Tag Archives: Gennady Stolyarov II


It’s Time to Postpone Your Appointment with the Grim Reaper – Article by Gerrard Jayaratnam

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Categories: Philosophy, Science, Transhumanism, Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The New Renaissance HatGerrard Jayaratnam

How long would you like to live for? Is there a limit to how long we can live for? These are not questions you hear often, but do not be surprised if they are repeated more frequently in the future. The reason? Life extension. It is the concept of living well beyond the average lifespan. [1]

Humans are already living longer due to vaccines and improvements in sanitation. [2] The World Health Organization reported that the average life expectancy at birth increased from 48 years in 1955 to 65 years in 1995, and is projected to rise to 73 years by 2025. [3] As medical techniques continue to improve, we are more inclined than ever to pursue life extension. [1] Indeed, from the Epic of Gilgamesh to China’s First Emperor, prolonging life has been an ever-present thought in society. [4, 5] Both individuals failed to escape death, but the idea of life extension ironically lives on. Even so, is it truly possible and what should upcoming doctors and scientists consider if they are to join the most ambitious of quests?

The “Horcruxes” of reality 

In the fictional Harry Potter series, “Horcruxes” were objects where people could hide a fragment of their soul in an attempt to take one step towards immortality. [6] Of course, humans cannot split their souls and hide them in objects, but there are several proposed means by which life extension may be achieved. [1] This is a testimony to the progress within the life extension field, but there remains much room for improvement.

Eat less, live more

Caloric restriction (CR) is one proposed method for life extension. [1] In the CALERIE (Comprehensive Assessment of Long term Effects of Reducing Intake of Energy) trial, 218 non-obese humans were randomised to either a control group or an intervention group. The latter aimed for a 25% reduction from baseline energy intake. At the end of the 2-year study period, the intervention group had significantly greater reductions in circulating levels of TNF-α – an inflammatory marker involved in many age-related diseases. [7] Dr Alexander Miras, winner of the 2014 Nutrition Society Cuthbertson Medal for his research on bariatric surgery, acknowledges that the study was a “good first step,” but argues that “the evidence in humans is lacking.” “A definitive RCT (randomised controlled trial),” Dr Miras continues, “would be very hard, if not impossible.” He also spots a glaring consequence of CR. “My personal approach is to avoid caloric restriction as this leads to hunger which is an unpleasant feeling. I would rather live a shorter life, but enjoy my food.”

Manipulating telomerase

One alternative is modulating telomerase activity – as attempted with the anti-ageing TA-65MD® supplement. [8] Telomeres protect the ends of chromosomes [9]; they resemble the aglets on the ends of shoelaces. Just as shoelaces would unravel without the aglet, chromosomes would lose vital DNA sequences in the absence of telomeres. [9] Our cells divide over time, causing telomeres to shorten. Once the telomere becomes too short, cell division ceases, and short telomeres correlate with cellular ageing. [10] Telomerase is an enzyme that can oppose telomere shortening [10] – it was what Hamlet was to King Claudius; what exercise is to obesity; and what junior doctors, in England, will be to Jeremy Hunt.

Reactivating telomerase in telomerase-deficient mice reversed both neurodegeneration and degeneration of other organs. [11] This proved the concept that boosting telomerase activity could have anti-ageing effects, but there is little proof that this occurs in humans. While the mice were telomerase-deficient, humans normally have some telomerase activity. It is like giving food to someone who has been fasting for hours and to someone who has just eaten a three-course meal – the starved individual would unquestionably benefit more. A 12-month long RCT, involving 117 relatively healthy individuals (age range: 53-87), found that low-dose TA-65 significantly increased telomere length when compared to placebo. High-dose TA-65, however, failed to do so. [12]

Dancing with the devil

What is more worrying than treatments that may be ineffective? Side effects. Telomerase is a double-edged sword and by reducing telomere attrition, it can promote unlimited cell division and cancer. [9] Elizabeth Blackburn, co-winner of the 2009 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for her role in the discovery of telomerase, has doubts about exploiting the enzyme. Speaking to TIME magazine, she said, “Cancers love telomerase, and a number of cancers up-regulate it like crazy. . . . My feeling would be that if I take anything that would push my telomerase up, I’m playing with fire.” [13]

