X-Message-Number: 12068
From: Thomas Donaldson <>
Subject: for G. Smith and others: yes, we can advance NOW.
Date: Mon, 5 Jul 1999 23:03:20 +1000 (EST)

Hi everyone!

First of all, I've never accused Bob Ettinger of a religious approach to
cryonics. I will stand firm that some cryonicists do have such an

The difference can be seen from behavior rather than what someone says. If
someone is actually trying to improve the probability that current (or
past) suspensions will someday be reversible, and doing so by scientific
study or the support of scientific study, then that is not taking a
religious approach at all. If some other person merely does lip service
to the need for PRESENT research and puts all the burden of revival onto
the future, THAT is a religious approach. 

Furthermore, anyone who looks into cryobiology and neuroscience will learn
that we are not so totally ignorant that we can do nothing at all. Not
only that, but they will discover lines of research that only cryonicists 
are likely to follow. For years now, little has come from scientifically
published cryobiology, but a lot of work has been done in neuroscience. 
That work, if considered, sharpens our ideas about just what we need to 
do. Not only that, but more recently, even though it still remains 
unpublished, further cryobiological work supported by CRYONICISTS has
come up with advances which deserve to be applied to suspension of human
brains as fast as possible.

Not only that, but work on neuroscience now gives us a far sharper set of
ideas about the different kinds of memory and how they work than anyone
had 10 years ago. And it begins to tell us concrete things about how our
sense of awareness works, too. Both of these remain important not only
for future suspensions but even for past suspensions, since if continued
(and some questions won't be asked by anyone but cryonicists here, too)
they may give us our best chance at someday reviving those frozen with
older methods too.

To say that we are totally ignorant on any of these questions is hardly
helpful. And (sorry for the ad) if you really think that, perhaps you
might benefit from reading the newsletter PERIASTRON, which I put out
in which I specifically discuss scientific developments relevant to 
cryonics and its success.

I myself remain VERY skeptical that ANY scientific development will solve
the problem of revival for EVERYONE. The best we can hope for is to
approach closer and closer to that goal as the centuries (yes, centuries)
pass. Even so, I'd rather be suspended by the best methods known at
the time of my suspension --- though life being as hard as it is, even
if such methods are known, I may still be unlucky. And finding those
best methods is exactly the job of any scientific research into cryonics.
Finding them, learning how to apply them to as many as possible, and
continuing to improve: that should be our major job.

			Best and long long life to all,

				Thomas Donaldson

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