[extropy-chat] Fwd: Robert Anton Wilson 1932 - 2007 (2)
jay.dugger at gmail.com
Fri Jan 12 22:46:51 UTC 2007
Friday, 12 January 2007
You could add Stanislaw Lem, de Camp, and many others to the list. The
list expands to a limit of everyone who died after 12 January 1967.
The list made an interesting seed for this thread, but it's a little
long for my Inbox.
> So here is a question, how many cryonics suspendees would choose to be
> brought back into reality with a lion about to rip out their throat? How do
> you guarantee that that is a low probability reanimation reality?
One can't guarantee anything past the cryonic preservation. You quite
literally pay your money and take your chances at (a) resurrection and
(b) the post-resurrection state of affairs. (See Larry Niven's "A
World Out Of Time" for fiction exploring this theme.)
I haven't yet signed up for cryonic preservation. In the case you
give, knowing I'd face a lion at my throat on resurrection, I'll
certainly do it. After all, I then know I return to life. Cryonics
strikes me as a very poor bet, one I can only entertain it because
offers the best odds of enjoying extreme longevity.
As for picking reanimation settings, I don't see how one could work
for that before suspension or during. Afterwards, a union of the
reanimated might help with returning to life. Who knows what form that
You could have a case where compound interest makes the preserved
ridiculously wealthy, and the reanimated form a new royalty. Call this
"Buying Time," after Haldemann's novel.
You could have a case where society has changed too much, and the
reanimated enter a preserve or a retreat. Call that "Frozen Society of
Perhaps the preserved get treated as an exploitable resource (Niven,
again) or the reanimated as a persecuted minority. Call those "Yummy
Corpsicles" and "The Frozen Letter".
Combining the first two might offer the best chance of a future
outcome where resuscitation can happen and where the preserved would
like to arrive. Sign up with a provider, join the FSoF, and do your
best while alive to shape such a future. Pretty vague recommendations,
I admit. You already do your best every day to make a better future,
Aside, I've lost friendships with people who refused to witness my
cyronics sign-up. They thought I'd lost my mind, or fell victim to a
swindle, or worst--reminded me I had immortality if only I'd except
Christ into my life. Not once did they ask whether I thought it would
work! They just assumed I'd some simplistic faith in a technological
rapture, as if I'd mistaken Halperin's "The First Immortal" for
scripture instead of entertainment. Documents describing the preserved
as "patients" and the process as "suspension" aggravated the problem.
Again, semantics matter.
I ultimately decided I had no need for short-sighted hypocrites among
my friends. A painful decision indeed, but one worth making.
Sometimes the delete key serves best.
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