A cauldron of rewards

CR and boosting telomerase activity are just a small sample of life extending techniques, yet there is the notion that such techniques will be intertwined with risks. However, risks are always weighed against rewards, and Gennady Stolyarov, editor-in-chief of The Rational Argumentator and Chief Executive of the Nevada Transhumanist Party, believes life extension would bring “immense and multifaceted” rewards. “The greatest benefit is the continued existence of the individual who remains alive. Each individual has incalculable moral value and is a universe of ideas, experiences, emotions, and memories. When a person dies, that entire universe is extinguished . . . This is the greatest possible loss, and should be averted if at all possible.” Stolyarov also envisages “major savings to healthcare systems” and that “the achievement of significant life extension would inspire many intelligent people to try to solve other age-old problems.”

Former chairman of the President’s Council on Bioethics, Leon Kass, disagrees with this view and argues that mortality is necessary for “treasuring and appreciating all that life brings.” [14] Hence, increased longevity could lead to an overall reduction in productivity over one’s lifetime. Perhaps Kass is correct, but the array of potential benefits makes it seem unwise to prematurely dismiss life extension. In fact, a survey, which examined the opinions of 605 Australians on life extension, highlighted further benefits – 23% of participants said they could “spend more time with family” and 4% cited the opportunity to experience future societies. [15]

Learning from our mistakes

Conversely, life extension may result in people enduring poor health for longer periods. 28% of participants in the Australian survey highlighted this concern. [15] Current trends in life expectancy reinforce their fears. Professor Janet Lord, director of the Institute of Inflammation and Ageing at the University of Birmingham, explains, “Currently, in most countries in the developed world, life expectancy is increasing at approximately 2 years per decade, but healthspan (the years spent in good health) is only increasing at 1.7 years. This has major consequences . . . as more of later life is spent in poor health.” This is a consequence of treating “killer diseases” – according to Dr Felipe Sierra, director of the Division of Aging Biology at the National Institute on Aging. “The current model in biomedicine,” says Dr Sierra, “is to treat one disease at a time. Let’s imagine you have arthritis; cancer; and are starting to develop Alzheimer’s disease. So what do we do? We treat you for cancer. You now live longer with Alzheimer’s disease and arthritis.” A better approach is clear to Dr Sierra who stresses the importance of compression of morbidity – “the goal is to live longer with less time spent being sick.”

Learning from our successes

Even with Dr Sierra’s approach, individual boredom and social implications, including overpopulation, would still be problems.[16] According to Stolyarov, the boredom argument does not hold up when facing “human creativity and discovery.” He believes humans could never truly be bored as “the number of possible pursuits increases far faster than the ability of any individual to pursue.”

In his novel Death is Wrong, Stolyarov explained that the idea that society could not cope with a rapidly expanding population was historically inaccurate. The current population “is the highest it has ever been, and most people live far longer, healthier, prosperous lives than their ancestors did when the Earth’s population was hundreds of times smaller.” [16] If it has been achieved in the past, who is to say our own society – one far more advanced than any before it – cannot adapt?

The verdict

Life extension research is quietly progressing, and there is a good chance that it will eventually come to fruition. Although there are doubts about current techniques, Dr Sierra draws attention to novel interventions, such as rapamycin, which “delay ageing in mice.” He concludes that the next challenge is to “develop measures than can predict whether an intervention works in a short-term assay.” Such measures would provide the scaffolding for future clinical trials that test life extension techniques.

Given what may be gained, it is no surprise that artificially prolonging life is exciting some in the same way the Tree of Knowledge tempted Eve. The impact on society? Impossible to predict. It would undoubtedly be a big risk, but perhaps in this complex and uncertain scenario, we ought to remember the words of the poet Thomas Stearns Eliot: “Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.” [17]

Gerrard Jayaratnam is a student of Biomedical Science at Imperial College London.


