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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Thu Mar 31, 2011 11:48 pm 
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Tony Fisher wrote:
For several billion years I was essentially dead (I assume) but now I am alive. Out of nothingness I suddenly came to exist. (I am talking about me as in my conscious mind). This kind of throws the whole 'once your dead your dead' argument out of the window. If it happened once why shouldn't it happen again?

I haven't read all of this thread yet so if some of this has been mentioned already I'm sorry.

To me death is the end of some living things existance. You had never existed prior to those billions of years so I wouldn't say you were dead then. It would be like calling your half sister Annie dead now. I assume Tony doesn't have a half sister Annie. If you do my apologies again.

But lets assume YOU do come to life again. How do you know its you? Before you can even answer some of these questions you have to be able to define YOU. I'm a physist and I'll leave my religious beliefs out of this as I go back and forth on that topic myself. The physics stuff is much easier. So let's conduct a few thought experiments.

Let's assume you can be scanned at the subatomic level and that info beamed to a distance planet where that info was used to recreate a copy of you down to the quatum state of each subatomic particle. If this process takes seconds and the body that walks into the scanner is distroyed in the scanning process... Do you think you could walk into this scanner and then open your eyes on a distant planet? I believe the answer is no. I think you are dead and that you were killed in the scanning process. There is however a new person on the distant planet that does think he just walked into a scanner and then opened his eyes on a distant planet. He has your memories, your feelings, just about everything that made you... YOU. But is he?

Let's remove some variables from this thought experiment. The scanner and the place where the copy appears are now in the same room. Let's also assume the scanning process is non-destructive. One person, you, walks into the room and is blindfolded. You're copied... blindfold and all. And two people walk out. Which one is you? Can you... or anyone even tell? You both have the same memories... you would both remember walking into the room. But both are now seperate. The brain in one can't see through the eyes of the other for example... there in no optic nerve there to carry the single. I'd argue that there is one real you and the other is a copy. If someone watched the copying process they would know which was which. The brain that walked into the room is still connected to the same pair of eyes after the process so that IS YOU. The other person is a copy and is very much akin to a twin brother. Remember two twins are infact one living organism at one point that seperated into two. Just at a very very early stage in the development of YOU. The copy is NOT you even though he thinks he is and if no one watched the process YOU could potentially even end up thinking YOU are the copy.

So if we stop here we could say there is always a unique YOU. But let's again carry this thought experiment one step further. Now the scanner scans you, makes a copy, AND cuts you perfectly in half and joins your left half with the right half of the copy and vice versa. Remember the copy is perfect and again two intact bodys walk out of the room. Does your right eye know its on one body while your left eye knows its on the other? No... your right eye has no way to know the left eye it is paired up with is a copy. So in this case, to you... and anyone outside the room its no different than the case where you aren't cut in half in the process. Which one IS you? And which one is the twin that thinks he's you? Are you dead and these are two new people both with your memories? Or is it valid to think of these as two seperate YOUs existing at the same time. Let's use the term soul as I'm not sure what else to call it here. If these two people have the same soul then do twins too? Depending on your beliefs and how you answer these question you could take this line of thought in many directions. For example... if you think the real you is dead and these are two new people that think they are you then let's look at the person that had a stroke and was effectivly dead for a period of time but was revived. Could it be that a soul left the body there and a new one pulled in that now has access to the memories in the body so it now thinks its the same person? If you think twins could have the same sole and you believe in an afterlife will their just be one of them there? etc...

Let's back up... is it really necessary to cut you in half to have these questions? In the case where you aren't cut in half it appears clear that you walk in and are passively scanned and walk out... that MUST be you and the other must be the copy. Right? I'm honesly not sure as without any knowledge of what happened in the room which you wouldn't have being blindfolded that this case is any different then the case where you are cut in half. Two people walk out both of which think they are YOU. One still can't see through the eyes of the other.

So going back to Tony's example... let's say you are brought back into existance again. Even if you have the same DNA and memories is it really you... or a copy of you? Is there any way to tell? If not... how do you define you?

I've thought along this line before and one theory that popped into my head is this.... Remember the apple passing though flat land? It could appear in several places at once? What if there is no YOU... only US. Could we all belong to a single soul/being/something that exists in a higher dimension and this coping process simply allows for us to bring another part of this "life" into our dimension? I'm not saying I believe that. I can't prove or disprove it but its something to think about. If true then death would simply be that part of "life" passing out of our dimension again.

