RE: IDENTITY- What it means to be 'me'

From: Louis Newstrom (
Date: Sun Dec 02 2001 - 09:14:39 MST

> From:
> []On Behalf Of John Clark

> Louis Newstrom <> Wrote:
> >The key phrase here is "as far as the economy is concerned".
> >When we are talking about identity and survival, most people want "
> >as far as I am concerned".
> That is exactly, precisely, what I was trying to say. I don't
> care if protoplasm
> is destroyed because I am not two hundred pounds of protoplasm, I
> am a adjective.

I believe the original claim was "nothing was lost". Now it's "we don't
care about what was lost". If that is the case then I think we are in
agreement. The physical body doesn't matter. The important question is
does the consciousness survive.

> What is the mass of beautiful?
Mass doesn't apply. "Beautiful" is like temperature. It is a quality of an
object. I think I am seeing what you are getting at. Any object can have
any temperature or beauty. Therefore those qualities could be transferred
(like heat) from one object to another. Temperature and beauty have
existence, but are not "things" in that they are not tied to any specific

> Tell me the position in space of the number eleven.
Wherever you store it. (Another "quality" not a "thing".)

> The premise of the thought experiment was that you could make a copy of
> anything,

Ok. Then I guess the real question is to identify what makes "you" so you
can copy it. I agree with you that it's not the protoplasm. I think I have
read on the list that some people think it's your memories. I don't buy
that, because it would mean all amnesiacs are the same person. (It would be
interesting to see if two amnesiacs, waking up in the same hospital and
interacting with the same staff would have different personalities. This
might help indicate whether there is something more than memory at work.)

> >After all, I do have a natural clone walking around, but I
> still believe that
> >something would be lost if one of us were destroyed.
> Come on now play fair, we both know a twin is not a copy.
At the time the copy was made, it was. But you're right, in the present, we
are not copies.

Louis Newstrom

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