Re: virus: Re:virtuality

Alex Williams (
Mon, 30 Dec 1996 10:32:50 -0500 (EST)

> That would be a terrible situation to be in. To commit any act which relied
> on the world being virtual would be the biggest gamble of your "life" :)
> I would, personally, be incapable of such an action. The only point at
> which the meme-structure would be altered by the existance of this
> virtual world would be if there were conclusive proof that it does exist
> and that the "real" world is in no way affected by actions inside this
> virtuality.

For that kind of proof you'd have to have something /extremely/
persuasive and that you couldn't late be convinced was self-delusion
or hallucination. I'm not sure that kind of proof /could/ be given to

> But what is pain? Pain isn't dangerous, it's a life saving mechanism.
> IT's merely a firing of nerves and neurons which you interpret as pain.
> It's the physical damage that pain is caused by which is dangerous,
> and without pain many serious injuries my be ignored. If the pain is
> real, but the damage is not, then it does not make any difference to the
> alteration of the meme-structure.

So, you don't mind torturing someone on the rack or punishing their
flesh with agony as long as it doesn't leave any marks? Somehow I get
the feeling that's not what you meant to communicate ...

> That's all based on faith though, and I could not act under such circumstances.

How do /you/ know its based on faith, though? Perhaps they really
/were/ visited by angels, taken up into heaven and sat at the feet of
Jesus while He patiently explained why the sinners have to be cleansed
by hot lead injections. We don't know, moreover, we /can't/ know,
even if it happened to you or I directly because there's still the
chance its delusion or hallucination. You see my point?

> I think I should make clear at this point that I do not necessarily believe
> that we live in a virtual world, only that *if* we did, then this is
> what I /think/ would happen.

Even if it suddenly became widely known we live in a completely
virtual world, I don't think you'd see much difference after 35 -
50yrs. Everyone that would run rampant would get killed off or go
into hiding and the rest would decide `real or not, I'm here I might
as well get by.'