# Re: What Is Identity ?

Derek Strong (derek@zhmort.com)
Sun, 28 Sep 1997 05:56:03 -0700

He who both is and is not Ian Goddard wrote:

> THE PRIMARY QUESTION of logical inquiry
> Must be "what is identity?"

Actually, that's THE SECONDARY QUESTION.
THE PRIMARY QUESTION must be "Hey, is this thing on?"

> That question, all other inquiry is illogical.

...and therefore naughty.

> A thing, a state of difference, A, is an identity.

Well, yes, obviously that. I mean, if we can't agree that A is an
identity, a state of difference, a thing, then what can we agree on?
Nothing, I'd say. (Oops! I'm jumping ahead!)

> Every identity is derived from relation.

> There is no identity that is not derived from relation.
> There can be no identity that is not derived from relation.

Except for "Manos" (The Hands of Fate). Manos has no derivation. Manos
just is.

> Therefore "relation" cannot be separated from "identity,"

Not without the Jaws of Life, anyway.

> And therefore, as relation contains both A and not-A,

...and not-both-A...

> What a thing is said not to be cannot truthfully
> Be separated from what it is said to be.

(See Jaws of Life comment above.)

> The assumed separation of A and not-A is therefore
> A fallacy.

...and even more naughty than illogical inquiry.

> If A is not separate from not-A,
> Then A is not-A:
>
> A = not-A

Or, more elegantly:

A !=<>= !A + some_other_stuff

> If there is nothing A is not, A is everything.

Including pasties. Maybe even especially pasties. (Woo hoo!)

> If A is everything, A is no thing, A is nothing,
> And thus everything is nothing... Logical Zen.

But what is nothing? Something? A nice snack? (Yes, thank you. A donut
if you have one.)

> So the answer to the primary question as to the nature
> Of identity is that identity is nothing,

Actually, the answer to the real primary question (see comments above) is,

> identity is
> False where it assumes separation, and that is true.

Truth is that separation assumes, where it is false, identity is. Just ask
Yoda.
(See http://www.theonion.com/onion3109/newgammar.html for more profundity.)

> Identity is not identity, different is same.

Any 10 year old could tell you this. But I'm glad you said it, anyway, so
the elderly on the list might also benefit, and grow thereby.

> Separation does not exist.

Unless you really, really believe in it with all your heart.

> No thing is apart from the whole.

Now you're getting personal!

> Every thing is the whole.

And now you're being rude!

> Everything is whole.

Oh. Well, that's not so bad, I guess. If you'd ended all of that with
everything being torn asunder and strewn about, we'd have quite a logical
mess to clean up. Your tidiness and manners are greatly appreciated.

P.S. Sorry for the "Me, too." post. I'll try to have more to add next
time!

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Derek Strong aka Derek Ryan
derek@zhmort.com http://www.zhmort.com/
Webmaster, Extropy Institute http://www.extropy.org/
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