Re: Can I kill the original?

From: phil osborn (
Date: Mon May 08 2000 - 23:51:48 MDT

>From: Dan Fabulich <>
>Subject: Re: Can I kill the original?
>Date: Sun, 7 May 2000 16:21:05 -0400 (EDT)
I'm more than happy to say that my life
>is an end in itself. But I have to choose what constitutes me. Are you
>going to take the hard line that "defining myself as a consciousness
>stream" is an end in and of itself? If so, then I suppose I really can't
>persuade you to give it up. But I bet you don't take defining to be an
>intrinsic goal, that you've taken it up on account of other goals that you

An excellent introduction to this line of thought exemplified is Hogan's
"The Two Faces of Tomorrow." Consciousness EVOLVEs internally. Those
processes which do not succeed in attaining control over unmaskable
interrupts die off or are subsumed. Untimately, this internal ecology
results in what we call "I." The "I" is this thing that evolved as a
self-generative/self-sustaining system. Whether some outside justification
from some ultimate philosophical recourse can be brought to bear to sanction
it, or not, is not relevant at this point.

"I" cause my actions - not society - not hormones - not atomic/quantum
interactions. "I" am just as real as any quark. Which one you want to
focus upon in a chain of causality/responsibility is an epistemological
issue - not an ontological one. The size of a particle or system or the
number of components is not a measure of whether it is "real" or not. Most
people have been so locked into the false alternatives of atomistic
determinism versus some kind of mystical "free will" or "volition!" I
figured this one out in 1966 or '67.

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