What makes me the same over time

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Studies of mental functions, behaviors and the nervous system.

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Re: What makes me the same over time

#61  Postby laklak » Nov 04, 2015 5:00 pm

I ain't as good as I once was but I'm as good once as I ever was.
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#62  Postby iiii » Nov 05, 2015 3:26 am

I have another hypothetical question. Split brain no one knows if they are 2 consciousness vs 1 consciousness. So someone splits the corpus callosum. The person becomes 2 people. You then recombine them by repairing the corpus callosum. Lets call left side lefty and right side righty. A) Righty survives the fusion
B ) Lefty survives the fusion
C ) Neither survives
D) Both survive
You can survive with either half of your brain. Now what happens If transfer Lefty and Righty into 2 different bodies and decide to repair the missing hemisphere and corpus callosum half survives and you decide to repair the other half using futuristic technology. How is this different than the above example?

I am assuming continuity exists. Some people don't but I do. So only answer if you believe continuity exist and can answer according to criteria stated earlier while using real science.

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Re: What makes me the same over time

#63  Postby Cito di Pense » Nov 05, 2015 6:44 am

DavidMcC wrote:
Arjan Dirkse wrote:
Animavore wrote:Who said we do stay the same over time?


That's it. I'm pretty sure I am not the same person as 4 year old me. We are renewed every single moment.

Indeed, you are not the same as when you were 4. However, you are almost certainly quite similar to what you were a year ago, because your brain does not completely rewire in such a short period.


That would simply point to the futility of searches involving the word 'same' outside mathematics, except that we can talk, for example, about two individuals of the same species. This suggests that sameness is best left a part of taxonomy.
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Translation by Elbert Hubbard: Do not take life too seriously. You're not going to get out of it alive.
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#64  Postby Cito di Pense » Nov 05, 2015 6:47 am

laklak wrote:I ain't as good as I once was but I'm as good once as I ever was.


It's also true that the old gray mare just ain't what she used to be. But then, nostalgia ain't what it used to be, either.
Хлопнут без некролога. -- Серге́й Па́влович Королёв

Translation by Elbert Hubbard: Do not take life too seriously. You're not going to get out of it alive.
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#65  Postby VazScep » Nov 05, 2015 9:13 am

Cito di Pense wrote:That would simply point to the futility of searches involving the word 'same' outside mathematics, except that we can talk, for example, about two individuals of the same species. This suggests that sameness is best left a part of taxonomy.
As I suggested earlier, it's also left to art dealers and collectors. There's are at least some techniques there.
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Re: What makes me the same overtime

#66  Postby Rumraket » Nov 05, 2015 10:31 am

Animavore wrote:Who said we do stay the same over time?

:this:

We clearly don't. We retain some attributes to some degree, yet others clearly change and even the least impacted ones seems to me to still undergo some change. My views, my personality and my physical appearance has all changed throughout my life to some degree. The more time passes the more I change. I reject the premise in the title.
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#67  Postby Rumraket » Nov 05, 2015 10:40 am

iiii wrote:I am assuming continuity exists. Some people don't but I do. So only answer if you believe continuity exist and can answer according to criteria stated earlier while using real science.

Continuity of what, precisely? There is a persistence of the sense of being "you", but that does not mean that "you" remains unaltered.
It seems to make perfect sense that there is a persistence of "you", after all, you are what your brain does, and in so far that it "does what it is supposed to", it will persist in upholding your existence.
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Re: What makes me the same overtime

#68  Postby VazScep » Nov 05, 2015 10:56 am

Rumraket wrote:We clearly don't. We retain some attributes to some degree, yet others clearly change and even the least impacted ones seems to me to still undergo some change. My views, my personality and my physical appearance has all changed throughout my life to some degree. The more time passes the more I change. I reject the premise in the title.
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#69  Postby Cito di Pense » Nov 05, 2015 11:02 am

Steven Wright: I had this horrible dream that everything in my house was removed and replaced by an exact duplicate. I told my friend about my dream. He said, "Do I know you?"
Хлопнут без некролога. -- Серге́й Па́влович Королёв

Translation by Elbert Hubbard: Do not take life too seriously. You're not going to get out of it alive.
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#70  Postby DavidMcC » Nov 05, 2015 1:37 pm

Cito di Pense wrote:
DavidMcC wrote:
Arjan Dirkse wrote:
Animavore wrote:Who said we do stay the same over time?


