselves approved, we have to acquire some rudimentary understanding of the biblical languages. If we are going to pronounce authoritatively on certain complex doctrinal matters, we must be equipped.

There is an easy way to prove that aionios does not always mean never-ending and that it can mean eternal in its results and consequences.

In Jude 1:7 we read that Sodom and Gomorrah suffered the “punishment of eternal fire.” Yet no one believes that Sodom and Gomorrah are burning now. The inhabitants suffered the punishment of eternal fire in the sense that they were completely destroyed; the fire was eternal in its results and effects; it left nothing to be consumed.

There can be no dispute about this for there are no cities named Sodom and Gomorrah burning today! Scripture does not say they suffered the punishment of Gehenna (hell) fire, so one cannot reason that perhaps they are suffering (unknown to us) in hell. They suffered the punishment of a literal fire which swept through the area. (One scholar points out that at least seventy times in the Bible the Greek word aionios qualifies objects of a temporary and limited nature.)

The Hebrew equivalent of aionios in the Old Testament is olam, which can also mean eternal or everlasting, but is also used in reference to a limited span of time. To prove decisively that “forever” or “eternal” do not always mean never-ending, notice the following passages in which olam obviously means age-lasting or a limited time.

In Exodus 12:24 we read that the sprinkling of the blood at the Passover was to be “an ordinance for ever.” The Aaronic priesthood was also said to have been a “perpetual statute” (Exodus 29:9; 40:15; Leviticus 3:17). Solomon’s temple was supposed to have been everlasting (1 Kings 8:13). The ritual of tending to the light in the tabernacle was to be “a statute for ever” (Exodus 27:21). All the sacrifices and circumcision were said to last “forever.” Now how many Christians, even among law-keepers, are still practicing these rituals which the Bible clearly says should be observed forever, as part of an “everlasting covenant”? Clearly, the Hebrew word olam, the equivalent of aionios in the passages quoted, means age-lasting, to be in force for the life of the Old Covenant.

Romans 16:25 talks about the revelation of the mystery which was kept secret “for long ages.” What the reader of the English translations of the Bible would not know immediately is that the word translated “long ages” is aionios-the same word translated “forever” in the passages quoted about eternal fire and everlasting punishment. It is indisputable, therefore, that the word carries more than one meaning and cannot, under all circumstances, be interpreted as eternal in the sense of never-ending.

But then there is Matthew 3:12, pulled out by immortal soul advocates to prove their point. It refers to the “unquenchable fire” which will be unleashed on the lost.

Again, just as in the case of the “eternal” fire which destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah, the fire threatened by Jesus here is one which will accomplish its purpose of utter destruction, one whose purpose and mission cannot be thwarted by anyone or anything. This is the sense of the phrase.

To prove that this is not speculation, turn to Jeremiah 17:27 where a similar threat was made to a rebellious Israel. Hear the words of Yahweh: “But if you do not listen to me, to keep the sabbath day holy…then I will kindle a fire in its [Jerusalem’s] gates, and it shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem and shall not be quenched.”

Yahweh threatened an unquenchable fire that could not be put out by all the firemen in the world. It would achieve its purpose: the utter destruction of Jerusalem and its sinning inhabitants. The unquenchable fire, like the eternal fire, refers to the results and consequences of its action, not the duration of its time.

Isaiah 34:9,10 is a clincher. Notice the imagery of the punishment proposed for Edom: “And the streams of Edom shall be turned into a pitch, and her soil into brimstone; her land shall become burning pitch. Night and day it shall not be quenched; its smoke shall go up for ever [notice this similarity with the Revelation texts quoted earlier], from generation to generation it shall lie waste; none shall pass through it for ever and ever.”

Yes, there it is! The fire would completely destroy Edom; its smoke would proverbially go up forever, “from generation to generation.” The land would be desolate-no more; it would be completely destroyed. That the fire would be “eternal” and “unquenchable” means a fire which no one would be able to quench until it achieved its purpose. See also Isaiah 1:30,31: “For you shall be like an oak whose leaf withers, and like a garden without water. And the strong shall become tow, and his work a spark, and both of them shall burn together, with none to quench them.”

There it is”none to quench them”clearly meaning both will burn until they become extinct, annihilated!

As Clark Pinnock has suggested in his essay in the book Four Views on Hell, “I believe that the real basis of the traditional view of the nature of hell is not in the Bible’s talk of the wicked perishing, but an unbiblical anthropology that is read into the text. If a biblical reader approached the text with the assumption that souls are immortal, would they not be compelled to interpret texts that speak of the wicked being destroyed to mean that they are tortured forever since according to that supposition they cannot go out of existence?….[T]he belief in the immortality of the soul will necessarily skew the exegesis.”

This is why we have dealt extensively in this booklet with the discussion of hell, for at the root of the traditional view of an ever-burning hell is the false doctrine of the immortality of the human soul.

The attempt to use Matthew 25:41,46 to prove this false doctrine fails miserably. The fact is, both the righteous and the damned will have their fates sealed eternally. The righteous will enjoy unending life as a reward and the unrighteous will suffer everlasting punishment-their punishment will be final, inexorable, irredeemable. The unrighteous will suffer everlasting punishment, not everlasting punishing!

In his book, Life and Immortality, Basil Atkinson notes that “when the adjective aionios meaning ‘everlasting’ is used in Greek with nouns of action it has reference to the result of the action, not the process.

“Thus, the phrase ‘everlasting punishment’ is comparable to ‘everlasting redemption’ and ‘everlasting salvation,’ both scriptural phrases. No one supposes that we are being redeemed or being saved forever.

“In the same way the lost will not be passing through a process of punishment for ever but will be punished once and for all, with eternal results. On the other hand, the noun ‘life’ is not a noun of action, but a noun expressing a state; that is, the life itself is eternal.”

Finally, Samuele Bacchiocchi in his insightful book Immortality or Resurrection? says of aionios, translated “everlasting” or “forever”: “Ancient Greek papyri contain numerous examples of Roman emperors being described as aionios. What is meant is that they held their office for life. Unfortunately, the English words ‘eternal’ or ‘everlasting’ do not accurately render the meaning of aionios which literally means ‘age-lasting.'”

While some have tried to impose their own preconceived ideas on the biblical texts, a clear reading of the texts which refer to the fate of the wicked and the lost indicates that their end is destruction. Let’s look at some plain texts.

Malachi 4:1 says that on the Day of the Lord “all evildoers will be stubble; the day that comes shall burn them up, says the Lord of hosts, so that it will leave them neither root nor branch.” That text speaks most forcefully of destruction, and utter annihilation. How could we get any other concept from that text? When we are not imposing preconceived ideas on the biblical text, it is obvious that the fate of the unsaved is destruction.

Psalm 37:38 says that “transgressors shall be altogether destroyed; the posterity of the wicked shall be cut off.”

In Matthew 13:30, Jesus also uses the imagery of total destruction to describe the fate of the wicked. The proverbial weeds are gathered to be burned. The metaphor is of total destruction. In Psalm 37:2, we read that the wicked will “fade like the grass”; they “shall be cut off” and “will be no more” (verses 9,10).

Hebrews 10:27 refers the “fury of fire which will consume the adversaries.” Defenders of the immortal soul doctrine have often replied to the avalanche of texts showing that the wicked will be destroyed by saying that the word destruction is sometimes used to mean “put out of action.” The example is used of Christ who, as it were, destroyed Satan the devil through His action on the stake, yet the devil continues to exist.

It is amazing the ingenious attempts which are made to preserve a cherished, inherited belief. While it is true that words do have several meanings, it takes no linguist with a doctorate to see that the contexts of words determine meaning. That destruction could possibly mean to put out of action and that it does take that meaning in one or a few texts does not mean that we should ignore the clear, ordinary meaning of the word as it is used in the many other texts of Scripture.

It is hard to ignore texts like Isaiah 1:28, which says that “rebels and sinners shall be destroyed together, and those who forsake the Lord shall be consumed.”

There is one text that cannot rationally or exegetically be open to any other meaning than the one favored by those who deny ever-burning hell and the immortality of the soul. This text is crystal clear once one really focuses on it.

We return to the case of Sodom and Gomorrah, which were destroyed by eternal fire and are clearly not burning today. This fire was complete in its work of utter destruction. Peter says that God turned “the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes” (2 Peter 2:6). We don’t have to wonder whether Sodom and Gomorrah are burning today. Those cities have been already turned to ashes as a result of the eternal fire.

So, clearly, their fire resulted in complete destruction in the ordinary sense of the word. Let’s go on, for it gets more interesting. What God did was condemn them to extinctionto annihilation!not an unending burning. But it gets even more interesting, and now we’ll see why there can be no other explanation of this bombshell of a text against the ever-burning hell and immortal soul concepts. In the latter part of verse 6, we are told that God “condemned them [Sodom and Gomorrah] to extinction and made them an example of those who were to be ungodly,” meaning that the ungodly will suffer the same fate. What fate? Utter extinction! They will be turned to ashes (which is exactly what Malachi 4:1 says).

It could not be clearer! What Sodom and Gomorrah suffered served as an example of the kind of destruction that awaits the wicked at the end.

(Other important texts applying the word destruction to the fate of the wicked are Philippians 3:9; 1 Thessalonians 5:2,3; and 2 Thessalonians 1:9.)

An argument often used to distort the biblical truth about man is the view that only the body dies at the withdrawal of man’s breath; the soul cannot. Yet Ezekiel 18:4 explicitly states that “the soul that sins shall die.” Those same words are repeated in verse 20.

The Messianic text in Isaiah 53 shows that Jesus as a human being went the way of all fleshHe died. And when He died it was not just the body which died but His soul. Notice Isaiah 53:12, which predicted that the Messiah would pour out “his soul to death.”

See also Psalm 89:48: “What man can live and never see death? Who can deliver his soul from the power of Sheol [the graveNKJV] ?”

