[extropy-chat] Probability of identity - solution?

John K Clark jonkc at att.net
Tue Oct 17 05:33:48 UTC 2006

Heartland, High Priest of the Unique Atom and Sacred Original Cult Wrote:

> if I brainwashed him [me] into believing he was an ant, that belief and
> nothing else determines the truth value of the statement, "John Clark is a
> ant."

That is true, but of course you'd have to be very good at brainwashing. If I
felt and though like an ant and had an ant's memories and you erased all my
memories of being a human being then there would be one more ant in the
world and John Clark would be dead. Objectively that particular ant would
look somewhat different from most other ants, but that is a trivial point
because it would be other people's problem not the ant's. Subjectively he
would see himself as a very handsome ant and a credit to his species.

> I only care about the process that wrote this sentence

That is an entirely reasonable sentiment, but to a process one atom of
hydrogen is as good as another atom of hydrogen, a process can be

> At the end of the day you have to ask yourself 2 questions: "What does it
> really mean to survive?"

To you survival means having the same atoms and some pompous-speak bafflegab
about space time coordinates. To me survival means that the difference
between yesterday and today and between today and tomorrow to be roughly the
same. If I feel that way tomorrow then I've lived another day.

The crazy thing is you claim it is possible to be dead and not know you are
dead, in fact according to you it is very easy to end up in that unfortunate
state if you have not carefully performed the proper rituals concerning the
High Holy Original atoms. And that my friend is beyond idiotic.

> Why does survival matter?

That is strictly a matter of personal preference and there is no point
disputing matters of taste.

> there's absolutely no point in continuing this
> discussion.

So you've said many times, so why do you keep continuing it?

  John K Clark

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