Not sure this helps but its the stuff I think about when I think along these lines.

Carl

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 12:39 am 
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wwwmwww wrote:
Let's assume you can be scanned at the subatomic level and that info beamed to a distance planet where that info was used to recreate a copy of you down to the quatum state of each subatomic particle. If this process takes seconds and the body that walks into the scanner is distroyed in the scanning process... Do you think you could walk into this scanner and then open your eyes on a distant planet? I believe the answer is no. I think you are dead and that you were killed in the scanning process. There is however a new person on the distant planet that does think he just walked into a scanner and then opened his eyes on a distant planet. He has your memories, your feelings, just about everything that made you... YOU. But is he?
...

:shock:
Carl, I swear you think EXACTLY the same way I do.....

That's all

Peace,
Matt Galla


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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 1:32 am 
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The only practical way to duplicate a living human is to extract the DNA from a culture or skin cells, use it to create and embryo, and then implant it in a surrogate mother's uterus. It's been done already with sheep, albeit with lackluster results. The clone will likely have a new soul, but it's magical beginnings will start somewhere between the test tube and it's live birth. When exactly this occurs is a matter of great religious, moral, and ethical debate which I will not get into here. But the clone has to be born first just like any other human in this world. It won't just "walk" out of a machine with all the intact memories as it's doner. But the day when humans start to "create human life" in a laboratory rather than allowing it to occur through natural means, I believe that humanity has grossly exceeded it's own authority to rule the earth.

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 10:24 am 
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stardust4ever wrote:
The only practical way to duplicate a living human is.... It won't just "walk" out of a machine with all the intact memories as it's doner.
I wasn't trying to imply that my thought experiment was practical. Just as a physist, I'm not aware of any reason to believe its impossible. Its not doable with current technology but down the road... who knows. Look at the length of time we walked on this planet before we could fly? Then once we could fly... how long was it before we were walking on the moon? In truth I think the task of copying the quatum state of each subatomic particle in your body is way over kill if one actually wanted to acomplish this task. Are you still you if you cut your hand off? I believe you are. Is every sub atomic particle in your body in the same state after 3 second? No, but you are still you after 3 seconds correct. And radiation and other things kill individual cells in our body all the time yet we are still us. So how exact does the copy need to be to be human? I argued down to the subatomic level to be on the safe side but would the atomic or celular level work? I think they would. I actually think most of what we perceive as US is contained within the neural network within the brain. If that network and the way it funtioned could be copied say in lines of computer code what would you have? Could you have a computer that when turned on remembered being a human? Would it have a soul?

I don't have the answers but if we, humans, remain around long enough I suspect its just a mater or time before we find ourselves having to have answers to some of these questions. Long before we are building time machines or flying through black holes these types of experiments will become possible.

Carl

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 1:23 pm 
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wwwmwww wrote:
Tony Fisher wrote:
For several billion years I was essentially dead (I assume) but now I am alive. Out of nothingness I suddenly came to exist. (I am talking about me as in my conscious mind). This kind of throws the whole 'once your dead your dead' argument out of the window. If it happened once why shouldn't it happen again?

I haven't read all of this thread yet so if some of this has been mentioned already I'm sorry.

To me death is the end of some living things existance. You had never existed prior to those billions of years so I wouldn't say you were dead then.


Please remember I said "essentially dead". I am sure that my awareness of 1000 years ago was identical to my awareness of 1000 years in the future. ie not conscious, in no way alive. Not exactly dead but essentially dead.

wwwmwww wrote:
So going back to Tony's example... let's say you are brought back into existance again. Even if you have the same DNA and memories is it really you... or a copy of you? Is there any way to tell? If not... how do you define you?
l



WARNING: The next paragraph insults everyone in the world!
I (me) am the only person in the world that can say "I am me" and be telling the truth. If anyone else says it they are clearly lying since you are you, they are they etc.
Having established that, I agree with what you say about copies not knowing who they are and a future me having no memories of the past. However which ever situation you refer to the person defined above as "me" continues to be me even if I don't know it.
Now, if I was to be copied, cut down the middle and spliced onto my other copied half (I never thought I'd ever write that) then of course things become a little confusing. Eyes, limbs etc aren't really relevant since people have transplants and I assume do not suddenly become 2% donor. If the brain was dissected exactly through the middle of the bit that deals with consciousness then I believe I would suddenly have double vision and feel very confused. I believe I would indeed experience sensation from both bodies but perhaps in a fuzzy kind of drunk way. My copy would also be feeling the same and I suspect the two bodies would suffer severe mental problems.

