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David_Solomon comments on Timeless Identity - Less Wrong

23 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 03 June 2008 08:16AM

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Comment author: David_Solomon 03 June 2008 10:13:18PM 0 points [-]

Sebastian:

I see your point that given the atoms are what they are, they are 'the same person', but can't get around the sense that it still matters on some level.

What if cryonics were phrased as the ability to create an identical twin from your brain at some point in the future, rather than 'you' waking up. If all versions of people are the same, this distinction should be immaterial. But do you think it would have the same appeal to people?

Suppose you do a cryogenics brain scan and create a second version of yourself while you're still alive. Each twin might feel strong regard for the other, but there's no way they would actually be completely indifferent between pain for themselves and pain for their twin. They share a past up to a certain point, and were identical when created, but that's it. If another 'me' were created on mars and then got a bullet in the head, this would be sad, but no more so than any other death. It wouldn't feel like a life-extending boon when he was created, nor a horrible blow to my immortality when he was destroyed. How is cryogenics different from this?