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Response to Major Nikon (Reply #83)

Mon Oct 10, 2016, 02:45 PM

88. Is there a distinct you that is separate from somebody else?

 

Last edited Tue Oct 11, 2016, 10:49 AM - Edit history (1)

What is it that makes you, you? Do you think you have a soul that makes your conscious-self you, or do you think your conscious-self is a brain process without a soul?

What is meant by I think therefore I am from René Descartes?:
“I think; therefore I am” was the end of the search Descartes conducted for a statement that could not be doubted. He found that he could not doubt that he himself existed, as he was the one doing the doubting in the first place. In Latin (the language in which Descartes wrote), the phrase is “Cogito, ergo sum.”

The I in “I think; therefore I am” is the conscious-self, and I know I exist as a conscious being. I have no doubt of this fact. I also know I am a distinct conscious being, separate from other conscious beings. The I that experiences my consciousness is not a thing. (*Edited this next line) The I is produced by my brain processes that create my consciousness.

When I became a conscious being, presumably in my mother's womb, nothing was transported to my brain to make me conscious. Nature doesn't need to transport anything to create consciousness. It's not part of the process, but yet I'm here.

Not that many years ago nature did just fine creating my consciousness. There is nothing inherent in this process, that I know of, that will prevent this exact same natural process from happening again. If you know of a reason that nature can't repeat the same process to create me again, you can tell me what it is.


Here's my math again. I'll also copy what I replied to Doodley:

"When I was young I thought it interesting that I was alive at that moment. With only one life the odds were greatly against my existence at that or any particular time, considering how old our Universe is. During most of the life of our Universe I hadn't’t existed (as far as I knew). I hadn't’t yet thought about there potentially being more than one life for each self.

Let’s say that our Universe is the only universe and time will soon end. With only our Universe and one life, someone’s chances of existing at a particular time (with a 75 year life span & our 13.8 billion year old Universe) are 1 in 13,800,000,000/75 = 1 in 184,000,000. Lotteries have much better odds than that.

But the odds get much worse. Our Universe will likely be around extremely far into the future, many times its current age – if not forever. Imagine an infinite time-line to the future representing all of time that will probably ever exist. Let's say that there is no reincarnation and we only get one life. What are the chances that I would be alive at a particular moment if I had only one life on the infinite time-line? It is zero, since (one life time)/(total time Universe will exist) = finite#/infinity = infinitely small number = zero, which would be the odds of me living right now with only one life and our Universe exiting forever into the future.

So it would be impossible for me to be conscious right now if I only got one life and time is infinite. Since my consciousness existing right now is very important for my consciousness, my existence right now is the equivalent of me winning the lottery with zero odds of winning. So it seems with infinite time I must be reincarnated an infinite number of times for it to be possible for me to exist right now."


So, out of the infinite time that probably has happened and probably will happen, it would be an impossible coincidence that this so happens to be my only chance at life. The math doesn't work. Something has to give. The simplest, and really only reasonable explanation, is that I am not limited to one life. I have to have an infinite number of lives through infinite time. That fixes the math.

It's impossible to absolutely prove the negative for Russell's Teapot. But Russell's Teapot is a far-fetched claim in the first place. Without proof, or at least good evidence, Russell's Teapot not existing is the default.

It's impossible to absolutely prove either way whether we only get one life. Unlike Russell's Teapot, consciousness is natural and my consciousness existing in my brain is expected. No one can explain why my consciousness can only exist in a brain one time. Unlike Russell's Teapot, which can't be explained, I can make an argument for multiple lives. You don't get to claim the default for single lives any more than I get to claim the default for multiple lives.

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