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Reincarnation of the consciousness is inevitable
#11
RE: Reincarnation of the consciousness is inevitable
How can the consciousness be reincarnated if death is the end of it and oblivion is eternal? Undecided
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#12
RE: Reincarnation of the consciousness is inevitable
He meant if another entity were to arise that would, by his definition, be sufficiently similar to him, then he would have been reincarnated.


This is just like saying a totally demolished car is reincarnated if another just like it comes off the assembly lines.
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#13
RE: Reincarnation of the consciousness is inevitable



Well, as noted, both P1 and P2 have problems, but I'd like to concentrate on P2 and what I see as problematic.

The first problem is equating what can happen with what you can imagine happening. Even if time is infinite, there are unlikely to be any square circles. Likewise for other things, if the laws of nature do not permit something, even if its impossibility is not obvious to us, it will not occur.

The more problematic is the sliding from can happen to will happen. It's entirely possible that under, say, Penrose's CCC scenario or Hindu cosmogony, that the universe repeats itself, but each time that it repeats, it repeats itself the same exact way. So while certain states are reachable, certain states are not in fact ever reached. (And while it's probably not proper to use the concepts of probability here, one might conjecture that such a state of affairs occurring is highly improbable; however, according to the rules of your hypothetical, even the most improbable will occur. Obviously, you've got some modal difficulties to iron out.)


One final point. Even if my consciousness were to be recreated in another container in some other time, there are some questions of sense involved. Would that container remember being me? It's not entirely clear which would be the most appropriate me for it to be. I don't remember having lived before, so if it remembers having lived before, then it is not me. Likewise, if it does not have my memories of this life, it also is not me. So the very real question is, what do you mean when you say that "I" am reincarnated. It's not immediately clear you can even make sense of it. (This problem also occurs in other contexts, including Star Trek. It's hypothesized that one day we will be able to digitize the relevant aspects of a person and broadcast that information to distant stars, where it will be used to create duplicates of ourselves. What the 'personhood' of those duplicates would be is unclear. Let's suppose we need a lot of technicians, so we create 1,000 copies of the best technician's template we can obtain. How do we treat them?)


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#14
RE: Reincarnation of the consciousness is inevitable
OK, argument disproven, but I'll try to respond where I can to help explain how I came to this better.

(September 14, 2012 at 2:08 pm)genkaus Wrote: Your premise 2 is incorrect. For "everything that can possibly come to pass" to come to pass more than once, it must itself be finite. If time is infinite and "everything that can possibly come to pass" is also infinite, then there is no need to repetition.

To simplify, you are assuming that while time itself is infinite, the total number of events that can take place are finite and therefore, at some point, they must be repeated. Well, first of all, there is no basis for assuming that the number of events is finite. And secondly, even if the number of events were finite, it's still not necessary that all of them must be repeated. Perhaps some of them are repeated infinitely while others occur just once. Therefore, your conclusions C2 and C3 are wrong and there is no reason to assume reincarnation.
In an infinite amount of time it's IMPOSSIBLE for everything to not occur infinitely, even if that everything is also infinitely varied. If there's an infinite amount of time, I would say it IS necessary that all of them must be repeated. Infinity isn't a finite number, so we can't treat it in the same way.

(September 14, 2012 at 2:08 pm)Cthulhu Dreaming Wrote: C1 does not logically follow from P1. As written, C1 is a bare assertion. It seems you may be thinking that the second clause of P1 is self-evident - if that's the case, then you're basically affirming the consequent.

The first part of your argument is invalid. As the latter part is dependent on the first, I haven't bothered with it.

In addition P1 is so awkwardly worded that I would scrap it and start over.
The whole syllogism is badly worded because I was originally going to write it as a paragraph but quickly transferred it into this format before posting.

How am I "affirming the consequent"? To me it is self evident that time cannot have had a beginning because the whole notion of a beginning rests upon the premise of there being a before and after the event. If there is no before the event then there can be no start of the event.

(September 14, 2012 at 2:14 pm)Ace Otana Wrote:
(September 14, 2012 at 1:22 pm)automaton Wrote: and also the thought of "no time" just doesn't feel right to me.

