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identity transhumanism the self philosophy resurrection parfitt ettuinger frank j. tipler

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#1 Julia36

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Posted 17 August 2015 - 04:08 PM







There is no fixed identity for a self, or for ones defining another. This is self-evident because the cosmos is ever changing.
The master work on this is Robert Ettinger chapter 8 of the Prospect of Immortality. Although cast in the light of cryoncs, it demonstrates intense philosophyaround the question "What am I?"


Ethiopian philosophy has soared ahead of classical schools,
the best of those famous is Parfit's work,

- which only mentions StarTrek as an aside and ignores the Transhumanist writings which are dominating the world with their strong links to technology and science, because they makes testable predictions about the future especially in technology and are published online- often in forums - not as finished works but to figure things out by debate.




Transhumanism makes testable predictions about the future especially in technology, which is unusual in philosophy.
They aren't the first school to do this - Galileo, Newton and Einstein did, and all physics and maths is about testable predictions. But until now it didn't assume immortality of an undying, physical, changing body; the confounding of death by science as resurrection, and interactive periods of history hitherto confined to it's mother, science fiction. It is not so easy to dismiss prediction of coming identities and environments as science fiction - or for the born again atheist the ultimate scorn "Religion!". Religion is many things, and is nowhere comprehensively defined, but includes early attempts to explain the world, using sleight of hand sometimes to sooth suffering and cover voids in philosophy.
Extropian philosophy was not possible before the Industrial Revolutions geared up.

Frank J Tipler has answered the objection scientific resurrection (also predicted in Quantum Archaeology:

"but you wouldn't know which self to resurrect as many are possible?"

All will be raised- or created. Alternate yous. There may be no final Omega point where everything comes together as one superintelligence, but series of them stretching to infinity like life forming in country pools and a food chain ensuing.

The infinite comsos of M Theory accommodates accelerating infinite identity changes.
Man's identity is not fixed nor just evolving. It inter-reacts with a dynamic environment. the observer and the identified
have to construct approximations, whilst both of them are changing, so identity can only ever be general and never complete.
Uploading a self will happen if no catastrophe strikes. but this self will be prescribed by the environment is is now in., altering according to the laws and limits of its new environment and the degrees of freedom which is now possessed of.

Those degrees of freedom and environmental limits cannot be the same as the ones it left, logically.
Man's demonstrable push has been to to explore, map and predict his widest environment. Confinement would always carry the fear that the system could fail, because it is limited by the total environment which is bigger and dominant by the fundamental physics laws of the cosmos.
Arguments we live in a simulation (already) are untestable, and thus not scientific theories: reality in any case, if defined as the total number of axioms that can be stated about any thing, and verges on sophism.

To be rigorous is to look cruel.

There isn't another way, as one ruthlessly eliminates falsehoods and unprovables, without losing imagination.
Language is so weak it is astonishing it does so well, and tests have to come from technology ie what can be build and how have we altered the environment and ourselves?

Identity is not fixed, and is interdependent identity of whom for who & within what limits of examination?



Edited by the hanged man, 17 August 2015 - 04:33 PM.

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#2 seivtcho

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Posted 17 August 2015 - 05:16 PM

I started to like your posts. They make me think :)


According to me, the identity of the man is in his brain and in his DNA.

#3 Julia36

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Posted 17 August 2015 - 10:23 PM

 the identity of the man is in his brain and in his DNA.


Useful starting point: A man's identity is also interactive...since his DNA is niot fixed..it floats (Rose & Rose) and modified by the environment as mutation

eg a nuclear radiation woud do that fast, and if a man lost his legs he would not be the same man but would have the same DNA.


We also are leaning to modify ourselves eg by implantng chips and pioneering gene therapy which directly alters his DNA.


Imposed on his genome (DNA) is epi9gentic tags which repress or liberate the actions of DNA.


But because a man is built of moving things he is moving..a system of complex movemnts of  astonishing actrions.


the classic:



Ettinger'schapter 8 (above)

id imporftant for it pioneered a look at what a self is:


"Striding eagerly into the new world, (the revived) feels like a new man. Is he?

Who is this resuscitee? For that matter, who am I and who are you?