That's it. I'm pretty sure I am not the same person as 4 year old me. We are renewed every single moment.

Indeed, you are not the same as when you were 4. However, you are almost certainly quite similar to what you were a year ago, because your brain does not completely rewire in such a short period.


That would simply point to the futility of searches involving the word 'same' outside mathematics, except that we can talk, for example, about two individuals of the same species. This suggests that sameness is best left a part of taxonomy.

Agreed. That is why I prefer to use the word, "similar".
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#71  Postby iiii » Nov 11, 2015 10:12 am

How is Continuity of self different than constantly dying?

Of course I am not identical but because I am not identical does that mean I die?

I will give you a few examples split brains, Lets assume there is 2 consciousness in split brains. Who survives in fissions such as split brain and fusions? What happens if we had 2 identical twins, one half survived from each twin and merged them. Which one survives. What happens if we have split brains from the same person and merge them? What happens if half a brain survives and you rebuild the other half what then?


If I was to connect 2 minds with an artificial device so it was like those 2 conjoined twins who are brain are connected than I was to severe the connection and recreate it who survives. (The twins were debated in another forum)

How is teleportation different than General anesthesia?

I illustrated some of my points better earlier.

As stated earlier in this post I decided to change the term same to what is the definition of death. Same questions just slightly modified first question.
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#72  Postby Cito di Pense » Nov 11, 2015 10:48 am

iiii wrote:How is Continuity of self different than constantly dying?


How is a pair of scissors different to a wooden spoon? They're both longer than they are wide. You can bend a pair of scissors, but not a wooden spoon. Things that are different are different.
Хлопнут без некролога. -- Серге́й Па́влович Королёв

Translation by Elbert Hubbard: Do not take life too seriously. You're not going to get out of it alive.
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#73  Postby DavidMcC » Nov 11, 2015 5:15 pm

iiii wrote:How is Continuity of self different than constantly dying?

Of course I am not identical but because I am not identical does that mean I die?

I will give you a few examples split brains, Lets assume there is 2 consciousness in split brains. Who survives in fissions such as split brain and fusions? What happens if we had 2 identical twins, one half survived from each twin and merged them. Which one survives. What happens if we have split brains from the same person and merge them? What happens if half a brain survives and you rebuild the other half what then?


If I was to connect 2 minds with an artificial device so it was like those 2 conjoined twins who are brain are connected than I was to severe the connection and recreate it who survives. (The twins were debated in another forum)

How is teleportation different than General anesthesia?

I illustrated some of my points better earlier.

As stated earlier in this post I decided to change the term same to what is the definition of death. Same questions just slightly modified first question.

If you could make a coherent post, it would help, iiii.
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#74  Postby iiii » Nov 20, 2015 8:46 am

IS this a coherent post?

You have a brain. You split it in half. Let's assume split brains are 2 people. 2 separate consciousness. You recombine the brain at a later time. What happens to the left side or the right side? Does the right survive but not the left. Does the left survive but not the right. I think it is more likely that neither survives. Or both survive and the person before the split comes back into existence.

Are there flaws in this argument assuming someone believe in a continuous ? Continuous self is another way of saying what does it take to survive.
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#75  Postby GrahamH » Nov 20, 2015 9:41 am

iiii wrote:How is Continuity of self different than constantly dying?


