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Kingreaper comments on How to Convince Me That 2 + 2 = 3 - Less Wrong

53 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 27 September 2007 11:00PM

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Comment author: Kingreaper 28 November 2010 12:08:32PM *  0 points [-]

If you suddenly gain a set of memories indicating that the raptor conspiracy is taking over the world, you would be considered deluded.

If you suddenly gain a set of memories indicating that 2+2 equals something other than what it DOES in fact equal, you are likewise deluded.

So your suggestion is in fact a subset of being deluded*. At which point you should voluntarily seek out psychological/psychiatric help.

  • (which I assign a low probability, as I have never heard of such a type of delusion existing)

If you believe (as you seem to suggest by use of the aactive rather than the passive voice) that this delusion is being deliberately induced, it is important to remember that anyone with the power to induce that delusion could also reduce you to a gibbering wreck; and hence that going to get help is highly unlikely to be "part of their plan".

Comment author: orthonormal 28 November 2010 08:58:11PM 0 points [-]

This is a distraction from the actual point; of course if this happened to me, then my first priority would be getting help (I might be having a stroke, for instance). But once I'm at the hospital and they tell me that I'm all right, but something strange happened to my brain so that it falsely remembers 2 and 2 having made 4, instead of the obviously correct 3...

If you don't agree that some set of circumstances like this should conspire to make me rationally accept 2+2=3, then if the scenario happened to you (with 3 and 4 reversed), you're asserting that you could never rationally recover from that metal event. Since I'd prefer, should I go through a hallucination that 2 and 2 always made 3, to be able to recover given enough evidence, I have to take the "risk" of being convinced of something false, in a world where events conspired against me just so.