Here is a speculation you may enjoy. It is based on two facts: A) that many of our beliefs result from a historical game of “telephone” where stories get twisted over the years as they are passed on (particularly before people could read and write), and B. that Plato’s story of Atlantis says advanced civilizations have risen and have been destroyed many times on Earth.
The following are the seven biological causes of aging, for which Dr. Aubrey de Grey believes we can engineer practical solutions:
(1) The loss of cells that we need;
(2) The accumulation of cells that we don’t need;
(3) DNA mutations inside the cell nucleus;
(4) DNA mutations inside the cell’s mitochondria;
(5) The accumulation of “junk” inside of cells;
(6) The accumulation of “junk” outside of cells; and
(7) The formation of cross-linked proteins outside cells.
If the seven deadly sins could be traced to some ancient writing (they don’t appear in the bible), then we could speculate that a previous technologically advanced race (“the gods”) knew about these biological reasons and put them into writing in a coded form long ago. Here are how the Seven Deadly sins might map to the seven things above that make us die of old age:
(1) Sloth – The loss of cells that we need;
(2) Greed – The accumulation of cells that we don’t need;
(3) Pride – DNA mutations inside the cell nucleus;
(4) Anger – DNA mutations inside the cell’s mitochondria;
(5) Gluttony – The accumulation of “junk” inside of cells;
(6) Envy – The accumulation of “junk” outside of cells; and
(7) Lust – The formation of cross-linked proteins outside cells.
Bonus: “Sins” and “SENS” are synonyms. SENS is de Grey’s term for his method of curing aging: “Strategies for Engineered Negligible Senescence“. Senescence just means aging. So in English, this is “ways to use engineering to make the effects of aging unnoticeable.”
The link between the two occurred to me after noticing that in the ancient Mesopotamian traditions the dead dwell in a sealed fortress, typically of seven gates, barred against invasion or escape. There are also, I’ve heard, seven gates of hell in the Qur’an, the Islamic bible.
The Qur’an describes the seven gates of hell as al-ghayb, “something that is beyond the reach of human perception” according to this post. “For each of those Gates Is a (special) class (Of sinners) held.” — Qur’an 15:44 (Abdullah Yusuf Ali’s translation). Hell translates to “the grave” in the earliest writings according to my research. I don’t understand Islam so I don’t know how each of these might map to the seven deadly Christian sins or to the seven biological causes of aging. Anyone?
nar (fire, which is the general term)
jahim (“blazing fire”)
sa’ir (“blazing flame”)
laza (“raging flame”)
hutamah (“crushing torment”)
There is a human tendency to force things to relate when they actually do not, and I may simply be a victim of this mental distortion in considering the above. However, I do find it an interesting idea.