Although most resuscitees will not represent such extreme cases-we hope most of us will be frozen by non damaging methods-nevertheless we cannot sidestep the issue. We are now face to face with one of the principal unsolved problems of philosophy and/or biology, which now becomes one of prime importance in an exceedingly practical way, namely that concerning the nature of "self."

What characterizes an individual? What is the soul, or essence, or ego? This seemingly abstruse question will shortly be seen to have ramifications in almost every area of practical affairs; it will be the subject of countless newspaper editorials and Congressional investigations, and will reach the Supreme Court of the United States.

We can bring the problem into better focus by putting it in the form of two questions. First, how can we distinguish one man from another? Second, how can we distinguish life from death?

Later I shall offer some tentative partial answers. First we can illuminate the question, and perceive some of its difficulties and subtleties, by considering a series of experiments. Some of these experiments are imaginary, but perhaps not impossible in principle, while others have actually been performed.

Experiment 1. We allow a man to grow older

Legally, he retains his identity; and also subjectively, and also in the minds of his acquaintances (usually). Yet most of the material of his body is replaced and changed; his memories change, and some are lost; his outlook and personality change.



It is even possible that an old acquaintance, seeing him again after many years, might refuse to believe he is the same person. On first considering this experiment, we are apt to feel slightly disturbed, but to retain a vague conviction that "basically" the man is unchanged. We may feel that the physical and psychological continuity has some bearing on the question.

Experiment 2. We watch a sudden, drastic change in a man's personality and physique, brought about by physical damage, or disease, or emotional shock, or some combination of these. Such has often occurred.

Afterwards, there may be little resemblance to the previous man, mentally or physically. There may be "total" amnesia, although he may recover capability of speech.




Of course he retains, e.g., the same fingerprints, and the same genes. But it would be absurd to say the main part of a man is his skin; and identical twins have the same genes, yet are separate individuals.

Although the physical material of his body is the same stuff, he seems-and feels-like a different person. Now we are more seriously disturbed, because the main continuity is merely physical; there is a fairly sharp discontinuity in personality. One might say with some plausibility that a man was destroyed, and mother man was created, inheriting the tissues of his predecessor's body.

Experiment 3. We observe an extreme case of "split personality."

It is commonly believed that sometimes two (or even more) disparate personalities seem to occupy the same body, sometimes one exercising control and sometimes the other. Partly separate sets of memories may be involved. The two "persons" in the same body may dislike each other; they may be able to communicate



  only by writing notes when dominant, for the other to read when his turn comes.

We may be inclined to dismiss this phenomenon by talking about psychosis or pathology. This tendency is reinforced by the fact that apparently one of the personalities is usually eventually submerged, or the two are integrated, leaving us with the impression that "really" there was only one person all along. Nevertheless, the personalities may for a time seem completely distinct by behavioral tests, and subjectively the difference is obviously real. This may leave us with a disturbing impression that possibly the essence of individuality lies after all in the personality, in the pattern of the brain's activity, and in its memory.

Experiment 4. Applying biochemical or microsurgical techniques to a newly fertilized human ovum, we force it to divide and separate, thereby producing identical twins where the undisturbed cell would have developed as a single individual. (Similar experiments have been performed, with animals.)

An ordinary individual should probably be said to originate at the moment of conception. At any rate, there does not seem to be any other suitable time-certainly not the time of birth, because a Caesarean operation would have produced a living individual as well; and choice of any other stage of development of the foetus would be quite arbitrary.

Our brief, coarse, physical interference has resulted in two lives, two individuals, where before there was one. In a sense, we have created one life. Or perhaps we have destroyed one life, and created two, since neither individual is quite the same as the original one would have been.

Although it does not by any means constitute proof, the fact that a mere, crude, mechanical or chemical manipulation can "create a soul" suggests that such portentous terms as "soul"



and "individuality" may represent nothing more than clumsy attempts to abstract from, or even inject into, a system certain "qualities" which have only a limited relation to physical reality.

Experiment 5. By super-surgical techniques (which may not be far in the future) we lift the brains from the skulls of two men, and interchange them.

This experiment might seem trivial to some. Most of us, after thinking it over, will agree it is the brain which is important, and not the arms, nor the legs, nor even the face. If Joe puts on a mask resembling Jim, he is still Joe; and even if the "mask" is of living flesh and extends to the whole body, our conclusion will probably be the same. The assemblage of Joe's brain in Jim's body will probably be identified as Joe. But at least two factors make this experiment non-trivial.

