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Having Pat in your head doesn't feel like a separately identifyable agent process that I can just discard, it just feels like typical hyper-self-awareness where you think of these status trespassers Eliezer-2010 as cornball or cringey like a Kanye West figure. Status regulation is an important part of my personality it makes me seem more authentic and likeable to others and it's a trait I find attractive in others.

I would also add that a big part of the Pat problem is motivation/energy. It's more comfortable to believe the Pat narrative, it requires less work. I too find his talk of the "outside view" tedious though and I don't particularly believe him to be right. Hopefully by identifying him, something can be done.

Great post once again, when I was younger I was a hedgehog, when I got older and started reading the sequences I strove for complete foxhood and have been using exactly some of these "modest epistemology" arguments although a much weaker version that I couldn't really formalize. This has been very helpful in clarifying things to myself and seeing the weaknesses of the latter approach. One criticism, why bring up Republicans, I'm not even a Republican and I sort of recoiled at that part.

I think you're smuggling the gunman into evolution. I can come up with good evolutionary reasons why people talk about God despite him not existing, but I can't come up with good evolutionary reasons why people talk about consciousness despite it not existing. It's too verbose to go into detail, but I think if you try to distinguish the God example and the consciousness example you'll see that the one false belief is in a completely different category from the other.

forced to type certain combinations of letters at gunpoint

Except there can't be a gunman in the zombie universe if it's the same as ours (unless... that explains everything!). This essay is trying to convince you that there's no way you can write about consciousness without something real causing you to write about consciousness. Even a mistaken belief about consciousness has to come from somewhere. Try now to imagine a zombie world with no metaphorical gunman and see what comes up.

I'm curious to see if this convinces Bryan Caplan & Sam Harris.

Everyone claims these days that canonical "literalism" is a recent phenomenon. It's said about Islam especially and now this comment claims it about Judaism. I've also heard this about the Greek religions (there's a book called 'Did the Ancients believe in their myths'). Is this really true? Or is this some kind of post-modern thing where everyone is trying to prove how much "wiser" our ancestors were as if they weren't literal idiots.

I think the common sense intuition is that literalism&fundamentalism must have been more prevalent in the past, but I'm willing to update if anyone can demonstrate some kind of trend in any of these religions.

I just read most of Signal and the Noise, and he brings up Overcoming Bias and interviewed Robin Hanson, and then his next chapter is about being "less wrong" (he specifically and repeatedly uses this phrase) when using bayesian reasoning. Is this a coincidence?

Ironically it's much more likely that gays are just bisexuals in denial.

Nope, MWI is still simpler. The Copenhagen version simply introduces a magical flying spaghetti monster that eats up all the other unobserved configuration spaces faster than light, non-unitarily, etc. That's not really what you would call an "explanation" of the Born probabilities, it's just a magical black box. Many Worlds proponents just say upfront that we don't really know why our experience matches the Born probabilities (and neither does Copenhagen), so it subtracts the FSM from the total complexity. Therefore O(MWI) < O(single-world theories).

Can't believe this got three upvotes on lesswrong.

Derren Brown doesn't use "psychological techniques" for his tricks. They are just tricks plain and simple. Either this was a confederate, or he repeated it until he got the result he wanted. His whole schtick is to pretend to be using "NLP" or some mind trick, when in reality it's your old fashion I've-got-a-camera-looking-at-your-answer trick. He's pretty upfront about this in his books.

The genius of it is that precisely by not pretending to be "magic", he actually draws in a sophisticated audience who genuinely thinks he's using psychological mind games. Precisely by eliminating his status as an omniscient magical guru, he gains status as an intuitive social genius which is more impressive for a modern audience.

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