You mentioned the flat land example well here's another 'out there' idea I had.
Once again I need to do this from my point of view. Imagine if every person who has ever existed is me. When I die I then live the life of another person and so on, living every life. Who is to say that if I was born with Adolf Hitler's DNA and upbringing I wouldn't have done the same things? That would mean that everyone reading this is in fact the same person but existing in different lives. You are all me and I am all of you.
I don't actually believe this BTW.

As for souls, I don't believe in them.

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 1:51 pm 
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Tony Fisher wrote:
As for souls, I don't believe in them.


Not even for Gingers? :P

Until proven, I have also thought about the fact that the world revolves around me. There is zero evidence (from my perspective) that any of you exist.

A nice idea that I would like to happen when I die is that my whole life turned out to be a dream, and I was a one day old baby with one hundred years (hopefully! :D) of knowledge. The downside is is that I couldn't stop any major events, such as 9/11, because it would completely alter the world I was raised in, and more disasterous things may happen due to that change. Also, I would know so much that pretty much every evil person in the world would want to kidnap me (and kill me, to stop me spreading information). Food for thought.

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 2:32 pm 
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Wwwmwww AKA Carl, have you by any chance read "the pig who wanted to be eaten"? because I remember one thought experiment in that which seemed identical you your "replicator" scenario. (By the way, I am not accusing you of plagiarism or anything like that :lol:) Also, have you seen this video on multidimensions? http://www.break.com/index/how-to-imagi ... nsion.html

Tony, I honestly thought I was the only one who had thought of that "possibility", of the "soul" being timeless, and we are all the same "being". weird thought huh?

Lastly, has anyone read the northern lights series? Because !!!SPOILER!!! perhaps when we die, our "soul" seperates from our body, and becomes one with the universe. Maybe there is some peculiar particle that science cannot explain or has not discovered yet AKA "Dust", that is what the soul is made up of, and then that soul can flow into other beings.

Sorry for going onto religion, but seriously. Why has the F.S.M. not come up yet? I am sure His Noodly Appendages could have had something to do with creation? :D

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 5:59 pm 
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DudeHuLubeDaRubeCube wrote:
Sorry for going onto religion, but seriously. Why has the F.S.M. not come up yet? I am sure His Noodly Appendages could have had something to do with creation? :D
Because the topic is life and death, not religion, creation nor noodles :)

The topic has gravitated towards consciousness, but it doesn't hurt to consider less self aware life in this discussion.

Where does a tree go when it dies? It has undergone a transformation from living to not living. Was it there to begin with? How do you characterize what was lost? Electrical signals? Movement of sap? Reaction to stimuli?

Now expand to a worm. Blood, movement, primitive nervous system. A bit easier to consider "live" but again, what is lost? How about a mouse? Now you've got personality, emotions, obvious memory. Pretty easy to see that there is something going on in even that tiny brain. Move up to a cat or dog. Now you've got something to which most people can easily relate. Not so different from a person, compared to a tree. All the measures used to say they are lesser than humans could probably be used to say learning disabled humans aren't humans.

Which gets me back to the life vs. consciousness issue: At what point is there a "you" to go away when you die? Many well known religions have a clear division (only humans get souls) where other have virtually no distinctions (reincarnation as another creature).

From the point of view of programming artificial intelligence one of the more difficult tasks is figuring out exactly what it is you are trying to copy. What is this "you" and what distinguishes it from a very complex set of responses given stimuli and some stored experience? If that machine were copied (wwwmwww's question) would the copy be any more or less "it"? One might argue they are identical as they would produce identical output, up until the point that the stored experience differs (like twins after egg split). What about "you" is the same from when you were, say, one month old?

So then the question is: Are you the same "you" that was reading the first part of my message? Your stored experience is different (sorry to have polluted "you"). Where is the "you", and is it *ever* the same, microsecond to microsecond?

We have heard the religious or spiritual answer (the soul is separate from the body) so no need to answer my question from that perspective. I think what Garrett is getting at with this question for those who are interested in another answer ("from a non-religious point of view", as he said).

Dave

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 6:21 pm 
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Tony Fisher wrote:
Now, if I was to be copied, cut down the middle and spliced onto my other copied half (I never thought I'd ever write that)

Too funny... That put a big grin on my face, Thanks.
Tony Fisher wrote:
If the brain was dissected exactly through the middle of the bit that deals with consciousness then I believe I would suddenly have double vision and feel very confused. I believe I would indeed experience sensation from both bodies but perhaps in a fuzzy kind of drunk way.

