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Brains and persons (was Re: Forget and change the past)

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  • Daniel
    ... Actually it already happens via something called eating. 8-) Over a 7 year period a large portion of our substance is replaced. ... Good point. I think the
    Message 1 of 32 , May 2, 2009
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      > I think it will prove misconceived to believe we as individuals would
      > survive even perfect and gradual replacement of our brains with an
      > artificial structure - unless the structure itself is in fact a
      > biological brain.
      >

      Actually it already happens via something called eating. 8-) Over a 7 year period a large portion of our substance is replaced.

      > I suspect the reason the 'piece at a time' argument seems so hard to
      > answer is because in our definitions we have not yet captured what it is
      > that determines how similar two arbitrary things actually are. Even
      > structurally and dynamically identical things have different histories,
      > and to that extent they are different.
      >
      > Our consciousness is probably inextricably wrapped up in the physical
      > structures of our brain, and also the internal chemical dynamics, which
      > in turn rely on structures at lower scales..all the way to atoms. The
      > structure of DNA in great part defines what it is in terms of its
      > relationship to life. Could an artificial DNA with completely flat shape
      > replace real DNA? Would we even consider it a sensible avenue to go
      > down?

      Good point. I think the way to cut into the problem is to divorse substance and structure. I believe if you use the relativity concept of a world line you can create a entity with consistent structure but not consistent substance that is endowed with its own world line (i.e. timeline.) In this way the whole substance argument become moot. 8-)
    • urmenonhigh
      ... I understand your suggestion that each subjective moment is independent or at least not connected to the previous or following experiential episode in
      Message 32 of 32 , May 17, 2009
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        --- In Fabric-of-Reality@yahoogroups.com, "Daniel" <dneedles@...> wrote:
        >
        > I agree with the paraphrase, but appear to be interpreting the words differently from you.
        >
        > My interpretation is that subjectively one moment to the next is not connected. Objectively they are in that the continum of space time is continous without sudden jumps in the macro world. So it appears we have a connected history. However, we are issolated in experience.
        >
        > It appears from the paraphrase you get "all our experiences--past, present, or futures are present moments in the subjective stream of consciousness"
        >
        > So are you saying we subjectively experience from more than one place in time? Or are all places in space and time the same? I am not quite following how to ground what you are saying to my experience of reality. Can you give an example so I can follow your idea?
        >
        > Thanks!
        > Daniel
        >
        >
        I understand your suggestion that each subjective moment is independent or at least not connected to the previous or following experiential episode in space-time. This interpretation seems to imply or presuppose a flow of discrete subjective consciousness relative to time.

        In his book David Deutsch further explains that we do not experience time flowing, or passing. Instead, what we experience are differences between our present perceptions and our present memories of past perceptions. He states that we interpret those differences, correctly, as evidence that the universe changes with time, but that we also interpret them incorrectly as evidence that our consciousness or the present or something else moves through time.

        I hope this helps.
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