What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Discuss the November 2022 Philosophy Book of the Month, In It Together: The Beautiful Struggle Uniting Us All by Eckhart Aurelius Hughes.

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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by Leasa Ana Maria »

If my original memory were wiped out, I do not think I would notice a difference. But there could be a slight feeling of something missing or something not feeling right, maybe.
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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by Shondranika Ford »

Yes, I would. It took forever for me to understand this because it was so deep. Even though we are one of the same as a collective spiritually, we are still individuals first with unique memories and experiences.
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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by book+lover-people »

I think that despite waking up in someone else's body with their memories, there would be subtle differences. My innate nature would peak through, and the difference would make itself known in small things. If you, by nature, are a happy person, then when you awaken in someone else's body, the heart of the soul is still the same.
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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by Hellen Muriithi »

I would notice a difference. It would be impossible to not notice the variable. I could tell immediately that I was in another body, especially if it was my own acquaintance whose body is similar to mine, or someone whom I am close with but whom I have never seen before (except for in photos). If a person were visiting my home, and they walked in and sat down on my bed (assuming it has one), there would be a huge difference between them sitting on the bed while they see me sitting there and them waking up from some sort of sleep paralysis induced dream where they don't know who sits down in front of them in their bed when they come out from their sleep paralysis induced dream. It's not only about bodily appearance because there would also be other differences such as general behavior, mannerisms, voice timbre, etc.
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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by Meghan Sica »

My answer to the two questions posed above:
1. If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your memories, and awoke in my body in my bed with my memories instead of yours, would you notice a difference?

I believe yes, I would notice a difference. From my personal standpoint, I believe there is more to "me" than my physical being, than my memories even. My soul, which carries so much more than this physical entity, would still be me.

2. Would there even be a difference to notice?

Yes, there would be a great difference to notice. Although we are connected on many levels, all humans, we are still individuals. There is something so much deeper than the physical aspects of this life. Our true intentions and feelings lie deep within our souls. Even changing the memories, surroundings and physical entity would not replace the soul itself, which makes each and everyone of us completely unique.
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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by Leslie Kunde »

Scott wrote: December 15th, 2022, 2:05 pm

The opening question in the newest edition of the book was slightly updated based on reader feedback and a vote held for readers of the book. Namely, the phrase "instead of yours" was added to the question to clarify it. The current clarified version of the question (which is really two questions) is as follows:

If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your memories, and awoke in my body in my bed with my memories instead of yours, would you notice a difference? Would there even be a difference to notice?


What's your answer to those two questions?



Sorry, Scott, I see this question in the Schroedinger's cat scenario. If you cannot perceive it, then you cannot know it; therefore, it is both you and me, yet neither is until it is perceived to be other. The memories would either be yours or belong to no one. Your memory is yours and cannot be perceived by others; a shared memory is a fallible memory, for the two sides will always see only their memory.
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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by Eckhart Aurelius Hughes »

Scott wrote: December 15th, 2022, 2:05 pm If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your memories, and awoke in my body in my bed with my memories instead of yours, would you notice a difference? Would there even be a difference to notice?
Hubre De Klerk wrote: January 31st, 2023, 8:25 am I don't think you would notice any difference as you would essentially be that person. Unless there is something to make you wonder like flashbacks, dreams, and feelings of Deja Vu, I don't think you would know there was any change at all.
I agree, so let me then ask: was there even a change?

I think there would be no change to know of.

To me the question is of the same form as asking, if you went to sleep on Planet Earth and woke up in the Milky Way Galaxy, would you notice a difference? Would there even be a difference to notice?

As I see it, the answer is this: You wouldn't notice a difference because there is no difference to notice.
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"The mind is a wonderful servant but a terrible master."

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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by Eckhart Aurelius Hughes »

Scott wrote: December 15th, 2022, 2:05 pm If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your memories, and awoke in my body in my bed with my memories instead of yours, would you notice a difference? Would there even be a difference to notice?
Leasa Ana Maria wrote: February 1st, 2023, 3:44 pm If my original memory were wiped out, I do not think I would notice a difference.
I agree, so then that brings us to the second question: Would there even be a difference to notice?

I believe there would be no difference notice.

To me the question is of the same form as asking, if you went to sleep on Planet Earth and woke up in the Milky Way Galaxy, would you notice a difference? Would there even be a difference to notice?

As I see it, the answer is this: You wouldn't notice a difference because there is no difference to notice.
My entire political philosophy summed up in one tweet.

"The mind is a wonderful servant but a terrible master."

I believe spiritual freedom (a.k.a. self-discipline) manifests as bravery, confidence, grace, honesty, love, and inner peace.
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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by Eckhart Aurelius Hughes »

book+lover-people wrote: February 2nd, 2023, 12:32 am I think that despite waking up in someone else's body with their memories, there would be subtle differences. My innate nature would peak through...
Can you tell me more about how your innate nature differs from mine?

What is it that is determined or affected by our differing innate natures that does not correspond to our memories, brain structure, and atom-by-atom makeup?
My entire political philosophy summed up in one tweet.

"The mind is a wonderful servant but a terrible master."

I believe spiritual freedom (a.k.a. self-discipline) manifests as bravery, confidence, grace, honesty, love, and inner peace.
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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by Eckhart Aurelius Hughes »

Scott wrote: December 15th, 2022, 2:05 pm If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your memories, and awoke in my body in my bed with my memories instead of yours, would you notice a difference? Would there even be a difference to notice?
Hellen Muriithi wrote: February 3rd, 2023, 11:05 am I would notice a difference. It would be impossible to not notice the variable. I could tell immediately that I was in another body [...]
How?