First, if the experiment were actually performed and not merely discussed, the emotional impact on the parties concerned would be powerful. The wives would be severely shaken, as would the subjects. Furthermore, Joe-in-Jim's-body would rapidly change, since personality depends heavily on environment, and the body is an important part of the brain's environment. Also, we may be willing to admit that Joe's arms, legs, face, and intestines are not essential attributes of Joe-but what about his testicles? If Joe-in-Jim's-body lies with one of their wives, he can only beget Jim's child, since he is using Jim's gonads. The psychiatric and legal problems involved here are formidable indeed.

Some people might be tempted to give up on Joe and Jim altogether, and start afresh with Harry and Henry. In one sense, this is an impractical evasion, since the memories, family rights and property rights cannot be dismissed. From another view, it may be a sensible admission that characterization of an individual is to some extent arbitrary.



Coming technologies may enable exact copies of living bodies. After that they will configure exact copies of persons long dead.


Once again, the suggestion is that physical systems (i.e., real systems) must in the end be described by physical parameters (operationally) and that attempts to pin profound or abstract labels on them, or to categorize them in subjective terms, cannot be completely successful.

Experiment 6. By super-surgical techniques (not yet available) we divide a man s brain in two, separating the left and right halves, and transplant one half into another skull (whose owner has been evicted).

Similar, but less drastic, experiments have been performed. Working with split-brain monkeys, Dr. C. B. Trevarthen has reported that " . . . the surgically separated brain halves may learn side by side at the normal rate, as if they were quite independent." (121) This is most intriguing, even though the brains were not split all the way down to the brain stem, and even though monkeys are not men.

There is also other evidence in the literature which we can summarize, with certain simplifications and exaggerations, as follows. Either half of a brain can take over an individual's functions independently. Normally, one half dominates, and loss of the other half is not too serious. But even if the dominant half is removed, or killed, the other half will take over, learning the needed skills.

There is presently no conclusive evidence that so drastic an experiment as ours would necessarily succeed; but in principle, as far as I know, it might, and we are not at the moment concerned with technical difficulties.

If it did succeed, we would have created a new individual. If the left half was dominant, we might label the original individual Lr; the same skull containing the left half alone after surgery we might call L, and the right half alone, in a different skull after the operation, is R.



L thinks of himself as being the same as Lr. R may also think of himself as Lr, recuperated after a sickness, but to the outside world he may seem to he a new and different, although similar, person.

In any case, R is now an individual in his own right, and regards his life to be as precious as anyone else's. He will cling to life with the usual tenacity, and if he sees death approaching will probably not be consoled by the knowledge that L lives on.

Even more interesting is the attitude of L, the formerly dominant half, now alone in the skull. Suppose that, before the operation, we had told Lr that the dominant half of his brain was diseased, and would have to be removed, but that the other half would take over, albeit with some personality changes and possibly some loss of memory. He would be worried and disturbed, certainly-but he would probably not regard this as a death sentence. In other words, Lr would be consoled well enough by the assurance that R would live on. Yet after the splitting, and transplanting operation, L would regard his own destruction as death, and it would not satisfy him that R lived on, in another body.

This experiment seems to suggest again that, psychologically if not logically, the physical continuity is an important consideration.

Experiment 7. A man is resuscitated after a short period of clinical death, with some loss of memory and some change in personality.

This experiment has actually been performed many times. (97) Death was real by the usual clinical tests (no respiration, no heartbeat) but of course most of the cells remained alive, and most people would say that he had not "really" died, and that he was certainly the same person afterward. This experiment is important only as background for the following ones.



Experiment 8. A man dies, and lies unattended for a couple of days, passing through biological death and cellular death. But now a marvel occurs; a space ship arrives from a planet of the star Arcturus, carrying a super-surgeon of an elder race, who applies his arts and cures the man of death and decay, as well as his lesser ailments.

(It is not, of course, suggested that any such elder race exists; the experiment is purely hypothetical, but as far as we know today it is not impossible in principle.)

