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Preface

  1. When Methuselah had lived 187 years, he became the father of Lamech.
  2. After he became the father of Lamech, Methuselah lived 782 years and had other sons and daughters.
  3. Altogether, Methuselah lived a total of 969 years, and then he died.

Genesis 5:25-27

Dreams, visions and wishes to live longer, forever and without aging have followed humanity throughout known history and perhaps even before. That’s entirely understandable: each of us has the desire for eternal existence; to see, feel, act, live and be in the youngest form and mode possible. These desires form the basic nature of our consciousness, spirit and soul, or however we’re defining it; they are based on our main biological instincts: self-preservation and self-wellbeing.

The human race has many legends, myths, stories, folklores and novels originating in all epochs, peoples, different cultures, religious periods and countries from around the world describing or fantasizing about everlasting or incredibly long lives and about persons staying young “forever.”

People have not only been passively watching and observing aging and natural death, while dreaming about immortality, but have been actively trying to intervene in the biological nature of human beings to obtain immortality or to expand their longevity. In the beginning of human history, the interventions were based on different beliefs, religious conceptions and legends, and were mostly on a spiritual level. The next step was to develop different types of practical interventions in biology with the aim of achieving immortality. These interventions were based on experiments and experiences using different natural substances (mostly from herbal origins) and hard, long training exercises (yoga practice, etc.). The contemporary step in biological intervention, currently in progress for about a few hundred years, started with scientific methodology: first to establish a hypothesis, a theory and a model, and according to them, develop new technological actions to prevent aging.

There are two very different, but not excluding each other, aspects to life extension. The first deals with keeping the biological body young “forever” and the second deals with the immortal soul, spirit or consciousness, which could “travel” from body to body, or even to non-living objects or exist in some kind of non-physical environment. Starting thousands of years ago and having its roots in different religious beliefs and legends, this idea nowadays finds growing interest in science fiction or even in science.

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