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Could I be someone else?

posted 2/18/2010 2:19:07 AM |
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tagged: philosophy
  soonersoccer

I sometimes think about what it would be like to be different. Some things aren't too hard to imagine. I can understand what it would be like to be taller or shorter. Better looking or less attractive. Richer or poorer. Smarter or dumber. I can think of what it would be like to have a different name, be from a different place, and even live in a different time. I can imagine preferring Pepsi to Coke, blondes to brunettes, classical to rock and roll, and baseball to soccer.

Other things take a bit more of a stretch of my imagination. It's hard to know how it would feel to switch political parties or religions. To not care about my family. To have no interest at all in art, music, or literature. What would it be like to be someone with a different sense of humor, or to be the guy who is supremely confident and comfortable in big groups of people, or to be someone dependant on drugs for happiness?

Even crazier things seem beyond he scope of my imagination entirely. I can't even begin to imagine what it would be like to experience time in some nonlinear fashion or to have additional senses. I can't think at all of what it would be like to be a sea sponge or bacteria or a butterfly. Some things are seem so far from the human experience that we can't even comprehend them.

The real question, I think, is how much can I change before I become someone else? Is it even a coherent idea that I could be an insect an still be me? What if I was a Scientologist? What if I was simply a taller, better looking, smarter guy with more money? Could I be any of these things and still be me, or is it impossible for us to be anyone beside who we are?

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StraddleMyNose

Feb 18 @ 5:51AM  
I think what you're going through right now is trying to find your identity at your age. Most young adults your age have this problem, and it's common. I think most of us go through the same thing when we're growing and maturing through our early 20's. Be patient, don't rush things, be true to yourself, keep an open mind, but don't compromise your values along the way. I think if a person who has goals and really wants something in life, the sky's the limit.
selectusername

Feb 18 @ 6:13AM  
Thomas Nagel wrote a famous essay titled,
"What is it Like to Be a Bat?" It's in this book:

Mortal Questions

I'm thinking of writing my own philosophical treatise,

"What is it Like to be a Stink Bug?" since they invaded my house this summer.

The essay was recommended in a dvd course I watched on
the human brain. The professor claimed it was impossible
to know what it would be like to be another creature entirely
because their brains are organized differently. I got lost while
gazing into the abyss of philosophy at your age, I found it to be
a fruitless endeavor. Try learning something more concrete and
far more profoundly meaningful such as neurology:

The Brain
Ewe_Wish

Feb 18 @ 9:44AM  

The real question, I think, is how much can I change before I become someone else?
Changing is what made me who I am........I could never be anyone else because I am unique in my way of thinking, how I live and what I believe. I would think that would be the same for anyone else...............now there are changes that make people into someone they are not suppose to be..........for instance an independent woman marries a man who turns out to be a control freak......she is determined that she is going to make her marriage work (although sadly we all know that a marriage only works if two ppl are working at it) but she stops doing the things he doesnt want her to do and does things that he wants her to do that wouldn't be her style...........perhaps he believes all women should wear dreses and she loves jeans, but to make him happy and for their marriage to succeed she gets rid of the jeans, or maybe he decides that he wants to follow the Jehoveh Witness and she has been a Catholic all of her life.........but again to make him happy she follows his faith.............in the end she becomes someone else..........but for the most part as we mature we learn new ideas we sorta evolve into the person we are meant to be.........no we cant change our height but we can accept how tall we are and it no longer is something that we would change............

I don't think we ever stop changing as long as we are alive..........in the end we turn out to be who we were meant to be............you can change the variables no matter how you like but you are who you are...........

Sorry didnt mean to write a book here lol
RevDocLove

Feb 18 @ 9:57AM  
From my life experience, I know that one can change into someone
else entirely...IF, and only IF
You are capable of changing back into you..
There is only one you..As Ewe said, you change throughout life,
but you will always be the unique YOU..
There's nothing wrong with that
Dione

Feb 18 @ 11:03AM  
There are two kinds of change. One form of change comes from the simple matter of living... our views and experiences change over time, therefore, we change by default.

The second form of change is what I prefer to concentrate upon. We can choose to become a better person in many areas of our lives. We can replace a bad habit with a good habit whether it be not drinking, smoking or using drugs. We can choose to help others instead of taking advantage of the less fortunate. There are a myriad of ways to change... the important changes we make in life are those we make consciously no matter how difficult they may be. Allowing life to just happen is passive change and I don't respect it.
Dione

Feb 18 @ 11:05AM  
Oops, forgot your greenie.

No matter how old you are, contemplating these things is good to do. I learned a great deal studying philosophy... it helped me to form become the person I wanted to be... and it still has influence upon me today.

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Could I be someone else?