The purpose of death

Discussion in 'Free Thoughts' started by Michael 345, Feb 2, 2017.

  1. Michael 345 Looking for Bali in Nov Valued Senior Member

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    The thread about the purpose of life provided some mental exercise but I settled back to my already held position

    There is no purpose to life

    The life here refers to all life not a individual person's life

    So I now pose the question as in the title of the thread

    Below are some of my ideas about what should be carved on my tombstone

    Every day you wake up is a good day
    Today is not a good day

    Forget ashes to ashes dust to dust I'm star stuff I'm going to the stars

    The recently formed term Alternative Facts gave me

    I am dead and that's a fact
    The alternative fact is I am alive in the afterlife

    Over to the members
     
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  3. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    Everything, everyone, has a "use by date" [even star stuff, BH's and probably protons]

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  5. Michael 345 Looking for Bali in Nov Valued Senior Member

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    I'm going to play the 2 games you know very well

    Why?

    and

    but answer the question what's the purpose?

    Surely you are not suggesting we are created in the great image of the ID just to have a use by date?

    I will check all over my body in the shower to see where the date is stamped

    Or is it inside?

    Can you give guidence is it
    • ' use by '
    • ' best by '
    • ' expires on '
    date?

    Also is it with
    • the list of contents
    • the bar code
    • list of contents warnings
    • and, for the cannibals, calorie content
     
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  7. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    This is all valid musing, but it's not biology or genetics.
     
  8. Michael 345 Looking for Bali in Nov Valued Senior Member

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    I was unsure where I should lodge the thread so I would be comfortable to have it moved to a where it is deemed to fit
     
  9. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    Fair enough: perhaps the Mods will move it to Free Thoughts or somewhere.

    Trying to think about the question biologically, it occurred to me that the ability of organisms to adapt to changes in their environment depends on replication with change and natural selection, i.e. the basic engine of evolution. If organisms live very long, the rate of replication and thus the rate of adaptation to change, will presumably tend to be lower than if replication were more rapid, in order to avoid a population explosion that would outstrip the food supply. So it seems to me that death is actually important to maintain the adaptability of the species (the selfish gene and all that).

    Apart from that of course, the inevitable accumulation of irreparable damage to the organism (whether mechanical or biochemical), over a long life, makes continued existence increasingly difficult and at some point it make sense for nature to cut its losses and throw in the sponge. What I find interesting about the human race is the evolutionary value in having individuals live long past the end of their reproductive capacity. It must be to do with wisdom, I think.
     
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  10. Michael 345 Looking for Bali in Nov Valued Senior Member

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    I agree it does seem strange that certain people provide extreme levels of care to someone under the guise of life is precious when the suffering of the person being kept alive is anything but precious

    It seems the ID'er missed the chance to design humans the ability to last forever subject to trauma which would kill them

    And a system of reproduction of one gone one born keeping the population at a stable level equal to the availability of renewable food supply
     
  11. gmilam Valued Senior Member

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    If there is no "purpose" to life, then there is no "purpose" to death.

    Having said that, the Earth would get very crowded if nothing ever died.
     
  12. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    4,236
    Matter exists. Sometimes it exists in the form of biological organisms, sometimes not.

    "Purpose" is a fiction. What is the purpose of a tree or a rock? One that you give it.
     
  13. Michael 345 Looking for Bali in Nov Valued Senior Member

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    Agree 100%

    Sort of agree

    It would be impossible for any life form to live forever if the requirements for life ran out

    Which I covered when I posted

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  14. paddoboy Valued Senior Member

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    There is no purpose.......Things happen, spacetime evolved, matter evolved, as did stars, planets and life........things then die.
    https://www.quora.com/What-is-the-purpose-of-death
     
  15. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    There is, or are, proposed biological purpose(s) for death, evolutionarily established and biologically/ecologically mediated, that would be appropriate - core issues - in a biology and genetics subforum.

    At least one macroscopic and mobile organism of potential immortality has been discovered - this one: http://www.bosch.zoologie.uni-kiel.de/?p=489
     
  16. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    Death serves a purpose. An evolutionary purpose.

    Living things that no longer have the bility to reproduce (perhaps because they have run out of eggs, or myriad other reasons) are a liability. They do not contribute to the propagation of the gene pool (which, as several have pointed out is the purpose of life), but they still compete for resources such as food. That is in copetition with the breeding population.

    Once you are done breeding, nature will spend the rest of your days trying to kill you. As it should. So that resources are freed up for those who can propagate the species.

    Now - that being said - it is not a black and white issue. In community-based organisms (such as mammals), the non-breeders still serve an important function in the care and raising of the young. But nature doesn't work very hard to keeping them alive; their fellow tribe members may have to help their decrepit bones along a little, so that elders, in-turn, may uphold their societal functions.
     
  17. timojin Valued Senior Member

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    You are using a buzz sentence " evolutionary purpose " Is there a purpose for evolution ? If there is , therefore there is an objective, Is the objective to improve ? Does the gene know that that there is an objective ? The gene is only a part if the DNA. To have an objective there have to be an organisation which mean multicellular.
     
  18. Michael 345 Looking for Bali in Nov Valued Senior Member

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    Think you are trying to read to much into and taking to literally when calling a post sentence a buzz sentence

    If I say to a friend my motorbike has a purpose to take me from A to B I am not giving my motorbike concessness to understand MY purpose or say there is a alphabet somewhere which requires a motorbike to travel between the letters A and B

    I normal speech most would understand this

    Might be problems with foreigners

    As I have mentioned the ID'er missed the chance to produce a system where the major life form reaches a numerical number suitable for the available sustainable food production and from that moment each person lives forever

    That excludes accidents causing death

    The rule, one out - one born, kicks in to keep stable population

    The argument I would make for a stable population living forever would be the maintenance and expansion of a knowledge base
     
  19. Michael 345 Looking for Bali in Nov Valued Senior Member

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    Before I go in the ground to be recycled by worms I would like written large on the side of the coffin

    No usable parts inside

    Hopefully if there were any usable parts left at my age they had been taken out and reused in a body which needed them

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  20. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    That begs the question of why any organism should lose the ability to reproduce - the equivalent of death, evolutionarily speaking.
     
  21. Michael 345 Looking for Bali in Nov Valued Senior Member

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    Short answer NO

    Longer answer if, as I noted elsewhere in this thread, you might need to fight for the privilege to replace someone who has died from a stable population
     
  22. exchemist Valued Senior Member

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    I had a shot at answering that earlier in the thread. To make evolution work you need to keep changing the replicator, in order to amplify any advantageous changes between the new replicator and the previous one. If the same replicators just go on making more and more copies, you don't get any evolution, the species becomes non-adaptive and eventually is more likely to die out when conditions change.
     
  23. Michael 345 Looking for Bali in Nov Valued Senior Member

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    Agree wholeheartedly

    My stable population model with only those dying by accident would still allow for evolution but at a snail's pace

    The advantage would be the preservation of knowledge

    While we have preservation of knowledge in enormous abundance in various media it has to be reloaded into each new being
     

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