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What is the Self?
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Posted 12/7/06
Oh! Philosophy papers sure are difficult. I had to do a small one on Kant Why is it that some philosophers have great ideas but stink at getting them across in paper?
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Posted 12/7/06
Hopefully I get a rough draft done sometime sat. Yea, what do you think, next thread when I'm done finals about the unimportance of philosophy.

I asked for this book among several others for Christmas. Probably half the stuff is avaialbe on line, but nice to have the book in your hands and on the shelf later. http://www.us.oup.com/us/catalog/general/subject/Philosophy/?view=usa&ci=0199247285
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Posted 12/7/06
I just bought "A theory of Justice" by John Rawls.

too many eye avatars, but certainly much better than the last one.
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Posted 12/7/06
Yea were both reading books from the 70s, but I suppose thats better then a bible. >_>

P.S. obnoxious avatars are a statement for ALLC, association for liberation of longcats on crunchyroll.
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Posted 12/8/06
WOW O_o okay this is my... preface I suppose to a longer post I'll make later after I've read all the links/other posts more carefully, because as a lot of other people said this is a very complex topic that requires a lot of study and thought.

My first impression of "self" is the person as a whole. The "self" encompasses every angle of a person, body, mind, experiences, memories, habits, everything. If one of those things are altered, which occurs very frequently perhaps as much as every millisecond, then you can't be the exact same person you were. It's like a cicada that sheds it's skin. It's the same insect, it just left behind a shell of itself. When you change whether it be physically or mentally, it's as if you just shed your former self, and are different yet the same. Because the changes are usually so gradual (with the exception of extraordinary events) they go unnoticed such as aging, so it doesn't effect the individual much until they remember the old "skin". The "skin" or self is almost indistinguishable from the self 1 second ago, but the differences exist. We only notice the change in our "self" when we compare a current to a very old self, or in the case of a sudden change such as epiphanies or injuries. As to what happens to the old self, I suppose in a sense it "dies" because that self ceases to exist, in this reality in any case. I don't know much about alternate realities though =P.
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Posted 12/8/06
"I suppose in a sense it "dies" because that self ceases to exist, in this reality"
That's a bit depressing if the person believes in the soul as the self because the person you are right now is not going to be the person who goes to Heaven.

hmm... no, that does not sound right. I need a break.
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Posted 12/8/06

mauz15 wrote:

"I suppose in a sense it "dies" because that self ceases to exist, in this reality"
That's a bit depressing if the person believes in the soul as the self because the person you are right now is not going to be the person who goes to Heaven.

hmm... no, that does not sound right. I need a break.


Well, if you believe in the soul and heaven, you would probably put your faith in the fact that God will remember all your good/bad deeds. Even if through some accident of amnesia, God would remember *shrugs*. Maybe the soul is what links us to our past selves?

EDIT: The more I think about that soul idea the more I like it. Perhaps the soul is our permanent record of our selves. Despite amnesia or anything else our soul remembers who we are and were... Well, now I'm thinking of the brain transplant idea and what that would do to our soul...hmm... maybe physical changes have no bearing on our selves. What is the body except a container for our soul/mind?
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Posted 12/8/06
The more ppl write, the more I think I should have made the title about persons rather then selves. For that matter whats the difference? These seem to be very tricky words to define and differentiate.

Well, put simply using the soul as the criteria for personal identity is rather unpopular among philosophers. First, it comes with a lot of metaphysical baggage. Second, you really can't work with it at all. Supposedly "the simple view" deserves more attention though. http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/identity-personal/

There are many potential things to comment on with doomaid's post, but I'll just focus on two aspects. 1) Self is a person as a whole. You want it all. Thought experiments such as switching brain/memory is meant to test the limits of what a person is. Thats what this is all about. Wanting it all I'm sure will lead to inconsistencies. So, then you would either want to take a more limited view of self, or deny some aspect of our theorizing. 2) you type the self is different, but the same. Offering more technical terms, you mean strict identity is not there, but ordinary identity is. I suppose there are severals ways to approach this, but I suppose It comes down to either admit to having two different conceptions of self(one is actually illusory perhaps), or give up one.
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Posted 12/9/06
I think the limited view would have just as many inconsistencies. Instead of people saying "well what if _____ happened?", people would question "How can you exclude this part of a person?"

That aside I do think the physical body can be eliminated as a part of ones true self. It just gives our selves a substancial form to exist in and express our selves through.
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Posted 12/25/06
Alright, I'm reviving this thread so hopefully you guys start thinking about this because it's an interesting question and because there is just too many game threads right now.

So, what is the self?
(and don't spam)

*Edit: lol, no one cares, oh well your loss.
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Posted 12/25/06
Self is generalized as who you and other people think you are? Well, these are just some thoughts from me so they might not be accurate: What most people think 'self' is who they are, or who other people think they are. So its very vague of what self is; just some thoughts, but if this is true then it would also mean 'self' is what you think of other people. Creating a chain of what people think 'self' is.I'm also thinking back to the cloning machine question on the first page, if you cloned yourself what would make you different? They look the same, so that definition of 'self' would work. What I think what forms 'self' is what makes you different: how you act, your thoughts, or personality. John Locke's idea, or theory of how self is formed, is that its based on consciousness. Which includes: awareness, self-awareness, conscience( or feelings that go against your morals), stream of consciousness, Husserl's phenomenology(individual's point of view), and intentionality. Which I think is probably true. I was reading this magazine about criminal minds, I guess this would have to do with intentionality, is that most of the violent offenders have higher levels of testosterone, which might cause them to gain less control over violent actions. I was looking at a chart about increase in violent offenders going to jail, it increased 5 percent a year for men, and 10 percent a year for women(their total numbers are still less, they usually commit non-violent crimes instead) . So intentionally might actually be decreasing over time in violent offenders. Also people who have brain defects also lose some intentionality. I would have to look into it, but I think its pretty accurate.

Well I guess in the end its all relative but I don't want to get into that. :D


More later if theirs time
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Posted 12/25/06
Glad you responded naruto9817

*Edit: Nice Naruto! keep editing that post!
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Posted 12/26/06
hmm..i think whut makes a person who they are is..umm..whut they see, think, experience, tha stuff around them i guess? things people learn about themselves and others..
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Posted 12/26/06
I'm going to edit this later.

I think that question really has no answer other than this " I think therefore I am" or something like that.

You can do all the research you want, write all the notes you want, still debate it and some even try to find an answer by answering different questions ( Hopefully that made sense ).

I was at this thread on another account and I can see you're asking this again but differently to get different responses and some one else it trying to revive it because this is an interesting thread.

The mind changes over time therefore you change over time, you're a different person today than you were yesterday.

That question really won't have an actual answer because people wonder about it all the time. At the end of the day it really depends on you; "you" have to make an answer on your own.

I'll come back with completely different answer than this.
Posted 12/26/06

ArtOfMind wrote:

I'm going to edit this later.

I think that question really has no answer other than this " I think therefore I am" or something like that.

You can do all the research you want, write all the notes you want, still debate it and some even try to find an answer by answering different questions ( Hopefully that made sense ).

I was at this thread on another account and I can see you're asking this again but differently to get different responses and some one else it trying to revive it because this is an interesting thread.

The mind changes over time therefore you change over time, you're a different person today than you were yesterday.

That question really won't have an actual answer because people wonder about it all the time. At the end of the day it really depends on you; "you" have to make an answer on your own.

I'll come back with completely different answer than this.


I agree and understand what you mean.

Kinda makes you wonder; what is a person ?


:h uh:
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