Its the brain which processes vision so how would either brain see double vision? Each brain would be connected to only the two eyes in the same skull as it so I don't see any means for this double vision to occur. You say you don't believe in a soul but I can only assume you believe something exists which connects these two brains. What is that?

Carl

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 6:23 pm 
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You guys are all silly for discussing this because I am the only person who actually exists and you're all in my head. :P


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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 6:48 pm 
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wwwmwww wrote:

Tony Fisher wrote:
If the brain was dissected exactly through the middle of the bit that deals with consciousness then I believe I would suddenly have double vision and feel very confused. I believe I would indeed experience sensation from both bodies but perhaps in a fuzzy kind of drunk way.

Its the brain which processes vision so how would either brain see double vision? Each brain would be connected to only the two eyes in the same skull as it so I don't see any means for this double vision to occur. You say you don't believe in a soul but I can only assume you believe something exists which connects these two brains. What is that?

Carl


The double vision occurs because you have cut me in two! I am in both heads with both brains at the same time but operating on half power in each battling against the other two half consciousnesses. Having spent all my life in just one head I suspect it would take some adjusting to be in two heads. To be honest this is the least certain thing I have ever argued. In fact the more I think about it the less sense it makes.
With regards to a soul there are different meanings. I simply mean that I don't believe in any fanciful supernatural thing. I believe we are no different in that respect to a chimp or sewer rat.

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 6:54 pm 
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If our "soul" comprises our senses, thoughts, emotions and memories, then these must die with our bodies because they are fundamentally connected to electrical and chemical signals that are made and passed from one cell to another. And all of these processes require the energy that is produced by the incredible complex biochemical machinery within each cell as it burns food into carbon dioxide and water. Without living cells there is no way to produce energy, nor the electrical and chemical signals that make our senses, thoughts, memories and emotions. Therefore there cannot be any soul without life. Our soul is what has evolved through generations to help keep us alive, but there is no use for a soul after death. After death there is only entropy, as every cell and molecule in our body is completely broken apart and recycled into carbon dioxide and water by the bacteria that feed on our bodies. Why then should we expect any kind of soul to survive this process?

PS. I'm not expecting an answer, just wanted to stimulate some more thinking. :D

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 6:58 pm 
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DudeHuLubeDaRubeCube wrote:
Wwwmwww AKA Carl, have you by any chance read "the pig who wanted to be eaten"? because I remember one thought experiment in that which seemed identical you your "replicator" scenario. (By the way, I am not accusing you of plagiarism or anything like that :lol:)

Actually no but given that title is sounds like something out of the Hitchhikers Guide to the Universe which I've read. Actually my "replicator" scenario is a very common scenario. I think there is a Twilight Episode about something very similiar which I have seen. And there is a TV show called SiFi Science that had an episode about what would be needed to make Star Trek like transporters real that I've seen as well. To that end you could call the Star Trek transporters my replicators and there is even an episode of TNG where Riker is copied that I've seen. So not really trying to claim it as an original idea... just wanting to look at in the light of something other then SiFi and ask yourself what that would mean to you. I personally agree with McCoy and would NEVER use one. Sure I may have a copy of me materialize at the other side but I think I'd be dead.
DudeHuLubeDaRubeCube wrote:
Also, have you seen this video on multidimensions? http://www.break.com/index/how-to-imagi ... nsion.html
Yes I think I have. Break is blocked on the PC I'm on at the moment so I can't check. If its the one I think it is there use time as the 4th dimention and go from them. I don't quite agree with that. When they talk about higher dimentions in terms of string theory, m-theory, etc they are talking about spacial dimentions and it isn't anything like what is talked about in this video.
DudeHuLubeDaRubeCube wrote:
Tony, I honestly thought I was the only one who had thought of that "possibility", of the "soul" being timeless, and we are all the same "being". weird thought huh?

I've had conversations along all these lines before. Here is another odd one. How do you know you (your soul) what ever you want to call it wasn't in someone else yesterday. Each time you go to bed you wake up as someone else. You have access to that body's brain and thus its memories so you remember that bodies yesterday and his entire prior life and you have no memory of who you were yesterday because you no longer have access to that brain.

