Re: PHIL: Extropy, Boundaries and Suicide

Anders Sandberg (
26 Feb 1998 00:15:21 +0100

Darren Reynolds <> writes:

> Someone you know, rationally, carefully and thoughtfully, decides that it
> is time to end their life. Such an action has a number of easily
> identifiable anti-Extropic effects.
> What is the right thing to do? Do you give the person their liberty, or do
> you exercise your "ethics for survival and flourishing" and forcibly remove
> it?

A tricky question. My basic view is that everybody should have control
over one's life - if we cannot decide if to live or die, then we are
fundamentally limited. So if somebody wants to end his or her life for
rational reasons I see no point in interfering, other than offering my
advice pro or con.

This might appear to be a loss for the total diversity of the universe
(which forms my usual ethical-ruler), but one has to weigh the loss of
one individual to the risks of placing control over our lives in the
hands of others, which might cause even greater loss of diversity in
the long run. Of course, this is by no means obvious, and I would be
surprised if others did not reach different conclusions based on their

Anders Sandberg                                      Towards Ascension!                  
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y