Futurists of the World takes on Death

Photo by davide ragusa on Unsplash

Death is frightening because it can come faster than you think, and out of nowhere. We hosted a Twitter Space a while back to see what people thought about death and the future of it. We chose the topic at the time because we were aware of the casualties that happened at a Travis Scott concert, and how it impacted a lot of people.

Do you think we will never fear death? Is there technology today that we can use to prevent this kind of fate? Would you like to be immortal? Just a few questions for you to ponder, and maybe even provide your thoughts in the comments if you’d like!

Here are a few thoughts that some people said about the topic:

“One of the things that made me realize about death is it is really one of the very few things that is set in stone for people’s future. Is it something that should be anticipated or just, I’m not sure if you guys want to agree with me on this or not, but accept the fate of our journeys end or whatever…? And I know science has been able to extend life for generations and generations, and it’s interesting how science was able to expand extend life. And we’re at this point where…are we able to avoid death entirely [soon]”? — Victor Sarat (Foresight Advocate)

“I think, as a human, my goal is also to be able to accept my own death. It’s a hard job, but I think I find it somehow, maybe that’s a personal opinion here. I found that all the minds applauding and transcendence and quantum eternal life and so on, I think it’s kind of lazy in the way. It’s like you don’t accept that you’re going to die and you just want to narcissistically prolong yourself. And I personally have a different opinion, which is more about ‘I want to have a footprint on the world before I leave’. I want to leave my own legacy, but in a more constructive way, be it about contributing to a collective action or collective activity or building a piece of the society. It’s more about, I think, being part of humanity as just coping myself…” — Sylvia Gallusser (Global Futurist)

“When it comes, it comes and I’m ready to go whenever it happens, I’m kind of ambivalent towards death. But what is interesting to me is the future of dying specifically. And I think it was Sylvia talking about how there are ways to prolong life and within the technology that exists right now, that’s kind of what we’re looking at. But as technology exists right now, we are all eventually going to die. That might be many more years later than we think it is, but eventually we could die. And at least in the United States, we have very poor funerary methods, like we have burial and cremation, both of which are notoriously bad polluters. So we don’t currently have, at least speaking from a federal point of view, eco friendly ways to even die, which is horrible obviously…” — Austin Wiggins (Collaborative Futurist)

“I found it very interesting to talk about the impairments of the body and the ecological impact of dying. I thought that impact was very true. And I also observed that even if we’re talking about the futures, we always start to talk with a philosophical or theological point of view as well. We cannot abandon that. That’s part of our humanity”. — Tania Santana (Economist and Public Policy Specialist)

“I think what I would love to see in regards to the futures of death and, you know, everything surrounding it is from a cultural standpoint of more people embracing the thought of death not being an ending, but more of an adventure. Because even if one isn’t here present, like your influence, what you experienced, that leaves a ripple effect. And I feel like people aren’t as cognizant of the fact of how much of an impact they have in their circle, and they don’t realize that sometimes even up to like the 7th generation of the family line, like, your decisions will have impact on them. So I feel like people embrace more of a concept of like, death isn’t this big gloom and doom kind of negative thing. There can be, I guess, beauty and the acceptance of like, there’s an adventure beyond this. There’s still something to continue, even if there isn’t like a conscious continuation of it. Like, there’s still a continuation because of how you lived your life and how that presents itself in your descendant”. — Emmanuelle Naranjo (Trend Researcher)

What are your thoughts about death and the future?

Maybe one day we’ll find a way to prolong life even more, maybe our own digital selves will carry on for us, cryogenic could be a thing, or maybe anti-aging biotech could help in ways we haven’t thought of before.

One thing is for sure, though: Whether you are holding onto something from the past or looking forward to something in the future, you should take some time in the present, because it’s the gift of life.

Photo by J W on Unsplash

Hey there! We hope some thoughts, and questions rose up while reading about death. There were more things that was shared and said by these amazing people, but we like to keep these articles short.

We thank you for taking the time to read this article, and if you like this quick recap article of our conversations, please consider donating! Another option is to join us during our live Twitter Spaces so you can network with the futures/foresight field, and share your own thoughts and questions with us. You can also be featured on here!

Make sure to follow the Using Foresight page, and our social media accounts (@usingforesight) to be informed of any or all of our future events. You can also check out our website to learn more of what we do, and the other kinds of content we create!

Until next time!

Credit: Victor Sarat, Sylvia Gallusser, Emmanuelle Naranjo, Austin Wiggins, and Tania Santana

This a short summary of an audio-only conversation that was held in Twitter Spaces on November 12th, 2021.

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