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Re: OT: Corpses, etc. (was: Re: Gender in conlangs (was: Re: Umlauts (was Re: Elves and Ill Bethisad)))

From:Andreas Johansson <andjo@...>
Date:Thursday, November 6, 2003, 22:39
Quoting Christopher Wright <faceloran@...>:

> Andreas Johansson palsalge > >Quoting John Cowan <cowan@...>: > > > >> Isidora Zamora scripsit: > >> > >> > Orthodox Christians do not > >> > cremate those who have fallen asleep for this very reason. It's not > that > >> > God cannot resurrect a body which has been completely destroyed, as by > >> > modern methods of cremation, because He can, but it is shows disrespect > to > >> > God to go to a great deal of trouble to destroy something that you know > He > >> > is planning to use again. > >> > >> It will be destroyed in any event, unless the general resurrection comes > >> within a century or so. > > > >This reminds me of one of the less convincing "proofs" that Christianity > must > >be false I've heard; a guy argued that the general resurrection would be an > >extremely messy affair, since alot of atoms are going to belong to multiple > >people's bodies. That, in turn, reminded me of Feynman's suggestion that > all > >electrons are _one_ electron, which goes back and forth in time (much like > >Marvin!). But back on the previous OT track, what this rises is the > question > >in what sense my body on two different occasion is "the same" (particularly > if > >I've been cremated and resurrected in between!). The actual material > >components of a body are not normally considered important for this kind of > >identity - over the last year, a big proportion of the atoms in my body has > >been replaced, but no-one would say I've acquired a new body in the process. > I > >can see no other conclusion that the identity - and there must be an > identity, > >if resurrection is to mean anything, and this whole discussion of course > >presupposes it does - rests rather in the "structure" or "organization" of > the > >body. But that is pretty fundamentally altered at death - I do not think > what > >it would be controversal to define the death of a multicellular creature as > >the cessation of the entire-body level organization. What all this leads to > is > >the question if cremating my body makes it meaningfully less "me" than > simple > >death. > > > >It of course also ties in to the sometimes advanced idea that after-life > >really is a simulation of sorts - if the structure/organization is the > >important thing, it makes little difference if it's realized as electrons > in > >God's laptop* or an as actual material body. Which raises the > counterquestions > >i) who's to say the present life isn't a simulation too, and ii) what > exactly > >is the difference between a simulation and a "reality"; both consist of a > >number of elements interacting according to some rules. > > It's simpler than that. You take any movement paradox you like and add the > caveat that time comes in discrete amounts--it's digital rather than analog. > Then you get many universes, each made of one "frame" of time. You get a new > universe every time. Thus, there are two methods of resurrecting people in > their own bodies: > > 1) Forge them. Just make new ones. Does the difference really matter? I've > had a billion times a billion bodies just writing this message.
I think I made it clear I was assuming that the difference does indeed matter.
> 2) Yank them out of an unused universe. Since that frame's already been > experienced, who needs it?
This seems to presuppose the existence of "external" time, the existence of which I cannot guarantee. Andreas