Why die – a philosophical apology of death

Heine A. Holmen
University of Tromsø
In the Insanity Defence Woody Allen claims that when we say humans are mortal we are obviously not complimenting them. It is difficult to contradict great comedy, of course, but if what I argue holds, Allen is wrong on this account. Mortality is a compliment – or at least something for which we should be grateful – since life without it threatens with disaster. To live without death also means living in the universe in its more hostile stages under conditions where there can be no meaningful life. In this way, immortality is worse than death. In addition, I argue that no matter how carefully we qualify the conditions that make up immortality the old problem of death resurface. I therefore conclude, with a nod towards Voltaire, that if death did not exist, it would have been necessary to invent it.
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Reprint years 2017, 2018
DOI 10.1080/21692327.2017.1412834
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References found in this work BETA

The Emperor's New Mind.Roger Penrose - 1989 - Oxford University Press.
Mortal Questions.Thomas Nagel - 1979 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 43 (3):578-578.
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