Memory and identity: introduction – OU Boundaries philosophy series (3/7)

Memory and identity: introduction – OU Boundaries philosophy series (3/7)


What is it that makes me, me. Even though
now I’m not much like the child that once was the simple answer is that I’m
an animal with a genetic inheritance from my parents and ancestors and I’ve
been shaped by the things that have happened to me and of course if I would
have chosen to do but plenty of people think there’s a core self something
unchanging behind this a soul maybe back in the 18th century when most
people believed in immortal souls David Hume who is my favorite philosopher tried to find the self lurking behind all his experiences the thing that made
him, him. but he couldn’t Religious philosophers like Bishop Butler for example was certain they had direct experience to their own soul but try as he might him couldn’t find it all he could discover was a succession
of fleeting experiences, perceptions, memories, and so on, nothing permanent
behind it all for my part when I enter most intimately
into what I call myself I always stumble on some particular perception or other
how could I call it… light or shade love or hatred pain or pleasure I never can
catch myself at any time without a perception and never can observe
anything but the perception. Memory seems to hold my life together he joins the fleeting
impressions make sense of it a bit John Locke writing in the 17th century was
really worried about what the self was that’s partly because he and most of his
contemporaries believed that self would survive death but in what sense could somebody be the same person after death? after all it’s
not even obvious that we remain the same person as we get older. Given that we
changed so much over time I suppose it’s clear that I’m the same biological human
being I was when I was a child like all animals were born we develop physically we get decrepit and eventually we die a lot thought that being the same human being was different from being the same person so if you do forget everything you might still be the same animal but you surely wouldn’t be the same person you once were because it’s the continuity of our memory the links past with present and makes us the same person not our body so if you lose your memory your
past is no longer your past but if your past is no longer a part of you now are
you nevertheless still responsible for the things you did back then this matters because we still do have to decide whether or not people remain
morally responsible for things they did years ago or if they were concentration
camp guards is it still right to prosecute people like this for something
they can hardly remember Locke had a simple answer for him memory is the key memory gives us personal identity its memory that makes us what we are despite
all the physical changes so if you completely forget something you did then as far as Locke was concerned you’d no longer be morally responsible for it. God would only punish people for the sins they remembered committing it’s a
consequence of Locke’s view that you could be the same person in a completely
different body lock thought about this and he imagined a prince waking up with a cobbler’s memories and the cobbler waking up with the prince’s memories if the prince turned out to be a serial killer. then it should be the one with the prince’s memories and the cobbler’s body
they should be punished at least in God’s eyes actually I don’t agree with
Locke but if I could transfer all my memories to another brain and a cloned body perhaps will that carry on existing if I could then that would mean I could
survive bodily death but how will we ever find out the great surrealist
filmmaker Luis Buñuel wrote you have to begin to lose your memory if only in
bits and pieces to realize that memory is what makes our lives. Life without
memory is no life at all.

10 thoughts on “Memory and identity: introduction – OU Boundaries philosophy series (3/7)

  1. Silly mechanical wiev.
    Its like describing quantum physics by newtonian laws.
    Its the same problem as of predestination vs free will.
    The solution is obvious when youre looking holistically, not on world in time, but on world and time from over-timespace-perspective.

    If u want to see a picture, you wont see it as a dot on paper, but youre able to see it above the paper on whitch is the picture.
    From dots perspective, all we can do is to model the reality, whitch is not needed from above.

  2. it means i will not be held responsible for some thing i have done if i have forgot that..i dont think it is correct…do what you want then forget that and you will be free..i dont think it is right

  3. How does it answer my question anyway? At the end he said "Life without memory is no life at all", thats why i asked. I realise that human and plants are somewhat different ūüėÄ

  4. We can only tell who we are by our interactions with others, without other people around to react to us we would never know about our personality type. Just like a mirror in the dark, you need the light and objects to reflect back in order to adjust things how you want them, or want other people to perceive you. We have no 'self' without other people to give us the social feedback to tell us what we are, which is ever changing.

  5. 4:50 "Life without memory, is no life at all"

    I question that.
    The whole universe exists independently of memory. Another issue, memory is not intelligence at all. Memory by itself is mechanical, repetitive and limit. Our life is mechanical, repetitive and not intelligent. If we look to the human existence, we well see a great mess. For me, these things are facts. By the way, I would like to share this video:
    Krishnamurti – La naturaleza del tiempo (1 de 3)

  6. this is horrible even for (perhaps particularly for) general dissemination of coherent thought on the topics of self (and memory).  For a person who has Hume as his favorite philosopher, he should familiarize himself (or at least note) that Hume's bundle theory (the quote he references and audio plays) was something Hume himself had serious concerns about and noted in his appendices.

    Regardless, the stipulated relations of self and memory (among other weakly engaged arguments) are strikingly simplistic, at odds with empirical research, and not overly coherent.

    Just stop it.

  7. What about Alzheimer's? And filling in the gaps of lost memory with replacement or unconsciously self-invented memories? Apparently, healthy individuals do this without intentionally meaning to all the time.

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