X-Message-Number: 14590
Date: Sat, 30 Sep 2000 12:00:12 EDT
Subject: sentience in other media

Henri Kluytmans writes:

>According to physics there are no special qualities to organic matter that 
should >make it the only possible substrate for sentience.

It would have been more accurate to write, 

"There does not seem to be any physical reason to believe that only organic 
matter can serve as the substrate for sentience."

But even that would be misleading, I think. How can one reasonably make such 
a statement, in the absence of an understanding of sentience?

The chief basis of sentience is FEELING or qualia, anatomy/physiology not yet 

Some types of activity are limited to a subset of the possible types of 
physical systems. (Electrical conductivity can exist in hot 
hydrogen--plasma--but not in cold hydrogen. Etc.Etc.Etc.) 

Qualia my depend e.g. on standing waves in the brain, of a type not possible 
in other media. We just don't know yet. Don't let your xenophilia distort 
your objectivity. 

Robert Ettinger
Cryonics Institute
Immortalist Society

Rate This Message: http://www.cryonet.org/cgi-bin/rate.cgi?msg=14590