RE: many worlds theory of immortality

From: Brent Meeker <>
Date: Fri, 15 Apr 2005 16:13:30 -0000

>-----Original Message-----
>From: Stathis Papaioannou []
>Sent: Friday, April 15, 2005 7:02 AM
>Subject: RE: many worlds theory of immortality
>Jonathan Colvin writes:
>>While I'm a supporter of Tegmark's Ultimate Ensemble, I think it is by no
>>means clear that just because everything that can happen does happen, there
>>will necessarily be a world where everyone becomes omniscient, or lives for
>>ever, or spends their entire life dressed in a pink rabbit outfit.
>>"Everything that can happen does happen" is not synonymous with "everything
>>we can imagine happening does happen". Worlds where we live forever or
>>become omniscient or are born dressed in a pink rabbit suit may not be
>>*logically possible* worlds. Just as there is no world in the multiverse
>>where 2+2=5, there may be no worlds in the multiverse where I live forever
>>or spend my entire life dressed in a pink rabbit suit.
>>Jonathan Colvin
>I don't see this at all. It is not logically possible that there is a world
>where 2+2=5 (although there are lots of worlds where everyone shares the
>delusion that 2+2=5, and for that matter worlds where everyone shares the
>delusion that 2+2=4 while in actual fact 2+2 does equal 5), but how is it
>logically impossible that you live your whole life in a pink rabbit suit? If
>anything, I would rate such worlds as at least on a par with the ones where
>pigs fly, and certainly more common than the ones where Hell freezes over.
>--Stathis Papaioannou

But what does "logically possible" mean? Logic is just some rules to prevent
us from contradicting ourselves. Is it logically possible that, "Quadruplicity
preens cantatas."? Is it logically possible that the same object be both red
and green? Once you get beyond direct contradiction (e.g. "Quadruplicity does
*not* preen cantatas") you have to invoke semantics and some kind of
"nomologically possible". Then, so far as anyone knows, we're back to
"physically possible" and even that is ill defined. The whole concept of
"possible", beyond narrowly defined circumstances, is so ambiguous as to be

Brent Meeker
"The life of the law has not been logic, but experience".
   --- Oliver Wendell Holmes
Received on Fri Apr 15 2005 - 20:07:06 PDT

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