8 Secrets to Immortality

• Turritopsis, the immortal jellyfish, is the only creature on the planet that can revert back to its earliest stage of development. It simply sinks to the bottom of the ocean floor, folds in on itself to form a polyp, and starts a new life as a jellyfish. While Turritopsis, with its fabulous name and abilities, is fascinating, the scientist who studies it is even more colorful. Read more in this NY Times article.

• The Tao Te Ching by Laozi (pictured as a gilt brass sculpture from the Ming dynasty) hints at immortality, though not in the sense of preserving the human body. Turritopsis comes to mind in passages like: “All things are born of being. Being is born of non-being.”

• Peaches, that juicy summer delight, are a staple in the diet of the Chinese immortal gods. In this silk tapestry, Dongfang Suo, a Han Dynasty courtier, steals a peach from a visiting god.

• Infinity, represented on a small, wearable scale in these Mobius Strip Earrings by Ilana.

• Cinnabar, which often accompanied Mayan royals in their burial chambers. Debby’s Necklace combines cinnabar beads with vintage ivory and chalcedony stone beads.

• Jade, which made up head-to-toe immortality suits kept by Han dynasty royals. For a lighter version, try this Necklace by Cloud Pine Studio.

• A Crane, which carried one of the eight immortals across the sea, is depicted in this folding screen.

• The Elixir of Immortality Tea is produced on Wu Yi Mountain, a process overseen by a Taoist master. Read a review of the tea here.