David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Inquiry 33 (1):39-68 (1990)
Imagine that you and a duplicate of yourself are lying unconscious, next to each other, about to undergo a complete step?by?step exchange of bits of your bodies. It certainly seems that at no stage in this exchange of bits will you have thereby switched places with your duplicate. Yet it also seems that the end?result, with all the bits exchanged, will be essentially that of the two of you having switched places. Where will you awaken? I claim that one and the same person possesses both bodies, occupies both places and will experience both awakenings, just as a person whose brain has been bisected must at once experience both of the unconnected fields of awareness, even though each of these will falsely appear to him as the entirety of his experience. I also claim that the more usual apparent boundaries of persons are as illusory as those in brain bisection; personal identity remains unchanged through any variation or multiplication of body or mind. In all conscious life there is only one person ? I ? whose existence depends merely on the presence of a quality that is inherent in all experience ? its quality of being mine, the simple immediacy of it for whatever is having experience. One powerful argument for this is statistical: on the ordinary view of personhood it is an incredible coincidence for you (though not for others) that out of 200,000,000 sperm cells the very one required on each occasion for your future existence was first to the egg in each of the begettings of yourself and all your ancestors. The only view that does not make your existence incredible, and that is not therefore (from your perspective) an incredible view, is that any conscious being would necessarily have been you anyway. It is a consequence that self?interest should extend to all conscious organisms
|Keywords||Experience Metaphysics Self Token Type|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
No references found.
Citations of this work BETA
Michael Hauskeller (2012). My Brain, My Mind, and I: Some Philosophical Assumptions of Mind-Uploading. International Journal of Machine Consciousness 4 (01):187-200.
Peter Cave (2011). With and Without Absurdity: Moore, Magic and McTaggart's Cat. Royal Institute of Philosophy Supplement 68 (68):125-149.
Similar books and articles
A. Minh Nguyen (2001). A Critique of Dretske's Conception of State Consciousness. Journal of Philosophical Research 26 (January):187-206.
Jenny Slatman (2011). The Meaning of Body Experience Evaluation in Oncology. Health Care Analysis 19 (4):295-311.
Eric Schwitzgebel (2000). How Well Do We Know Our Own Conscious Experience? The Case of Human Echolocation. Philosophical Topics 28 (5-6):235-46.
D. H. Mellor (1993). Nothing Like Experience. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 63:1-16.
L. Dempsey (2004). Conscious Experience, Reduction and Identity: Many Gaps, One Solution. Philosophical Psychology 17 (2):225-246.
Mark Rowlands (2008). From the Inside: Consciousness and the First-Person Perspective. International Journal of Philosophical Studies 16 (3):281 – 297.
Gregory M. Nixon (2010). From Panexperientialism to Conscious Experience: The Continuum of Experience. Journal of Consciousness Exploration and Research 1 (3):216-233.
Joseph K. Schear (2009). Experience and Self-Consciousness. Philosophical Studies 144 (1):95 - 105.
Zenon Pylyshyn (2004). The Illusion of Explanation: The Experience of Volition, Mental Effort, and Mental Imagery. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 27 (5):672-673.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads105 ( #13,265 of 1,410,540 )
Recent downloads (6 months)7 ( #32,886 of 1,410,540 )
How can I increase my downloads?