Dying in the Gantz world
Sorry if someone wrote about this already, but I didn't find it in the FAQ's and didn't check through every page of threads.
My question is, When the whole transportation thing, faxing, reviving, etc. happens in Gantz, is it really bringing YOU, or is it just a copy?
In other words, when a person dies and is sent to Gantz, do they actually die for real and a perfect replica with all memories simply recreated in the room? and are revived members also simply replicas?
For example, it is definitely possible to make a copy, as seen with both the male and female Kei. However, when being transported to and from the game, we see the characters still controlling both portions of their body: the part transported and part about to, suggesting it is still the same person.
I am very surprised that this ethical debate is not so prominent not just among fans but within the manga as well. The closest we see is when Sakata says he does not want to be revived because it "cheapens the life" yet I don't think he means it the way I do. I think he is more on the side of "it's really you" but the fact that you can just come back to life after you die makes your life less precious.
I had a similar question asked before in my philosophy class. Question goes, when you go to bed and wake up the next morning are you the same person as when you were before you went to bed? Have you ever heard of the evil brain theory? That we're all just a brain in a jar and some force out there is just filling in what we long for. If you close your eyes and touch an apple is it really an apple your touching? Basically what I'm trying to say is some things aren't that complicated they are who they are and that's all that matters.
Well I think the original recruit is a copy of the original created using nanos. Other than that, the teleport tech has been rather unreliable in a set method, sometimes as noted above its like a wormhole... note after the Kappe alien hunt where Izumi jumps "through" his teleport loop to get to the room and escape the vampires quicker.
Also compared to the earlier volumes, later on people who were injured seemed to keep their memories after this point when returning to the room, suggesting Gantz had "copy n paste" and "teleport wormhole" capabilities and what each hunter is put through is reliant on some unknown criteria set in its programs (As Gantz is pretty much a organism-powered computer).
Anymore than that is out of my field unless you want to discuss nanotechnology, which is my field.
I personally have always seen it that the Gantz creates duplicates of people at the point of death, they're copied perfectly, and are identical in all ways down to the thoughts at the time of death, but technically are a new biological being.
The fact that Gantz is powered by an organism also leads me to believe that it isn't exactly one hundred percent the same thing every time either, hence it's little glitches and variations in how the thing works.
Would be an interesting twist for our RPG though, Gantz glitches whilst returning someone to the room, altering or missing memories, clothing, or even organs.
Thanks, ikari, I didn't think of Gantz using two methods, that would explain the difference.
But I would also really like to know what ethical/philosophical views the characters have, such as whether the "soul" is transferred as well. As I stated earlier, I'm really surprised this discussion doesn't come up in the manga. The characters just seem to take for granted that they can come back. Even when the glitches came up, the other characters did not start questioning their own identities.
I guess I'm used to manga going really into these philosophical issues, which usually annoys me, but in this case I wish there was a bit more explanation.
The theory of a soul doesnt seem to enter into Gantz as it being a pure science manga (though elements of religion are mentioned, such as the "will of God", in this sense God could just be an extremely powerful being, some think Sebastian or possibly whatever he is working for, if anything, is the God mentioned by Nuri and Sebastian himself).
What I mean by this is that Kurono mentions when Sakurai is brought back after the Oni hunt that he is merely stored as GB in Gantz's memory storage. Going with this, as a "file" in Gantz's memory, Gantz can create a new Sakurai (with all memories he had at the time of his last "save") out of nanomachines programmed to imitate biological materials. Everything about Sakurai is the same but it is a copy of the deceased original, the original being the one killed by Izumi back in Shinjuku, with later memories being "saves" made of the copies Gantz created after this.
Why is this important? Because a "soul" is not something I think can be recreated when a copy or "clone" is made of an original. The biological stem-point of recreating what makes us who we are and seems to hold true in Gantz is the recreation of our brain and the memories within; our memories and amount of make us who we are;
See for example the many iterations of Kurono, the original whose memories are led straight into two Kuronos, the one from v1-v20 when he is freed and the copy sent back into the world when he is freed, as if the last 19 volumes or so never happened. Both are Kurono but both act differently as the second Kurono has no memories of dying and of Gantz. The only difference is the memories that each copy have.
See also with Kurono #1 who lives with Tae, when he met Kurono #2 who Reika created and lives with her now. Both have the same memories up to the climax of the Italy hunt but then they diverge, when Kurono #2 meets Kurono #1 he dislikes him because he acts like an unfeeling jerk.
The point is, these characters have no individual soul, and if pushed it could just be argued the soul of the original is, like the original, dead and what makes the person who they are is the memory of said person, siding more with nuture rather than nature which would be the soul of the original.
Exactly, what makes a person that person is the memories, there's nothing else.
Copy = revival
Btw Izumi didn't "jump through" anything, look again and you'll see he merely jumped while being sent. What gantz does seems to do is some form of transportation where he gradually sends the matter that constitutes the gantzer (or whatever is being transported) and instantly rebuilds it on the other side. In some cases the rebuilding process is made according to a past state from gantz memory (when there are injuries, broken suit...), and in others (revivals) the process is one-sided and gantz simply builds the gantzer (using matter transported from wherever).