What is age?
Depends on who you ask. If you ask your grandmother her age, she may not want to discuss age at all. If you ask your four year old nephew he may be so eager to discuss it that he’ll tell you his exact societally-defined age to the day (“i.e. I’m 4 and a half years old and 25 days!”).
You’ve likely heard the old trope “age is just a number”. You may have shrugged when you heard this. Or perhaps you chuckled at the perceived denial. Yet, in turns out there is a lot truth to that statement. Philosophers, doctors and scientists have known for centuries – perhaps millennia – that only minor details could be gleaned and inferred from learning someone’s age. Yes, perhaps one could roughly estimate the height of a “10 year old” [sic] or the slouch of an “80 year old” [sic] but it tells you nothing about the person themself. It tells you little about their intellect, their ambition, or their experience. A “10 year old” boy who “spent his childhood fighting in and then escaping Civil War in Africa will arguably have a lot more life experience than an “80 year old” man in Oklahoma who spent his life filing papers at the local town hall. The intention here is not to stereotype (we believe to do so is immoral and perhaps criminal) but to illustrate that age is meaningless.
Some in the bigoted anti-Transchrono camp will attempt to claim that age is an undeniable fact of nature that can be easily seen with the naked eye. This claim could not be further that the truth. A recent article in the Scientific American, a well regarded scientific magazine analyzed a study that found that even in a biologically aging brain, there was no perceivable difference in the level of intellect or abilities of the person to whom [the brain] belonged. This was quite a startling discovery and raises numerous questions about how the brain works.
The film Benjamin Button, which was made in consultation with members of the Los Angeles transchrono community did a great job of asking the question “What is Age?” The title character Benjamin struggles his whole life to answer that question but only discovers what the viewer realizes much sooner; that age is nothing. Even though Benjamin Button “ages” in reverse, his life plays out exactly as does any other person’s. He begins as a baby despite being in the body of an old man, and dies an old man, despite being in the body of a child. Never – except for a brief point in his life does he identify with the age that society would impose upon him.
Transchrono International aims to encourage more media, from Hollywood and elsewhere. with this thought-provoking message about our misconceptions about age. We are already living in ageless world, but most people don’t know it. The sooner we rid ourselves of “age” the faster we will advance.