We have all heard the story about Walt Disney freezing his head, perhaps in the hope that it could be defrosted and then attached to a new body some time in the future. We’ve all seen Futurama and those sci-fi films where a frozen body from the past comes alive in the future and experiences the world anew.
But the truth is a little different. For one thing Walt Disney’s head is not frozen, those films are highly improbable and freezing yourself is not a way to guarantee everlasting life.
To show you what I mean, let’s take a look at the pros and cons of cryogenics.
How it Works
There are organizations known as “Cryopreservation Companies.” They offer to preserve your body on death by freezing it and then basically keeping it on ice. There are many complicated processes involved with this to ensure as little damage to the tissue as possible.
As soon as you pass, a team of experts will begin a lengthy and complicated process that culminates with your full body or just your head (up to you) being frozen for regeneration at some time in the future.
Of course, you are dead and it’s not a simple case of defrosting you and then letting you live again. But the idea is that, in the future, there will be cures for the diseases that you had on death.
There may even be cures for cellular death, which means that regardless of the cause of death, they can fix the issue and bring you back to life.
There are a number of issues with this industry. Firstly, if the company goes bust, which is very possible when you think that you will need them to be active for hundreds of years, then your hopes of regeneration will go down with them. Secondly, there are major doubts that we will ever be able to bring a person back to life. Curing cancer is one thing, but killing cancer in someone who has been deceased for centuries and then bringing them back to life is another thing entirely. And then you have those who die from truck accidents, falls and the horrific accidents – are they going to have full body replacements when they are somehow restored?
Thirdly, why would they bother bringing you back to life?
Let’s envisage a scene for a moment, a scenario that should be obvious but fails to be seen by many who get involved with this industry.
For cryogenic companies to remain profitable and for your body to remain on ice, the industry needs to be very popular. So if your body is going to be in that state for any length of time then we can assume this will be the case. If it is popular, then it means millions of bodies will be on ice. As the human population grows and this industry continues to flourish, those numbers will climb to the hundreds of millions, maybe even the billions.
Now fast forward several hundred years. All of those people are on ice and we just discover a way to reverse death. No one dies of diseases anymore, people can be brought back to life. A population likely to be over 10 billion begins to expand like never before. We have more humans than we can feed and it becomes a serious problem. At that point, what are the odds of everyone deciding to bring all of those human ice cubes back to life?
It’s fun to think of and if you have the money it might even be worth it, just on the off chance that you will live again. But you would be much better off using that money to live a little more than to give yourself a slim chance of a second life.
On a side note, death is big business and it is getting even better. Whether you consider cryogenics viable or not, you can’t deny the fact that the people who offer these services and services like them have created huge companies that are growing all of the time.
Whenever a company takes something from science-fiction and aims to make it science fact, the stock markets blow up and everyone wants a piece of it. We know that these companies could become the giant multinational corporations of the future. That’s why companies like SpaceX are so huge right now.
So, whether you choose to freeze yourself or not, this is an industry that you may still want to keep tags on and one that could define the future of life and death.