  1. Stambler I. A History of Life-Extensionism in the Twentieth Century. Ramat Gan: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; 2014.
  2. National Institute on Aging. Living Longer. 2011. https://www.nia.nih.gov/research/publication/global-health-and-aging/living-longer.
  3. World Health Organization. 50 Facts: Global Health situation and trends 1955-2025. 2013. http://www.who.int/whr/1998/media_centre/50facts/en/.
  4. Encyclopaedia Britannica. Epic of Gilgamesh. 2016. http://www.britannica.com/topic/Epic-of-Gilgamesh.
  5. Lloyd DF. The Man Who Would Cheat Death and Rule the Universe. Vision. 2008. http://www.vision.org/visionmedia/history-shi-huang-emperor-china/5818.aspx.
  6. Rowling JK. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. London: Bloomsbury Publishing; 2005.
  7. Ravussin E, Redman LM, Rochon J, et al. A 2-Year Randomized Controlled Trial of Human Caloric Restriction: Feasibility and Effects on Predictors of Health Span and Longevity. J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci 2015;70:1097-1104.
  8. A. Sciences. What is TA-65®? (n.d.) [Accessed 3rd April 2016]. https://www.tasciences.com/what-is-ta-65/.
  9. De Jesus BB, Blasco MA. Telomerase at the intersection of cancer and aging. Trends Genet 2013;29:513-520.
  10. A. Sciences. Telomeres and Cellular Aging. (n.d.) [Accessed 3rd April 2016]. https://www.tasciences.com/telomeres-and-cellular-aging/.
  11. Jaskelioff M, Muller FL, Paik JH, et al. Telomerase reactivation reverses tissue degeneration in aged telomerase deficient mice. Nature 2011;469:102-106.
  12. Salvador L, Singaravelu G, Harley CB, et al. A Natural Product Telomerase Activator Lengthens Telomeres in Humans: A Randomized, Double Blind, and Placebo Controlled Study. Rejuvenation Res 2016; ahead of print. doi:10.1089/rej.2015.1793.
  13. Kluger J. The antiaging power of a positive attitude. TIME. 2015.
  14. Than K. The Psychological Strain of Living Forever. Live Science. 2006. http://www.livescience.com/10469-psychological-strain-living.html.
  15. Partridge B, Lucke J, Bartlett H, et al. Ethical, social, and personal implications of extended human lifespan identified by members of the public. Rejuvenation Res 2009;12:351-357.
  16. Stolyarov II G. Death is Wrong. 2nd ed. Carson City, Nevada: Rational Argumentator Press; 2013.
  17. The Huffington Post. 11 Beautiful T.S. Eliot Quotes. 2013. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/26/ts-eliot-quotes_n_3996010.html.


“A Morte é um Erro” – Portuguese Translation of “Death is Wrong” – Translated by Eric Pedro Alvaro – Post by G. Stolyarov II

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The New Renaissance Hat
G. Stolyarov II

A free PDF version of A Morte é um Erro – the Portuguese translation of Death is Wrong – is now available for download from The Rational Argumentator. You can obtain your copy here and may spread it to Portuguese-speaking audiences as widely as you wish.

A Morte é um Erro was generously translated into Portuguese by Eric Pedro Alvaro.

Death_is_Wrong_Portuguese_CoverPaperback copies of A Morte é um Erro can be purchased in the following venues:



Kindle copies of A Morte é um Erro can be purchased on Amazon for $0.99.


Se você já se perguntou, “Por que as pessoas morrem?” então este livro é para você. A resposta é que não, a morte não é necessária, inevitável ou boa. Na verdade, a morte é um erro. A morte é uma inimiga de todos nós, que deve ser combatida com ciência, medicina e tecnologia. Este livro lhe apresenta os maiores, mais desafiantes e mais revolucionários movimentos para prolongar radicalmente o tempo de vida humano, para que você então simplesmente não precise morrer.

Você aprenderá sobre algumas plantas e animais com um tempo de vida incrivelmente longo, sobre recentes descobertas científicas em relação a ampliação do tempo de vida em humanos, e sobre simples e poderosos argumentos que podem refutar as comuns desculpas para a morte. Se você alguma vez já pensou que a morte é injusta e que ela deve ser derrotada, você não está sozinho. Leia este livro, e se torne parte desta importante busca na história da humanidade.