The implications are apt to shake us. If decay is to be regarded as just another disease, with a possibility of cure, then when may the body be considered truly dead? If "truly" dead be taken to mean "permanently" dead, then we may never know when we are in the presence of death, since the criterion is not what has already happened to the man, but what is going to hap pen to him in the (endless?) future.

Experiment 9. A man dies, and decays, and his components are scattered. But after a long time a super-being somehow collects his atoms and reassembles them, and the man is recreated.

Once more, the difficulty or even impossibility of the experiment is not important. We also disregard the question of the possibility of identifying individual elementary particles. Is it the "same" man, in spite of the sharp physical discontinuity in time? If memory, personality, and physical substance are all the same, perhaps most of us would think so, even though we are disturbed by the black gulf of death intervening. But if we so admit, we must open the door even wider.

Experiment 10. We repeat the previous experiment, but with a less faithful reproduction, involving perhaps only some of the original atoms and only a moderately good copy. Is it still the same man?



We are doing things once thought impossible- it has much further to go.



Again, perhaps, we wonder if there is really any such thing as an individual in any clear cut and fundamental sense.

Experiment 11. We repeat experiment 10, making a moderately good reconstruction of a man, but this time without trying to use salvaged material.

Now, according to the generally accepted interpretation of quantum theory, there is in principle as well as in practice no way to "tag" individual particles, e.g. the atoms or molecules of a man's brain; equivalent particles are completely indistinguishable, and in general it does not even make sense to ask whether the atoms of the reconstructed body are the "same" atoms that were in the original body. Those unfamiliar with the theory, who find this notion hard to stomach, may consult any of the standard texts.

If we accept this view, then a test of individuality becomes still more difficult, because the criteria of identity of material substance and continuity of material substance become difficult or impossible to apply.

Experiment 12. We discover how to grow or to construct functional replicas of the parts of the brain - possibly biological in nature, possibly mechanical, but at any rate distinguishable from natural units by special tests, although not distinguishable in function. The units might be cells, or they might be larger or smaller components. Now we operate on our subject from time to time, in each operation substituting some artificial brain parts for the natural ones. The subject notices no change in him - self, yet when the experiment is finally over, we have in effect a "robot"!

Does the "robot" have the same identity as the original man?

Experiment 13. We perform the same experiment as 12, but more quickly.



In a single, long operation, we keep replacing natural brain components with artificial ones (and the rest of the body likewise) until all the original bodily material is in the garbage disposal, and a "robot" lies on the operating table, an artificial man whose memories and personality closely duplicate those of the original.

Perhaps some would feel the "robot" was indeed the man, basing the identity in the continuity, on the fact that there was never a sharp dividing line in time where one could say man ended and robot began. Others, well steeped in democracy and willing to apply political principles to biology, might think the robot was not the man, and ceased to be the man when half the material was artificial.

The subject himself, before the operation, would probably regard it as a death sentence. And yet this seems odd, since there is so little real difference between experiments 13 and 12; 13 merely speeds things up. Perhaps sufficient persuasion could convince the subject that the operation did not represent death; he might even be made to prefer a single operation to the nuisance of a series of operations.

Experiment 14. We assume, as in the previous two experiments, that we can make synthetic body and brain components. We also assume that somehow we can make sufficiently accurate nondestructive analyses of individuals. We proceed to analyse a subject, and then build a replica or twin of him, complete with memories.

Does the identity of our subject now belong equally to the "robot" twin? It might seem absurd to say so, but compare the previous experiment. There is scarcely any difference, especially since in 13 the subject was under anaesthesia during the operation; 13 was virtually equivalent to destroying the subject, then



building a robot twin. The only real difference between 13 and 14 is that in 14 both the original and the duplicate survive.

Experiments 15, 16, and 17. We repeat experiments 12, 13, and 14 respectively, but instead of using artificial parts we use ordinary biological material, perhaps obtained by culturing the subject's own cells and conditioning the resultant units appropriately. Does this make any difference?

In logic, one would think perhaps not, but blood is thicker than water. Some people might make a different decision on 15 and 16 than on 12 and 13.

Experiment 18. We assume the truth of an assertion sometimes heard, viz., that in certain types of surgery a patient under certain types of anaesthesia suffers pain, although he does not awaken and afterwards does not remember the pain. The experiment consists in performing such an operation.

