RE: Rationalizing qualia-based morality

From: Ben Goertzel (
Date: Sat Feb 14 2004 - 13:05:12 MST


I agree that given two universes that are identical in every other way, the
one with a better positive/negative qualia balance wins.

I also agree that given two universes with equal amounts of choice and
growth, the one with a better positive/negative qualia balance wins.

"Agree" here means in terms of my own ethic of Voluntary Joyous Growth.

So generally, agree that eliminating negative qualia and increasing positive
ones is important. However, to me this is one among a number of goals to be
balanced against each other, not the sole and ultimate goal.

-- Ben G

> -----Original Message-----
> From: []On Behalf Of
> Metaqualia
> Sent: Saturday, February 14, 2004 8:06 AM
> To:
> Subject: Rationalizing qualia-based morality
> I have started to notice that most arguments about my qualia
> based morality
> arise on the positive qualia side (is orgasmium better than
> heaven on earth
> etc.) None have emerged on the negative qualia side. Which is quite all
> right because we are not in a very good situation on the average and
> limiting losses has the priority over pure hedonism. Whatever
> transhuman AI
> is finally created, if the creators are not unfriendly it will probably
> allow freedom to continue, and with freedom the possibility to
> discover the
> best form of absolute good will exist, so it may not be for us to
> choose if
> paradise A is better than paradise B.
> For now, I will be satisfied if we can agree that limiting negative qualia
> in sentient beings is an inherently worthwhile goal. If we can agree that
> "limiting negative qualia" is a better, more general principle
> than "do not
> sleep with your brother's wife" then I am even more satisfied. If we can
> stop using "human" in our definitions of good and replace that with
> "whatever sentient even remotely looks like it has first-person
> experiences
> which produce similar states to human reported qualia, according
> to bleeding
> edge scientific knowledge at the time of measurement" then even better.
> mq

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