Long life has a matchlessly huge value

A long life has a matchlessly huge value, not only to the individual, but also to the society.

If we make an analysis of the life periods, a life can fall into the production period and the consumption period and so on. Production periodconsumption periodcontribution period. For instance,if an average life is 80 years, we may have the following picture: A person goes through the kindergarten, the primary school, the middle school, the college, until doctorate study and postdoctoral study, he is 30 years old then; he retires at 60 (now it is even earlier). So, he only works for 30 years. He passes away at 80,and from 60 to 80 he needs support from the society again. His production period for the society (working period) is only 30 years,far shorter than the consumption period of 50 years,thus, the contribution period has become a negative. Although a person’s actual contribution to the society does not only depend on the length of the working period and contribution period, yet, the too short working period and contribution period is a great obstacle to social progress indeed! If we can live a long life and it is a healthy and youthful long life, then, along with the extension of the life-time and the corresponding extension of the working period, we may increase our contribution to the society greatly. When the life time increases from 80 to 150, even if we study until 30 and begin to work then, and retire at 130, the working period is as long as 100 years,and the consumption period is less than 50 years,so, the contribution period will increase greatly (from a negative of 20 years to a positive of 50 years). Hence,the society will be able to accumulate wealth much more and at a faster rate, so that it may progress much faster. When people’s life span reaches 500, or 1200 years, people’s working period and contribution period will increase by many times,so, the social accumulation and progress will be greatly sped up.

We must point out,the long life mentioned here only refers to the long life with a good health as the precondition and the long life with youth as the precondition. I am very interested in the new concept “healthy longevity” set forth by World Health Organization. The length of “healthy longevity” refers to the average number of years in which a citizen lives, and it results from subtraction from the time of health damage because of illness, injury and so on. We do not only seek a long life, but also seek a healthy life at the same time. Moreover, we should not only try to get a “healthy longevity”,but also seek “a youthful longevity”. That is to say,we should not only seek a healthy long life, but also seek a youthful long life. A new branch of learning on keeping youth, namely, “science of youth”, has come into being for a long time. The science of youth is just for keeping a person’s working capacity and vitality in all his life,extending and retaining his youthhood, even making youth stay forever. In the pursuit of a youthful long life,on the one hand we must fight against aging physically, and on the one hand we must also fight against aging psychologically. Fighting against aging psychologically is even more necessary. If all oldsters have the state of mind of “The old horse in the stable is yet dreaming of heroic exploits”(poem by Cao Cao), we may say they are not old in mentally. An American author Samuel Erman wrote an essay “Youth”, which has been regarded as a talisman for prolonging youth by many great figures. The famous General MacArthur inlaid “Youth” in his picture frame and kept it on his desk all the time. The founder of Panasonic Electric Company of Japan, Matsushita, remarked with deep feeling: “For 20 years,’Youth’ has always been accompanying me, and it is my motto.” In “Youth”, there are such sayings:

Youth is not a time of life; it is a state of mind; it is not a matter of rosy cheeks, red lips and supple knees; it is a matter of the will, a quality of the imagination, a vigor of the emotions; it is the freshness of the deep spring of life.” “Youth means a temperamental predominance of courage over timidity, of the appetite for adventure over the love of ease. This often exists in a man of 60 more than a boy of 20.”

Only such a person can enjoy a youthful long life,being even more youthful than a 20-year-old chap. Such a person is bound to make great achievements in academic career, in jobs and in life.

The ratio between personnel’s service period and personnel’s training period is of decisive significance to economic and social development. For any product, people lay a great stress on its service life,and the same is true of personnel. Personnel are different from products in that products lose their functions along with the increase of service time whereas personnel increase their abilities along with the increase of service time (working time).The longer the working years are, the more competent the person will be; the older the age is, the more skillful the person will become. Along with the growth in age,a person will accumulate more wisdom, experience, knowledge, and skill. Some neurology researchers have found, after the age of 70, more inter-connecting “branches” will grow out among the brain cells, which can enhance the depth of one’s knowledge. Psychological study has also proved, people’s mental mechanism will become healthier and more perfect gradually along with the increase of age. It is obvious that oldsters have many advantages that are incomparable to those in other age groups. Our society has not made the best of old people’s strong points and advantages,nor has it extended the working lives of all kinds of qualified personnel greatly. If we can prolong the life of all kinds of qualified personnel, especially their healthy and youthful life, we may greatly increase their working years and contributing years, thereby greatly increase their contribution to the society and accelerate social progress.

The famous physicist Seman said with emotion: “If scientists’ life can be prolonged for another 10 years,the civilization progress of the world will never be like the present state.” By prolonging scientists’ life for mere 10 years we can exert such a great effect on the civilization progress of the world,then, if we can prolong their life by 50 years, 100 years, or even 1000 years,what a huge effect it will have on world civilization and mankind’s progress!

Schopenhauer said: “When a genius is alive, people cannot estimate his greatness;One century later,the world will recognize his greatness;It will long for his return.” However,no matter how great and outstanding the person is, how we long for his return, he will never come back. The moment he dies, his great wisdom will vanish completely!

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