X-Message-Number: 25596
Date: Thu, 20 Jan 2005 19:43:29 -0800
Subject: Potential Existence
From: <>

Dear Robert,

I had written a length response but it got lost before I could 
finish it. Therefore, I will be brief.

The problem of potential existence is one I have given much thought 
to. My answer is that at this point in time, we don't know enough 
to say definitively where the line is between survival and 
destruction. However, I would say there *is* a line, and I can 
imagine some answers.

If experience is an eletrical phenomenon, then surely, it must be 
tied to the wiring of the circuits in question. In other words, we 
would expect that electrical activity only in certain kinds of 
circuits is experience. In this case, survival would require the 
continued existence of such circuits, which would require the 
continued existence of their constituent axons, dendrites, and 

However, I would note that the brain is multiply redundant, and 
would generally agree with your 'survival in part', if you mean 
this in the same sense that 'part' of me survives even if I lose my 
hearing or sight---though I have lost experience in both cases.

I have more thoughts on this issue I may write later.

Best Regards,

Richard B. R.

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