Matthew 10:28 is abundantly clear: “And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul; rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body….” The soul can be destroyed! Why do we refuse to believe the plain statements of Scripture?

The title of the book of one noted theologian, Oscar Cullman, says it all: Immortality of the Soul or Resurrection of the Dead? It is an either-or issue. You cannot have both.

What is the purpose of the resurrection if the saints are already in heaven with Christ and the wicked in hell?

Nor is there any evidence that there is some special place called “paradise” where Christians stay in transit until the resurrection when they join Christ in heaven.

The uniform testimony of Scripture is that the dead remain in their graves until the time of the resurrection.

John 5:28,29 says, “Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear His voice and come forth, those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of judgment.”

Daniel 12:2 says, “And many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.” First Corinthians 15:52 shows that it is at the resurrection that the saved will gain immortality, and before then the dead are asleep in their graves. “For the trumpet will sound and the dead will be raised imperishable….For this perishable nature must put on the imperishable and this mortal nature must put on immortality. When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written: ‘Death is swallowed up in victory.’ O death, where is thy victory? O death, where is thy sting?”

First Thessalonians 4:15 refers to the dead as being “asleep.” The text goes on to say that when the Lord returns “the dead in Christ will rise first” (verse 16). Now if the dead go immediately to be with the Lord at death, how can they only rise at the last trump?

The Scriptures show that at the resurrection it is the entire person who is raised, not merely his body. “The dead in Christ” are the persons who die in Christ, not just their bodies.

Look at Job 14:12 to see unequivocally that it is the person himself, not just a part of him, who rises when Christ returns: “So man [his entire being] lies down and rises not again; till the heavens are no more he will not awake; or be roused out of his sleep.”

This takes us to the next point: that the Bible consistently refers to death as a sleep.

If death does not indicate unconsciousness why would the analogy of sleep be meaningful? The Psalmist refers to the “sleep of death” (Psalm 13:3). Psalm 115:17 says, “The dead do not praise the Lord, nor do any that go down into silence.” Matthew 27:52 states that “the tombs also were opened, and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised.” In Acts 7:60 we read of Stephen who “fell asleep.” Second Peter 3:4 speaks of those who ask, “Where is the promise of His coming? For ever since the fathers fell asleep, all things have continued….”

Other equally clear texts show unmistakably that the dead are unconscious. Psalm 146:4 says, “When his [man’s] breath departs he returns to his earth; on that very day his plans [“thoughts”KJV] perish.” The Psalmist asks, “Dost thou work wonders for the dead? Do the shades rise up to praise thee? …Are thy wonders known in the darkness, or thy saving help in the land of forgetfulness?” (Psalm 88:10,12).

The idea that the saints are having a great time praising the Lord and playing on harps finds no support in the Sacred

Scriptures! The dead are asleep; they are in silence, in the land of forgetfulness! Psalm 6:5 says pointedly, “For in death there is no remembrance of thee; in Sheol [the grave] who can give thee praise?”

Immortality is set forth in Scripture as something to be sought and attained in the future. Romans 2:6,7 says that God “will render to every man according to his works; to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, He will give eternal life.”

Immortality is a gift of God through Christ. It is not possessed inherently by humans. Only the saved will be granted immortality. For proof see 2 Timothy 1:10, which states that Jesus Christ “abolished death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.”

Let’s go to the very first book of the Bible to see God’s revelation of what man really is and what constitutes the soul. In Genesis 2:7 we read, significantly, that “God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being [or soulKJV].” Notice that man was not given a soul; God did not breathe a soul within man. Man became a living soul, a living being.

The Hebrew word for soul is nephesh, which is often translated “person,” meaning one’s entire being, not some immaterial part of him. The Hebrews had a holistic conception of human beings.

In Genesis 12:5 we read of Abraham’s gathering all the “persons” (nephesh, rendered “souls” in the KJV) they had gotten in Haran. Genesis 46:27 says that seventy “persons” (nephesh) went into Egypt.

Leviticus 7:20 says that the “person” (nephesh) who touches any unclean thing shall be cut off. The English translations use “soul” and “person” interchangeably in a number of texts. (The King James Version regularly uses “soul” while the Revised Standard Version uses “person”it has the same meaning and comes from the same Hebrew, nephesh.) Leviticus 23:30 says, “And whoever does any work on this same day, that person [soul] I will destroy from among his people.”

The problem is that many persons reading English translations might not realize that a number of references to a “person” (or “persons”) dying are translated from the Hebrew nephesh, which means soul. If they did, it would be patently clear that the notion that the soul cannot die is a flagrant error.

Numbers 31:19, for example, says, “Encamp outside the camp seven days; whoever of you has killed any person [nephesh]….” See also Numbers 35:15,30; Joshua 20:3,9; Genesis 37:21; Deuteronomy 19:6,11; and Jeremiah 40:14,15 to see that souls (persons) die.

We find in the very first revelation about man’s creation that man did not possess a soul but rather was a soul. So where did we get the concept of an immaterial soul that constitutes the real person and that could have an independent existence from the body? As Clark Pinnock and other scholars have pointed out, this view in Christian theology has come from Platonic thought.

Saying that man has no immaterial soul within is not to say that man is not distinguished from the animal kingdom. Man is made in the image of God; the animals and plants are not. Man has intelligence and reasoning ability and shares a number of characteristics with his Maker. Nothing must be done to take away from man’s uniqueness in the created order. However, we need not build myths to sustain our uniqueness and supremacy in the earthly created order.

Some believe that the spirit in man, which goes back to God upon death of the body, can enable man to have conscious existence at that time.

Ecclesiastes 12:7 says that “the dust returns to the earth as it was, and the spirit [ruach] returns to God who gave it.”

The spirit is the life force which God breathed into man which made him a living soul. It is the life principle, the life energy, without which human life is not possible. As Job says, “If he [God] should take back his spirit [ruach] to himself, and gather to himself his breath [neshamah], all flesh would perish together, and man would return to the dust” (Job 34:14,15). The spirit animates human life. It has no separate existence apart from the body.

The breath of life which God breathed into man is equated with the spirit in man. Notice the Hebrew parallelism in Job

27:3: “[A]s long as my breath is in me, and the spirit of God in my nostrils; my lips will not speak falsehood.” Notice this other parallelism (where the same thought is expressed in two ways for emphasis) in Job 33:4: “The spirit [ruach] of God has made me, and the breath [neshamah] of the Almighty gives me life.”

Yet another example of this parallelism is found in Isaiah 42:5: “Thus says God, the Lord, who created the heavens and stretched them out…who gives breath to the people upon it and spirit to those who walk in it.” The Scriptures are, indeed, abundantly clear that the breath of life is equated with the spirit in man.

Those who use Ecclesiastes 12:7, which says that “the spirit returns to God who gave it,” to prove that the spirit is equated with the immortal soul have a very uncomfortable dilemma: They are forced to teach that everyone who dies, not just the saved, goes to heaven irrespective of whether he had a personal relationship with Jesus Christ!

No, the spirit in man is the breath of life which was given to man. As Job 34:14,15 says, “If [God] should back his spirit to himself…all flesh would perish”cease from existence.

Objection after objection crumbles as we look at the scriptural teaching on what man really is. Yet all the world’s religions, all New Age philosophies, all of Eastern mysticism, and almost all of the Christian-professing world have accepted the very opposite of what the Bible teaches.

We now turn to some of the major objections raised against the view that the soul is mortal. We will see in each instance that the objection is not sustained.

Let’s begin with Genesis 35:18, which says of Rachel, “And as her soul was departing (for she died), she called his name Bennoni….” Now does her soul’s departing mean that it had a separate, conscious existence?

Samuele Bacchiocchi puts it well in his book Immortality or Resurrection?: “The phrase ‘her soul was departing’ most likely means that ‘her breath was stopping’ or, as we might say, she was taking her last sigh. It is important to note that the noun soul-nephesh derives from the verb by the same root which means ‘to breathe,’ ‘to respire,’ ‘to draw breath.’ The inbreathing of the breath of life resulted in man becoming a living soul, a breathing organism.

“The departing of the breath of life results in a person becoming a dead soul. Thus as Edmund Jacob explains, ‘The departure of nephesh is a metaphor for death; a dead man is one who has ceased to breathe.'”

Another text commonly misunderstood is 1 Kings 17:21,22, which says of Elijah: “Then he stretched himself upon the child three times, and cried to the Lord, ‘O Lord, my God, let this child’s soul come into him again.'”

If the soul is not a separate part of the person, how could Elijah make this prayer? The Lord heard Elijah’s prayer, “and the soul of the child came into him again and he revived.”

Notice first that in verse 17 it is said that “there was no breath left in him,” which harmonizes well with what we have covered, showing that the departure of the breath of life results in death. It was when God breathed into man’s nostrils the breath of life that man became a living soul. When the breath of life came back into the widow’s son mentioned here, his nephesh (or life-force) came back and he became conscious again.

The soul of the child coming back into him simply means that his life returned! Nothing more, nothing less.

But the most popular of all the misunderstood texts is found in Luke 16, which records the parable of Lazarus and the Rich Man. For many Christians, this is the single text which seals the issue.

First, note that this was a parable. It was not a real historical event or the reporting or recounting of an actual event. It was a parable, a teaching, a pedagogical device designed to express truths in symbolic or metaphorical terms.

It is important, in looking at parables, to notice the contexts carefully, to see what were the lessons which the storyteller wanted to convey.

Jesus had been teaching on covetousness and stewardship (Luke 16:1-13). Jesus usually selects an appropriate parable to illustrate his ethical teachings. The parable of the Rich Man and Lazarus was a classic one showing the rich’s insensitivity to and exploitation of the poor.

Many theologians realize that Luke was the Gospel writer most concerned about social and political issues and that his gospel focuses more on the justice and equity issues. (Advocates of “Liberation Theology” are particularly fond of Luke.)

