Re: Identity

Patrick Wilken (
Mon, 23 Nov 1998 22:37:46 +1100

At 5:08 PM 23-11-98, John Clark wrote:


> Nobody knows. Somebody suggested that random quantum fluctuations would
> be enough to make them instantly diverge but if things were really that
> delicate nobody would have a stable personality, but they do. Besides
> the human brain is a hot noisy place, I don't see how quantum effects
> could play much of a part in its operation. I don't know how long they
> would stay in parallel, I would guess a few minutes, perhaps a few
> hours.

The brain is chaotic, as such small fluctuations in initial conditions will rapidly lead to divergent results. So even if the two brains are initially identical and in identical environments QM will lead to divergence over time.

Note: I am not suggesting weird QM affects a la Hameroff and Penrose, but more mundane affects of QM on the exact rate of chemical and electrophysical reactions in the brain.

best, patrick

Patrick Wilken          
Editor:     PSYCHE: An International Journal of Research on Consciousness
Secretary:      The Association for the Scientific Study of Consciousness