Este livro foi escrito pelo filósofo e futurólogo Gennady Stolyarov II e ilustrado pela artista Wendy Stolyarov. Com o intuito de lhe mostrar que, não importa quem é você e o que você pode fazer, sempre há uma forma de ajudar humanidade em sua batalha contra morte.


“La mort, c’est mal!” – French Translation of “Death is Wrong” – Translated by Philippe Castonguay – Post by G. Stolyarov II

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The New Renaissance Hat
G. Stolyarov II
May 16, 2015

La mort, c’est mal! – the French translation of Death is Wrong – is now available for download from The Rational Argumentator. You can obtain your free PDF copy here and may spread it to French-speaking audiences as widely as you wish.

La mort, c’est mal! was generously translated into French by Philippe Castonguay.

Death_is_Wrong_French_CoverPaperback copies of La mort, c’est mal! can be purchased in the following venues:

Createspace – $9.48

Amazon – $9.48

Kindle copies of La mort, c’est mal! can be purchased on Amazon for $0.99.


Si vous avez déjà demandé « pourquoi les gens doivent-ils mourir? » alors ce livre est pour vous. La vérité est que non, la mort n’est ni bonne, ni nécessaire, ni inévitable. En fait, la mort, c’est mal! La mort est notre ennemie à tous et toutes et doit être combattue par la médecine, la science et la technologie. Ce livre vous introduit au plus grand défi de notre espèce, à son mouvement le plus révolutionnaire; celui d’augmenter radicalement l’espérance de vie humaine pour que vous n’ayez plus à mourir, du tout.

Vous trouverez dans ce livre des plantes et des animaux à la longévité spectaculaire, des découvertes scientifiques récentes pavant le chemin vers l’augmentation de la durée des vies humaines, ainsi que de simples, mais puissants arguments pour affronter ceux en faveur de la mort. Si vous avez déjà pensé que la mort était injuste et qu’elle devrait être vaincue, sachez que vous n’êtes pas seul. Lisez ce livre et prenez part à la plus importante quête de l’histoire de l’humanité.

Ce livre a été écrit par le philosophe et futuriste Gennady Stolyarov II et illustré par l’artiste Wendy Stolyarov. Ici, il vous sera démontré que, peu importe qui vous êtes et peu importe vos habiletés, il vous est toujours possible d’aider l’humanité dans sa lutte contre la mort.


“Death is Wrong” Reviewed by Robert W. Franson of Troynovant

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Read the excellent new review by science-fiction author and literary essayist Robert W. Franson of Death is Wrong. The review is published on Mr. Franson’s website Troynovant, which offers extensive literary and philosophical analysis.

Here is an excerpt: “Death is Wrong is a short book, clearly written and easy to read. I like the personal approach: it doesn’t talk down and is quite accessible. A striking concept presented quite reasonably and supported matter-of-factly. There are apt quotations from a variety of thinkers, including several of my personal heroes of modern times: Francis Bacon, Benjamin Franklin, Friedrich Nietzsche. These people and some scenes from nature are nicely illustrated by Wendy Stolyarov. For readers who want a little more about the background concepts, there is a brief Appendix discussing the seven basic causes of senescence, such as cell loss and atrophy. There are some links for further learning. It’s a good book, entertaining and thoughtful, and certainly gives us a challenge to think about.


Strides of Technology, Op. 30 (2004) – Musical Composition and Video by G. Stolyarov II

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The New Renaissance Hat
G. Stolyarov II
October 19, 2014

This 2004 piano composition by Mr. Stolyarov illustrates the determined advances of technological progress, interspersed with the peaceful, leisurely contemplation that technologically driven rises in living standards and abundance make possible.

This work was remastered using the SynthFont2 software, with the Evanescence 2 and GMR Basico 1.1 instrument packs.

Download the MP3 file of this composition here.

See the index of Mr. Stolyarov’s compositions, all available for free download, here.

The artwork is the “Internal View of the Stanford Torus Space Station Design“, painted by Donald Davis in 1975 and released by the artist into the public domain.

Remember to LIKE, FAVORITE, and SHARE this video in order to spread rational high culture to others.