This parable highlights Luke’s emphasis on concern for the poor and downtrodden and God’s judgment of the selfish and sinful rich. Even the distinguished evangelical theologian Murray Harris, author of the book Raised Immortal: Resurrection and Immortality in the New Testament, admits that “the parable of the rich man and Lazarus was told to illustrate the danger of wealth (Luke 6:24) and the necessity of repentance (Luke 16:28 30), not to satisfy our natural curiosity about man’s anthropological condition after death.” (See his article, “The New Testament View of Life after Death” in the January, 1986, issue of the scholarly journal, Themelios.)

Continue reading here:

Immortality: God’s Gift To The Saints The Church of God …

Immortality – Wikipedia

Immortality is eternal life, being exempt from death, unending existence.[2] Some modern species may possess biological immortality.

Certain scientists, futurists, and philosophers have theorized about the immortality of the human body, with some suggesting that human immortality may be achievable in the first few decades of the 21st century. Other advocates believe that life extension is a more achievable goal in the short term, with immortality awaiting further research breakthroughs. The absence of aging would provide humans with biological immortality, but not invulnerability to death by disease or physical trauma; although mind uploading could solve that if it proved possible. Whether the process of internal endoimmortality is delivered within the upcoming years depends chiefly on research (and in neuron research in the case of endoimmortality through an immortalized cell line) in the former view and perhaps is an awaited goal in the latter case.[3]

In religious contexts, immortality is often stated to be one of the promises of God (or other deities) to human beings who show goodness or else follow divine law. What form an unending human life would take, or whether an immaterial soul exists and possesses immortality, has been a major point of focus of religion, as well as the subject of speculation, fantasy, and debate.

Life extension technologies promise a path to complete rejuvenation. Cryonics holds out the hope that the dead can be revived in the future, following sufficient medical advancements. While, as shown with creatures such as hydra and planarian worms, it is indeed possible for a creature to be biologically immortal, it is not known if it is possible for humans.

Mind uploading is the transference of brain states from a human brain to an alternative medium providing similar functionality. Assuming the process to be possible and repeatable, this would provide immortality to the computation of the original brain, as predicted by futurists such as Ray Kurzweil.[4]

The belief in an afterlife is a fundamental tenet of most religions, including Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, Christianity, Zoroastrianism, Islam, Judaism, and the Bah’ Faith; however, the concept of an immortal soul is not. The “soul” itself has different meanings and is not used in the same way in different religions and different denominations of a religion. For example, various branches of Christianity have disagreeing views on the soul’s immortality and its relation to the body.

Physical immortality is a state of life that allows a person to avoid death and maintain conscious thought. It can mean the unending existence of a person from a physical source other than organic life, such as a computer. Active pursuit of physical immortality can either be based on scientific trends, such as cryonics, digital immortality, breakthroughs in rejuvenation or predictions of an impending technological singularity, or because of a spiritual belief, such as those held by Rastafarians or Rebirthers.

There are three main causes of death: aging, disease and physical trauma.[5] Such issues can be resolved with the solutions provided in research to any end providing such alternate theories at present that require unification.

Aubrey de Grey, a leading researcher in the field,[6] defines aging as “a collection of cumulative changes to the molecular and cellular structure of an adult organism, which result in essential metabolic processes, but which also, once they progress far enough, increasingly disrupt metabolism, resulting in pathology and death.” The current causes of aging in humans are cell loss (without replacement), DNA damage, oncogenic nuclear mutations and epimutations, cell senescence, mitochondrial mutations, lysosomal aggregates, extracellular aggregates, random extracellular cross-linking, immune system decline, and endocrine changes. Eliminating aging would require finding a solution to each of these causes, a program de Grey calls engineered negligible senescence. There is also a huge body of knowledge indicating that change is characterized by the loss of molecular fidelity.[7]

Disease is theoretically surmountable via technology. In short, it is an abnormal condition affecting the body of an organism, something the body shouldn’t typically have to deal with its natural make up.[8] Human understanding of genetics is leading to cures and treatments for a myriad of previously incurable diseases. The mechanisms by which other diseases do damage are becoming better understood. Sophisticated methods of detecting diseases early are being developed. Preventative medicine is becoming better understood. Neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s may soon be curable with the use of stem cells. Breakthroughs in cell biology and telomere research are leading to treatments for cancer. Vaccines are being researched for AIDS and tuberculosis. Genes associated with type 1 diabetes and certain types of cancer have been discovered, allowing for new therapies to be developed. Artificial devices attached directly to the nervous system may restore sight to the blind. Drugs are being developed to treat a myriad of other diseases and ailments.

Physical trauma would remain as a threat to perpetual physical life, as an otherwise immortal person would still be subject to unforeseen accidents or catastrophes. The speed and quality of paramedic response remains a determining factor in surviving severe trauma.[9] A body that could automatically repair itself from severe trauma, such as speculated uses for nanotechnology, would mitigate this factor. Being the seat of consciousness, the brain cannot be risked to trauma if a continuous physical life is to be maintained. This aversion to trauma risk to the brain would naturally result in significant behavioral changes that would render physical immortality undesirable for some people.

Organisms otherwise unaffected by these causes of death would still face the problem of obtaining sustenance (whether from currently available agricultural processes or from hypothetical future technological processes) in the face of changing availability of suitable resources as environmental conditions change. After avoiding aging, disease, and trauma, you could still starve to death.

If there is no limitation on the degree of gradual mitigation of risk then it is possible that the cumulative probability of death over an infinite horizon is less than certainty, even when the risk of fatal trauma in any finite period is greater than zero. Mathematically, this is an aspect of achieving “actuarial escape velocity”

Biological immortality is an absence of aging. Specifically it’s the absence of a sustained increase in rate of mortality as a function of chronological age. A cell or organism that does not experience aging, or ceases to age at some point, is biologically immortal.

Biologists have chosen the word “immortal” to designate cells that are not limited by the Hayflick limit, where cells no longer divide because of DNA damage or shortened telomeres. The first and still most widely used immortal cell line is HeLa, developed from cells taken from the malignant cervical tumor of Henrietta Lacks without her consent in 1951. Prior to the 1961 work of Leonard Hayflick, there was the erroneous belief fostered by Alexis Carrel that all normal somatic cells are immortal. By preventing cells from reaching senescence one can achieve biological immortality; telomeres, a “cap” at the end of DNA, are thought to be the cause of cell aging. Every time a cell divides the telomere becomes a bit shorter; when it is finally worn down, the cell is unable to split and dies. Telomerase is an enzyme which rebuilds the telomeres in stem cells and cancer cells, allowing them to replicate an infinite number of times.[10] No definitive work has yet demonstrated that telomerase can be used in human somatic cells to prevent healthy tissues from aging. On the other hand, scientists hope to be able to grow organs with the help of stem cells, allowing organ transplants without the risk of rejection, another step in extending human life expectancy. These technologies are the subject of ongoing research, and are not yet realized.[11]

Life defined as biologically immortal is still susceptible to causes of death besides aging, including disease and trauma, as defined above. Notable immortal species include:

As the existence of biologically immortal species demonstrates, there is no thermodynamic necessity for senescence: a defining feature of life is that it takes in free energy from the environment and unloads its entropy as waste. Living systems can even build themselves up from seed, and routinely repair themselves. Aging is therefore presumed to be a byproduct of evolution, but why mortality should be selected for remains a subject of research and debate. Programmed cell death and the telomere “end replication problem” are found even in the earliest and simplest of organisms.[19] This may be a tradeoff between selecting for cancer and selecting for aging.[20]

Modern theories on the evolution of aging include the following:

There are some known naturally occurring and artificially produced chemicals that may increase the lifetime or life-expectancy of a person or organism, such as resveratrol.[23][24]

Some scientists believe that boosting the amount or proportion of telomerase in the body, a naturally forming enzyme that helps maintain the protective caps at the ends of chromosomes, could prevent cells from dying and so may ultimately lead to extended, healthier lifespans. A team of researchers at the Spanish National Cancer Centre (Madrid) tested the hypothesis on mice. It was found that those mice which were genetically engineered to produce 10 times the normal levels of telomerase lived 50% longer than normal mice.[25]

In normal circumstances, without the presence of telomerase, if a cell divides repeatedly, at some point all the progeny will reach their Hayflick limit. With the presence of telomerase, each dividing cell can replace the lost bit of DNA, and any single cell can then divide unbounded. While this unbounded growth property has excited many researchers, caution is warranted in exploiting this property, as exactly this same unbounded growth is a crucial step in enabling cancerous growth. If an organism can replicate its body cells faster, then it would theoretically stop aging.

Embryonic stem cells express telomerase, which allows them to divide repeatedly and form the individual. In adults, telomerase is highly expressed in cells that need to divide regularly (e.g., in the immune system), whereas most somatic cells express it only at very low levels in a cell-cycle dependent manner.

