> >Well, ....you've already admitted that a
> >little memory loss does not threaten your identity! Recall the Aussies
> >you wrote about who customarily lose an entire evening's inebriation :-)
> Yes, and I also admitted that there is an inconsistency in my position.
Well, if you ever aspire to having a consistent position on these
issues, don't forget the "duplicates are selves" view.
> Having my duplicate who has already diverged live on while I die is not just
> memory loss, but rather replacement of the lost memories with someone
> else's, which I feel is a greater threat to my identity and which I would be
> less likely to agree to.
It's "someone else" just because that's the *feeling* you have about
it! Since you have "the feeling" that you are the same person today
that you will be tomorrow, perhaps some day you can achieve the
feeling that your duplicate sitting across the room is really you too.
> Memory loss would be more like having myself backed
> up and the backup run after I have died. If the backups are frequent, I
> suppose it is better than no backup at all, but I would still feel afraid of
> dying. At its most basic, for me anyway, the fear of imminent death is the
> fear that the person I am *now* will be wiped from the universe and never
> have any more experiences.
Have faith in physics. If from *every* objective measure, a Stathis
will be awaking tomorrow in your bed, and will do things and talk to
everyone just like you, then he is you. There are no souls. You must
have faith. The physics of the situation is all that there is.
> The same consideration ought to apply to memory loss, but people
> don't generally think of it that way, because they know
> that they'll be OK afterwards, on the basis of past experience.
Just because they're not used to thinking of it in the right way,
does not preclude our embracing the right way that we should be
thinking of it.
Yes, it's true: the very first thing you learned on this Earth
was how to tell what was outside your body from what was inside,
and slowly your concept of self was formed. But we can see now
that it was wrong. We can see now that if you are to have a
consistent view of what self is, then it must include all processes
that (from the viewpoint of physics) are indistinguishable from
you. Or rather, which are very, very similar (like the you yesterday,
or the you across the room).
Just embrace it: when you see your duplicate across the room,
and you know all the facts of his and your existence, just
repeat: "There by the grace of God go I".