Hal Finney wrote:
Arguing against this is that every night you fall asleep, a similar loss of consciousness (often with memory erasure of the last few thoughts before sleep). This theory would predict that each night you only experience universes where, for whatever reason, you never again lose consciousness.
I don't know why this objection to QTI/QS keeps coming up. It is surely a truism that you cannot *experience unconsciousness*, but this is certainly not the same as saying that you cannot lose consciousness, or experience worlds where you lose consciousness. If the loss of consciousness is permanent (i.e., death), then yes, since it is imposssible to *experience unconsciousness*, you will not experience those worlds. But if the loss of consciousness is temporary, as in sleep, you will experience only a discontinuity from which you might conclude you have gone through a period of unconsciousness.
You can turn this whole chain of logic around and make it an argument against QS. Sleep proves that loss of consciousness is possible, and that memory erasure is possible. Imagine memory erasure becoming so complete that it erases your entire life. Is that possible? If so, isn't it essentially the same as suicide? Or if it's not possible, where is the dividing line between the amount of memory erasure that is and is not possible?
I agree, complete memory erasure is essentially the same as suicide. Therefore, you cannot experience complete memory erasure if QTI is true. The "dividing line between the amount of memory erasure that is and is not possible" is a problem in the philosophy of personal identity: how much "you" can change and still be "you". The MWI predicts that every possible variation on your mind will exist in some world, and although you can get into complex discussions about amnesia, delusions etc., a simple answer might be, those versions which think they are you, are in fact you.
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