Wait a second - that’s not completely abnormal! While trying to get up, I have this idea to develop some technique that could convert my mass into energy so I could travel with the speed of light, reach my sister’s place and convert myself back into matter.
Let me start with an explanation of the famous E = mc2 thing. It says that the total energy of a body at rest is equal to the product of its rest mass m and a suitable conversion factor to transform from units of mass to units of energy. In other words, this equation says that matter and energy are convertible. This conversion actually happens! Nuclear fission is a nuclear reaction in which the nucleus of an atom splits into lighter nuclei often producing free neutrons and protons (in the form of gamma rays). Such splitting of an atom releases an incredible amount of heat and gamma radiation, or radiation made of high-energy photons. The two atoms that result from the fission later release beta radiation (super fast electrons) and gamma radiation of their own as well. The energy released by a single fission comes from the fact that the fission products and the neutrons, together, weigh less than the original U-235 atom. The difference in weight is converted directly to energy at a rate governed by the equation E = mc2. Practically of course, in a nuclear fission reaction, 7% of the matter is converted into energy.
Conversely, in the phenomenon of pair production, two gamma rays give an electron-positron pair essentially converting energy into mass. It refers to the creation of an elementary particle and its antiparticle, usually from a photon (or another neutral boson). This is allowed, provided there is enough energy available to create the pair – at least the total rest mass energy of the two particles and that the situation allows both energy and momentum to be conserved.
When we talk about converting energy into matter we cannot just create matter out of energy. There are various laws of conservation that have to be followed. Whenever we try to convert energy into matter, it gives a matter and anti-matter pair which immediately combines back to energy. So it takes a huge amount of energy to keep them from combining.
In the LHC at CERN, high speed protons are colliding to produce energy just as it happened before the existence of the universe. Protons are racing around a 27-kilometer ring at nearly the speed of light colliding billions of times per second. If we get the results of that experiment, that would be an insight to many phenomenon of the early universe and will explain a great deal about the mass-energy conversion thing. It would take 300 thousand times the age of the Universe for the LHC to produce one kilogram of mass. Still, it does produce mass from energy! The problem is that the mass particles that are produced decay into smaller components which in turn decay into smaller ones until all that remains are stable particles such as those that constitute the atoms of matter we see all around – protons and neutrons - only dispersed. We can also count neutrinos and electrons, but those are much less massive than protons and neutrons.
Once we convert matter into energy, the matter is destroyed. And it becomes highly improbable to recollect that energy and convert it back into matter anti-matter pair. With these facts and taking into account all the experimental and technical difficulties, it becomes extremely ridiculous to think that some day we would actually convert ourselves into energy and control ourselves then.
So yes, we will have to wait till we can govern some system to convert effectively all our particles into energy and more importantly devise some plan to preserve that energy, making it unique, transport it and reconvert it back into matter whenever we want. Let’s just take comfort in the fact that many great inventions start from ideas that arise from laziness!