Hi there! I wanted to re-open a question that was posted a couple of years ago, by probing a bit further. This is what "Mario" asked [http://www.askphilosophers.org/question/1142]:
"Does the individual consciousness depend on the actual atoms or only on the configuration of the atoms? Suppose we have mastered cryo-freezing and atom-manipulation technology. We can freeze and unfreeze people at will. We freeze Sarah. We replace Sarah's atoms one by one. With all atoms replaced, we wake her up. Is it the "same" Sarah? (the same to herself, not just to us)."
I'd like to add that I recently heard that over a few years, every single cell in our bodies is replaced, except for a few memory cells that last much longer. But given during our lives, we WILL eventually be composed of different atoms to those with which we started, and that it is generally agreed that we nevertheless remain the same "people"/"consciousnesses" throughout, where does that leave us?
If it means that it must be structure/organization of matter that solely determines "me"/"my consciousness"...what if someone created a copy of me with exactly the same structure? It seems I can't be two people at once, so if it's not actual atoms that determines "me", and it's not the configuration of them, what on earth am "I"??
:) Thanks, Holly M.