Will Beyoncé Noels die? The question cannot be answered as straightforwardly as one thinks, as modern transhumanist movements seem to think digital immortality will become a viable option in the near future when it comes anti-aging. Indeed, it seems she might very well become immortal, as she has become digitally distributed across the entire planet. So, will she die?
Table Of Contents
- Can She Escape The Clock?
- Our Creeping Fate
- Programmed To Die
- The Break Down Of Life
- Socially Neglected
- Our Corrupted Fate
- Not Programmed To Last
- The Grandfather Clock Fell On Her
Will Beyoncé Die
Can She Escape The Clock?
Will Beyoncé Noels ever cease to be? Shall her heart ever grow weary in beat, no longer able to circulate vitality throughout her being: from head to feet. We might be tempted to suppose so. That she will, like us all, be buried beneath the soles of our shoes. After all, she is as human as any of us. She eats food, she has emotion, and she consumes life. How normal, indeed; or so it would seem.
When I speak of Beyoncé Noels, I have not a person in mind. Nowhere to be found, flesh, muscle, or bone. Beyoncé appears to no one, and so cannot be found in human form. Nay, we have but a perception of her self-image: an idealized archetype fabricated by our brains. There is no unified Beyoncé, there are just many idealized constructions.
Beyoncé appears as an idealized archetype in the format of MP3, wherein which she shapes the cultural foundations of young minds from ages 16 to 30. Beyoncé appears as an idealized archetype in the format of MP4, wherein which she pre-occupies exorbitant amounts of space inside the domain of dance and music. Beyoncé likewise appears as an idealized archetype in the format of Jpeg, wherein which her aesthetics have been sculpted and perfected by digital chisels and brushes. She is metaphysically plural rather than singular.
So Beyoncé is indeed far from normal; she has no tangibility, no extension, no mass. She be not a person in the common understanding of personhood. But will that allow her to live forever? To answer such a question requires first some understanding about the nature of aging.
Theories Of Aging
Our Creeping Fate
We grow old in life. We become wrinkled in the face, robbed from our youth; we become unable to move, robbed from our mobility; and we become forgetful of time, robbed from our memories. Old age be devoid of all empathy and ruthless in its entropy.
But what is old age? Is it just that creeping fate which stirs the depths of all our unconscious minds and plagues nearly all beings bound by time?
Among the possibilities, there are two broad categories which characterize aging: namely, programmed and error theories of aging, at least as they relate to biology.
Programmed To Die
Programmed to age, some scholars argue. We have located within us biological clocks which bring us through a series of progressions; like a developing flower, we go through time-dependent gene expressions that modify our capacities for repair, maintenance, and defense responses. But the handful of theories that regard programmed aging are rather diverse.
One such theory is programmed-longevity; that is, we age, reliably so, because various genes, overtime, turn on while others turn off; such changes in gene expression bring about age in the human body: irreversible alterations.
Another such theory is the endocrine theory; the view that aging is regulated by hormonal responses. More specifically, how fast or slow we age will be greatly influenced by evolutionarily conserved IGF-1/Insulin signalling pathways, as a decrease in IGF-1/insulin signalling can increase the lifespan of organisms.
And the last of such theories is the immunological theory; that is, the immune system declines over time, which thus makes us more vulnerable to infectious disease: our anti-bodies become weaker and less able to fight off new infections. The inability to fight off disease leads to unrepairable damage to the body, thus bringing about aging.
Each of these theories, we ought note, has some implicit notion that we are designed to age; that birth is as natural as death: every start has an end. Or, that age ostensibly occurs as a consequent of some other evolved design inside the body. But as likely as these theories are, there are other theories which suppose otherwise.
The Break Down Of Life
The body and the world are like lion and gazelle; the lion is an aggressor on the gazelle, always seeking new ways to break down the defences of the gazelle. Likewise, the world conducts an assault on the defences of the body nearly every second of the day. The body is under an eternal bombardment.
And like the best of soldiers, we all encumber some damage in the battles of life. None leave war unscathed: broken bones, wounded flesh, and scarred souls. War marks us with permanent reminders of the assaults on our being; likewise, age serves as a permanent reminder that, as some believe, we are constantly being damaged by the world around us: the view that age manifests from damage done to central components of our biology. Namely, error theories of aging.
