Re: extropians-digest V2 #92

Mark Grant (
Sat, 5 Apr 1997 23:48:20 +0000

On Sat, 5 Apr 1997, ard wrote:

> When you boil all the bullshit out of it, is not ego simply the notion of
> being an individual?

I'm not sure of the 'official' definition of the word, and few of the
people I've asked seem to have any idea either. To me ego is the
difference between a person's perception of themselves and their real
state. This is why it holds people back; you can't act sensibly if you
don't know who you are. As we were discussing in another recent thread,
many people seem happy to just talk about doing things rather than
actually do them (which is hard work and involves a risk of failure).

> Is it possible for an individual to see their life the same way any
> other
> individual sees their own life?

Yes. It just takes effort to eliminate the ego nonsense and see yourself
as you truly are.

> What prevents you from "reprograming" yourself now?

I think the biggest problem with reprogramming is that people first have
to accept that they are programmed entities. Our mythology tells us that
we aren't, and you have to break through that programming before you can
start on anything else. I've tried explaining this to some of my friends
and even the neurophysiological evidence doesn't convince them. They
usually try to change the subject to avoid having to even consider that
they might be 'just' computers.

> Would you consider having a self-activated joy-button connected to your
> "feels good" section of the brain?

Everyone has a self-activated joy-button connected to the "feels good"
section of the brain. Most people just haven't worked out how to activate
it yet except through interactions with other people ('love', etc). Again
it's just a matter of programming.

> Have you ever experienced 100% Bliss? Can people experience this
> state at
> will? Can they go from Bliss to rationality at will?

Close to 100%, maybe and yes. Utter bliss is fun, but it gets dull after a
while, at least for me.


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