On Mon, Oct 21, 2013 at 12:54 AM, LizR <lizj...@gmail.com> wrote:
> This is explored in (amongst other places) the final chapter of "A history
> of the world in 10 1/2 chapters". (The converse is explored in a short story
> by Michael Moorcock about someone who goes to Hell and finds it quite
> pleasant after a while.)

Liz, thanks for the sci-fi references. I love reading such things.
Any idea on where the Michael Moorcock story was published? When I was
a kid and had to attend catholic Sunday school, I was terrified of
heaven -- it sounded boring and oppressive. Also Sunday school
prevented me from watching Battlestar Galactica (the original series).
I suspect this was the seed of my deep resentment towards organized
religion.

Best,
Telmo.

> This is also discussed in literature on Utopias generally (probably going
> back to someone like Plato) - the problem with "wireheading" is that it
> omits some of the supposedly necessary features of utopian existence e.g.
> breadth and vividness. So although one might be unable to escape it if
> placed in this situation, that doesn't mean one would choose it (since when
> *not* perpetually blissed out, one can see its inadequacies).
>
>
>
> On 21 October 2013 07:43, Craig Weinberg <whatsons...@gmail.com> wrote:
>>
>>
>>
>> On Sunday, October 20, 2013 6:53:41 AM UTC-4, telmo_menezes wrote:
>>>
>>> On Sat, Oct 19, 2013 at 4:26 PM, Craig Weinberg <whats...@gmail.com>
>>> wrote:
>>> > Another way of approaching human emulation.
>>> >
>>> > Step 1: Manufacture an inexpensive biofeedback monitor that you plug
>>> > into
>>> > your internet enabled device.
>>> >
>>> > Step 2: Braindora reads up your personal data and compares it against a
>>> > huge
>>> > database of other people’s data, looking for matches.
>>> >
>>> > Step 3. Meanwhile, Braindora keeps monitoring what you are looking at
>>> > online
>>> > while it tracks your brain data, comparing your history of what you
>>> > find and
>>> > how it makes you feel. Matches that correlate to mood improvement, on
>>> > both a
>>> > short term and long term basis are flagged.
>>> >
>>> > Step 4: Braindora offers to take over your web browsing, steering your
>>> > computer/TV/Ipod/game system automatically to sources which are most
>>> > statistically likely to be successful in improving the indicators in
>>> > ‘people
>>> > who probably feel like you do’.
>>> >
>>> > Step 5: Customers, who are now virtually incapable of being bored, can
>>> > go to
>>> > the next level and browse social networks for bio-compatible matches in
>>> > the
>>> > same way.
>>> >
>>> > Step 6: Gradually all lifestyle decisions can be ported to the system,
>>> > ensuring that that everything that you eat, buy, do, or experience is
>>> > optimized at least a little better than you could do on your own.
>>> >
>>> > Step 7: The entire process will be recorded and fed back into the
>>> > system so
>>> > that it can be compressed into an algorithm which can be pushed back to
>>> > the
>>> > customer’s transcranial magnetic stimulation device.  As a result,
>>> > everyone
>>> > will feel like they have a great and constantly improving life, even as
>>> > they
>>> > degenerate into pulpy masses of human squash.
>>>
>>> If this was possible, wouldn't you choose it? If not, why not?
>>
>>
>> I might choose it personally, but that is only because my personhood is
>> defined by its deprivations. If I were the universe, an ontology of
>> masturbation is a dead end.
>>
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> I have a recurring similar discussion with a friend: suppose you could
>>> be put in a capsule on life support and given a steady supply of a
>>> drug that makes you feel pure bliss for the rest of your natural life.
>>> Would you agree? If not, why not?
>>
>>
>> I don't think that is actually possible. The intellect can conceive of
>> monotonous bliss, but that does not mean that is the way that bliss could
>> work. A bliss that you cannot escape from is ultimately a prison. Our
>> understanding of sensation points to relation of contrasts, not to
>> mechanical absolutes. Feelings are living responses to meaningful
>> conditions. We quickly adapt to euphoria, build a tolerance, become bored.
>> There may not be any such thing as a bliss which cannot fade into misery
>> eventually. If there were, I think it would constitute a kind of universal
>> halting, just as strong addiction can suspend normal social functions.
>>
>> Craig
>>
>>>
>>> >
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