Originally Posted by Typo
This is wrong. How could anything be only partly aware of its own existence?
Plenty of people are making very good arguments on both sides in this thread. Like so many other big questions, ultimately I don't think any of us will ever know the definite answer.
I'm just making a very simple point that can be applied to this or any other question. NOTHING can be yes/no, either/or. Once you set up two poles to reference, and try to understand ANYTHING, you become aware of everything that lies between them. For example, take day and night: They're opposites, and at some point one turns into the other. But is it a sudden on/off switch between the two? No, there's a whole, slow transition from one to its opposite. Or take colors: Exactly where does blue turn into purple? Half way? Sounds logical, but different people see colors differently, and will place that mid point differently.
Or let's take something more difficult, like LIFE. That seems easy at first glance; you're either dead or alive, right? Nothing really between them, is there? But there is. And once you look past the simple on/off of it, you see there's a whole range of properties to life. A baby is fresh, brand-new. It's flexible, its skin glows, it has inexhaustible energy to cry until it's fed or comforted. But an old person is inflexible, dry, brittle, easily exhausted by the slightest thing. It's parts are failing and at some point will
fail. But again, where exactly do you draw the line? Sure, you can say "well, the person is dead when their life processes stop." Yeah, but they've been in the process
of stopping for a long time before they do stop completely. And going back to the baby, exactly at what point did it cross from no-life to life?
It might sound New Age-y and all that, but it's nonetheless true. The philosophical idea dates back thousands of years, but it's borne out by cutting-edge quantum theories.
So I'm not "wrong". I might
be wrong. I might be right
. I might be both at the same time. Who knows? Not me. All I know is that, every time I find an answer, it only creates another question.