Category Archives: Philosophy

Cryonics, Nanotechnology and Transhumanism: Utopia Then and Now

Over the past few years there has been increasing friction between a subset of cryonicists, and people in the Transhumanist (TH) and Technological Singularity communities, most notably those who follow the capital N, Nanotechnology doctrine.[1, 2] Or perhaps more accurately, … Continue reading

Posted in Cryonics History, Cryonics Philosophy, Culture & Propaganda, Philosophy | 66 Comments

1968 AD > Cryonics > Reboot

Work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.” -      Philippians 2:12-13 Left: Mike Darwin at the Cryonics Society of New York in1971 (Inset: in Russia July, 2008). Future Shock Now By the time you are 50, if not before, … Continue reading

Posted in Cryonics History, Culture & Propaganda, Perfusion, Philosophy | 4 Comments


I remember. A warm summer day, the smell of her house spilling over through the screen of the aluminum storm door: the smell of barley soup and mothballs and dried rose petals all rolled into one. And I remember her. Continue reading

Posted in Cryonics History, Philosophy | 18 Comments

Poisoning the Well

Monitoring the CryoCultural Penetration of the Groundwater By Mike Darwin There ain’t no justice… If any press is good press, then cryonics should consider itself blessed indeed; because that perennial bad seed, Robert F. Nelson, is about have a movie … Continue reading

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Don’t Ask, But Do Tell

One of the things I find fascinating about so many people in cryonics is their seeming total inability to ask a direct question – or any question – of the person(s) who can answer it. One of the reasons I dislike the Cold Filter Cryonics Chat forum is the sheer stupidity of it. There are thousands upon thousands of words of more (rather than less) idle speculation about all manner of practical questions about cryonics, and yet, apparently no one ever thinks to simply ask the person or persons who knows, or might know, the answer to the questions that are under discussion. Continue reading

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On the Need for Prosthetic Nocioception in Cryonics

Onto 50 years ago now, the newborn that was cryonics was held up before the world and cried out lustily. And the world heard that cry and took note. From the tabloids to the learned journals, the infant’s birth was cataloged and commented upon. Some greeted it with wonder, some with puzzlement, and some with the contempt that was reserved for the bastard child of any culture at that time. Continue reading

Posted in Cryonics Technology (General), Philosophy | 6 Comments

Cryonics and the Creation of a Durable Morality

Forty-seven years ago, when cryonics was brand new, a nearly universally asked question was, “What if you are married and your wife dies and is frozen, and you subsequently remarry, and you and your second wife are frozen, as well. What happens when all of you are revived?!” This was a deadly serious question, asked with creased brows, and great concern. It wasn’t asked because people were trying to be snide or clever, but rather because it reflected a deep moral concern about the sanctity of marriage, which cryonics called into question at that time. Today, the only people in most of the Western world who are much exercised about marriage are homosexuals, who haven’t had an adequate taste of it, and polygamists, who would have no problem with being recovered from cryopreservation to find they had two wives – and who might well be disappointed that they didn’t have more. The mid-20th century angst about the revived cryonicist with two wives, as seen from the perspective of the early 21st century, seems quaint, and more than a little archaic. Continue reading

Posted in Philosophy | 8 Comments

London at Apogee: A Reflection on the Criticality of Life Affirming Values to Economic Viability and Personal Survival

Most of the essay below was written on 16 June, 2008. It was written as a post (including all of the financial graphics) for a critical care medicine list-serve called CCM-L – a venerable, but at the same time quirky and eclectic forum, for discussing critical care medicine and topics that could transform it, for good or ill (even if they are seemingly far afield from the brass tacks of medical technology, per se). Sometime ago, I’m not sure quite when, I was alerted to the work of the economic analyst (and economist) Michael Mandel’s in the form of his seminal article, “Why the Jobs Crisis is Actually an Innovation Crisis”, by something I saw in an e-communication from the Cato Institute. Mandel’s analysis started me working to rewrite my CCM-L piece into a more rigorous (and less personal) exposition of my ideas. Subsequently, Mandel’s article prompted a more exhaustive and insightful analysis of the current financial meltdown by the even more prestigious economist Tyler Cowen. Continue reading

Posted in Economics, Philosophy | 19 Comments

Cryonics and Technological Inevitability

One of the most fundamental insights I’ve ever had came when I was in Rome, and also reading a very good biography of Leonardo da Vinci, in preparation for a visit to Florence. Da Vinci spent most of his career designing war machines, and trying to reroute the Arno River for military advantage. As I looked at the remains of the awesome Ancient Roman engineering around me, and thought of da Vinci, it occurred to me that one of the most powerful and off putting military advantages that could have been deployed, in either Ancient, or Renaissance times, would have been hot air balloons. Continue reading

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Welcome to a New World

I was cold and edgy. We had departed Mosul well before dawn, in order to arrive at Nineveh before the call to morning prayers. Mosul had been a jumble of box-like, recent construction; unimpressive Mosques and the grim and gritty dwellings of the poor. The drive had been the usual terrifying excursion into the pitch blackness of a moonless night, with only the infrequent and very momentary benefit of headlights. A burned out headlamp is a financial disaster in this part of the Arab world, so road travel proceeds at breakneck speed in complete darkness, with only brief flashes of the headlights to keep the driver in position on the road and from colliding, head-on, with any oncoming traffic. Continue reading

Posted in Philosophy, Uncategorized | 4 Comments