Error theories of aging view age as the manifestation of damage to the organism; put otherwise, we only age because we cannot repair the damage done encumbered from the world around us. But that is about the only thing which the error theories of aging agree on.
The first of such theories: the wear and tear theory. That theory believes age results from usage. When we use our pens to write, ink bleeds onto the paper and leaves the pen emptier than it was before; we have depleted some of its resources while it likewise has no means to replenish them. In much similar fashion, human cells deplete their resources and stress their structural components, so much so that they eventually die. As with the pen, each use is a step closer to death.
The second of such theories: rate of living theory. The view put forth: aging is caused by oxidative stress, as defense against oxidative stress is correlated with a longer lifespan. Therefore, our lifespan is determined by defense against oxidative damage as well as our rate of living. Higher rates of living and lower levels of defense lead to shorter lifespans.
The third of such theories: cross-linking theory. Cross-linking, as a concept rather than a theory, references the bonding of two molecules side by side. As a theory in the biology of aging, it is about protein cross-links; more specifically, cross-linked proteins slow down various processes of the body and thus bring about age.
The fourth of such theories: free radical theory. Much like the decay of a structure from rust, the free radical theory propositions that the macromolecular components of cells are susceptible to attack from free radicals. Free radicals such as superoxide lead to decay and inability to function, over time.
The last of such theories: somatic DNA damage theory. The DNA damage theory references the fact that cells, especially non-dividing cells, accumulate damage overtime; damage that cannot be repaired as fast as it occurs. In other words, DNA polymerases and other repair mechanisms cannot maintain the same rate of action as damage input: there is too much damage occurring too fast.
The Death Of Her Popularity
The theories of aging we have thus far discussed all regard biological aging, and so each apply to Beyoncé insofar as we discuss the person rather than her digital archetype. In other words, the person will die, but the digital archetype can survive, presumably.
It thusly follows, however, that her social popularity will die, despite the archetype. Her legacy, along with her, shall cease to be. And it is evident as to why.
When a lamp shines bright, surging with life, it is visible to all; it can be seen not only by those who read quietly beneath its warmth, but also by those who pass by the house in which the lamp so radiates. It’s presence seldom goes unnoticed.
Likewise, the brightness impresses upon the memory of onlookers a temporary image: a visual awareness of its radiance. And when the onlookers leave all sight of the lamp behind, they are left with a memory; they have to recall the visual awareness of the lamp rather than perceive it, which is weaker in its impression upon consciousness.
In similar fashion, when the digital archetype of Beyoncé no longer has a biological life to surge through it, a renewing energy for her digital archetype, our awareness of her will inevitably diminish. Like an unplugged lamp, we will eventually forget about Beyoncé. She will be nothing more than memory on a device that no one ever touches.
So, if Beyoncé ages, her idealized archetype will cease to be relevant. No human mind will represent the archetype; it will be stuck inside a dark and lonely digital space with no one to take note of its presence.
Aging In The Digital Age
Our Corrupted Fate
Alongside biological aging, we have digital aging as well; that is, both biological and non-biological structures age: they manifest damage and error, of which cannot be repaired. Our hippocampus will corrupt in due time, and so will our RAM.
But digital aging is different from biological aging. Digital aging references the degradation of data, which can occur in RAM, storage, or systems and component failures.
Not Programmed To Last
When information stored in RAM disrupts, it is due to an electrical charge being dispensed, which then alters code or stored data. Another way in which information decays is when the electrical charge slowly leaks from the storage device. Or, when the physical medium which the data is stored on breaks down, then data loss likewise occurs.
In other words, even non-biological forms of data cannot escape the far reaching grasp of death and aging. We all age, whether we are human or not: time is inescapable.
Beyoncé Meets Fate
The Grandfather Clock Fell On Her
Beyoncé shall die biologically due to age, she shall die socially due to age, and she shall die digitally due to age. Like us all, a grandfather clock will fall on her and burry her beneath the surface of the earth.
No one can escape age, as noise and signal distortion plague the essence of all things distinct. Things collide with one another, they degrade overtime, and they make errors in their basic functions. And each time they do so, they become less and less themselves: they age.
We will all change, we will all alter, we will all die.