This review was originally posted on the Facebook page of the Eternal Life Fan Club, a community created by Roen Horn to share philosophy, research, and strategies to help humans increase their chances of living forever.
I finally got around to reading the new transhumanist children’s book Death is Wrong. I was impressed with the simplicity and clarity of the message, and my impression was that children could easily digest the information. It’s about time there was a children’s book promoting the message of indefinite life-extension. This book should be mandatory reading in elementary schools. I was pleased to see that the book gave mention to Aubrey de Grey and SENS Research Foundation. Besides explaining the logical reasons for why death is wrong, I was delighted that the book spoke about the frailness of life and the overwhelming sadness of death. The book also specified the importance of vigilantly avoiding dangerous behaviors which would endanger one’s life, and the importance of taking care of one’s health. I think that message is especially important for young children to hear. The book leaves the reader with the optimistic outlook that death does not have to be inevitable. If we know that death is wrong, then we must wage war on death and never give up until we have won this fight. You can find the book on Amazon here.
Wendy Stolyarov, Illustrator of Death is Wrong, at the Transhuman Visions 2.0 Conference – March 1, 2014
A Roman Coin from the 330s: The New Oldest Object in Mr. Stolyarov’s Possession
At the March 1, 2014, Transhuman Visions 2.0 conference in Piedmont, CA (where Wendy and I gave a presentation on Death is Wrong), I was pleased to meet Neal VanDeRee of The Church of Perpetual Life, an organization promoting the desirability of living without end and inspired by the philosophy of the great Russian Cosmist thinker Nikolai Fedorov (or Fyodorov – a better Anglicization of the Russian “Фёдоров”).
Mr. VanDeRee organized a drawing of attendees’ business cards, for which the prize was an ancient Roman coin from the 4th century CE. I was thrilled to win the drawing, and I received my coin in the mail today. Here are images (scans on top, photographs on bottom) of both the front (obverse) and back (reverse) sides of the coin.
Some further research enabled Wendy and me to form a reasonably good understanding regarding the origins of this coin. The “SIS” letters on the bottom indicate that the coin was minted in Siscia (today, Sisak in Croatia), which housed a mint for roman coins between 262 and 383 CE. (Wendy and I are not yet in agreement as to whether the first letter is “A” or “B”. Wendy thinks it is an “A”, while I see a “B” because of the elevated ridge on the bottom of the letter. What do you think?)
This particular coin is a commemorative coin for the city of Constantinople, with a left-facing image of a helmeted emperor (likely Constantine I – Roman emperor from 306 to 337) on the obverse side and a winged Victory goddess with a spear and shield on the reverse side. Here and here are images of two highly similar coins, which are identified on the Dirty Old Coins website as dating from 330-333 CE and 334-335 CE, respectively. Another highly similar coin is listed here on the Portable Antiquities Scheme site from the United Kingdom. That coin is dated to 334-335 CE. Based on our research, Wendy and I are reasonably confident that our coin, too, dates to the 330s CE, prior to Constantine’s death.
In Death is Wrong, I wrote about an 1893 Indian head penny which I found in the hallways of my high school in 2004, when I was gathering spare change found in the “state of nature” in order to donate to the Methuselah Mouse Prize. I am happy to still have this object – older than any living human being today – in my coin collection. This Roman coin from the 330s, though, is older by an order of magnitude. It has existed for approximately 1680 years already, and it is certainly the oldest object I own. May it continue to exist indefinitely, and may all of us humans continue to live indefinitely also!
Gennady and Wendy Stolyarov’s Forthcoming Presentation on “Death is Wrong” at Transhuman Visions 2.0
I invite all of my readers to join me at the Transhuman Visions 2.0 East Bay conference in Piedmont, CA, on Saturday, March 1, 2014. I will be there with my wife Wendy Stolyarov to deliver the opening presentation about Death is Wrong, our new ambitious illustrated children’s book on indefinite life extension. For a prelude to my presentation, I invite you to read my article, “Why I Wrote a Children’s Book on Indefinite Life Extension“. Also, autographed copies of Death is Wrong will be available for sale.
The Transhuman Visions 2.0 East Bay conference is produced by the Brighter Brains Institute and its energetic, prolific, and creative founder, Hank Pellissier. For detailed information about the conference, see the official Brighter Brains Institute page here.
The poster for this event was designed by none other than Wendy Stolyarov. It is a testament to her skill in graphic design and the new standard of excellence her art brings to the transhumanist movement.