"[T]he process involves making a cut into DNA, it leaves the DNA somewhat vulnerable to mutations, so most cells use the process sparingly [... Studies suggest that in] mammals' brains [it happens] more than in any other area of the body — and Song’s group wanted to know why all this risky business was going on in such a vulnerable tissue as the brain."
Neurons do this, germ cells do this, immune cells do this, every cell in the body does this.
What's interesting here is the specific factor (Tet3), not the occurrence of epigenetic modification. The perils of science journalism, as usual.
Maybe it is not such a crazy idea. Code is data, after all (especially if our brains are written in LISP).
I'd wager white blood cells are a species apart, in this territory.
So, this raises the question of whether someone can seriously say: "I did something 15 years ago" - when many of the things that make up the human have been changed plus the person saying it is most likely making up a story about past(confabulation). What do you think?
Same variable, but the value stored changes over time.
Consider the human body to be like a variable. The value stored changes over time. When we use "I" in the present, we are talking about the "value" stored in our body in the present. When we use "I" in the past, we are talking about the value that was stored at a different time. That is how we can refer to systems that change over time using the same identifier - by treating them the same way we treat variables.
Only if you define "I" as something that doesn't match reality, just because people change doesn't mean they aren't still themselves. "I" doesn't refer to some ethereal unchanging thing, it merely refers to the self which is ever changing.
I see the self like the emergence of a car wave on the highway. The wave appears spontaneously when the highway is crowded. It can disappear on its own when the density decreases a little. It exists moment by moment as a result of emerging processes and underlying conditions. It is in a constant state of flux. A great part of it is dependent on the external conditions, not just the cars.
Similarly, external factors are also part of the momentary self. The self is not separated from the external world, but the world plays a part in it. It selects the momentary self from a complex space of possible personalities. Basically, we are the resultant of the stream of experiences and conditions that existed around us all our life. We know that also from artificial neural networks, which are built by distilling their experiences.
Just send us a Self Addressed, Stamped Envelope to:
PO Box 102436
Pueblo, CO 81009