Re: PSYCH/PHIL: We ARE the Experience

Joy Williams (
Mon, 27 Jan 1997 03:52:01 -0800

At 11:13 PM 1/26/97 -0800, you wrote:
>There's another interesting point here, however, and that is the premise
that immortality would be unachievable, as we are ever-changing,
ever-growing, and ever-dying. That needn't be the case. Uploading
yourself could put a halt to this process, if your "self-image" is never
activated. You could exist on file for centuries. As immortality goes,
that's not much to look forward to, but I rankle at the
suggestion that immortality is IMPOSSIBLE... Even in the philosophical
sense, it is POSSIBLE, if undesirable.

You know I see the quasi attractiveness of uploading your memories and
stuff on line, but I fail to see how that would emcompass the entire aspect
of what you really are. I'm not sure that it would be "me" existing on
files for centures! seems like the emotional perspective is left out, as
well as the intuitive. Ostensibly, in email I'm uploading parts of my mind
right now, but considering i'm having thoughts on various different levels
all at the same time, this idea of a micro robot collecting data, except
perhaps at the very instance of death to upload, to me seems very, very
strange. how can it possibly include the complexities of emotions we feel
(and how would it be able to interpret that? --- and if it did this at the
moment of death, then what emotional state would you be in that would be
uploaded, is this what you want recorded in files forever?), as well as the
data running around in our brains? How does it account for the subthoughts
underneath the "forethoughts" of our brain, which might indeed be
influencing the "forethoughts" in subtle ways we don't even realize...and
the "robot" would have to be able to get all of these at once to really
replicate the complex beings we are. How would it be able to do this when
we ourselves are not always sure of that is going on in our subconscious?
Since we ourselves, as beings, are not completely cognizant of the
complexities that influence why we think the way we do, why do some think
we could create a "robot" to be able to do it? (after all, we created it
from a place of lacking full information). For us to assume that we fully
understand how each individual thinks, and the full process of our brains,
(which is also problematic in that we don't fully understand the process of
that which we understand as whatever we consider "self" to be being related
to other aspects of the body, like the heart, and cell-to-cell
communication so we might leave out crucial elements if we think that this
"being" that we are is totally and completely defined by the brain) which I
think at this point, we have only begun to understand.

I guess I'm not so sure that we can upload our beings to a computer...I
think we are far too complex at this point. I don't know how we could
possibly upload the "wetware" of our brain to replicate the real synapsis
that is going on. So far i've not heard of technology that can reproduce
the brain cells, etc. The only thing I've heard of which might POSSIBLE the new DNA based chips...which are experimental at this time.
And even were you able to upload everything to this kind of a machine with
your own DNA as part of the chip, and then upload all the data of your
brain onto a *multi* gig harddrive if not can still get fried
in an electrical storm. Anyhow, I like the flesh! :) It's warm, and it's
me. I don't think you can upload *that*.

then again, I'm an unabashed hedonist....

Joy Williams
Owner, Dancing Hummingbird Designs & the Brain Boutique