[extropy-chat] Meta re recurring threads was Personal Identity Bis

Jef Allbright jef at jefallbright.net
Sun Apr 15 19:15:58 UTC 2007

On 4/13/07, Keith Henson <hkhenson at rogers.com> wrote:

> At 06:52 PM 4/13/2007 +0200, Eugen wrote:
> snip
> >I wonder why I keep posting that example, with literature,
> >but nobody seems to actually care to read it. It's been more
> >than a decade that we keep having these threads, and they
> >always go through the same motions. I'm getting tired of this.
> >I think I'm going to ban these for good.
> I wondered why these identity threads seemed so old to me.  Various moves
> and escapes have winnowed my SF collection to a remnant, but I kept several
> by A.E. Van Vogt including _The World of Null A_.  I don't know how many
> here have read it, but the copyright is 1945.  That *62* years ago.
> I just reread it.
> None of the identity arguments on this or any other forum I have seen has
> added a new idea to those expressed in that story written in 1945.

I read the story this weekend.  What a quaintly futuristic read!

While I found clear statements of Slawomir's position that it's
logically impossible that two physical objects be identical, and
examples of the common idea that personal identity is defined
essentially by personal memory and functional similarity, I saw
nothing even hinting at personal identity consisting in the extent to
which an agent is seen to represent a given abstract entity.

- Jef

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