Re: Is a Person One or Many?

From: Mike Dougherty (
Date: Mon Mar 10 2008 - 10:09:20 MDT

On Mon, Mar 10, 2008 at 12:10 AM, Stathis Papaioannou <>

> Let's say many memories, aspects of personality etc. are involved in
> sense of self, and these are lacking in the proportions as above. Is
> your subjective probability of ending up as a particular copy
> proportional to the degree of fidelity of that copy? What if the
> copying is low in quality but high in quantity? You would expect
> *something* since you might expect something after a head injury with
> partial memory loss. But what, exactly, if there are multiple copies
> involved? I don't think there is a clear answer because the notion of
> subjective probability is based on the idea that you are a single
> person who persists through time.

Is every memory required for your sense of self? When you wake each day, do
you consult some checksum that verifies the integrity of your memory to
date? Could you temporarily be unable to recall the details of your 10th
birthday, yet still believe yourself to be the same person who does remember
their birthday? Suppose those hundred copies each received 1/100th of the
memories to the point of copying, would any of them believe themselves to be
you? Would their subjective sense of identity be comparably diminished one
hundred fold? What about only 2 copies, one with all your memories/skills
for work and the other with skills uniquely allocated for relaxation and
enjoyment: Each is run in a microcosm matched to their purpose. After some
interval of subjective experience, the two copies are merged back together.
Is the resulting whole more or less than the sum of their work and rest

A sound wave travels through air much faster than individual air particles
can move. Using this particle analogy to understand subjective units of
space-time/experience, is identity/self the wave that moves through this
medium? (If not sound&air, use light&vacuum, etc.)

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Wed Jul 17 2013 - 04:01:02 MDT