x-post: LessWrong

Set-up: In a world that’s otherwise the same, an anthropomorphic God comes to you with a gun and a check, and offers you the following deal, should you accept it. (God can perfectly see the future and is honest.)

Dilemma: God will give you a check of X USD if you accept to be immediately and instantly killed iff the current cryonics protocole is sufficient to preserve identity.

Alternative: God kills you iff the following is true: If you were signed up for cryonics and died this year, you would get reanimated at some point in the future.

Question: What’s the minimum X for which you would accept this deal? What probability of dying are you trading this for?


Say 100,000 USD and 5%. This means this deal would give you:

  • 100% earning 100k USD
  • 5% of dying (right now, instead of ~0%)

If you die and get cryopreserved:

  • 100% losing 100k USD (i.e. a typical cost for state of the art cryonics)
  • 5% of living (instead of 0%)

If you die and don’t get cyropreserved:

  • 100% of saving 100k USD (by not paying for cryonics)
  • 5% more chance of dying (100% instead of 95%)

In this sense, taking the deal is similar to not getting cryopreserved (and vice versa).


There are significant disanologies of course:

  • The type of life you would live
  • How long you life would be if you didn’t die
  • The social cost of signing up for cryonics

I still think this might be a useful thought experiment to bring this dilemma to a more near mode way of thinking. It also reverses the default option.