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A History of Ideas About the Prolongation of Life by Gerald Gruman MD PhD

By Gerald Gruman MD PhD

Textual content examines attitudes towards durability and dying in Islamic and chinese language societies in addition to in Western civilizations. presents an realizing of the origins of drugs, own hygiene and public health and wellbeing, and the underlying mental and social concerns surrounding getting older. Softcover.

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Extra resources for A History of Ideas About the Prolongation of Life

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Malthus, see later, chap. VIII). Another consolation is the thought that death has been the fate of all men, even the greatest. It would be presumptuous for one to try to escape a fate which had overeóme the "King of Kings" Darius, Scipio the conqueror of Carthage, the poet Homer, and the incomparable Epicurus himself. Lucretius feels that there is not much point in trying to prolong life, for, no matter how long we might live, the length of our life still would remain insignificant compared with the infinite duration of time during which we shall be dead.

69 Secondly, there are the prolongevity substances with empirical qualities. It is alleged that they simply have been found to work, and no further explanation is required. For example, by the "cut-and-try" method of ordinary human experience, a great many plant materials have been found to have beneficial medical properties. Starting from that basis, one might imagine an herb with the power of prolonging life, perhaps indefinitely, as the grassy herb of the Glaukus legend.

45 Again and again he returned to the theme that length of life is a matter of no importance. Though thou shouldst be going to live three thousand years and as many times ten thousand years, still remember that no man loses any other life than this which he now lives. . The longest and shortest are thus brought to the same . . all things from eternity are of like forms and come round in a circle . . 46 Thus, the Stoics developed an apologist line of reasoning which excluded not only the possibility of the prolongation of life but its desirability as well.

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