Technological immortality is the prospect for much longer life spans made possible by scientific advances in a variety of fields: nanotechnology, emergency room procedures, genetics, biological engineering, regenerative medicine, microbiology, and others. Contemporary life spans in the advanced industrial societies are already markedly longer than those of the past because of better nutrition, availability of health care, standard of living and bio-medical scientific advances. Technological immortality predicts further progress for the same reasons over the near term. An important aspect of current scientific thinking about immortality is that some combination of human cloning, cryonics or nanotechnology will play an essential role in extreme life extension. Robert Freitas, a nanorobotics theorist, suggests tiny medical nanorobots could be created to go through human bloodstreams, find dangerous things like cancer cells and bacteria, and destroy them.[26] Freitas anticipates that gene-therapies and nanotechnology will eventually make the human body effectively self-sustainable and capable of living indefinitely in empty space, short of severe brain trauma. This supports the theory that we will be able to continually create biological or synthetic replacement parts to replace damaged or dying ones. Future advances in nanomedicine could give rise to life extension through the repair of many processes thought to be responsible for aging. K. Eric Drexler, one of the founders of nanotechnology, postulated cell repair devices, including ones operating within cells and utilizing as yet hypothetical biological machines, in his 1986 book Engines of Creation. Raymond Kurzweil, a futurist and transhumanist, stated in his book The Singularity Is Near that he believes that advanced medical nanorobotics could completely remedy the effects of aging by 2030.[27] According to Richard Feynman, it was his former graduate student and collaborator Albert Hibbs who originally suggested to him (circa 1959) the idea of a medical use for Feynman’s theoretical micromachines (see biological machine). Hibbs suggested that certain repair machines might one day be reduced in size to the point that it would, in theory, be possible to (as Feynman put it) “swallow the doctor”. The idea was incorporated into Feynman’s 1959 essay There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom.[28]

Cryonics, the practice of preserving organisms (either intact specimens or only their brains) for possible future revival by storing them at cryogenic temperatures where metabolism and decay are almost completely stopped, can be used to ‘pause’ for those who believe that life extension technologies will not develop sufficiently within their lifetime. Ideally, cryonics would allow clinically dead people to be brought back in the future after cures to the patients’ diseases have been discovered and aging is reversible. Modern cryonics procedures use a process called vitrification which creates a glass-like state rather than freezing as the body is brought to low temperatures. This process reduces the risk of ice crystals damaging the cell-structure, which would be especially detrimental to cell structures in the brain, as their minute adjustment evokes the individual’s mind.

One idea that has been advanced involves uploading an individual’s habits and memories via direct mind-computer interface. The individual’s memory may be loaded to a computer or to a new organic body. Extropian futurists like Moravec and Kurzweil have proposed that, thanks to exponentially growing computing power, it will someday be possible to upload human consciousness onto a computer system, and exist indefinitely in a virtual environment. This could be accomplished via advanced cybernetics, where computer hardware would initially be installed in the brain to help sort memory or accelerate thought processes. Components would be added gradually until the person’s entire brain functions were handled by artificial devices, avoiding sharp transitions that would lead to issues of identity, thus running the risk of the person to be declared dead and thus not be a legitimate owner of his or her property. After this point, the human body could be treated as an optional accessory and the program implementing the person could be transferred to any sufficiently powerful computer. Another possible mechanism for mind upload is to perform a detailed scan of an individual’s original, organic brain and simulate the entire structure in a computer. What level of detail such scans and simulations would need to achieve to emulate awareness, and whether the scanning process would destroy the brain, is still to be determined.[29] Whatever the route to mind upload, persons in this state could then be considered essentially immortal, short of loss or traumatic destruction of the machines that maintained them.[clarification needed]

Transforming a human into a cyborg can include brain implants or extracting a human processing unit and placing it in a robotic life-support system. Even replacing biological organs with robotic ones could increase life span (e.g. pace makers) and depending on the definition, many technological upgrades to the body, like genetic modifications or the addition of nanobots would qualify an individual as a cyborg. Some people believe that such modifications would make one impervious to aging and disease and theoretically immortal unless killed or destroyed.

Another approach, developed by biogerontologist Marios Kyriazis, holds that human biological immortality is an inevitable consequence of evolution. As the natural tendency is to create progressively more complex structures,[30] there will be a time (Kyriazis claims this time is now[31]), when evolution of a more complex human brain will be faster via a process of developmental singularity[32] rather than through Darwinian evolution. In other words, the evolution of the human brain as we know it will cease and there will be no need for individuals to procreate and then die. Instead, a new type of development will take over, in the same individual who will have to live for many centuries in order for the development to take place. This intellectual development will be facilitated by technology such as synthetic biology, artificial intelligence and a technological singularity process.

As late as 1952, the editorial staff of the Syntopicon found in their compilation of the Great Books of the Western World, that “The philosophical issue concerning immortality cannot be separated from issues concerning the existence and nature of man’s soul.”[33] Thus, the vast majority of speculation regarding immortality before the 21st century was regarding the nature of the afterlife.

Immortality in ancient Greek religion originally always included an eternal union of body and soul as can be seen in Homer, Hesiod, and various other ancient texts. The soul was considered to have an eternal existence in Hades, but without the body the soul was considered dead. Although almost everybody had nothing to look forward to but an eternal existence as a disembodied dead soul, a number of men and women were considered to have gained physical immortality and been brought to live forever in either Elysium, the Islands of the Blessed, heaven, the ocean or literally right under the ground. Among these were Amphiaraus, Ganymede, Ino, Iphigenia, Menelaus, Peleus, and a great part of those who fought in the Trojan and Theban wars. Some were considered to have died and been resurrected before they achieved physical immortality. Asclepius was killed by Zeus only to be resurrected and transformed into a major deity. In some versions of the Trojan War myth, Achilles, after being killed, was snatched from his funeral pyre by his divine mother Thetis, resurrected, and brought to an immortal existence in either Leuce, the Elysian plains, or the Islands of the Blessed. Memnon, who was killed by Achilles, seems to have received a similar fate. Alcmene, Castor, Heracles, and Melicertes were also among the figures sometimes considered to have been resurrected to physical immortality. According to Herodotus’ Histories, the 7th century BC sage Aristeas of Proconnesus was first found dead, after which his body disappeared from a locked room. Later he was found not only to have been resurrected but to have gained immortality.

The philosophical idea of an immortal soul was a belief first appearing with either Pherecydes or the Orphics, and most importantly advocated by Plato and his followers. This, however, never became the general norm in Hellenistic thought. As may be witnessed even into the Christian era, not least by the complaints of various philosophers over popular beliefs, many or perhaps most traditional Greeks maintained the conviction that certain individuals were resurrected from the dead and made physically immortal and that others could only look forward to an existence as disembodied and dead, though everlasting, souls. The parallel between these traditional beliefs and the later resurrection of Jesus was not lost on the early Christians, as Justin Martyr argued: “when we say… Jesus Christ, our teacher, was crucified and died, and rose again, and ascended into heaven, we propose nothing different from what you believe regarding those whom you consider sons of Zeus.” (1 Apol. 21).

The goal of Hinayana is Arhatship and Nirvana. By contrast, the goal of Mahayana is Buddhahood.

According to one Tibetan Buddhist teaching, Dzogchen, individuals can transform the physical body into an immortal body of light called the rainbow body.

Christian theology holds that Adam and Eve lost physical immortality for themselves and all their descendants in the Fall of Man, although this initial “imperishability of the bodily frame of man” was “a preternatural condition”.[34] Christians who profess the Nicene Creed believe that every dead person (whether they believed in Christ or not) will be resurrected from the dead at the Second Coming, and this belief is known as Universal resurrection.[citation needed]

N.T. Wright, a theologian and former Bishop of Durham, has said many people forget the physical aspect of what Jesus promised. He told Time: “Jesus’ resurrection marks the beginning of a restoration that he will complete upon his return. Part of this will be the resurrection of all the dead, who will ‘awake’, be embodied and participate in the renewal. Wright says John Polkinghorne, a physicist and a priest, has put it this way: ‘God will download our software onto his hardware until the time he gives us new hardware to run the software again for ourselves.’ That gets to two things nicely: that the period after death (the Intermediate state) is a period when we are in God’s presence but not active in our own bodies, and also that the more important transformation will be when we are again embodied and administering Christ’s kingdom.”[35] This kingdom will consist of Heaven and Earth “joined together in a new creation”, he said.

Hindus believe in an immortal soul which is reincarnated after death. According to Hinduism, people repeat a process of life, death, and rebirth in a cycle called samsara. If they live their life well, their karma improves and their station in the next life will be higher, and conversely lower if they live their life poorly. After many life times of perfecting its karma, the soul is freed from the cycle and lives in perpetual bliss. There is no place of eternal torment in Hinduism, although if a soul consistently lives very evil lives, it could work its way down to the very bottom of the cycle.[citation needed]

There are explicit renderings in the Upanishads alluding to a physically immortal state brought about by purification, and sublimation of the 5 elements that make up the body. For example, in the Shvetashvatara Upanishad (Chapter 2, Verse 12), it is stated “When earth, water fire, air and akasa arise, that is to say, when the five attributes of the elements, mentioned in the books on yoga, become manifest then the yogi’s body becomes purified by the fire of yoga and he is free from illness, old age and death.”

Another view of immortality is traced to the Vedic tradition by the interpretation of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi:

That man indeed whom these (contacts)do not disturb, who is even-minded inpleasure and pain, steadfast, he is fitfor immortality, O best of men.[36]

To Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the verse means, “Once a man has become established in the understanding of the permanent reality of life, his mind rises above the influence of pleasure and pain. Such an unshakable man passes beyond the influence of death and in the permanent phase of life: he attains eternal life… A man established in the understanding of the unlimited abundance of absolute existence is naturally free from existence of the relative order. This is what gives him the status of immortal life.”[36]

An Indian Tamil saint known as Vallalar claimed to have achieved immortality before disappearing forever from a locked room in 1874.[37][38]

The traditional concept of an immaterial and immortal soul distinct from the body was not found in Judaism before the Babylonian Exile, but developed as a result of interaction with Persian and Hellenistic philosophies. Accordingly, the Hebrew word nephesh, although translated as “soul” in some older English Bibles, actually has a meaning closer to “living being”.[citation needed] Nephesh was rendered in the Septuagint as (psch), the Greek word for soul.[citation needed]

The only Hebrew word traditionally translated “soul” (nephesh) in English language Bibles refers to a living, breathing conscious body, rather than to an immortal soul.[39] In the New Testament, the Greek word traditionally translated “soul” () has substantially the same meaning as the Hebrew, without reference to an immortal soul.[40] Soul may refer to the whole person, the self: three thousand souls were converted in Acts 2:41 (see Acts 3:23).

