Re: The prospect of immor(t)ality

Crosby_M (
Tue, 24 Sep 1996 15:05:00 -0400

On 9/24/96 Anders Sandberg wrote:
>On Sun, 22 Sep 1996, Damien Broderick wrote:
>> Suppose the Singularity (to be concise if imprecise) is reasonably expected
>> somewhere between 2030 and 2080, so that people alive now have some
>> of hanging on grimly until rejuvenative longevity is available. Sure, you
>> can freeze your head, but it seems more provident to stay alive as long as
>> possible. What does effect would this prospect have on your willingness to
>> take risks?

>This of course depends a lot on your views of death; if you regard
>yourself as supremely important in your own universe, then you should
>avoid all risks, while if you regard your existence as just another fun
>aspect of the universe you can take some risks (up to a limit determined
>by how non-I-centered you are).

>Personally I avoid unnecessary risks and try to plan for possible future
>contingencies, but I do not regard my survival as the one and only
>driving force of my existence.

*This is not a direct response to either Damien's query or Anders'
response; but, since I just responded to another post regarding Tipler's
"Physics of Immortality", and since I have my 'archives' open, maybe a
dump of some more of my notes on this might be of interest.*

10/20/94. Reading ch.10 of "Physics of Immortality" wherein Tipler
describes "What Happens After the Resurrection: Heaven, Hell &
Purgatory" noting that "all possible combinations of resurrected dead
can be placed in the same simulation and allowed to interact". I argue
that such resurrections would be chimeras, not representing actual
historical persons, because the Omega Point could not possibly know,
which of many possible simulations actually happened. In fact, as he
suggests, "the Omega Point would be able to advise us on possible
imperfections"; so, the result would not be anything representing a
resurrection of historical personalities. In fact, as he proves using
game theory and Becker's notions of utility functions, such resurrected
beings would be more altruistic than (and thus not identical to) us
mortal beings in a world of finite resources.

Tipler uses the notion of infinity to resolve the Tristram Shandy and
Hilbert's Hotel paradoxes, essentially implying that infinity can
accomodate all possible permutations; therefore, whatever actually
happened historically will eventually happen in the final emulation. I
grant this; but, I still ask, how will the Omega Point KNOW which of
these infinite combinations of phase trajectories represents the
actualized past and is, thus, a 'true' resurrection.

Tipler discusses the problem of Evil and God's responsibility, the
principle of nonsatiation, and theodicy. Using Hayek's theories
regarding 'the supply of capital', he concludes that "Any cosmology with
progress to infinity will necessarily end in [infinite wealth] God." I
can accept this and don't question what the Omega Point can/will
accomplish. What I question is whether this will represent a genuine
resurrection, and eternal life, for ALL those who HAVE lived and died
during the actual light cone of this Earth. As he notes, "It is not even
necessary for ANY of the past to be repeated." Thus, while my life
experience IN GENERAL will certainly be emulated by the Omega Point, it
is impossible for the Omega Point to emulate my life experiences IN
PARTICULAR by any 'brute-force' simulation. Therefore, unless I dismiss
myself as a simple instance of some universal pattern of experience, I
can not expect an individual resurrection in the Omega Point.

According to the Law of Mass Action, I am indistinguishable from
multitudes of others who have followed my same general pattern of
development. The Omega Point will not recall the physical specifics and
random fluctuations of my life, just as my memory does not store
everything it experiences; but (due to data compression economics), is
capable only of accessing certain general archetypes, i.e, normalized
relations and experiences. So, this means there is no personal
resurrection, only resurrection of principals, of 'spirits'. If I am one
who strives toward an altruistic ideal, this will be satisfactory; in
other words, I will be resurrected in 'heaven'. However, if I am one who
strives to be unique, or who is basically Narcisistic in my experiences,
I can expect no resurrection at all, only the damnation of eternal
return, stuck in an infinite loop, or perhaps I will simply be treated
as noise and be deleted from the 'Final Reality'.

Forwarded for Comments and Discussion, Not Necessarily Endorsed by ...
Mark Crosby
"we go thru so many transitions that hardly preserve our identity in any
definition of this word..."
- Alexander Chislenko,