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MinibearRex comments on The Uses of Fun (Theory) - Less Wrong

15 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 02 January 2009 08:30PM

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Comment author: MinibearRex 09 March 2011 06:33:55AM 4 points [-]

I know a transhumanist who has strong religious visions, which she once attributed to future minds reaching back in time and talking to her... but then she reasoned it out, asking why future superminds would grant only her the solace of conversation, and why they could offer vaguely reassuring arguments but not tell her winning lottery numbers or the 900th digit of pi. So now she still has strong religious experiences, but she is not religious. That's the difference between weak rationality and strong rationality, and it has to do with the depth and generality of the epistemic rules that you know and apply.

Does this person genuinely have schizophrenia? I've occasionally wondered what would happen if a schizophrenic was taught rationality, or a rationalist developed schizophrenic. I didn't think such a thing had happened already though.

Comment author: wnoise 09 March 2011 07:45:52PM 8 points [-]

I recall a neurologist that suffered a stroke and was able to reason out that she was suffering a stroke and managed to use the phone to call for help while severely impaired. It doubled as a religious experience for her.

I also recall a story about a woman trained in medicine who developed schizophrenia and turned her intellect to coping with her delusions, and rationalizing them, and poking holes in her rationalizations. Unfortunately I can't find the story, but I remember that she was convinced that rats were running around in her brain chewing on her nerves, but that she could electrocute them by thinking really hard. She realized that real rats couldn't possibly be running around in her brain, but had some rationalization for that.

Comment author: [deleted] 13 September 2011 10:12:57PM 0 points [-]

That sounds fascinating, I wish I could read it..