Your memory would be that you went to bed in my body and my bed, which is also where you woke up, so from your perspective/memory you would have gone to sleep in the same bed and body in which you woke up. When you look in the mirror, you would remember having seen the same face in the mirror the night before.

So what difference would you notice exactly, and how would you notice it, since you would have my memories instead of yours?
My entire political philosophy summed up in one tweet.

"The mind is a wonderful servant but a terrible master."

I believe spiritual freedom (a.k.a. self-discipline) manifests as bravery, confidence, grace, honesty, love, and inner peace.
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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by Eckhart Aurelius Hughes »

Scott wrote: December 15th, 2022, 2:05 pm If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your memories, and awoke in my body in my bed with my memories instead of yours, would you notice a difference? Would there even be a difference to notice?
Meghan Sica wrote: February 5th, 2023, 10:51 pm My answer to the two questions posed above:
1. If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your memories, and awoke in my body in my bed with my memories instead of yours, would you notice a difference?

I believe yes, I would notice a difference. From my personal standpoint, I believe there is more to "me" than my physical being, than my memories even. My soul, which carries so much more than this physical entity, would still be me.
How is your soul different than mine? How is (1) the combination of my body (including its brain and memories) plus my soul different from (2) the combination of my body plus your soul?

In a sense, I think I can agree that there is more to you than the physical, just as I would likewise agree that there is more to me than just the physical. So my question is in terms of only that extra stuff, what is it that is noticeably different about my extra stuff (i.e. my soul) than your extra stuff (i.e. your soul)?

How can you be sure there even is a difference to notice?
Meghan Sica wrote: February 5th, 2023, 10:51 pm Our true intentions and feelings lie deep within our souls.
I could be wrong, but I am pretty sure that is demonstrably not the case. I think the science, namely the neuroscience, is pretty clear on that. The feelings and intentions are of the mind (i.e. the brain) not the spirit or soul. The spirit/soul/consciousness experiences the feelings, but the atomic, molecular, and neurological makeup of the nervous system and brain determines what those feelings are. Peanut butter doesn't taste good or gross to one person and not another because of differences in their soul, but because of atomic, molecular, and biochemical makeup of the body (including the brain).

If peanut butter tastes bad to me today and good to you today, and you wake up tomorrow in my body in my bed with my memories and brain instead of your memories and brain, then peanut will taste bad to you tomorrow despite good to you today. Right?

Likewise, if waterbeds feel bad to me today and good to you today, and you wake up tomorrow in my body in a waterbed that I went to sleep in feeling bad the night before, then the waterbed will feel bad to you tomorrow. Right?

Meghan Sica wrote: February 5th, 2023, 10:51 pm Even changing the memories, surroundings and physical entity would not replace the soul itself, which makes each and everyone of us completely unique.
I may be misunderstanding what you mean, but I think the reasoning here is a bit circular. You are assuming our soul(s) are different.

In a sense, I believe you have a soul, and I have soul, but I don't see any reason to think those would-be two souls are different. I believe they are identical.
My entire political philosophy summed up in one tweet.

"The mind is a wonderful servant but a terrible master."

I believe spiritual freedom (a.k.a. self-discipline) manifests as bravery, confidence, grace, honesty, love, and inner peace.
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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by kayla1080 »

These are great opening questions, and I believe that no, I would not notice a difference because I would be totally unaware of that previous former life. It's like being an ant that's reincarnated into a human; do you remember your ant life? And so my answer to the second question is also, "no", there is not a difference to notice.

And to mimic what Scott said in the opener, this is definitely one of my favorite quotes in the book:
"The mind is a wonderful servant but a terrible master."
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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by Abby Young 2 »

I don't think that there would be a difference to notice. If I didn't have any of my memories any of the things that make me me, then how would I be able to tell a difference between You and Me? It is possible that if I moved bodies and lost everything that had to do with my old body there could be a small piece of me that remains constant. Perhaps when we pick up a new hobby or intrest we are realy changing bodies and that body holds memories of what made the previous owner themselves.

What made me come to this conclusion was that fact that cells might hold memories. People who have had an organ transplant have gain some new likes and dislikes. My Aunt had a heart transplant, before she couldn't stand the tast of Mt.Dew, but now, it's not her favorite, but she will drink it. Many people have reported small things like this happening, what if we aren't thinking big enough?
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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by Olga_Markova »

A very interesting and difficult question! To set my line of thought in context, the book distinguishes between the "two Yous" - the "real" which is the conscience, and the "unreal" which is the body with all its "dress up" of the physical and social attributes. So the next question is what conscience is made of. If, as in the opening question, we remove from a person's conscience the person's memories and replace them with the memories of another person, would the conscious identity of the original person remain? I personally think that memories are the premise of a person's consciousness. Humans have memories from as far back as 2.5 years old and build their life experience on them - if I learned how to read, it becomes a memory which I use to read books. If I cooked the food, it becomes the memory which I use to eat what I cooked, etc. From this perspective, if we replace the memories with another's person, the person's identity will be replaced with that of that another person. So my answer to these questions is that I would not notice the difference, and there would be no difference to notice. This will be not because I would still be the real me. It will be because I would become the two Yous.
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Re: What is your answer to the updated Opening Question? ("If you went to sleep in your body in your bed with your...")

Post by Amarachi Nzeakor »

As so many replies point to, the answer to this question lies in what makes "I" a different entity from "you". It definitely is not in our physicalities or genetics because we all potentially carry the same human genome. If the difference is in memory, then no, there would be no a difference as there is no memory. If we are being more spiritual, and as a lot of replies point to, we are all made of unique energies, and the core of that energy is not in our memories or experience. It's simply in the fact that we are. But since we are talking more about how we would perceive this change as mortal and physical entities, then my answer is that no difference will be noticed.
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