Most of us do not fear such operations, because we remember no pain in previous experiences, and because authoritative persons assure us we need not worry. Even a warning that the pain under anaesthesia is real is unlikely to disturb us much, if we are not of very nervous temperament. Still less do we fear ordinary deep anaesthesia, in which there seems to be no pain on any level, even though for the conscious mind this gulf is like that of death. Yet a child, or a person of morbid imagination, might be intensely frightened by these prospects.

Thus again we note a possible discrepancy between the logical and the psychological.

Experiment 19. A Moslem warrior is persuaded to give his life joyfully in a "holy war," convinced that the moment his throat is cut he will awaken in Paradise to be entertained by houris.



The synapse...the most complex machine known- and still a mystery.


An artificial synapse has been attempted in Germany 2012


We draw the obvious but useful conclusion that, from the



standpoint of present serenity, it is merely the prospect of immortality that is important.

Experiment 20. We pull out all the stops, and assume we can make a synthetic chemical electronic mechanical brain which can, among other things, duplicate all the functions of a particular human brain, and possesses the same personality and memory as the human brain. We also assume that there is complete but controlled interconnection between the human brain and the machine brain: that is, we can, at will, remove any segments or functions of the human brain from the joint circuit and replace them by machine components, or vice versa.

In a schematic sense, then, we envisage each of the two brains, the biological one and the mechanical one, as an electronic circuit spread out on a huge "bread board" with complete accessibility. From the two sets of components, by plugging in suitable leads, we can patch together a single functioning unit, the bypassed elements simply lying dormant.

To make the picture simpler and more dramatic, let us also assume the connections require only something like radio communication, and not a physically cumbersome coupling.

We might begin the experiment with the man fully conscious and independent, and the machine brain disconnected and fully dormant. But now we gradually begin disconnecting nerve cells or larger units in the man's brain, simultaneously switching in the corresponding units of the machine. The subject notices no change - yet when the process is completed, we "really" have a machine brain controlling a "zombie" human body!

The machine also has its own sensory organs and effectors. If we now cut off the man's sensory nerves and motor leads and simultaneously activate those of the machine, the first subjective change will occur, namely, an eerie transportation of the senses from one body to another, from the man's to the machine's.



This might be enjoyable: perhaps the machine's sense organs are more versatile than the man's, with vision in the infra-red and other improvements, and the common personality might feel wonderful and even prefer to "live" in the machine.

At this stage, remember, the man is entirely dormant, brain and body, and the outside observer may be inclined to think he is looking at an unconscious man and a conscious machine, the machine suffering from the curious delusion that it is a man controlling a machine.

Next, we reactivate the components of the man's brain, either gradually or suddenly, simultaneously cutting off those of the machine, but leaving the machine's sensors plugged in and the sensors of the human body disconnected. The subject notices no change, but we now have a human brain using mechanical senses, by remote control. (We disregard such details as the ability of the human optical centre to cope with infra-red vision, and the duplication of the new memories.)

Finally, we switch the human effectors and sensors back in, leaving the man once more in his natural state and the machine quiescent.

If we perform this sort of exchange many times, the subject may become accustomed to it, and may even prefer to "inhabit" the machine. He may even view with equanimity the prospect of remaining permanently "in" the machine and having his original body destroyed. This may not prove anything, but it suggests once more that individuality is an illusion.

Discussion and Conclusion. In discussing these hypothetical experiments we have touched on various possible criteria of individuality-identity of material substance, continuity of material substance, identity of personality and memory, continuity of personality and memory-and seen that none of these is



wholly satisfactory. At any rate, none of these, nor any combination, is both necessary and sufficient to prove identity.

One cannot absolutely rule out the possibility that we have missed the nub of the matter, which may lie in some so far intangible essence or soul. However, such a notion seems inconsistent with the ease with which man can instigate, modify, and perhaps actually create life, and with several of our experiments.

