[extropy-chat] How to be copied into the future?

Stathis Papaioannou stathisp at gmail.com
Sun Apr 29 11:51:15 UTC 2007

On 4/28/07, Heartland <velvethum at hotmail.com> wrote:

If you had a perfect twin right now, would it be OK if you killed him too? I
> imagine you would still argue with the guards, while being dragged to your
> cell or
> even a death chamber, that you should go free since the victim's death was
> not a
> big deal because the type of your twin's brain structure still remains or
> because
> flat EEGs are poor indicators of death so, according to your definition of
> death,
> you didn't kill
> anyone.

In reality, you couldn't have a "perfect" twin for more than a moment,
because as soon as the twin came into existence he would start to have his
own thoughts, different from your thoughts, and would anticipate that if you
killed him he would never have any more thoughts again; that is, there would
never be any more copies or twins or people or spirits or whatever that
identify as being him and continue his thoughts. The twin would not have the
illusion of continuity (if you wish to call it an illusion, that's fine with
me), which is what I worry about when I worry about death.

As for Lee's criticisms of my criticisms of your position, I do understand
that you don't think it will really be you if you are copied or resuscitated
after flatlining, but pronoun use gets very cumbersome in these discussions.
Suppose I propose that you die as a result of a good night's sleep,
according to my definition of "death". How would you criticise that
definition if you didn't agree with it? You might point out that people go
to sleep all the time and still wake up OK, but of course I would say that
they are not the same people. You would deny that death has occurred due to
such and such a criterion, but I might be able to show you new medical
criteria that show death *has* occurred, in fact has always occurred
whenever anyone falls asleep. What evidence would you use to support a claim
that the new medical criteria are wrong?

Stathis Papaioannou
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