2009/2/27 Bruno Marchal <marc...@ulb.ac.be>:

> Gosh!  And what if the backup has been done last year, or one minute ago? I
> will be dead too? Less dead?

This shows a potential problem the psychological criterion for
personal identity. If I am facing death it is little consolation to me
if a backup was made an hour ago, since I (the presently speaking I)
will not be able to anticipate any future experiences. Only if there
exists some copy who will have a memory of my present experiences
would I not object to dying, and this would require a backup updated
every moment. In that case, I should also object to an hour of memory
loss, due to a medication like midazolam. But I don't think that
taking midazolam is tantamount to dying. Inconsistency! Either I have
to agree that taking midazolam is like dying, or I have to agree that
dying while leaving an old (how old?) backup behind does not matter.
If I agree to the latter, then I give up worrying about the thing I
don't like about dying, which is the fact that I won't be able to
anticipate any future experiences. And if I give up worrying about
that, then there isn't anything else that worries me about dying. So
if I think that taking midazolam is no big deal (which I do), to be
consistent I should also think that death is no big deal.


-- 
Stathis Papaioannou

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