X-Message-Number: 25336
Date: Wed, 15 Dec 2004 16:43:14 -0800
Subject: My Views, to Francois
From: <>

Dear Francois:

You wrote:

"Wow, this is really fascinating stuff. You gave a number of good 
counter arguments to my own. However, I suppose you will not be 
surprised when I tell you that my opinion has not been changed. I 
am still completely satisfied that a good enough duplication or 
uploading procedure will result in personal survival."

Then why not duplicate yourself while you are awake? Then you can 
clearly see, your subjective inner life does not transfer to the 

I would advise you to look at my more sophisticated argument to 
Thomas, the one which postulates you are duplicated when frozen, 
and then you and your duplicate are separated by vast distances. 
Clearly, in both our views, if you do not kill yourself, you live 
on in the original, but according to the patternist, if you kill 
yourself, your subjective inner life continues in the duplicate. 
Since subjectivity is localized (if you smash your brain you do not 
experience, which implies subjectivity is localized to your brain), 
you can see this implies instantaneous transfer of some 
metaphysical 'stuff' from one brain to the other, across millions 
of light years. This seems to be fantastical (and I mean this in a 
bad way).

You wrote:

"I think the key divergence between our conclusions comes from how 
understand the subjective perception of our sense of self. 
Subjectively, we generally perceive ourselves as being situated 
inside our skulls, about midway between our temples, with some 
variations from individual to individual. Our 'persons' and sense 
of identity seem to reside there. We can call this the center of 
awareness and the qualia experiencer would responsible for it's 
existence. It is obvious to me that you consider this subjective 
perception to be the very core of our sense of self. Everything we 
perceive is being referenced to that center, and no other. 
Everything others perceive is being referenced to their own 
centers. Since what a duplicate of you would perceive could never 
be referenced to your center of awareness, but would instead always 
be referenced to its own center of awareness, it follows that a 
duplicate, however perfect, can never be you."

This is a fair summary of my views (though you may not understand 
me exactly, but we shall see). A few other notes that may aid your 

1. Subjectivity is localized to somewhere within the boundaries 
your skull (e.g. when you smash your brain, you no longer 

2. Experience is something that happens to a brain. In particular, 
your experience is something that happens to *your* brain. 
Therefore, if *your* brain is destroyed, your experience can no 
longer happen. 

3. A radioactive isotope can no longer decay when it is destroyed, 
by virtue of the fact that it no longer exists! Similarly, your 
brain can no longer experience when it is destroyed, because it 
doesn't exist.

4. Your inner life is merely the experience of your brain. 
Therefore, when that brain is destroyed, your inner life can happen 
no more.

5. A physical system can't change (i.e. experience, in the case of 
systems so capable) if it doesn't exist. Therefore, your brain 
can't experience unless it exists. Unless you think you are more 
than your brain, this implies you can't experience unless your 
brain exists.


Best Regards,

Richard B. R.

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