But your observation goes to the heart of my question.  If we were
indeed 'merely incidental' (from whose perspective?) then what would
this say about the ethical position of the simulaters?  Further, if we
are merely playing the role of 'simple automata' then what is the
purpose (from the simulaters' viewpoint) of our *conscious* fears,
pains, loves, life struggle, and so forth?  Are these just an
unavoidable and unimportant (except to us) 'epiphenomenon' of the
simulation method?  Or are they what you mean by an 'interesting
pattern'?  Are we to take our creators' position as being 'superior' to
ours and if so what does this imply for our own (periodic) moral
delicacy about the rights and feelings of others - should we perhaps
view this as mere naivety or lack of intelligence in the light of our
masters' indifference to ours?

These are the issues I'm attempting to raise in the context of the
'simulation hypothesis'.  Of course, there's an aspect of this that
recapitulates the struggle throughout history to establish humane moral
criteria in the face of various arbitrary and omnipotent god-figures,
or for that matter 'blind necessity'.  Even in the teeth of your
creator, you are not forced to accept the justice of his position, even
as you bow to his overwhelming force, as Job shows us.


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