RE: Sincere Questions on Identity

From: Eugene Leitl (
Date: Sun Dec 16 2001 - 04:07:50 MST

On Sun, 16 Dec 2001, Harvey Newstrom wrote:

> Just because you hide all the evidence, prevent them from measuring
> themselves, block their memories of what really happened, and feed
> them false sensory input so they can't perceive reality, does not mean
> that there are not discernable differences between the two. The fact

I don't see why the concept of a bifurcation vs. total sync is so hard to
understand. All these extra details you consider as embellishments (GPS,
name tags, same input, trajectory forcing) are constraints preventing the
two perfect clones from forking, and starting to diverge.

So they *are* the same beings as long as they stay in synch, and they
*will* become different beings as soon as you remove the constraints
keeping the trajectories in perfect overlap.

> that you have to go to so much trouble to keep them from
> distinguishing themselves as two separate individuals seems to
> indicate that this would be their natural inclination.

Of course total sync is pathological. In the sense that it doesn't happen
spontaneously: you have to create it and to maintain it. Nevertheless it
is a real state, and identity of n clones in total synch is equally real.

And of course this means that perfect state clones are to distinct
individuals once they've forked, and it becomes very relevant which prong
of them you are, and which one the other guy(s).

Is it rare? Yes. Is it contrieved? Of course. But if you claim the
described conditions cannot occur, you're wrong.

-- Eugen* Leitl <a href="">leitl</a>
ICBMTO: N48 04'14.8'' E11 36'41.2''
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