The Hebrew Bible speaks about Sheol (), originally a synonym of the grave-the repository of the dead or the cessation of existence until the resurrection of the dead. This doctrine of resurrection is mentioned explicitly only in Daniel 12:14 although it may be implied in several other texts. New theories arose concerning Sheol during the intertestamental period.

The views about immortality in Judaism is perhaps best exemplified by the various references to this in Second Temple Period. The concept of resurrection of the physical body is found in 2 Maccabees, according to which it will happen through recreation of the flesh.[41] Resurrection of the dead also appears in detail in the extra-canonical books of Enoch,[42] and in Apocalypse of Baruch.[43] According to the British scholar in ancient Judaism Philip R. Davies, there is little or no clear reference either to immortality or to resurrection from the dead in the Dead Sea scrolls texts.[44] Both Josephus and the New Testament record that the Sadducees did not believe in an afterlife,[45] but the sources vary on the beliefs of the Pharisees. The New Testament claims that the Pharisees believed in the resurrection, but does not specify whether this included the flesh or not.[46] According to Josephus, who himself was a Pharisee, the Pharisees held that only the soul was immortal and the souls of good people will be reincarnated and pass into other bodies, while the souls of the wicked will suffer eternal punishment. [47] Jubilees seems to refer to the resurrection of the soul only, or to a more general idea of an immortal soul.[48]

Rabbinic Judaism claims that the righteous dead will be resurrected in the Messianic Age with the coming of the messiah. They will then be granted immortality in a perfect world. The wicked dead, on the other hand, will not be resurrected at all. This is not the only Jewish belief about the afterlife. The Tanakh is not specific about the afterlife, so there are wide differences in views and explanations among believers.[citation needed]

It is repeatedly stated in Lshi Chunqiu that death is unavoidable.[49] Henri Maspero noted that many scholarly works frame Taoism as a school of thought focused on the quest for immortality.[50] Isabelle Robinet asserts that Taoism is better understood as a way of life than as a religion, and that its adherents do not approach or view Taoism the way non-Taoist historians have done.[51] In the Tractate of Actions and their Retributions, a traditional teaching, spiritual immortality can be rewarded to people who do a certain amount of good deeds and live a simple, pure life. A list of good deeds and sins are tallied to determine whether or not a mortal is worthy. Spiritual immortality in this definition allows the soul to leave the earthly realms of afterlife and go to pure realms in the Taoist cosmology.[52]

Zoroastrians believe that on the fourth day after death, the human soul leaves the body and the body remains as an empty shell. Souls would go to either heaven or hell; these concepts of the afterlife in Zoroastrianism may have influenced Abrahamic religions. The Persian word for “immortal” is associated with the month “Amurdad”, meaning “deathless” in Persian, in the Iranian calendar (near the end of July). The month of Amurdad or Ameretat is celebrated in Persian culture as ancient Persians believed the “Angel of Immortality” won over the “Angel of Death” in this month.[53]

Alcmaeon of Croton argued that the soul is continuously and ceaselessly in motion. The exact form of his argument is unclear, but it appears to have influenced Plato, Aristotle, and other later writers.[54]

Plato’s Phaedo advances four arguments for the soul’s immortality:[55]

Plotinus offers a version of the argument that Kant calls “The Achilles of Rationalist Psychology”. Plotinus first argues that the soul is simple, then notes that a simple being cannot decompose. Many subsequent philosophers have argued both that the soul is simple and that it must be immortal. The tradition arguably culminates with Moses Mendelssohn’s Phaedon.[56]

Theodore Metochites argues that part of the soul’s nature is to move itself, but that a given movement will cease only if what causes the movement is separated from the thing moved an impossibility if they are one and the same.[57]

Avicenna argued for the distinctness of the soul and the body, and the incorruptibility of the former.[58]

The full argument for the immortality of the soul and Thomas Aquinas’ elaboration of Aristotelian theory is found in Question 75 of the First Part of the Summa Theologica.[59]

Ren Descartes endorses the claim that the soul is simple, and also that this entails that it cannot decompose. Descartes does not address the possibility that the soul might suddenly disappear.[60]

In early work, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz endorses a version of the argument from the simplicity of the soul to its immortality, but like his predecessors, he does not address the possibility that the soul might suddenly disappear. In his monadology he advances a sophisticated novel argument for the immortality of monads.[61]

Moses Mendelssohn’s Phaedon is a defense of the simplicity and immortality of the soul. It is a series of three dialogues, revisiting the Platonic dialogue Phaedo, in which Socrates argues for the immortality of the soul, in preparation for his own death. Many philosophers, including Plotinus, Descartes, and Leibniz, argue that the soul is simple, and that because simples cannot decompose they must be immortal. In the Phaedon, Mendelssohn addresses gaps in earlier versions of this argument (an argument that Kant calls the Achilles of Rationalist Psychology). The Phaedon contains an original argument for the simplicity of the soul, and also an original argument that simples cannot suddenly disappear. It contains further original arguments that the soul must retain its rational capacities as long as it exists.[62]

The possibility of clinical immortality raises a host of medical, philosophical, and religious issues and ethical questions. These include persistent vegetative states, the nature of personality over time, technology to mimic or copy the mind or its processes, social and economic disparities created by longevity, and survival of the heat death of the universe.

Physical immortality has also been imagined as a form of eternal torment, as in Mary Shelley’s short story “The Mortal Immortal”, the protagonist of which witnesses everyone he cares about dying around him. Jorge Luis Borges explored the idea that life gets its meaning from death in the short story “The Immortal”; an entire society having achieved immortality, they found time becoming infinite, and so found no motivation for any action. In his book Thursday’s Fictions, and the stage and film adaptations of it, Richard James Allen tells the story of a woman named Thursday who tries to cheat the cycle of reincarnation to get a form of eternal life. At the end of this fantastical tale, her son, Wednesday, who has witnessed the havoc his mother’s quest has caused, forgoes the opportunity for immortality when it is offered to him.[63] Likewise, the novel Tuck Everlasting depicts immortality as “falling off the wheel of life” and is viewed as a curse as opposed to a blessing. In the anime Casshern Sins humanity achieves immortality due to advances in medical technology; however, the inability of the human race to die causes Luna, a Messianic figure, to come forth and offer normal lifespans because she believed that without death, humans could not live. Ultimately, Casshern takes up the cause of death for humanity when Luna begins to restore humanity’s immortality. In Anne Rice’s book series The Vampire Chronicles, vampires are portrayed as immortal and ageless, but their inability to cope with the changes in the world around them means that few vampires live for much more than a century, and those who do often view their changeless form as a curse.

In his book Death, Yale philosopher Shelly Kagan argues that any form of human immortality would be undesirable. Kagan’s argument takes the form of a dilemma. Either our characters remain essentially the same in an immortal afterlife, or they do not. If our characters remain basically the samethat is, if we retain more or less the desires, interests, and goals that we have nowthen eventually, over an infinite stretch of time, we will get bored and find eternal life unbearably tedious. If, on the other hand, our characters are radically changede.g., by God periodically erasing our memories or giving us rat-like brains that never tire of certain simple pleasuresthen such a person would be too different from our current self for us to care much what happens to them. Either way, Kagan argues, immortality is unattractive. The best outcome, Kagan argues, would be for humans to live as long as they desired and then to accept death gratefully as rescuing us from the unbearable tedium of immortality.[64]

If human beings were to achieve immortality, there would most likely be a change in the worlds’ social structures. Sociologist argue that human beings’ awareness of their own mortality shapes their behavior.[65] With the advancements in medical technology in extending human life, there may need to be serious considerations made about future social structures. The world is already experiencing a global demographic shift of increasingly ageing populations with lower replacement rates.[66] The social changes that are made to accommodate this new population shift may be able to offer insight on the possibility of an immortal society.

Although some scientists state that radical life extension, delaying and stopping aging are achievable,[67] there are no international or national programs focused on stopping aging or on radical life extension. In 2012 in Russia, and then in the United States, Israel and the Netherlands, pro-immortality political parties were launched. They aimed to provide political support to anti-aging and radical life extension research and technologies and at the same time transition to the next step, radical life extension, life without aging, and finally, immortality and aim to make possible access to such technologies to most currently living people.[68]

There are numerous symbols representing immortality. The ankh is an Egyptian symbol of life that holds connotations of immortality when depicted in the hands of the gods and pharaohs, who were seen as having control over the journey of life. The Mbius strip in the shape of a trefoil knot is another symbol of immortality. Most symbolic representations of infinity or the life cycle are often used to represent immortality depending on the context they are placed in. Other examples include the Ouroboros, the Chinese fungus of longevity, the ten kanji, the phoenix, the peacock in Christianity,[69] and the colors amaranth (in Western culture) and peach (in Chinese culture).

Immortality is a popular subject in fiction, as it explores humanity’s deep-seated fears and comprehension of its own mortality. Immortal beings and species abound in fiction, especially fantasy fiction, and the meaning of “immortal” tends to vary. The Epic of Gilgamesh, one of the first literary works, is primarily a quest of a hero seeking to become immortal.[6]

Some fictional beings are completely immortal (or very nearly so) in that they are immune to death by injury, disease and age. Sometimes such powerful immortals can only be killed by each other, as is the case with the Q from the Star Trek series. Even if something can’t be killed, a common plot device involves putting an immortal being into a slumber or limbo, as is done with Morgoth in J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Silmarillion and the Dreaming God of Pathways Into Darkness. Storytellers often make it a point to give weaknesses to even the most indestructible of beings. For instance, Superman is supposed to be invulnerable, yet his enemies were able to exploit his now-infamous weakness: Kryptonite. (See also Achilles’ heel.)