The simplest conclusion is that there is really no such thing as individuality in any profound sense. The difficulty arises from our efforts first to abstract generalities from the physical world, and then to regard the abstractions, rather than the world, as the basic reality. A rough analogy will help drive home the point:

The classification "man" is useful, but not sharply definable. Is a freak a man? Is an aborted foetus a man? Is a pre-Neanderthal or other "missing link" a man? Is a corpse a man if some of the cells are still alive? And so on. A label is handy, but objects may be tagged arbitrarily. In the physical world there is no definite collection of objects which can be called "men," but only shifting assemblages of atoms organized in various ways, some of which we may choose to lump together for convenience."


We need better understanding of how the brain works (as well as how DNA works")


state of the art: March 2015


Future Computing: Brain-Based Chips | Henry Markram




We cant do the detail- as Philosophers- but must have accuracy of superficial description that is logical, consistant, and not in conflict with known, testable facts.


And a method to find happioness, which is the first aim:)


Edited by the hanged man, 17 August 2015 - 11:08 PM.

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#4 seivtcho

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Posted 19 August 2015 - 08:10 AM

OK. DNA is not unchangable (not fixed as you wrote) - it changes due to numerous mutation factors,including radiation, even gene therapy, 

So is the brain - we may start implanting chips, the way the person thinks changes, etc.


Then what? We don't have an identity? :) lol. No. We have it. It simply changes. Thats all.


#5 Julia36

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Posted 19 August 2015 - 05:15 PM

OK. DNA is not unchangable (not fixed as you wrote) - it changes due to numerous mutation factors,including radiation, even gene therapy, 

So is the brain - we may start implanting chips, the way the person thinks changes, etc.


Then what? We don't have an identity? :) lol. No. We have it. It simply changes. Thats all.


On this we agree. Identity is ever-changing.


What the self is that has it is a wider issue.


Also identity is not just for the self, but for others to identify.


"That's the man who stole my wallet, officer"


The issue of dynamic (changing) things looks difficult, but as everything changes, we are certainly used to it.


eg "That tree out the window" 's identity is also a product of it's enviromnent.




so how do we say what the parametres of a thing are? I suspect we must go into a higher level, more general description of it.


As we have learning systems in the brain..parts of the brain must be changing rapidly as we think. And part of this change is forced by the enviroment eg in communcations





Generally speaking, language processing is a job for the brain's left hemisphere. That's true whether that language is spoken, written, or signed. But researchers reporting in the Cell Press journal Current Biology on August 17 have discovered an exception to this rule in a most remarkable form: whistled Turkish.

"We are unbelievably lucky that such a language indeed exists," says Onur Güntürkün of Ruhr-University Bochum in Germany. "It is a true experiment of nature."





Edited by the hanged man, 19 August 2015 - 05:33 PM.

#6 seivtcho

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Posted 19 August 2015 - 07:16 PM

Alright. So, now we know, that our identity is our changable brain and our changable DNA  :)   So, what is it "to exist forever"? What does this mean? Always to have your brain and always to have your DNA, that to change in some speciphic borders. This is a point for the stem cells development. 

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#7 Julia36

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Posted 20 August 2015 - 02:52 PM

Alright. So, now we know, that our identity is our changable brain and our changable DNA   :)   So, what is it "to exist forever"? What does this mean? Always to have your brain and always to have your DNA, that to change in some speciphic borders. This is a point for the stem cells development. 


Vast. Scifi is the training ground of futurism.



#8 Julia36

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Posted 14 September 2015 - 03:12 PM

Alright. So, now we know, that our identity is our changable brain and our changable DNA   :)   So, what is it "to exist forever"? What does this mean? Always to have your brain and always to have your DNA, that to change in some speciphic borders. This is a point for the stem cells development. 


Macro   general bid explanations.


meso m iddle explanations


micro small world.


Mankind starts with the macroworld..the sun the moon te wiond the earh the sea.


Then the meso world..his size cows, other men, tools,. cars


but we learn to go smaller and biggers as well

In 3D sizes.




Identity is not only dynamic, it is a continuance of memory whether those memories are self-reflective modeling or are automatic ie the body.


The main question ios what am I


and for that


what is a self.


One way of answering is via science. Deconstructing a self. physically.


Including moving parts and theor nature's eg their trajectories.


Any other way of defininga self isn't going to help you having a hospital operation for appendix.


Indeed some religions refuse medical operations for the reason you mentioned..it would change them.


True and now they are dead


R v Blau

R v Blaue - Wiki



for the moment.