Is there continuity of self? It seems that consciousness is routinely discontinuous in deep sleep, epileptic episode or anaesthesia, concussion etc. We can't be absolute about that, but it's a distinct possibility the brain constructs a self moment to moment that integrates information from past events, and that construction can start and stop. When it stops there is no self, no consciousness.

iiii wrote:Of course I am not identical but because I am not identical does that mean I die?


That depends how you define "I" and "die". There is no physiological termination in these scenarios, so you don't die in the normal sense. I think the sensible way to think of it is that you sleep and will re-awaken.

iiii wrote:I will give you a few examples split brains, Lets assume there is 2 consciousness in split brains. Who survives in fissions such as split brain and fusions? What happens if we had 2 identical twins, one half survived from each twin and merged them. Which one survives. What happens if we have split brains from the same person and merge them? What happens if half a brain survives and you rebuild the other half what then?


I don't think split brains are separate people as you suppose. I think one whole person is the sum of constructions by the whole brain, and splits are slightly less extensive constructions. Conceivable one brain might construct more than one self. We could use a painting, or a script, as a metaphor. A team of painters (or script writers) work on an integrate whole work. They could split up and work alone or in sub-groups, to produce similar, but slightly less comprehensive works. Think of the self as the work of art or play, not the artists. The team keeps the work consistent over time, preserving a sense of continuity, but the work to produce it may not be continuous. The team could change over time through the production of the work. Homer Simpson has continuity but he may be drawn by several different people from frame to frame.

iiii wrote: If I was to connect 2 minds with an artificial device so it was like those 2 conjoined twins who are brain are connected than I was to severe the connection and recreate it who survives. (The twins were debated in another forum)


The build on the Simpson metaphor, you can bring in different artists to produce one work that has continuity. It doesn't make sense to talk of connecting two Homers then severing them and ask who survives. Change the team and Homer survives, but may look a little different.

iiii wrote:How is teleportation different than General anesthesia?


If the teleporter is assumed to be a destructive copying device then the original body dies physiologically in the machine. The animators go into a room, are killed, and a new team of animators walk out of another room and continue animating Homer. Would that matter to Homer?

Anaesthesia is like the same team of animators taking some time off then coming back to work, and depicting a process of going to sleep and waking up into the Homer story. The animation need not show that pause.

A key difference with the Homer metaphor is that the animating team is our physical self, so the created self is tightly bound to events that affect our physiology. Also, the animators are not conscious selves in their own rights. The self is the work they create and necessarily reflects the state of the body.
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#76  Postby ADParker » Nov 20, 2015 11:24 am

iiii wrote:IS this a coherent post?

Some poor English there, which can cause problems in comprehension, as one has to make more efforts to interpret what you might be trying to convey.

iiii wrote:You have a brain. You split it in half. Let's assume split brains are 2 people. 2 separate consciousness.

Assume? But okay let's define for the sake of this discussion that each now separate portion of a full human brain as a "person".

iiii wrote:You recombine the brain at a later time. What happens to the left side or the right side?

They are reconnected... you just said that.

iiii wrote:Does the right survive but not the left. Does the left survive but not the right.

According to what seems to be your hypothetical scenario both sides survive. Perhaps what you are trying to ask is; do the two "people" exist?

As you asked it: If I receive a kidney transplant from someone; "Does that kidney survive but not me? Do I survive but not the kidney?"

iiii wrote: I think it is more likely that neither survives.

If neither hemisphere of your brain survives then you are dead. :roll:

iiii wrote:Or both survive and the person before the split comes back into existence.

I take it that you are assuming that in your little hypothetical the reconnected brain functions essentially identically to how it did before the split?
Both hemispheres exist (assumed in your hypothetical scenario). One could say they merge into a new single unit. much like the set of individual ingredients merge into a single cake. In both cases; a single unit comprised of those previously unconnected parts.
But really; the mind is into some uniformed whole anyway, but a combination of all the relevant functions going on in the brain. From that perspective the only 'real' change here is that certain parts "communicate" or interact with one another that previously (during the "split brain" period) could not.