Believe it or not this last idea came out of a conversation I once had with a preacher. He believed the world was ~5000 years old but when asked to explain how there could be dinasaurs bones he believed that God simply had created the world with a history. With that line of thought Adam and Eve may not have had a childhood but they could have been created with a memory of one. Now apply that to us now... what proof do I have that I even existed yesterday? I have a memory of yesterday but how do I know that wasn't "created" last night in my sleep. And if I don't know I was "me" yesterday maybe I actually was someone else. We are back again to how do I define "I", "myself", etc.

Carl

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Fri Apr 01, 2011 8:28 pm 
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wwwmwww wrote:
[ what proof do I have that I even existed yesterday? I have a memory of yesterday but how do I know that wasn't "created" last night in my sleep. And if I don't know I was "me" yesterday maybe I actually was someone else. We are back again to how do I define "I", "myself", etc.

Carl


Yes me too, in fact I wonder if we change every minute or so.
Regarding the history point. As an archaeologist I find stuff daily that is supposedly thousands of years old. It's all just lumps of stuff though that could have been made like that yesterday.

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2011 3:56 am 
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I think near death experiences are probably the only thing we have that tells us what happens when we die. Of course if you believe that NDEs are an illusion of the dying brain, then that would mean total and final death of consciousness.

I've actually read and studied a lot on NDEs because they intrigue me. The scientific explanation that it is an illusion created by the dying brain still causes some problems for me and doesn't answer all the questions I have.

What is the evolutionary mechanism that would cause a human brain to have coherent visual access of your surroundings outside your body, as well as the other classic NDE symptoms. Since by definition, it is too late to pass on those genes, since you are dead.

When people come back, they all say it is real. Not it seemed real. But it was real, just the same as everyday interactions. I've never seen an experiment where they tried to reproduce an NDE in the brain, and the subjects said it was definitely real. Also, the people that have NDEs are profoundly changed, including atheists, and seem to have a better perspective of the world and life. Again, this has never been reproduced in the lab to my knowledge.

Also, why is it so coherent? Wouldn't a dying brain be even more random than a dream, which occurs in a non-dying brain? All kinds of drugs that cause you to trip out, the brain is just firing random crap. And I can tell you my dreams are weird and random. When I wake up, sometimes I'll say, boy that was weird, but it seemed real at the time I was dreaming it. But I always know it's a dream upon waking.

But with an NDE, it is consistently reported that it is real. It's not random, trippy stuff happening like a drug episode. And it's not even dream-like. It's coherent like normal everyday life. That just doesn't make sense to me that a dying brain would be so coherent, when a dream is anything but coherent.

I'm not trying to convince anybody that NDEs are definitely real. It's just how I currently view them. They seem to be one of the very few pieces of evidence that can be studied as far as trying to determine what happens after bodily death.

I also have always subscribed to the "video game" theory. Kinda like dungeons and dragons. We all get certain powers and weaknesses, and then we start living. It's really the greatest illusion, virtual reality ever created.

I know some current physics theories posit many more dimensions that we cannot see. I like to think that our bodies inhabit the 3 visible dimensions, and when we die, our consciousness is not destroyed, but continues on as energy in those other smaller dimensions. So that when people die, and somebody says they are around you, they really are. Their energy is just inhabiting the non-visible dimensions around us that our human body cannot perceive.

Anyway, very interesting topic.


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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2011 6:20 pm 
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As i was reading through this very interesting thread i was reminded of movies i have seen which you might find interesting if you haven't seen them:

upisno1 wrote:
I've never seen an experiment where they tried to reproduce an NDE in the brain, and the subjects said it was definitely real

Check out Flatliners Better than it's rating but it is a long time since i saw this...

wwwmwww wrote:
Each time you go to bed you wake up as someone else


Check out Dark City This is a great movie!

Also for the readers out there interested in cloning/copying etc check out Cory Doctorow's books particularly "Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom" and "Makers" - you can download the ebooks free at craphound.com - you may have to click around the site a bit to find them but they are there! This is the author's own site and he makes the ebooks available free at the same time as the books are published (sounds crazy i know) and for those of you wondering no i am not cory doctorow....oh well at least i'm not right now....wait maybe i am :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2011 7:37 pm 
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upisno1 wrote:
I also have always subscribed to the "video game" theory. Kinda like dungeons and dragons. We all get certain powers and weaknesses, and then we start living. It's really the greatest illusion, virtual reality ever created.
.


It is virtual reality in a way. We never truly feel, see or hear things. We only experience electrical impulses in out brains. We are incredibly closed off from everything and everyone inside our skulls.

