Behind and beyond any belief or adventure in life, you have only one task to focus on and that is — Victory over death.
I would like to talk to you about Physical Immortality…
A few years ago I had the pleasure to have as guest of honor at the graduation ceremony organized by the European School of Economics in Florence Professor Aubrey de Grey, a famous immortalist. Aubrey de Grey is a gerontologist from Cambridge and co-founder of the Californian Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence (SENS) Research Foundation. Gerontology is the science of ageing, and de Grey is currently making great strides in the field. De Grey is at the epicentre of a growing group of researchers who believe that they are on the brink of a biological revolution that will give rise to a series of therapies that will enable many of us already to fulfil the dream of immortality during our lives.
Physical immortality as the hidden achievement of all religions, all philosophies, all disciplines and therapies. It is the final aim of all arts, yoga, sports and health techniques, the purpose of education, of medicine, science and technology.
Mr. Aubrey de Grey: Longevity and immortality are also something that you have researched and studied throughout your life. Its pursuit is also something that you have made a founding pillar of the European School of Economics. Why is that important to you?
Elio D’Anna: I tried to convey the students this thought, that death is an idea, it’s a description. We all victims of that description and death is something that exists only for those who identify with it. But if you stop identifying with, lets say, the outer world, all that happens in the outer world, and you understand that you are the one that is protecting whatever you see and touch, then you will see that dead is, as many other events in the world, just a projection, just a sort of mirror of what you are inside. And if you intervene on yourself and you know how to transform some deaths within yourself, you will see that the description of death is gone.
Aubrey de Grey: first of all we are going to develop technologies that are going to repair the molecular and cellular damage that the body does to itself throughout life. Those are the side effects of the normal operation of the body. The repair strategies that we will use are within reach. They are things that we already have the basic tools for, genetic manipulation, stem cells, things like that, and we are of course working very hard to bring those things to completion. However, as we can currently see them, those therapies will not be 100% perfect. I estimate that they will probably add maybe 30 years to people’s healthy lives. That’s good of course, it’s much better than nothing, but it’s definitely not getting you to 1000. Still though, these therapies, because they are repairing the damage that the body has already done to itself, that means that, if we think of the amount of damage in the body as the definition of the person’s biological age, then we will make them biologically younger again. And that means that we will be buying time. They won’t be biologically the same age as they were when we started the therapy for another 30 years. At that point we can’t just carry on using the same therapies because the type of molecular and cellular damage that the people have now will be the types that the therapies don’t work on. The imperfections in the therapies. So in order to re-rejuvenate the same people we would need better therapies that are more comprehensive that could fix the more difficult damage. But we’d have 30 years to do that right? So, this is what I call longevity escape velocity. We will never necessarily have therapies that are perfect, which can repair absolutely everything that the body does to itself which eventually kills us. But we don’t need to be absolutely perfect. We just need to approach perfection rapidly enough to be able to stay one step ahead of the problem. And I believe that once we get the first 30 years we will easily be able to move fast enough thereafter to stay one step ahead of the problem. That’s how we get numbers like 1000. If you look at young adults today, of course they don’t die of aging. They die of a lot of things, you know being hit by trucks or whatever, but not very often. If you reach the age of 26, in the western world today, you are almost certain to reach the age of 27, your chance of not doing so is less than 1 in 1000. So if you maintain that same probability of dying in the next year, however long ago you were born, it’s just mathematics.
Elio D’Anna: Physical death can materialize as a consequence of an infinite number of inner deaths. You collect traumas, negative emotions and destructive thoughts in your body until it becomes such an unpleasant place to live that physical death appears to be the only way out. You have to practice to die less until one day you finally stop dying all together. You have to learn to not allow one single moment of death inside. If you are alert, present and take more care of your inner life there wouldn’t be moments of tiredness, sorrow and despair…
In order to win death you have to cultivate the idea that the body is indestructible and that death is not inevitable. And so, you have to apply the principles of inner integrity and fearlessness to your physical body and learn thus the ‘youthing’ process the same way you have learned the ageing-dying process.
You need, then, to master the process of regeneration of your entire being, eliminating thus all boundaries and limitations through a remarkable technique — voluntary death. Voluntary death means the conscious willingness to face and release all pain, fear and uncertainty apparently accumulated in your body. Voluntary death eliminates the unconscious physical death.
If you do not circumscribe your sorrow and pain, it will materialize in unpleasant events. Health, wealth and success are all projected from inside. How can you have a beautiful life — a winning personal adventure, if you die inside?
When you feel insecure and uncertain, ……when fear grips you like a vice…when you feel hurt, when you accuse, blame others or regret, when you complain or self-justify, if you would just observe yourself you would find that it is always the same recurring pain, springing from your self-sabotage and countless inner deaths. You have not yet recognized them as the very cause of all your troubles and difficulties. Do not turn your back on anything that menaces you inside. Face your inner war. Look at it fearlessly and recognize it as the only battle leading towards freedom. Remember, whatever happens within you, should never manifest without your inner consent.
You are here to wake up and start your own revolution… a silent, secret inner revolution that only few among few have ever been able to undertake — it will turn upside down the deeply-rooted belief that death is invincible.