Many fictitious species are said to be immortal if they cannot die of old age, even though they can be killed through other means, such as injury. Modern fantasy elves often exhibit this form of immortality. Other creatures, such as vampires and the immortals in the film Highlander, can only die from beheading. The classic and stereotypical vampire is typically slain by one of several very specific means, including a silver bullet (or piercing with other silver weapons), a stake through the heart (perhaps made of consecrated wood), or by exposing them to sunlight.[70][71]

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Immortality – Wikipedia

Immortality – Wikipedia

Immortality is eternal life, being exempt from death, unending existence.[2] Some modern species may possess biological immortality.

Certain scientists, futurists, and philosophers have theorized about the immortality of the human body, with some suggesting that human immortality may be achievable in the first few decades of the 21st century. Other advocates believe that life extension is a more achievable goal in the short term, with immortality awaiting further research breakthroughs. The absence of aging would provide humans with biological immortality, but not invulnerability to death by disease or physical trauma; although mind uploading could solve that if it proved possible. Whether the process of internal endoimmortality is delivered within the upcoming years depends chiefly on research (and in neuron research in the case of endoimmortality through an immortalized cell line) in the former view and perhaps is an awaited goal in the latter case.[3]

In religious contexts, immortality is often stated to be one of the promises of God (or other deities) to human beings who show goodness or else follow divine law. What form an unending human life would take, or whether an immaterial soul exists and possesses immortality, has been a major point of focus of religion, as well as the subject of speculation, fantasy, and debate.

Life extension technologies promise a path to complete rejuvenation. Cryonics holds out the hope that the dead can be revived in the future, following sufficient medical advancements. While, as shown with creatures such as hydra and planarian worms, it is indeed possible for a creature to be biologically immortal, it is not known if it is possible for humans.

Mind uploading is the transference of brain states from a human brain to an alternative medium providing similar functionality. Assuming the process to be possible and repeatable, this would provide immortality to the computation of the original brain, as predicted by futurists such as Ray Kurzweil.[4]

The belief in an afterlife is a fundamental tenet of most religions, including Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism, Christianity, Zoroastrianism, Islam, Judaism, and the Bah’ Faith; however, the concept of an immortal soul is not. The “soul” itself has different meanings and is not used in the same way in different religions and different denominations of a religion. For example, various branches of Christianity have disagreeing views on the soul’s immortality and its relation to the body.

Physical immortality is a state of life that allows a person to avoid death and maintain conscious thought. It can mean the unending existence of a person from a physical source other than organic life, such as a computer. Active pursuit of physical immortality can either be based on scientific trends, such as cryonics, digital immortality, breakthroughs in rejuvenation or predictions of an impending technological singularity, or because of a spiritual belief, such as those held by Rastafarians or Rebirthers.

There are three main causes of death: aging, disease and physical trauma.[5] Such issues can be resolved with the solutions provided in research to any end providing such alternate theories at present that require unification.

Aubrey de Grey, a leading researcher in the field,[6] defines aging as “a collection of cumulative changes to the molecular and cellular structure of an adult organism, which result in essential metabolic processes, but which also, once they progress far enough, increasingly disrupt metabolism, resulting in pathology and death.” The current causes of aging in humans are cell loss (without replacement), DNA damage, oncogenic nuclear mutations and epimutations, cell senescence, mitochondrial mutations, lysosomal aggregates, extracellular aggregates, random extracellular cross-linking, immune system decline, and endocrine changes. Eliminating aging would require finding a solution to each of these causes, a program de Grey calls engineered negligible senescence. There is also a huge body of knowledge indicating that change is characterized by the loss of molecular fidelity.[7]

Disease is theoretically surmountable via technology. In short, it is an abnormal condition affecting the body of an organism, something the body shouldn’t typically have to deal with its natural make up.[8] Human understanding of genetics is leading to cures and treatments for a myriad of previously incurable diseases. The mechanisms by which other diseases do damage are becoming better understood. Sophisticated methods of detecting diseases early are being developed. Preventative medicine is becoming better understood. Neurodegenerative diseases like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s may soon be curable with the use of stem cells. Breakthroughs in cell biology and telomere research are leading to treatments for cancer. Vaccines are being researched for AIDS and tuberculosis. Genes associated with type 1 diabetes and certain types of cancer have been discovered, allowing for new therapies to be developed. Artificial devices attached directly to the nervous system may restore sight to the blind. Drugs are being developed to treat a myriad of other diseases and ailments.

Physical trauma would remain as a threat to perpetual physical life, as an otherwise immortal person would still be subject to unforeseen accidents or catastrophes. The speed and quality of paramedic response remains a determining factor in surviving severe trauma.[9] A body that could automatically repair itself from severe trauma, such as speculated uses for nanotechnology, would mitigate this factor. Being the seat of consciousness, the brain cannot be risked to trauma if a continuous physical life is to be maintained. This aversion to trauma risk to the brain would naturally result in significant behavioral changes that would render physical immortality undesirable for some people.

Organisms otherwise unaffected by these causes of death would still face the problem of obtaining sustenance (whether from currently available agricultural processes or from hypothetical future technological processes) in the face of changing availability of suitable resources as environmental conditions change. After avoiding aging, disease, and trauma, you could still starve to death.

If there is no limitation on the degree of gradual mitigation of risk then it is possible that the cumulative probability of death over an infinite horizon is less than certainty, even when the risk of fatal trauma in any finite period is greater than zero. Mathematically, this is an aspect of achieving “actuarial escape velocity”

Biological immortality is an absence of aging. Specifically it’s the absence of a sustained increase in rate of mortality as a function of chronological age. A cell or organism that does not experience aging, or ceases to age at some point, is biologically immortal.

Biologists have chosen the word “immortal” to designate cells that are not limited by the Hayflick limit, where cells no longer divide because of DNA damage or shortened telomeres. The first and still most widely used immortal cell line is HeLa, developed from cells taken from the malignant cervical tumor of Henrietta Lacks without her consent in 1951. Prior to the 1961 work of Leonard Hayflick, there was the erroneous belief fostered by Alexis Carrel that all normal somatic cells are immortal. By preventing cells from reaching senescence one can achieve biological immortality; telomeres, a “cap” at the end of DNA, are thought to be the cause of cell aging. Every time a cell divides the telomere becomes a bit shorter; when it is finally worn down, the cell is unable to split and dies. Telomerase is an enzyme which rebuilds the telomeres in stem cells and cancer cells, allowing them to replicate an infinite number of times.[10] No definitive work has yet demonstrated that telomerase can be used in human somatic cells to prevent healthy tissues from aging. On the other hand, scientists hope to be able to grow organs with the help of stem cells, allowing organ transplants without the risk of rejection, another step in extending human life expectancy. These technologies are the subject of ongoing research, and are not yet realized.[11]

Life defined as biologically immortal is still susceptible to causes of death besides aging, including disease and trauma, as defined above. Notable immortal species include:

As the existence of biologically immortal species demonstrates, there is no thermodynamic necessity for senescence: a defining feature of life is that it takes in free energy from the environment and unloads its entropy as waste. Living systems can even build themselves up from seed, and routinely repair themselves. Aging is therefore presumed to be a byproduct of evolution, but why mortality should be selected for remains a subject of research and debate. Programmed cell death and the telomere “end replication problem” are found even in the earliest and simplest of organisms.[19] This may be a tradeoff between selecting for cancer and selecting for aging.[20]

Modern theories on the evolution of aging include the following:

There are some known naturally occurring and artificially produced chemicals that may increase the lifetime or life-expectancy of a person or organism, such as resveratrol.[23][24]

Some scientists believe that boosting the amount or proportion of telomerase in the body, a naturally forming enzyme that helps maintain the protective caps at the ends of chromosomes, could prevent cells from dying and so may ultimately lead to extended, healthier lifespans. A team of researchers at the Spanish National Cancer Centre (Madrid) tested the hypothesis on mice. It was found that those mice which were genetically engineered to produce 10 times the normal levels of telomerase lived 50% longer than normal mice.[25]

In normal circumstances, without the presence of telomerase, if a cell divides repeatedly, at some point all the progeny will reach their Hayflick limit. With the presence of telomerase, each dividing cell can replace the lost bit of DNA, and any single cell can then divide unbounded. While this unbounded growth property has excited many researchers, caution is warranted in exploiting this property, as exactly this same unbounded growth is a crucial step in enabling cancerous growth. If an organism can replicate its body cells faster, then it would theoretically stop aging.

Embryonic stem cells express telomerase, which allows them to divide repeatedly and form the individual. In adults, telomerase is highly expressed in cells that need to divide regularly (e.g., in the immune system), whereas most somatic cells express it only at very low levels in a cell-cycle dependent manner.

Technological immortality is the prospect for much longer life spans made possible by scientific advances in a variety of fields: nanotechnology, emergency room procedures, genetics, biological engineering, regenerative medicine, microbiology, and others. Contemporary life spans in the advanced industrial societies are already markedly longer than those of the past because of better nutrition, availability of health care, standard of living and bio-medical scientific advances. Technological immortality predicts further progress for the same reasons over the near term. An important aspect of current scientific thinking about immortality is that some combination of human cloning, cryonics or nanotechnology will play an essential role in extreme life extension. Robert Freitas, a nanorobotics theorist, suggests tiny medical nanorobots could be created to go through human bloodstreams, find dangerous things like cancer cells and bacteria, and destroy them.[26] Freitas anticipates that gene-therapies and nanotechnology will eventually make the human body effectively self-sustainable and capable of living indefinitely in empty space, short of severe brain trauma. This supports the theory that we will be able to continually create biological or synthetic replacement parts to replace damaged or dying ones. Future advances in nanomedicine could give rise to life extension through the repair of many processes thought to be responsible for aging. K. Eric Drexler, one of the founders of nanotechnology, postulated cell repair devices, including ones operating within cells and utilizing as yet hypothetical biological machines, in his 1986 book Engines of Creation. Raymond Kurzweil, a futurist and transhumanist, stated in his book The Singularity Is Near that he believes that advanced medical nanorobotics could completely remedy the effects of aging by 2030.[27] According to Richard Feynman, it was his former graduate student and collaborator Albert Hibbs who originally suggested to him (circa 1959) the idea of a medical use for Feynman’s theoretical micromachines (see biological machine). Hibbs suggested that certain repair machines might one day be reduced in size to the point that it would, in theory, be possible to (as Feynman put it) “swallow the doctor”. The idea was incorporated into Feynman’s 1959 essay There’s Plenty of Room at the Bottom.[28]

Cryonics, the practice of preserving organisms (either intact specimens or only their brains) for possible future revival by storing them at cryogenic temperatures where metabolism and decay are almost completely stopped, can be used to ‘pause’ for those who believe that life extension technologies will not develop sufficiently within their lifetime. Ideally, cryonics would allow clinically dead people to be brought back in the future after cures to the patients’ diseases have been discovered and aging is reversible. Modern cryonics procedures use a process called vitrification which creates a glass-like state rather than freezing as the body is brought to low temperatures. This process reduces the risk of ice crystals damaging the cell-structure, which would be especially detrimental to cell structures in the brain, as their minute adjustment evokes the individual’s mind.

