Wish logic- paradox

I always enjoy finding new/different paradoxes, and I came up with this wish for a wish granting scenario: “I wish that everyone besides me got their greatest wish granted.”  Now we can easily see that in a pool of two that this would be a paradox.  The other person gets their wish granted and now yours is both granted and not granted due to the wording of your wish.  Now we can expand the scenario and see that if it is possible to grant the “everyone’s greatest wish” portion, as soon as the last wish is granted (it seems like they’d happen immediately and simultaneously, but there may be exceptions to this and time/order of actions comes into play) you would return to that state of flux.  My best guess as to what might happen here is that you basically become a form encompassing both sides- having your wish(es) granted and not granted in varying measures and ways, which would create interesting options, and give you the ability to manipulate the system of wishes naturally.

My friend told me about a short story called The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas (https://www.utilitarianism.com/nu/omelas.pdf) where the cities wealth, advancements, happiness and very existence are based on the misery of one child.  Now, translated into our wish model, this is basically a society where everyone’s greatest wish is granted, but one child’s is not ( very much so).  Presumably the child did not wish to be there, but what if one did?  In that case the result would be a paradox as described above, but the perfection of the society would remain intact for as long as the wisher allowed it to.

As I was writing this down, it seemed like the same logic could apply to mathematics or computer science, replacing wishes and system of wishes with a variable and the systems with entire equations or programs.

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~ by songoflove on July 10, 2017.

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