Well, Christian Fearing God-Man is now a year old. I've managed to stick it out this long so far, so hopefully I can keep it going. I'll admit, though, that with my new job, school, and kids, it's kind of difficult to find the time and motivation to write. My friend and I, however, had an interesting conversation the other day, and I thought I'd share one of the big hilights.
What if tomorrow, all humans alive today would live to be 500 years old?
This question is different than "what if you lived to be 500." It's easier to speculate about how you would personally change, but speculating about society is a bit different I think. I for one think that a lot of problems in society would begin to work themselves out.
First, let's consider our current lifespan, approximately 80ish years if you're in decent health. 80 years is not a long time, and we always find ourselves saying "life is too short." I think our short life-spans have a negative effect on human nature. We feel as though time is short, so we feel that we must experience everything we can as soon as possible, lest we arrive at our day of reckoning without having lived life to its fullest.
That's pretty intense when you think about it. People scramble to get their piece of the pie, because they want it before they cash in their chips. But what people lived to be 500? Would there be such a scramble? Would people be so adamant about screwing each other over out of fear that they'll never get what's coming to them?
I'm inclined to think that after 500 years, nearly every person would have had the chance at some point to experience all the things they've wanted to do. 500 years is a long time, and a lot can change during that time period. Just 160-ish years ago, people in American were enslaved. Imagine how that would have been if those who had died of old age in bondage could have lived to breathe the free air.
Also, people in positions of power would have to put a lot more thinking into their decision-making. Most of the time, it takes a hundred years before the events of the present fully manifest their ramifications. Leaders know this, which is probably why they're willing to take so many risks and make poor decisions. They know they won't live to see how badly they screwed the future.
But if they knew they would have to live to see the results, they'd probably be a lot more judicious and prudent.
There would definitely be some negative results to this. There would likely be mass suicides. Super old people would probably just off themselves, because who would want to spend the next 500 years in a decrepit, old body? (In my little scenario, everyone's aging is proportional to what it would be if they only lived 80 years AFTER they reach the age of 25. So you would spend most of your life healthy and vivacious).
Also, the Christians who don't believe suicide would send you to hell would probably just off themselves. My guess is that the really hard core Christians would become insanely depressed knowing that they have to wait for the afterlife for that long. Maybe they'd all be really reckless in the hopes of "accidentally" biting the big one?
I don't rightly know, but I think it's an interesting thought experiment. So much of human nature is shaped by our short lifespan. How different would human nature look if we all lived for half a millenium?