Here’s a thought experiment: scientists find a way to map all the information embedded in your brain, including all neuronal connections and so on. You have a fatal disease. You die. You are cremated along with your brain. But the digital replica of it exists on a hard drive, and is one day, in whatever form, brought back to life. Is that You?
In fact, if that is done to a parent of yours, and you are told they are now on your laptop and can interact with you, will you still respect them?
If that’s a deceased loved one, will you still love her? Is she a person to you? How can you tell?
Our sense of self, quite clearly, is a product of the brain. But if a brain is intact and the body is not, does the self still exist?
This is a stray thought brought about by this news about scientists having found a way to reanimate a dead pig’s brain. Suppose you ate the pig. Did you really eat it?