The full self-ownership principle – FSO from now on – is known as a core libertarian principle. It is expressed throughout appealing to the concept of full self-ownership of individuals and guaranteeing them a stringent set of exclusive rights to the control and use over themselves as persons, their bodies, abilities, labour and use of their time.
Healthy longevity technology is aiming to provide biomedical tools to expand the healthy and maximum lifespans of people as much as possible.
Amongst peoples supporting healthy longevity many are libertarians, and several actually see libertarianism as a good (if not the best) ideological fit to support healthy longevity technology.
Biological aging is agings underneath, the result of multiple, separate, diverse, interconnected, but malleable processes, eventually compromising normal functions of the organism at different rates and at all levels.
Imagine philosophy being a city, Philosophy City. It’s not specified how big this city should be, use your existing experience. All the residents are philosophers, this is not a dismal condition if you think about all those philosophers who said everyone is doing philosophy at some points in their lives. Imagine then the citizens being all the people, at the time when doing philosophy. When they are not, they are elsewhere.
Today I would like to introduce a philosophical phenomenon that continue to surprise me to this day, so I still don’t have a settled theory about it. I’m hoping to reach at least a temporary solution though by writing about it. It is related to thought experimentation and offers at least 2 different ways to imagine ourselves being 572 years old and healthy.
Possible worlds and methodology: times, worlds and selves
To briefly put: possible worlds describe possible – largely, but not necessary spatiotemporal – situations that express of something being the case. Possible worlds are accessible from each other through an accessibility relation that can be defined various ways.
When I got back to the philosophical problems and project of healthy longevity in 2017, after defending my philosophy MS thesis about it in 2005 and spending the next long decade in science and bioinformatics, one of the first problems I encountered was that of distant self-imagination. This seemed to me as a core and also a well-defined problem that can be handled with the toolset of analytical philosophy quite well. I’ve found the relevant literature quick and thought and wrote a lot about it, to myself. Then, I realised there’s a relevant branch of psychological research looking into distant self-simulation with interesting results. What I came up with then, was a thought experiment that I turned into an actual little empirical survey as I’ve asked 4 different people (3 friends, 1 philosopher) to do a series of thought experiments. Here’s the informal slides I presented two them, without the results I typed into some tables during the interaction. 2 years later am now ready to write up the philosophical study in subsequent post and also am happy to report that I managed to find actual and great psychologists who have taken up on the idea and did a survey including hundreds of people. I presented some results in Brussels in 2018, and a paper is under peer review.