Fount of Clarity, Op. 24 (2003) – Musical Composition and Video by G. Stolyarov II

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The New Renaissance Hat
G. Stolyarov II
October 18, 2014

This 2003 piano composition by G. Stolyarov II evokes the image of absolute transparency and certainty, like the texture of water rushing from an ornate fountain, and the desired nature of ideas in the mind.

This work was remastered using the SynthFont2 software, with the Evanescence 2 and GMR Basico 1.1 instrument packs.

Download the MP3 file of this composition here.

See the index of Mr. Stolyarov’s compositions, all available for free download, here.

The artwork is “Sanssouci Palace” by Carl Graeb (1816-1884), painted between 1843 and 1845 and accessible as a public-domain image here.

Remember to LIKE, FAVORITE, and SHARE this video in order to spread rational high culture to others.


Liberation, Op. 20 (2003) – Musical Composition and Video by G. Stolyarov II

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The New Renaissance Hat
G. Stolyarov II
August 17, 2014

This 2003 composition by Mr. Stolyarov, written in a mid-19th-century style, reveals the true nature of liberty as experienced by the creative mind, not free from all order, but free to create and relish an order of one’s own.

Download the MP3 file of this composition here.

See the index of Mr. Stolyarov’s compositions, all available for free download, here.

The artwork is Mr. Stolyarov’s Abstract Orderism Fractal XVI, available for download here and here.

Remember to LIKE, FAVORITE, and SHARE this video in order to spread rational high culture to others.


“La muerte está mal” – Spanish Translation of “Death is Wrong” – Translated by Néstor Duno – Post by G. Stolyarov II

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The New Renaissance Hat
G. Stolyarov II
August 16, 2014

The Spanish translation of Death is Wrong – La muerte está mal – generously translated by Néstor Duno – is now available via The Rational Argumentator, Amazon, and Createspace.

A paperback version can be obtained from Createspace for $9.13 here.

Amazon has begun to carry the paperback version for $8.67 here.

The Kindle version is available for $0.99 (the lowest price Amazon permits) here.

Also, a free PDF version is available here.

You have my permission to spread the electronic version of the book to Spanish-speaking audiences as widely as possible, with no strings attached.


“Death is Wrong” Free PDF Files Available for Download – Post by G. Stolyarov II


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The New Renaissance Hat
G. Stolyarov II
August 11, 2014

Now that my campaign to spread over 1,000 Death is Wrong books to children has succeeded, I have asked myself what I could do to spread the book and its message even further. In an effort to increase the readership of the book, I have made the Second Edition available for FREE download as a PDF file. Perhaps, in this way, the book could reach tens or even hundreds of thousands of readers. Thus far, PDF versions are available in English, Russian, and Spanish.

PDF URL – Death is Wrong – English Edition: http://rationalargumentator.com/Death_is_Wrong_Second_Edition_Full.pdf

PDF URL – «Смерть неправильна!» – Russian Edition (translated by Marcus Baylin): http://rationalargumentator.com/Death_is_Wrong_Russian_Edition_Full.pdf

PDF URL – La muerte está mal – Spanish Edition (translated by Néstor Duno): http://rationalargumentator.com/Death_is_Wrong_Spanish_Edition.pdf

If you have read the PDF version and enjoyed it, consider purchasing the paperback version on Amazon for yourself, a friend, or a child, and/or consider making a PayPal or cryptocurrency donation via the sidebar on The Rational Argumentator.

Death is Wrong - by Gennady Stolyarov II, Illustrated by Wendy Stolyarov

Death is Wrong – by Gennady Stolyarov II, Illustrated by Wendy Stolyarov

Click on the cover for a high-resolution image that you can download, save, and distribute.


Over 1,000 Kids Will Indeed Be Taught That Death is Wrong – Article by G. Stolyarov II


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The New Renaissance Hat
G. Stolyarov II
August 7, 2014

At least 1,029 children in at least 14 countries will be taught that death is wrong as a result of the successful provision of Death is Wrong books to 50 longevity activists throughout the world. On August 7, 2014, the last book shipment, free for all recipients, was made, paid for by the funds raised through the Indiegogo campaign I ran in coordination with the Movement for Indefinite Life Extension (MILE) from February 22 through April 23, 2014. (Read Eric Schulke’s earlier article about the success of the fundraiser and the tremendous efforts and publicity that made it possible.) While some of my critics, such as Slate’s Joelle Renstrom, preemptively proclaimed that the funds raised would fall well short of the goal, we actually not only reached the goal in time but even exceeded it – and we have already spent all the money raised on providing free books to children.

