Re: Everything is Just a Memory

From: Russell Standish <>
Date: Mon, 17 Jan 100 15:41:36 +1100 (EST)

Fritz Griffith wrote:

> I'd like to hear just one good reason why you are dismissing these ideas.
> You seem to have a lot of ignorance towards solipsism (whatever exactly that
> is), yet you don't give any reasons why. As best as I can understand, you
> think my ideas are crossing too far into philosophical territory, where
> nothing gets accomplished. This often happens when too many assumptions are
> made. I took the opposite approach, however; I made no assumptions, and
> used logic and reasoning to draw my conclusions. Please point out just
> where this theory goes wrong.

Bruno pointed out why solipsism is a sterile philosophy, so I won't
need to go into that. The reason I was comparing your ideas to that,
was based on an interpretation of your discussion. I can see your
ideas have been refined away from the initial extreme position in
discussion with James Higgo.

In its extreme position, you are saying that only one observer moment
exists, all else are but memories connected to this. This is
solipsism, as no other point of view can exist, nor is there even any
process, except in memory.

In your slightly less extreme versions, you affirm that all observer
moments exist, but are not connected in any way to each
other. Therefore, you should just expect to find yourself at one
observer moment, one of the most likely according to the ASSA. The
problem with this is what is the practical difference between this
point of view and the extreme position above, except that you've
answered the question of why this observer-moment, and not some
other. In particular, there is no time for you to interact with the
universe and find out about other observer-moments - you only have
memories. I would label this as "neo-solipsism".

Finally, you could assume that one is sampling the observer moment
distribution, as a sequence embedded in some external time
dimension. This view was deemed repugnant by Jacques when I suggested
it. It presumably is rejected because it introduces the very concept
(that of time) that you want to get rid of. In any case it presents a
problem of how a conscious entity can make a coherent sense of the universe.

As I have stated elsewhere in this discussion list (and in my Occam
paper) I believe instead that time should be elevated to a fundamental
postulate of conscious - without time consciousness can't exist, and
time provides a means for linking observer moments. Conscious entities
project out sequences of observer moments from the plenitude, these
sequences defining connections between them.

I take these postulates of consciousness (that of projection and of
time) to be true, just as I accept the Church thesis to be true. If
someone could come up with a convincing counterexample of how
consciousness could work in another way, then I will need to revisit
these assumptions.

Dr. Russell Standish Director
High Performance Computing Support Unit,
University of NSW Phone 9385 6967
Sydney 2052 Fax 9385 6965
Room 2075, Red Centre
Received on Sun Jan 16 2000 - 20:38:03 PST

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