There was no 'before' the big bang. Time did not exist.
Most popular theories that I know of that are widely supported go against this notion (i.e. string theory). Either way, if you say time did not exist before the big bang then you come to the same problem that I demonstrated in response to the above post.

(September 14, 2012 at 2:16 pm)Haydn Wrote: Reminds me of that 1 million virtual mokeys randomly recreating the works of Shakespeare (given the right amount of time).
I agree an infinate amount of time creates an infinate amount of possibilitys , but re-incarnate our own conciousness?
Even if a infinate amount of time eventually created a (virtually) identical galaxy , identical Earth and then sunsequently creating humans and one of those humans turned out just like you (DNA , life experiences , the lot) , it wouldn't be you. It would be something that turned out identical by chance. So no , i don't think your conciousness can be re-incarnated , this way , or any other.
Fair enough, this reminds me of what someone else said in response to a similar question. He used the analogy of a coin, where if the coin is flipped and lands on heads every time, it's the same coin but it's a completely different occurrence (due to changing conditions). However, my point is that if time is TRULY infinite then there will come a point (and an infinite amount of points) where the conditions are EXACTLY the same, nothing at all is different in the universe, not even to the fraction of an atom. At this point, with the same matter, why will it not be "me"? I don't think you're fully realising the extent of infinity. It's not probability, it's certainty.

(September 14, 2012 at 2:21 pm)Tobie Wrote: I doubt a lot of modern physics would be around if we rejected theories because they didn't "feel right". I mean come on, waves that can also be particles? Diffracting electrons? The Uncertainty principle? Relativity? Tunelling? To quote a Theoretical Physics Professor I met; "It's just screwy!".
Yeah but what I meant by "feel right" was mainly that I can't logically conceive of it. That's different to those things you listed because, whilst wacky, it doesn't defy what I have (supposedly, though it will probably be disputed after this post) demonstrated to be analytic logic. It's analytic logic because to imply a start of time is internally incoherent.

(September 14, 2012 at 2:43 pm)liam Wrote: Your syllogism is bad and you should feel bad.
I don't feel bad for creating a "bad" syllogism. If it's bad and it gets proven wrong then it's something that I can learn from. If I had truly created a fool-proof, a priori argument using deductive reasoning that demonstrated reincarnation to be true, I'm pretty sure my name would be in a book somewhere, lol.

(September 14, 2012 at 3:11 pm)Chuck Wrote: Define "Time". Define what is meant by "Time Starting". Define what is meant by there "Being time"

Why could there be no point in "time" for which time could start? For that matter why could there be no point in "time" for which time could end?
If you want a true definition of physical time then you'd be better speaking to a physicist. I believe I've already stated why I thought that time cannot have a beginning or an end. This is because it seems to me that it is an analytic truth that time cannot have a "before", because the whole notion of "before" implies a TIME before. There needs to be a before for there to be an event of "starting".




Quote:Even if time is infinite (by some definition), the laws of Thermal dynamics as we understand them are not thereby undone. Entropy in the universe will still never again return to the level they had assumed at any point in time we can describe. Therefore it is not reasonable to expect everything that could happen could as easily, or could at all, happen again. Indeed one hypothesis for the eventual fate of the universe is attainment of the state in which nothing at all, whether it has happened before or not, could ever happen again. In this case time can never again be marked by succession of events, so time may not end, but its progress will never again be measurable. It's called the heat death of the Universe.

OK this is the only thing that I can't even really attempt to answer, bravo. I could respond by simply restating that if time is truly infinite surely something will have to happen, perhaps from a source external to the current universe, that triggers something. But of course that's supposition and a weak argument.

So far the only actual problem with my argument that I can see is that it's not necessarily reasonable to assume that when time is infinite, there has to be infinite recurrences of infinite things.


So, with that out the way, if possible, I'd like to debate some more the idea of a "finite" time being internally incoherent.
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#15
RE: Reincarnation of the consciousness is inevitable
(September 14, 2012 at 4:54 pm)Chuck Wrote: He meant if another entity were to arise that would, by his definition, be sufficiently similar to him, then he would have been reincarnated.


