The teleportation question which I'm sure most of you have researched,

If I replicate you atom for atom, which one of them will be you?

The issue of materialistic basis for consciousness posits a paradox in this scenario. If consciousness is a pure function of your body+environment system, that can easily be replicated in simulation or with real matter, and that should also have lights go on in the duplicate body. The question is, why is it that when lights to go on in the second body, they are not your lights and something that you can see as out there. If consciousness is really matter derived, and matter derived structures can be replicated, you should be a floating awareness localised within two bodies now. If that isn't the case, then you have to accept that it is not just matter that is the ingredient of consciousness.

The solution, if we have to stick with materialism, is to give ontological reality of emotions and assign the attribute of self to it. For instance: It is meaningless to say sadness exists without there being someone sad. Emotion is a phenomenon that necessitates a feeler. This person, who feels, may also feel self-awareness as an emotion. This emotion would be aware of itself. Sadness would be aware of itself. If emotions are objectively real, then it's only a matter of time that brains reach a configuration nearing to sadness.

By doing so, we have eliminated the need for an agent that feels, sees, hears, smells. The emotions themselves are what happens, like physical processes, ultimately pointing towards no need for a constant agent that does the observing. Assuming the self-awareness of qualia, we can explain the self and also explain why it is unitary in the event of replication because like particles, they assume coordinates in space-time.

What do you think? Is this a satisfactory model?

  • The solution is that this is a pseudo-question, "which you is you" is an external attribution decided by convention. Which our descendants will work out if they manage such replication based on their social needs, like assigning property rights, etc. There is no need for any "floating awareness", you can have multiple identical "awarenesses" just as you can have multiple identical shapes. "Which circle is the true circle?" is a nonsensical question, unless we decide to designate one of them as the reference for some practical reason.
    – Conifold
    Feb 18, 2020 at 21:57
  • @Conifold my point being exactly what you mention, I too am of the opinion it is absurd to speak which you is you. The concept of self isn't replicated by replicating the body. Perception might be equal, a third person could claim confidently that their subjective qualia is similar, yet when it comes to consciousness, you are still you. Your awareness hasn't suddenly been doubled to of two bodies.
    – Weezy
    Feb 19, 2020 at 5:43
  • @Conifold if we agree a person's subjective awareness (and not his perceptual apparatus) experience in this time and space is not irreproducible but we also want to be able to preserve the notion that there are really two identical people with exactly the same memories and morals, then the only solution remains is to reject the reality of the 'self' and assign qualia themselves as a self observing phenomenon to solve the problem of 'how qualia is experienced'.
    – Weezy
    Feb 19, 2020 at 5:48
  • This is not the only solution, and not the simpler one physicalists suggest. "Awareness" is just an alternative description of some brain states, like wave shapes are of states of water, and is replicated along with the states it supervenes on. We can keep the "self" and "you being you" without reifying qualia into some independent existence. The replicated "self" will have the same "continuity of experience" with prior "you" as the "original", there will be no difference between them except spatial location.
    – Conifold
    Feb 19, 2020 at 5:58
  • That last line doesn't imply a multiplication of awareness? The "new" me sure will experience a sudden jump into being, but you include the memory of changing spatial location as well => implying that the "new" me was aware of "prior me" before replication. So now we have two entities experiencing the same memories. However I'm not talking about perception again. I'm concerned about preserving the status of the subject in this procedure. I acknowledge perception is exactly replicable, but you just don't seem to agree that there is something that doesn't undergo replication.
    – Weezy
    Feb 19, 2020 at 6:45


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