Would things be different if we were born knowing when we would die?

If  we were born with an expiry date or just like a DOB ( date of birth) we had a DOD ( date of death ) written in our birth ceritificates would our lives be any different?

I wonder.

We would not need a death certificate, they could just add a feild for reason of death that could be filled out once we die.  It could help reduce the load of paperwork for our loved ones once we are gone.

On a more serious note though, would we be more daring and experience more living or would we be apathetic towards life.  Human beings tend to live thinking that they will live forever until they actually get old or just die suddenly.  The first thing that comes to mind is that people with shorter life spans would get discriminated against.  They would become undesirable for marriage, jobs and even buying things in installments.  Which most probably would lead to a whole new world of forgery.  We would probably read books and watch movies about love stories where couples would fight for their love because one person knew he would only live for another year or two and the other decades but they would still choose to get married and be together for whatever time they had.  Genetic studies would explore the human genome to find if they can modify your unborn baby’s genes to get a longer living baby.  Would people who knew they would live longer take better care of their health?  Would they make more friends and try more things because they know they have enough time to change their mind? Would decisions be harder or easier to make?

It is a blessing that we do not know.

At the end of the day it does not matter because

“اعمل لدنياك كأنك تعيش أبدا واعمل للآخرة كأنك تموت غدا”

Translated to

“work for your earthly life as if you live forever and work for the hereafter as if you die tomorrow”

This is sometimes said to be a hadith, but after a bit of research it was either said by Ali Ibn Abu Taleb or an unknown source.  Al Albany claimed that it was hadith da3if.

Either way, whomever said it, it has a lot of truth in it.


  • At 2010.03.24 11:40, M said:

    I never really thought of things this way.
    I agree, it’s a blessing we don’t know.

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      • At 2010.03.24 17:00, cinderella said:

        well you reminded me of a post i wrote before ..


        for me it’s better to know when i’ll die .. and when other people i love will die ..

        • At 2010.03.24 21:13, هوندا said:

          حلو قوى ياجيسى ,,كان مرة فى كاتب بيقول لو افترضت ان عمرك هينتهى بعد 6 شهور هتلاقيك تعمل كل حاجة كان نفسك تعملها فى حياتك فحاول تحسس نفسك ده من وقت للتانى

          فكرة الخلود او ان عمرك يطول مرعبة فى حد ذاتها لما تفكرى كده انك تفضلى عايشة لحد مااغلب الى بتحبيهم يموتو وانتى لسه عايشة حاجة رخمة يعنى

          • At 2010.03.24 23:05, Shimaa Gamal said:

            I once told a friend that a no tomorrow makes today the perfect day. We are all born to a death sentence, we are all dying but we just don’t seem to realize this.

            • At 2010.03.28 16:50, Amira AK said:

              well said jessyz. i definitely would not want to know when i die. and i believe it’s a blessing that we don’t. i don’t think people will take more care of their health and make better choices in life knowing they will die. on the contrary, they’ll be too happy doing lots of fun and useless things thinking they’ll have the time to change their habits in time but i doubt they’ll be able to. when you wollow in things that get you off track, you lose sight of the track and it’s much more difficult to get back on it. that’s my idea. besides if we knew when the rest of us would die.. the world would be a miserable place indeed… preparing for the departure of a loved one.. government and private entities would be totally crowded because people would want to finish papers and things before they departed.. and doctors probably wouldn’t take care of patients and try their best to keep them alive because they’d know that they would be dead in a few hours or days or what not anyway…
              Nope. it’s a blessing we don’t know.

              • At 2010.03.31 18:05, lendmeurear said:

                I think if people knew their DOD they would be despondent; they wouldn’t really see the purpose to living. So yes, it is definitely a blessing not knowing when one is going to die.

                About the health issue, I don’t think people would really care. The evidence is all around us. People keep eating fatty, artery-clogging foods knowing that they may lead to diseases that cause early death. The same goes for smokers; they know smoking is harmful but they keep on doing it. Many live by the mentality that they will eventually die, so might as well die of something.

                • At 2010.05.03 15:45, jessyz said:

                  Hehehe yeah I guess so, but if you knew you were going to live to be a hundred wouldn’t you want to at least live comfortably?