a hypothetic euthanasia machine in the form of a roller coaster, engineered to humanely – with elegance and euphoria – take the life of a human being. riding the coaster’s track, the rider is subjected to a series of intensive motion elements that induce various unique experiences: from euphoria to thrill, and from tunnel vision to loss of consciousness, and, eventually, death. thanks to the marriage of the advanced cross-disciplinary research in space medicine, mechanical engineering, material technologies and, of course, gravity, the fatal journey is made pleasing, elegant and meaningful.
design and engineering: julijonas urbonas
health issues: dr. michael gresty, spatial disorientation lab, imperial college, london
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july 15, 1956 - may 18, 1980
stretford, england - macclesfield, cheshire, england
do not stand at my grave and weep,
i am not there, i do not sleep.
i am in a thousand winds that blow,
i am the softly falling snow.
i am the gentle showers of rain,
i am the fields of ripening grain.
i am in the morning hush,
i am in the graceful rush
of beautiful birds in circling flight,
i am the starshine of the night.
i am in the flowers that bloom,
i am in a quiet room.
i am in the birds that sing,
i am in each lovely thing.
do not stand at my grave bereft
i am not there. i have not left.
by mary elizabeth frye
an eternal state of oblivion, or lack of awareness, is believed by some to occur after death. this belief contradicts beliefs that there is an afterlife, such as a heaven or hell, after death. the belief in eternal oblivion stems from the idea that the brain creates the mind; therefore, when the brain dies, the mind ceases to exist.
in classical greek, the word ‘lethe’ literally means “oblivion”, “forgetfulness,” or “concealment”. lethe was 1 of the 5 rivers of hades. also known as the ‘ameles potamos’ (river of unmindfulness), the lethe flowed around the cave of hypnos and through the underworld, where all those who drank from it experienced complete forgetfulness. lethe was also the name of the greek spirit of forgetfulness and oblivion, with whom the river was often identified.