This is just like saying a totally demolished car is reincarnated if another just like it comes off the assembly lines.
That's not reincarnation.

A clone, identical twin or doppelgänger is not you, they are not the original.
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#16
RE: Reincarnation of the consciousness is inevitable
(September 14, 2012 at 4:54 pm)Chuck Wrote: He meant if another entity were to arise that would, by his definition, be sufficiently similar to him, then he would have been reincarnated.


This is just like saying a totally demolished car is reincarnated if another just like it comes off the assembly lines.

Sorry for the double post, but I just wanted to clarify something, because a lot of you have posted something similar to this:

I had considered analogies of similar events. The difference is, that new car has completely different matter. In an infinite succession of recurrences and new occurrences the energy/matter that is in my current body will eventually be used in exactly the same way. It won't be new matter in the same function, it will be the SAME matter in the same function.
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#17
RE: Reincarnation of the consciousness is inevitable
(September 14, 2012 at 5:58 pm)automaton Wrote: I had considered analogies of similar events. The difference is, that new car has completely different matter. In an infinite succession of recurrences and new occurrences the energy/matter that is in my current body will eventually be used in exactly the same way. It won't be new matter in the same function, it will be the SAME matter in the same function.
That's not the way matter or biological matter, for that matter, works.

You are not the same you seven years ago. Nearly every atom in your body, every cell is replaced. Merely the memory of the previous formation/sequence/occurrence lingers.
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#18
RE: Reincarnation of the consciousness is inevitable



I'm tempted to bring up the concept of dependent origination from Buddhism, but this thread is already messed enough as it is.


Oh no! I just did! What's that swirling vortex of darkness coming down from the sky!?



You, the thread owner, need to think more deeply about what it means to be a me, or a self, and whether that concept makes sense in all the relevant contexts. (The ship of Theseus paradox has already been touched on, but that's a good start. The Buddhists have a concept, anatman, and the doctrine of Anatta, in which there is no enduring "self thing" to be recreated; examining Buddhist doctrine may not provide answers, but Buddhist defenses of Anatta, say on arguments about the five skhandas is a good place to look for missteps that have already been outlined.) I specialize in philosophy of mind, and from what my limited exploration has uncovered, there is no well founded theory of what constitutes a self. (Not including my own theory, which may or mar not be well founded.)

So it's not even clear that there is even a coherent concept of 'self' to which the process of reincarnation would apply, or at least not one that's well known.


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#19
RE: Reincarnation of the consciousness is inevitable
(September 14, 2012 at 2:14 pm)Ace Otana Wrote:
(September 14, 2012 at 1:22 pm)automaton Wrote: and also the thought of "no time" just doesn't feel right to me.

There was no 'before' the big bang. Time did not exist.

We don't, and can't, know that to be fair.

Did the big bang come from a singularity or from a big crunch of a previous universe? Or something else? No way of knowing is there.

(September 14, 2012 at 4:43 pm)Welsh cake Wrote: How can the consciousness be reincarnated if death is the end of it and oblivion is eternal? Undecided

Consciousness I don't think can be re-incarnated - well I'm pretty much as sure as I can be - because it's obviously a function of a living brain. So I'm in agreement that once the lights go out, it's oblivion for ever.

The bigger question for me is why do I experience my consciousness and nobody else's? Why am I me? There are billions of consciousnesses right now and will continue to be...maybe I'll experience another one just like I'm experiencing this one, once this consciousness ends?

Except it wouldn't be me, obviously.

Oh I dunno ROFLOL
You are currently experiencing a lucky and very brief window of awareness, sandwiched in between two periods of timeless and utter nothingness. So why not make the most of it, and stop wasting your life away trying to convince other people that there is something else? The reality is obvious.

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#20
RE: Reincarnation of the consciousness is inevitable
(September 14, 2012 at 7:13 pm)Norfolk And Chance Wrote: The bigger question for me is why do I experience my consciousness and nobody else's?

Take your stinking paws off my consciousness, you damned dirty ape!


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