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In a paper Pragmatism and Umwelt-theory the author begins by contrasting pragmatism with scientific realism. He writes something very intriguing at a certain point. That from pragmatic perspective "Death is viewed as optional; it results from a failure of an organism to solve its living problem." There is no reference given, so I was wondering if someone could suggest literature that touches on this subject or venture a guess why pragmatism would hold such a strong view.

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That hardly sounds like a strong view; it sounds like a simple statement of fact. Is there any indication of why this is not also a "scientific realist" perspective? Of course, once one realizes that death is optional, one should also notice that staying alive forever is absurdly hard, so reproduction starts to look like the best alternative. And one might also note that the universe appears to be destined for eventual heat death (if dark energy doesn't hyperexpand us to zero density first), so maybe death is not optional on cosmological timescales. –  Rex Kerr Dec 23 '12 at 19:27
    
@Rex Kerr: I'd strongly disagree with you on that. It isn't clear to me (without further elaboration, at least) that death per se is an intrinsic phenomenon of an organism. Indeed, it may be that death is an infliction of outside processes (e.g. an organism viewed as an ensemble of microscopic particles never dies, due to conservation of energy, death being only a change in macroscopic properties of this system, which comes from interaction with the rest of the universe). Indeed, an organism is not physically isolated from the universe. –  William Dec 24 '12 at 7:42
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@William - On what, precisely, are you disagreeing? That saying alive forever is absurdly hard? I never said that death was an intrinsic phenomenon. (However, it is true that death is often a regulated process; at the cellular level there are cascades of cell-death proteins that conduct death in an orderly fashion, and there are obvious examples like spiders and octopi where the life-cycle includes planned death at a very specific time.) –  Rex Kerr Dec 24 '12 at 12:31
    
I disagree with this: "..it sounds like a simple statement of fact." I am a scientific realist, and it is not my perspective. In general I'd be very careful with the word fact. –  William Dec 24 '12 at 12:51
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once one realizes that death is optional, one should also notice that **staying alive forever is absurdly hard**, so reproduction starts to look like the best alternative. THIS. –  c69 Feb 4 '13 at 22:36
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Well....immortal in what sense is important, are you talking physical immortalism or hiatorical or any other form? Or u may be talking about quantum immortalism.... Let us understand first why we are not immortal physically?? Its very simple bcoz we die and cant resist death... So let us understand death 1st; why we die;how we die and when we die..if we came to know this..we may change it..on quantum level.... Why/how/when?? Is understanding sequence and decoding will be reverse... Start with WHEN? we start dieying with the very begining of birth....dieying is a process which take odd 50/60/70 and for few it take 100 years..so the key of understanding is why this difference of years in everybodies dieying?.... we need to decode now HOW? For knowing how we need to understand the common paratmeter of each human...i.e...breathing/oxygen/blood/respiration/and a body/ and a enrgy..(soul) or a power of our body... Now lets take help of science... Let us understand ...the human body growth pattern..we get older due to oxygen...and we use anti oxigen which let us make younger then what we shud be....so see the human life programming...oxygen is making us older and oxygen is compulsary matter to take every moment...the key is oxygen and key is breathing.......our blood takes oxygen to heart and hearts beats and oxygen to brain and brain works...now question is why oxygen only?? How our body takes oxygen only from environment?? Why cant we live on hydrogen or nitrogen??or carbon?... Now the 3rd question arises... Why we die...?? The very WHY....to be continue if some body is interrsted in this philosophy..

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How does this address the question? –  virmaior Mar 22 at 23:59
    
Not all questions are perfect sometime answers need a right question.... –  simpleman Mar 23 at 0:26
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