One idea that has been advanced involves uploading an individual’s habits and memories via direct mind-computer interface. The individual’s memory may be loaded to a computer or to a new organic body. Extropian futurists like Moravec and Kurzweil have proposed that, thanks to exponentially growing computing power, it will someday be possible to upload human consciousness onto a computer system, and exist indefinitely in a virtual environment. This could be accomplished via advanced cybernetics, where computer hardware would initially be installed in the brain to help sort memory or accelerate thought processes. Components would be added gradually until the person’s entire brain functions were handled by artificial devices, avoiding sharp transitions that would lead to issues of identity, thus running the risk of the person to be declared dead and thus not be a legitimate owner of his or her property. After this point, the human body could be treated as an optional accessory and the program implementing the person could be transferred to any sufficiently powerful computer. Another possible mechanism for mind upload is to perform a detailed scan of an individual’s original, organic brain and simulate the entire structure in a computer. What level of detail such scans and simulations would need to achieve to emulate awareness, and whether the scanning process would destroy the brain, is still to be determined.[29] Whatever the route to mind upload, persons in this state could then be considered essentially immortal, short of loss or traumatic destruction of the machines that maintained them.[clarification needed]

Transforming a human into a cyborg can include brain implants or extracting a human processing unit and placing it in a robotic life-support system. Even replacing biological organs with robotic ones could increase life span (e.g. pace makers) and depending on the definition, many technological upgrades to the body, like genetic modifications or the addition of nanobots would qualify an individual as a cyborg. Some people believe that such modifications would make one impervious to aging and disease and theoretically immortal unless killed or destroyed.

Another approach, developed by biogerontologist Marios Kyriazis, holds that human biological immortality is an inevitable consequence of evolution. As the natural tendency is to create progressively more complex structures,[30] there will be a time (Kyriazis claims this time is now[31]), when evolution of a more complex human brain will be faster via a process of developmental singularity[32] rather than through Darwinian evolution. In other words, the evolution of the human brain as we know it will cease and there will be no need for individuals to procreate and then die. Instead, a new type of development will take over, in the same individual who will have to live for many centuries in order for the development to take place. This intellectual development will be facilitated by technology such as synthetic biology, artificial intelligence and a technological singularity process.

As late as 1952, the editorial staff of the Syntopicon found in their compilation of the Great Books of the Western World, that “The philosophical issue concerning immortality cannot be separated from issues concerning the existence and nature of man’s soul.”[33] Thus, the vast majority of speculation regarding immortality before the 21st century was regarding the nature of the afterlife.

Immortality in ancient Greek religion originally always included an eternal union of body and soul as can be seen in Homer, Hesiod, and various other ancient texts. The soul was considered to have an eternal existence in Hades, but without the body the soul was considered dead. Although almost everybody had nothing to look forward to but an eternal existence as a disembodied dead soul, a number of men and women were considered to have gained physical immortality and been brought to live forever in either Elysium, the Islands of the Blessed, heaven, the ocean or literally right under the ground. Among these were Amphiaraus, Ganymede, Ino, Iphigenia, Menelaus, Peleus, and a great part of those who fought in the Trojan and Theban wars. Some were considered to have died and been resurrected before they achieved physical immortality. Asclepius was killed by Zeus only to be resurrected and transformed into a major deity. In some versions of the Trojan War myth, Achilles, after being killed, was snatched from his funeral pyre by his divine mother Thetis, resurrected, and brought to an immortal existence in either Leuce, the Elysian plains, or the Islands of the Blessed. Memnon, who was killed by Achilles, seems to have received a similar fate. Alcmene, Castor, Heracles, and Melicertes were also among the figures sometimes considered to have been resurrected to physical immortality. According to Herodotus’ Histories, the 7th century BC sage Aristeas of Proconnesus was first found dead, after which his body disappeared from a locked room. Later he was found not only to have been resurrected but to have gained immortality.

The philosophical idea of an immortal soul was a belief first appearing with either Pherecydes or the Orphics, and most importantly advocated by Plato and his followers. This, however, never became the general norm in Hellenistic thought. As may be witnessed even into the Christian era, not least by the complaints of various philosophers over popular beliefs, many or perhaps most traditional Greeks maintained the conviction that certain individuals were resurrected from the dead and made physically immortal and that others could only look forward to an existence as disembodied and dead, though everlasting, souls. The parallel between these traditional beliefs and the later resurrection of Jesus was not lost on the early Christians, as Justin Martyr argued: “when we say… Jesus Christ, our teacher, was crucified and died, and rose again, and ascended into heaven, we propose nothing different from what you believe regarding those whom you consider sons of Zeus.” (1 Apol. 21).

The goal of Hinayana is Arhatship and Nirvana. By contrast, the goal of Mahayana is Buddhahood.

According to one Tibetan Buddhist teaching, Dzogchen, individuals can transform the physical body into an immortal body of light called the rainbow body.

Christian theology holds that Adam and Eve lost physical immortality for themselves and all their descendants in the Fall of Man, although this initial “imperishability of the bodily frame of man” was “a preternatural condition”.[34] Christians who profess the Nicene Creed believe that every dead person (whether they believed in Christ or not) will be resurrected from the dead at the Second Coming, and this belief is known as Universal resurrection.[citation needed]

N.T. Wright, a theologian and former Bishop of Durham, has said many people forget the physical aspect of what Jesus promised. He told Time: “Jesus’ resurrection marks the beginning of a restoration that he will complete upon his return. Part of this will be the resurrection of all the dead, who will ‘awake’, be embodied and participate in the renewal. Wright says John Polkinghorne, a physicist and a priest, has put it this way: ‘God will download our software onto his hardware until the time he gives us new hardware to run the software again for ourselves.’ That gets to two things nicely: that the period after death (the Intermediate state) is a period when we are in God’s presence but not active in our own bodies, and also that the more important transformation will be when we are again embodied and administering Christ’s kingdom.”[35] This kingdom will consist of Heaven and Earth “joined together in a new creation”, he said.

Hindus believe in an immortal soul which is reincarnated after death. According to Hinduism, people repeat a process of life, death, and rebirth in a cycle called samsara. If they live their life well, their karma improves and their station in the next life will be higher, and conversely lower if they live their life poorly. After many life times of perfecting its karma, the soul is freed from the cycle and lives in perpetual bliss. There is no place of eternal torment in Hinduism, although if a soul consistently lives very evil lives, it could work its way down to the very bottom of the cycle.[citation needed]

There are explicit renderings in the Upanishads alluding to a physically immortal state brought about by purification, and sublimation of the 5 elements that make up the body. For example, in the Shvetashvatara Upanishad (Chapter 2, Verse 12), it is stated “When earth, water fire, air and akasa arise, that is to say, when the five attributes of the elements, mentioned in the books on yoga, become manifest then the yogi’s body becomes purified by the fire of yoga and he is free from illness, old age and death.”

Another view of immortality is traced to the Vedic tradition by the interpretation of Maharishi Mahesh Yogi:

That man indeed whom these (contacts)do not disturb, who is even-minded inpleasure and pain, steadfast, he is fitfor immortality, O best of men.[36]

To Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the verse means, “Once a man has become established in the understanding of the permanent reality of life, his mind rises above the influence of pleasure and pain. Such an unshakable man passes beyond the influence of death and in the permanent phase of life: he attains eternal life… A man established in the understanding of the unlimited abundance of absolute existence is naturally free from existence of the relative order. This is what gives him the status of immortal life.”[36]

An Indian Tamil saint known as Vallalar claimed to have achieved immortality before disappearing forever from a locked room in 1874.[37][38]

The traditional concept of an immaterial and immortal soul distinct from the body was not found in Judaism before the Babylonian Exile, but developed as a result of interaction with Persian and Hellenistic philosophies. Accordingly, the Hebrew word nephesh, although translated as “soul” in some older English Bibles, actually has a meaning closer to “living being”.[citation needed] Nephesh was rendered in the Septuagint as (psch), the Greek word for soul.[citation needed]

The only Hebrew word traditionally translated “soul” (nephesh) in English language Bibles refers to a living, breathing conscious body, rather than to an immortal soul.[39] In the New Testament, the Greek word traditionally translated “soul” () has substantially the same meaning as the Hebrew, without reference to an immortal soul.[40] Soul may refer to the whole person, the self: three thousand souls were converted in Acts 2:41 (see Acts 3:23).

The Hebrew Bible speaks about Sheol (), originally a synonym of the grave-the repository of the dead or the cessation of existence until the resurrection of the dead. This doctrine of resurrection is mentioned explicitly only in Daniel 12:14 although it may be implied in several other texts. New theories arose concerning Sheol during the intertestamental period.

