On Thu, Jan 14, 2010 at 10:21:34AM -0600, Jason Resch wrote:
> If you don't believe they are you, that would imply when you put a pot of
> coffee on the stove, you do so out of altruism.  Since it only benefits
> those future observers who have memory of being you but are not.  It's not a
> useful philosophy for building anything on top of such as decision making as
> according to that theory, observers cannot make changes affecting what they
> will experience (since they only are that one moment).  Perhaps things
> really are that way, but evolution has created a useful illusion of
> continuity which leads to the overall betterment of OM's on average.  Rather
> than sit around never making coffee because it will be someone else who
> experiences it, you decide to make it knowing someone else will be better
> off for it.  As you said, there would be no observational distinction
> between whether you are one OM, one track of OMs, or all OMs, but they lead
> to different philosophies, the first being perhaps something like nihilism,
> nothing you do matters to your.  The second leads to egocentrism and
> selfishness.  The last leads to a golden rule, sacrifice for others type of
> ethic.  I think the middle one is the most complex, because it has the
> hardest definition as to what OMs to group together.  Of the first and last,
> the last is perhaps simpler too, since it could be thought to attach one
> observer to all OMs rather than an observer for each OM.
> Jason

The last viewpoint leads to a kind of fatalism - all these other OMs
exist/happen anyway, nothing I can do will change that.

To get the "golden rule" evolving, you need a complex system of
rewards and punishments, and perhaps a fair amount of shared DNA (see
the usual evolutionary explanations for altruism). But it still
evolves under the second option above.



Prof Russell Standish                  Phone 0425 253119 (mobile)
UNSW SYDNEY 2052                         hpco...@hpcoders.com.au
Australia                                http://www.hpcoders.com.au
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