#9 seivtcho

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Posted 14 September 2015 - 04:34 PM

so what we are suppose to do? How to preserve our identity?

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#10 Julia36

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Posted 14 September 2015 - 09:30 PM

Be happy.


no way yu ant be preserved. Information is incapaboe of destruction.


I looked @ your sites. It is not true you need a computer node for each atom of information.

Often people asseet that.

It's false.


We use symbols and have maths!!!!!


I congratulate you on your honest study. It is easy to be swamped by delusion.


I once had a young partner. One day I stood in front of the mirror and asked "What am I?


"You are very wonderful!" they said.


And I haven't needed the question of identity since.



#11 seivtcho

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Posted 15 September 2015 - 04:00 PM

So, in order to preserve what we are, we simply have to be happy :) 


That would be wonderful, if I believed, that this type of resurrections are not copy making. 

#12 Julia36

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Posted 15 September 2015 - 04:54 PM

Are you saying you dont copy, and despite your body making copies, you dont want medcine to make copies ?


Or if they do it;s not you?


This could erasily ber a question opf ego

#13 seivtcho

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Posted 15 September 2015 - 05:13 PM

There is a way to preserve what you are, in the absolute manner, without any possible copies made inside your body, and to stay absolutely unchanged, and it is the cryonics. You have to freeze yourself. But ... well... they you die. And there is no guarantee, that you will be thawed back some day. 

#14 Julia36

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Posted 15 September 2015 - 09:14 PM

The issue of identity


A set of atoms in a special pattern.


Each moment fo time, your identity changes.


Do you agree with this?

#15 seivtcho

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 05:10 AM

Yes I agree :) The idea, that out identity is a huge set of atoms in a special pattern is acceptable. And yes, from that point of view our identity changes inevitably in the life. Unfortunately being alive per se means, that your identity changes - cells constantly metabolize molecules and replace structures. Each day skin cells peel off and are being replaced with another skin cells, the hair and the nails grow. 

But these is a more important question - what is it to be alive, and what is it to keep being alive. This is more important than the absolute identity. 

#16 Julia36

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 04:15 PM




"The simplest explanation that fits all the facts must be the one you accept"



William of Ockham



The equals sign or equality sign (=) is a mathematical symbol used to indicate equality. It was invented in 1557 by Robert Recorde. In an equation, the equals sign is placed between two expressions that have the same value wiki



The principle of interchangability is a subset of the prionciple of equality or using an agency eg money or function, to attiubute the same value.


I found this very hard at Oxford where I was already an atomicist.. ie each event is unique. But it is an advance.






Edited by the hanged man, 16 September 2015 - 04:51 PM.

#17 Julia36

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Posted 16 September 2015 - 04:40 PM

Yes I agree :) The idea, that out identity is a huge set of atoms in a special pattern is acceptable. And yes, from that point of view our identity changes inevitably in the life. Unfortunately being alive per se means, that your identity changes - cells constantly metabolize molecules and replace structures. Each day skin cells peel off and are being replaced with another skin cells, the hair and the nails grow. 

But these is a more important question - what is it to be alive, and what is it to keep being alive. This is more important than the absolute identity. 





Sorry I have caried your questions as a reponse to your previous posting to the Determinism v Quantum Theory  thread.


A central issue shoud emerge of safety (in idenity) for survivakl. And how morality is an aspect of mutual saftey.


Being alive has a specific definition in biology.


Characteristics of living things



Listed here are the six rules used by scientists:
  • Living things are made of cells.
  • Living things obtain and use energy.
  • Living things grow and develop.
  • Living things reproduce.
  • Living things respond to their environment.
  • Living things adapt to their environment.



I doubt you mean that though.


There are profound quesations ahead of us as we become immortal and our people recursive..ie were the past and present  inter-react. see page 74 of stopgam's thread




THis looks a bit sci-fi but must happen and the big question must be how we surf the hard-take off into Superintelligence, and what identity we can have in it.


In this semnse you are correct to iomply that iodentity is changing and also that it may change at speeds at least as fast as digital changes eg computer calcuolations allow.


we dont most things that can be known, not even as a species., and learning has partly defined us eg by our ability to change much of what we scan and scale in dynamic  knowlege increases,  (thought and learning)

but also bodiloy healing and modification which is just at the start of what we guess is posssible.