Oh no! What happens to the individual bricks when my son builds his Lego constructions?! :shock:
:naughty2:

iiii wrote:Are there flaws in this argument assuming someone believe in a continuous ?

What argument?

iiii wrote: Continuous self is another way of saying what does it take to survive.

:what:
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#77  Postby iiii » Nov 21, 2015 7:19 am

The point about how consciousness can be interrupted is a valid point.
No arguments. But let us assume consciousness is never interrupted except during death or teleportation. Let us assume you split the brain. It becomes 2 conscious individuals. You recombine them. Would recombining the brains be a break in consciousness the same way teleportation would?

Sorry I made a slight typing mistake. I meant to write that recombining the 2 hemispheres would reform the consciousness before the split and this is the most likely answer to all the possible scenarios listed.

Now let us assume you are correct about consciousness having interruptions in everyday life. As long as the information survives the person survives. You could make an argument if the information changes enough then the person is gone. I am not sure if that is a valid argument but it seems to make sense. So information equals survival. You could also argue when is enough change of information. I will defer to advancement in science. For example there is a clear difference between I writing this and you who responds. If I were to slowly transform into you and you were to slowly transform into me that would be death. This would be true even if this was done gradually.
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Re: What makes me the same over time

#78  Postby ADParker » Nov 21, 2015 12:01 pm

iiii wrote:The point about how consciousness can be interrupted is a valid point.

Which point exactly? Who are you responding to? But yes consciousness (depending on how one might define the word) is indeed interrupted, possibly regularly and often.

iiii wrote:No arguments.

Is this directed at me? At my asking you "what argument", in response to you asking "are there flaws in this argument"?
If so: :what:

iiii wrote:But let us assume consciousness is never interrupted except during death or teleportation.

Why would we do that?

iiii wrote:Let us assume you split the brain. It becomes 2 conscious individuals. You recombine them. Would recombining the brains be a break in consciousness the same way teleportation would?

Not necessarily.

iiii wrote:Sorry I made a slight typing mistake. I meant to write that recombining the 2 hemispheres would reform the consciousness before the split and this is the most likely answer to all the possible scenarios listed.

Room for doubt on that one I would think.

iiii wrote:Now let us assume you are correct about consciousness having interruptions in everyday life. As long as the information survives the person survives.

That would depend a great deal on what one means by "information". I would think it would be the information processing as opposed to the information itself. Otherwise you could say (as some do, but generally only poetically) that someone "survives" if their writing or art survives.

iiii wrote: You could make an argument if the information changes enough then the person is gone.

Well; a better hypothesis would be that if ones mental processes change 'enough' then they could reasonably (in some sense at least) be said to no longer be the person they once were.
However; they would remain a "survivor' of their past self, of the (kind of) person they were. Just like everyone else is, I am "a different person" than my four year old self was for example.

iiii wrote:I am not sure if that is a valid argument but it seems to make sense.

That wasn't an argument, it was a contention a potential truth-claim. Actual arguments require more than that to qualify as such.

iiii wrote: So information equals survival.

I wouldn't say so, no.

iiii wrote:You could also argue when is enough change of information.

Sure; "enough" is a deliberately vague and open placeholder term. In such cases there is probably always going to be a relatively broad "grey area" in which it is questionable if a case is or is not "enough, but that does not detract from the fact that some cases will probably be pretty clear cut, "black and white".

iiii wrote:I will defer to advancement in science. For example there is a clear difference between I writing this and you who responds.

In that neither of us is the "survivor" of the other, there is no clear link (biological,temopral etc.) link between us. You could be more similar to me (now) than I am to me-at-four-year-old and still this distinction would hold true. And in that sense, although less similar, I am still more/closer to being the same person as me-at-four-year-old than I am to being the same person as you. This is because there is more than "similarity" to what constitutes identity.

iiii wrote:If I were to slowly transform into you and you were to slowly transform into me that would be death. This would be true even if this was done gradually.

Would it? Is all change death?
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