I am triumphantly proud to report that the fundraiser’s target of providing a book for every $5 raised has been strictly adhered to. In repeated postings to various social-media outlets – conducted at least once weekly – I did not stop seeking out new dedicated recipients until 1,029 books were provided. My persistence paid off, as every posting made new people aware of the book and its promise in spreading the message of indefinite longevity to children.

I have created a table displaying the numbers of books sent to longevity activists in each of 14 countries, the total cost of shipments in each country, the costs per book by country, and the total project costs.

DIW_Distribution_Summary Our Indiegogo campaign raised $5,141.00 in total. Printing and shipping the books cost slightly more than this amount – $5,259.23 – largely because international shipments are often more expensive than domestic shipments within the United States. An additional amount of $453.05 was paid in fees to Indiegogo, PayPal, and the payment processor used by Indiegogo to make transfers to my bank account. However, all of the cost overruns were covered out of my personal funds – and therefore I consider myself to have made an additional $571.28 donation to this distribution effort. This is certainly a worthwhile expenditure for facilitating the spread of life-extensionist ideas among the next generation of scientists, technologists, doctors, philosophers, and activists – people whom we will need to join us in the struggle against death, so that we might have any hope of personally achieving indefinite lifespans.

While some shipments are still en route, many of the ones that have reached their destinations have already begun to have significant impacts.

Some activists have sent us videos and pictures of children responding to Death is Wrong and its message.

Watch this brief, charming video of Aleksander Kelley interviewing his sister Hanna, who has been giving out Death is Wrong books to kids she knows. Thanks go to David J Kelley for making this possible.

Here is Hanna again, handing a book to a friend. This is a wonderful and inspiring vignette of what can happen as a result of our dedicated and persistent activism in support of indefinite life extension.


Roen Horn of the Eternal Life Fan Club has begun a strongly publicized series of book giveaways, the first of which he captured on camera. Here is his video featuring two kids who know that death is wrong.

Accompanying Roen’s video are excellent graphics like this one.

Children_Know_That_Death_is_WrongThe books were enthusiastically received at the Church of Perpetual Life in Hollywood, FL, a science-based Transhumanist church, whose primary focus is on ending death and reversing aging. Here is a picture kindly provided by Officiator Neal VanDeRee, where he presents a copy of Death is Wrong to the music teacher Dr. Angie Cook Wong and one of her students, who sang at the service.

DIW_IMG_0687Some of the book recipients have been librarians throughout the United States. Jameson Rohrer, the Transhumanist Librarian, has connected me with fellow librarians who have placed the books in libraries near them. Here are images of Death is Wrong books on display.

DIW_Rohrer_2DIW_Rohrer_3Successes like this one and many others have been chronicled on The Rational Argumentator, on a dedicated page that I continually update, informing readers of new developments in this unprecedented distribution effort. The updates are not finished. As the remaining book shipments arrive and books are given out to children, there will be more pictures, videos, and promising news to share. Indeed, even these impacts will just be the beginning. The true effects of this effort will be seen years and decades in the future – as the young readers of the books grow up and are hopefully motivated to develop their lives and pursuits in directions that will aid us all in overcoming the greatest enemy – death. I will know that my success is complete once even one young researcher or activist informs me, “I read Death is Wrong all those years ago, and it was this book that nudged me onto the path of discovery and development toward who I am today.” We supporters of indefinite life extension still have tremendous obstacles to overcome in achieving our vision. I hope that this effort to distribute over 1,000 Death is Wrong books will erode those obstacles at least somewhat – gradually injecting the ideas of indefinite life extension into the cultural mainstream and nurturing the next generation of advocates for this most worthwhile of endeavors.

DIW_World_MapPhotograph Courtesy of Eric Schulke

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