If hard take off ---> then even identity becomes unporedictable.


If slow Intelligence Amplification---> then prediction is to the event horizon and much easier.


But we agree that identity is not fixed, and a new concept..terologians used 'soul' as that which doe not alter nd then added..except by moral actions, then also added


and the soul's aim is to meet Giod


presumably drafted by someone watching moths at night trying to get to the flame.


Analogies arethe ;last rsort opf logician.


We must proceed like tapping spiders, proposition by proposition, each tested, each irreututable.


And also with the 'self'



We have 7 years boefre a hard take off makes our philosophy carvings in snow.

Technology looks liike it may be a findamental cosmic force being born, as a universe is born in the cosmos, and our flleeting identity gave us integrity to bring it to being, until like Pinocio, it achives its own exstance.


Our duty as philosophers is to point out possible paths for Man, weight them, test them for constencies,

and achieve happiness by friendship with wisdom. But it is still wise to cooperate, and perfect exoistence may be automatic co-operation in a game theory - as blind untilitarian reacfion? So the circle completes.





#18 Clifford Greenblatt

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Posted 03 October 2015 - 11:23 PM

This topic is very similar to the "What Constitutes 'me'" thread started back in 25 August 2002. In a materialist or physicalist worldview, there could be no fixed identity. A person's identity would change as physical/psychological changes continually take place in the person's biological system. The idea of a soul is a property of conscious experience that is unique to each person and is independent of the physical/psychological characteristics of the person's biological system.

#19 seivtcho

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Posted 04 October 2015 - 06:33 AM

The biological view is a nice start point


So, to be alive is:


- to be made of cells.

- to obtain and use energy.

- to grow and develop.

- to reproduce.

- to respond to the environment.

- to adapt to the environment.


Alright. The facts of obtaining and using energy, and the fact of growing and developing include changes in the cells. So, the absolute identity as you view it, can't be preserved. When a new cell appears, you are not the same anymore :) The same with developing. When you were a child you were not absolutely the same as you are now. So, your child eidentity is lost entirely. When even a skin cell pills off, while the wind is blowing, you are not absolutely the same either. So, the two questions are excluding each-other -> being alive and being absolutely you. The fact of being alive is you to loose and gain parts of your absolute identity. So, if you want to be immortal - lets name it to keep existing as alive, you have to swallow the fact, that you will keep changing. The absolute identity today (2015) can be preserved only if your body is being taken in the absolute zero temperature, and absolutely no change is being made in your entire body, and you to stay like that, like stone. But ...this is not a life. You are virtually death while frozen to the absolute zero.


If you ask me, we are a single large changing mass of cells, with the same DNA, which are:


- made of cells. :)

- obtain and use energy.

- cappable to grow and develop.

- cappable of reproduction.

- responding to the environment.

- adapting to the environment.


Existing forever, means maintaining this large mass of DNA equal cells and its properties forever.


This is why I focused myself on the stem cells recently.


It is nice, that we are having such a conversations, in order for me to purify my thoughts.

#20 Multivitz

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Posted 19 December 2015 - 01:21 AM

Everyone is curious towards a mirror, if theres no smell focusing skills working in the animal then it has to varifie its image from the eyes another way. The self has an image idea in mind it manifests. Photonic balance helps a being realise the self more accurately.
Monkey see, Monkey do. A sentient being reflects for reason. Part of the self as some know it?
When a critical mass gets reached and maintained through balance, the experience of life matures things to. The respect of Freedom shapes beliefs, daulality becomes inadequate as a system to view ideas. It can be hard to share views of different vibration, explanations get lost in context between animals. A type of analogy would be 'put yourself in thier shoes'!

Edited by Multivitz, 19 December 2015 - 01:39 AM.

#21 Multivitz

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Posted 19 December 2015 - 02:04 AM

Create thier environment. Create..... you catch my drift? It can be swaped with Manifest.

As you can see from the info in the link the context is left to the reciver to feel/understand with language, without the heart infomation communication is incomplete on occasions.

#22 Multivitz

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Posted 19 December 2015 - 02:18 AM


Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: identity, transhumanism, the self, philosophy, resurrection, parfitt, ettuinger, frank j. tipler

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