Less Wrong is a community blog devoted to refining the art of human rationality. Please visit our About page for more information.

JulianMorrison comments on Serious Stories - Less Wrong

39 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 08 January 2009 11:49PM

You are viewing a comment permalink. View the original post to see all comments and the full post content.

Comments (100)

Sort By: Old

You are viewing a single comment's thread.

Comment author: JulianMorrison 09 January 2009 10:29:08PM 0 points [-]

Caledonian: "If we could learn to simply get along with any level of pain... how would it constitute an obstacle?"

It would still hurt. You'd still not want it. It just wouldn't forcefully intrude itself on your every thought.

Compare a loud noise in your house - bubbles making the pipes howl, perhaps. You could put it off, even learn to sleep through it, but without an urgent reason you'd certainly prefer to call the plumber. If you did have an urgent reason, say you were scrimping money for something vastly more important, you would have the ability to put up with it. My suggestion would extend this sort of tuning-out to physical and emotional pain.

(Yes, I'm aware that a loud enough noise will force your attention and a trivial enough pain can be set aside, but the scales aren't the same.)