The views about immortality in Judaism is perhaps best exemplified by the various references to this in Second Temple Period. The concept of resurrection of the physical body is found in 2 Maccabees, according to which it will happen through recreation of the flesh.[41] Resurrection of the dead also appears in detail in the extra-canonical books of Enoch,[42] and in Apocalypse of Baruch.[43] According to the British scholar in ancient Judaism Philip R. Davies, there is little or no clear reference either to immortality or to resurrection from the dead in the Dead Sea scrolls texts.[44] Both Josephus and the New Testament record that the Sadducees did not believe in an afterlife,[45] but the sources vary on the beliefs of the Pharisees. The New Testament claims that the Pharisees believed in the resurrection, but does not specify whether this included the flesh or not.[46] According to Josephus, who himself was a Pharisee, the Pharisees held that only the soul was immortal and the souls of good people will be reincarnated and pass into other bodies, while the souls of the wicked will suffer eternal punishment. [47] Jubilees seems to refer to the resurrection of the soul only, or to a more general idea of an immortal soul.[48]

Rabbinic Judaism claims that the righteous dead will be resurrected in the Messianic Age with the coming of the messiah. They will then be granted immortality in a perfect world. The wicked dead, on the other hand, will not be resurrected at all. This is not the only Jewish belief about the afterlife. The Tanakh is not specific about the afterlife, so there are wide differences in views and explanations among believers.[citation needed]

It is repeatedly stated in Lshi Chunqiu that death is unavoidable.[49] Henri Maspero noted that many scholarly works frame Taoism as a school of thought focused on the quest for immortality.[50] Isabelle Robinet asserts that Taoism is better understood as a way of life than as a religion, and that its adherents do not approach or view Taoism the way non-Taoist historians have done.[51] In the Tractate of Actions and their Retributions, a traditional teaching, spiritual immortality can be rewarded to people who do a certain amount of good deeds and live a simple, pure life. A list of good deeds and sins are tallied to determine whether or not a mortal is worthy. Spiritual immortality in this definition allows the soul to leave the earthly realms of afterlife and go to pure realms in the Taoist cosmology.[52]

Zoroastrians believe that on the fourth day after death, the human soul leaves the body and the body remains as an empty shell. Souls would go to either heaven or hell; these concepts of the afterlife in Zoroastrianism may have influenced Abrahamic religions. The Persian word for “immortal” is associated with the month “Amurdad”, meaning “deathless” in Persian, in the Iranian calendar (near the end of July). The month of Amurdad or Ameretat is celebrated in Persian culture as ancient Persians believed the “Angel of Immortality” won over the “Angel of Death” in this month.[53]

Alcmaeon of Croton argued that the soul is continuously and ceaselessly in motion. The exact form of his argument is unclear, but it appears to have influenced Plato, Aristotle, and other later writers.[54]

Plato’s Phaedo advances four arguments for the soul’s immortality:[55]

Plotinus offers a version of the argument that Kant calls “The Achilles of Rationalist Psychology”. Plotinus first argues that the soul is simple, then notes that a simple being cannot decompose. Many subsequent philosophers have argued both that the soul is simple and that it must be immortal. The tradition arguably culminates with Moses Mendelssohn’s Phaedon.[56]

Theodore Metochites argues that part of the soul’s nature is to move itself, but that a given movement will cease only if what causes the movement is separated from the thing moved an impossibility if they are one and the same.[57]

Avicenna argued for the distinctness of the soul and the body, and the incorruptibility of the former.[58]

The full argument for the immortality of the soul and Thomas Aquinas’ elaboration of Aristotelian theory is found in Question 75 of the First Part of the Summa Theologica.[59]

Ren Descartes endorses the claim that the soul is simple, and also that this entails that it cannot decompose. Descartes does not address the possibility that the soul might suddenly disappear.[60]

In early work, Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz endorses a version of the argument from the simplicity of the soul to its immortality, but like his predecessors, he does not address the possibility that the soul might suddenly disappear. In his monadology he advances a sophisticated novel argument for the immortality of monads.[61]

Moses Mendelssohn’s Phaedon is a defense of the simplicity and immortality of the soul. It is a series of three dialogues, revisiting the Platonic dialogue Phaedo, in which Socrates argues for the immortality of the soul, in preparation for his own death. Many philosophers, including Plotinus, Descartes, and Leibniz, argue that the soul is simple, and that because simples cannot decompose they must be immortal. In the Phaedon, Mendelssohn addresses gaps in earlier versions of this argument (an argument that Kant calls the Achilles of Rationalist Psychology). The Phaedon contains an original argument for the simplicity of the soul, and also an original argument that simples cannot suddenly disappear. It contains further original arguments that the soul must retain its rational capacities as long as it exists.[62]

The possibility of clinical immortality raises a host of medical, philosophical, and religious issues and ethical questions. These include persistent vegetative states, the nature of personality over time, technology to mimic or copy the mind or its processes, social and economic disparities created by longevity, and survival of the heat death of the universe.

Physical immortality has also been imagined as a form of eternal torment, as in Mary Shelley’s short story “The Mortal Immortal”, the protagonist of which witnesses everyone he cares about dying around him. Jorge Luis Borges explored the idea that life gets its meaning from death in the short story “The Immortal”; an entire society having achieved immortality, they found time becoming infinite, and so found no motivation for any action. In his book Thursday’s Fictions, and the stage and film adaptations of it, Richard James Allen tells the story of a woman named Thursday who tries to cheat the cycle of reincarnation to get a form of eternal life. At the end of this fantastical tale, her son, Wednesday, who has witnessed the havoc his mother’s quest has caused, forgoes the opportunity for immortality when it is offered to him.[63] Likewise, the novel Tuck Everlasting depicts immortality as “falling off the wheel of life” and is viewed as a curse as opposed to a blessing. In the anime Casshern Sins humanity achieves immortality due to advances in medical technology; however, the inability of the human race to die causes Luna, a Messianic figure, to come forth and offer normal lifespans because she believed that without death, humans could not live. Ultimately, Casshern takes up the cause of death for humanity when Luna begins to restore humanity’s immortality. In Anne Rice’s book series The Vampire Chronicles, vampires are portrayed as immortal and ageless, but their inability to cope with the changes in the world around them means that few vampires live for much more than a century, and those who do often view their changeless form as a curse.

In his book Death, Yale philosopher Shelly Kagan argues that any form of human immortality would be undesirable. Kagan’s argument takes the form of a dilemma. Either our characters remain essentially the same in an immortal afterlife, or they do not. If our characters remain basically the samethat is, if we retain more or less the desires, interests, and goals that we have nowthen eventually, over an infinite stretch of time, we will get bored and find eternal life unbearably tedious. If, on the other hand, our characters are radically changede.g., by God periodically erasing our memories or giving us rat-like brains that never tire of certain simple pleasuresthen such a person would be too different from our current self for us to care much what happens to them. Either way, Kagan argues, immortality is unattractive. The best outcome, Kagan argues, would be for humans to live as long as they desired and then to accept death gratefully as rescuing us from the unbearable tedium of immortality.[64]

If human beings were to achieve immortality, there would most likely be a change in the worlds’ social structures. Sociologist argue that human beings’ awareness of their own mortality shapes their behavior.[65] With the advancements in medical technology in extending human life, there may need to be serious considerations made about future social structures. The world is already experiencing a global demographic shift of increasingly ageing populations with lower replacement rates.[66] The social changes that are made to accommodate this new population shift may be able to offer insight on the possibility of an immortal society.

Although some scientists state that radical life extension, delaying and stopping aging are achievable,[67] there are no international or national programs focused on stopping aging or on radical life extension. In 2012 in Russia, and then in the United States, Israel and the Netherlands, pro-immortality political parties were launched. They aimed to provide political support to anti-aging and radical life extension research and technologies and at the same time transition to the next step, radical life extension, life without aging, and finally, immortality and aim to make possible access to such technologies to most currently living people.[68]

There are numerous symbols representing immortality. The ankh is an Egyptian symbol of life that holds connotations of immortality when depicted in the hands of the gods and pharaohs, who were seen as having control over the journey of life. The Mbius strip in the shape of a trefoil knot is another symbol of immortality. Most symbolic representations of infinity or the life cycle are often used to represent immortality depending on the context they are placed in. Other examples include the Ouroboros, the Chinese fungus of longevity, the ten kanji, the phoenix, the peacock in Christianity,[69] and the colors amaranth (in Western culture) and peach (in Chinese culture).

Immortality is a popular subject in fiction, as it explores humanity’s deep-seated fears and comprehension of its own mortality. Immortal beings and species abound in fiction, especially fantasy fiction, and the meaning of “immortal” tends to vary. The Epic of Gilgamesh, one of the first literary works, is primarily a quest of a hero seeking to become immortal.[6]

Some fictional beings are completely immortal (or very nearly so) in that they are immune to death by injury, disease and age. Sometimes such powerful immortals can only be killed by each other, as is the case with the Q from the Star Trek series. Even if something can’t be killed, a common plot device involves putting an immortal being into a slumber or limbo, as is done with Morgoth in J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Silmarillion and the Dreaming God of Pathways Into Darkness. Storytellers often make it a point to give weaknesses to even the most indestructible of beings. For instance, Superman is supposed to be invulnerable, yet his enemies were able to exploit his now-infamous weakness: Kryptonite. (See also Achilles’ heel.)

Many fictitious species are said to be immortal if they cannot die of old age, even though they can be killed through other means, such as injury. Modern fantasy elves often exhibit this form of immortality. Other creatures, such as vampires and the immortals in the film Highlander, can only die from beheading. The classic and stereotypical vampire is typically slain by one of several very specific means, including a silver bullet (or piercing with other silver weapons), a stake through the heart (perhaps made of consecrated wood), or by exposing them to sunlight.[70][71]

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