Aaron Graifman

41 karmaJoined Pursuing an undergraduate degree


  • Completed the Introductory EA Virtual Program
  • Completed the In-Depth EA Virtual Program


Thank you. I looked at that yesterday. and I think it's a great idea to have a post like that where people can "drop" in their ideas without having to commit much to them.

It's a bit of a think tank for forum posts huh?

As to your comment about my question, "If something is worth saying, it's worth saying more than once." agreed.

Your music analogy reminds me of something I once wondered when I first started learning guitar chords... "If there are a limited number of chords, won't we eventually run out of songs?" But now I realize there's a lot more to it than just the chords and even melody and lyrics. Guitar pedals, amplifier settings, added instruments, vocal frying, and other techniques allow for a huge variety of songs with the same-ish chords. Ideas are a bit like that too.


Hi @saulius,

That's an interesting take. I've thought about that before whenever I've been exposed to a lot of new information and felt information overload. 
Some part of me has wondered "do we really need hundreds of ways to explain a single quote/book/concept" but as @MichaelStJules said above, "Having alternative write ups that are more accessible/attractive to some people, because people have different preferences over writing structure, styles, lengths, etc." so I've changed my mind a bit about this.

I wonder if part of that thinking is due to a sort of scarcity mindset around internet resources.... worth reading more about perhaps.

Still, I appreciate the article you linked, and your take.

Hi @Amber Dawn,

First, thank you.

Second, it's ironic that you used this example, "I feel like what you are doing is similar to how some EAs are like 'oh I won't apply to that job because I don't want to waste the org's time and surely I'm not a good candidate'" as I have literally said that to my brother before. Your thoughts have changed my mind on the topics discussed, and I appreciate this. Sometimes, all it takes is someone laying out the argument, showing some of the absurdities of it, and then I see it in a whole new light. 

As a result of the discussions on this post, I intend to write more on the forum and my blog.

I recently wrote an article yesterday where I outlined some of my reasons for writing, no coincidence, including learning by writing.

Again, thank you for your well-thought-out response and rational encouragement!

- Aaron

Hi Riley,

Thank you. I think you're right to call attention to the idea of writing for the intrinsic nature of the act. It is something I enjoy very much, and find it brings a certain quality of peace to my mind that is unlike any other.

"Other people may not have been exposed to these ideas, so you might be able to do more to improve the average quality. " This is also a point that is worth taking into account and acting out. I have a Substack, which I haven't written on as much as I'd planned to simply because I wasn't certain of the quality of work I was putting out. I knew I could do better, but I guess the harm of putting out something not entirely fleshed, isn't something predictable and might not be worth worrying about.

Thank you for your reply

"Having alternative write ups that are more accessible/attractive to some people, because people have different preferences over writing structure, styles, lengths, etc." 

This is an interesting benefit I hadn't thought of yet I find myself encountering this often when I jump from website to website while learning something.  Sometimes, as @Alexander David mentioned above, "the way you express it, the way you summarize it, the particular point you emphasize, etc" bears some importance.

I'm glad you made this point because it brought to mind some of the books I'd read in the past that reiterate the same physics or pop-psychology lessons in different tones or wording, but the reading is no less enjoyable and some lessons bear repeating too. 

Thank you,


Hi Alexander,

Thank you! You add an important point which is that the packaging of the ideas matters. I think what you said here is more or less the same idea "the way you look at the issue, the way you express it, the way you summarize it, the particular point you emphasize, etc." This phrasing of packaging isn't my concept but rather comes from the author Mark Manson.  I'm glad this reminded me of it.

Yours was an encouraging response, I appreciate it greatly. 

Hi @JDBauman,

Thank you for getting in touch with me. I shared that website with the local church.

I'm very happy to see that there is a thriving community of Christians involved with EA and effective charity.

- Aaron

Hi Jason,

Thank you for your response.

Do you think you could elaborate on the second point? I'm personally unfamiliar with Catholic moral theology and would be interested in learning more about the basic ideas that connect to AI ethics.

Thank you,

- Aaron

Hi Joseph,

Thank you for your thorough and thoughtful responses. This has helped me gain an understanding of your perspective. I'm now considering speaking to the head pastor this Sunday about EACH, with what you've said in mind. I find that this point in particular stood out to me as reasonable and important.

Also, emphasizing Jesus' teachings, like how "when you give to the least of these, you give to me" (demandingness), or the parable of the talents (effectiveness), or speaking of "you will know them by their fruits" (consequences), can be helpful to encourage a stronger moral imperative.

Side note:
I followed the Christ and Counterfactuals blog and will read more of what they have on there. Philosophy of Religion is somewhat of a natural interest for me, as is the theology of Christianity, so if you know anyone who I should reach out to about potentially contributing to the blog, that would be wonderful. I would love to add to the discussion and body of work. 


Thank you again,


Hi Joseph,

I'm very glad to hear that. How might one go about bringing that movement into their local church? 
I've encountered many Christians who use the second-coming as a reason not to care too much about the long-term future and I don't know how to reconcile this. I consider myself Agnostic, but some of my Baptist friends have become convinced that since their faith is, well, faith-based, they don't feel like the moral imperative to do acts beyond tithing. 

What're your thoughts on this? 

If there's any advice or resources you could point me to, that would be excellent.

Thank you very much


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