The ancient Mesopotamian King Gilgamesh of the Epic of Gilgamesh failed in his quest to become immortal and had to accept the wall he built around his city-state Uruk as his lasting legacy. Now, scientists have discovered an animal that has apparently achieved what Gilgamesh didn’t—immortality. A species of jellyfish (turritopsis nutricula) can regenerate its body over and over, returning to its youth, maturing, and recycling again. You can read a news story about it here.
What would it be like to live forever, not as a middle aged or elderly person, but to experience repeatedly the various stages of life? Would we eventually learn from our past mistakes and become wiser and more compassionate people like Phil Connors, the Bill Murray character in the movie Groundhog Day? Or would we simply make new mistakes, live similarly mediocre and self-focused lives?
I woundn’t mind having a Mulligan rule in life that gives me a do-over when I make mistakes. But eternal life? That’s just crazy. Or is it?