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Sat Apr 02, 2011 11:56 pm 
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Tony Fisher wrote:
It is virtual reality in a way. We never truly feel, see or hear things. We only experience electrical impulses in out brains. We are incredibly closed off from everything and everyone inside our skulls.
You say "never" and "only", as if this is something lesser than... what? Drop the "never" and "only" and have a fine definition of things :)

Getting this back to Garrett's question: What is the "you" that receives these impulses? It certainly isn't the actual physical brain receiving the signals. That's still around after you die (well, until it decomposes). It is the electrical interactions that fade. What would happen if you gave a dead brain the same impulses? We don't have the technology to record and replay neural stimuli in its entirety, but can certainly do crude stimulation of various parts of the live brain and see reactions. I presume a dead brain does not respond, but I really don't know. Muscle tissue certainly responds to stimuli outside of a live body.
The brain needs oxygen and nutrients to function which it gets through blood flow. All sorts of complex hormones play a part too. So it's quite a bit more than just the electrical impulses that are required for proper functioning and for us to consider someone exists.

If you could restore proper blood flow could "you" come back after death? I suppose that is what near death experiences are: The brain having enough trauma or lack of resources to completely shut down as if dead, but getting enough back to get going again. Where does that person go in the mean time? Are they gone, or just hibernating? If "they" are the electrical interaction in their brain and it stops and comes back, did "they" just stop existing for a while? I suppose it is the same person that comes back no different than you are the same person they would be were they to have had no stop in activity (aside from memory loss due to lack of oxygen).

Dave

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2011 4:54 am 
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Jared wrote:
You guys are all silly for discussing this because I am the only person who actually exists and you're all in my head. :P


Sorry for double posting this (under a different nickname) until I can realise it through all my other
nicknames (which are still posting all those various - but wonderful - theories). But why am I trying
so hard to convince myself and I keep talking to myself about something I already know?

The answer is: Because I need to make things more interesting by increasing the relative complexity,
the total mental energy, and the chaotic entropy. Now you ( I mean... *I*) know the truth!
(or did I always know?)

8-) :lol:


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Last edited by kastellorizo on Mon Apr 11, 2011 4:31 am, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2011 9:03 pm 
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Can anyone explain what brain cells do after recieving a signal on one of their dendrites?

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 04, 2011 12:14 am 
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PuzzleMaster6262 wrote:
Can anyone explain what brain cells do after recieving a signal on one of their dendrites?


Mine usually go back to sleep :lol: :lol:

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 Post subject: Re: Views on life and death?
PostPosted: Mon Apr 11, 2011 3:55 am 
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wwwmwww wrote:
I've had conversations along all these lines before. Here is another odd one. How do you know you (your soul) what ever you want to call it wasn't in someone else yesterday. Each time you go to bed you wake up as someone else. You have access to that body's brain and thus its memories so you remember that bodies yesterday and his entire prior life and you have no memory of who you were yesterday because you no longer have access to that brain.

Believe it or not this last idea came out of a conversation I once had with a preacher. He believed the world was ~5000 years old but when asked to explain how there could be dinasaurs bones he believed that God simply had created the world with a history. With that line of thought Adam and Eve may not have had a childhood but they could have been created with a memory of one. Now apply that to us now... what proof do I have that I even existed yesterday? I have a memory of yesterday but how do I know that wasn't "created" last night in my sleep. And if I don't know I was "me" yesterday maybe I actually was someone else. We are back again to how do I define "I", "myself", etc.

Carl


This is really fascinating. When I find myself stuck in the ever-present Socal traffic I often start thinking about this. If we really did switch bodies/consciousness every night we would never know it! :lol:

But yea, I think we define ourselves by our experiences and memories. So really, if I did "switch bodies" tomorrow, from my immediate point of view, it wouldn't really matter because I would have no recollection that anything else ever existed. And as long as someone else's consciousness "Filled in" for me after I left, I would assume that the body I left behind would continue as normal.

As the starter of this topic I don't mind at all that it has strayed away from it's original intentions towards the discussion of consciousness. This discussion is certainly a lot less depressing. And since the starting of this thread I have gotten a much deeper understanding of my original question (there isn't really an answer). If anything, it has helped me understand that this life is all that we are guaranteed until the day comes when we will find out what lies in store. Whether eternal nothingness, or an afterlife awaits, the point is we will never know and should live life to the fullest.

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