[extropy-chat] Personal Identity Bis
lcorbin at rawbw.com
Wed Apr 11 18:17:56 UTC 2007
>> Yes, I agree that "process is the substance of life", if I'm reading you okay.
>> So the process is, after all, necessary and sufficient to achieve survival, right?
>> As I recall, though, your answer is "no". An interruption of the process for
>> you is the same as death, right?
You can be a computer program? That is, while I guess you don't believe
that you can *become* a computer program, you agree that you might be
one right now?
>> What on Earth can you have against cryonics? It's just a slowing down
>> of the process, not even a cessation any more than sleep is. Even at
>> liquid nitrogen temperatures, processes proceed (only more slowly).
>> Even the same atoms are used upon re-animation.
> Flat EEG means death. It has to. It's the only conclusion that doesn't lead to
> contradictions. Besides, it's consistent with a belief that there's no such thing
> as a resurrection.
I know how you feel :-) I myself am squeezed between two unacceptable
possibilities in the discussion of GLUTs and causal processes! I tried to
find the only way free of contractions! :-)
Here, however, your definition of death is very interesting, and is not all
in keeping with medical practice. Sometimes people's EEGs do go quiet
for a few seconds, but then the system gets kickstarted again. At least
that's what I've heard. In cryonics, a boy was once rescued who had
been underwater for 45 minutes, with heart stopped (and probably with
flat EEG). But he came to.
> I guess it's one of those either-you-get-it-or-don't kinds of things. Perhaps you
> might realize and appreciate the difference by focusing on the amount of benefit
> that each instance derives from existence of other instances. There's no doubt in
> my mind that this amount is always exactly zero.
Yeah, nearly zero to me. True, an instance of me does gain some satisfaction that
I am also getting benefit in other locations, but he also gains satisfaction from
knowing that some people in Istanbul are being nice to other people there.
> In other words, if I'm hungry, I
> will stay hungry regardless of how many other instances fill their stomachs with
> food. If I'm dead, I will stay dead regardless of how many other instances stay
Of course, naturally, you are using *your* definition of "I' and "me", just
as previously I was using mine.
> If an instance was alive and then its brain exploded, that instance cannot
> have any type of experience (cannot derive any benefit) because the "machinery"
> that made that experience possible is gone. Am I getting anywhere here, Lee?
Well, not so far with this last line of questioning. The only weakness in your
argument that I know of is addressed above, namely that processes starting
and stopping may not be so black and white as you think.
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