Am I my body?

Self aware snake - Angela Defendini 

What do you think it would be like if your consciousness were transferred into the body of a snake? Would you still be you or would you instead be a snake? 

I can imagine what it would be like to slither through grass and smell with my tongue, but would my consciousness also reflect the type of body I now reside in? 

Would my consciousness be shrunk to the size of a snake as well? Would I think like a snake and forget my previous body? If so, would I still be me at all? 

These are questions that center around mind body dualism. Are we our bodies? Our minds? Or are the two not separate at all but one in the same? 

I've been reflecting on these questions for the majority of my life now and the answer I continue to arrive at is "I don't know." Truly, that's the most honest answer isn't it? 

Anyone who says they know for sure is surely going on faith, right? For how can there be truth with no evidence? 

Then again, who is to say that your truth is the same as mine. 

Setting aside the scientific method and objective truths, when we try to imagine ourselves as someone else or something else, it takes more imagination.  

We can't possibly know what it's like to be anyone else, we only know what we would feel, do, think if we were in their position. To truly understand someone we would have to live their life up to that point, have had their experiences, their wins and losses, their heartbreak and their great loves. 

Would that be enough though? Would we also have to have their specific genetic makeup as well? 

There's a lot of argument that points to humans being both of mind and body, but before Descartes introduced this idea, we were seen as body and soul fused into one. As a type of animal automaton, our actions and thoughts led by our souls via God. 

Descartes rationalism posited a new foundation of truth: the I of subjectivity. In order to think, I must exist. I think therefore I am. 

Under his maxim, our thinking minds exist outside of our senses, and our minds can reason against what our bodies tell us. Our bodies perceive ice and water as two separate things, but our minds tell us they are the same thing. The body alone cannot be trusted, for instance what we see with our eyes is actually grasped by our minds. 

Mind-Body dualism separates us into immaterial and material. 

For example; I am not Angie. 
Angie and I are two separate things. I represents my mind, and Angie my body. 

Angie feels the keys under her fingers as she types, but I interpret the smooth texture of them and determine which key I will hit next. 

This is obviously a drastic oversimplification, but it gets the point across. 

Your body takes in information and your mind interprets it. While they work together, mind-body dualism says they are separate. In this way we can imagine that the immaterial part of us might go on in some way after our bodies pass. 

Our minds very well might just be our brains, and the subjective I nothing more than a construct. If that's the case, is the same true for animals? 

Does the snake have a subjective I as well that is separate from their bodies but also working in tandem? Or are they more simplistic in their nature and not existential animals such as we are? 

We may never know, but it sure is fun to think about. What are your thoughts, do you believe  the immaterial I goes on in some way? Or are we bound strictly to our material bodies and death is all encompassing? 


  1. I like to feel as though I am eternal energy lucky enough to be sentient. I try not to define as mind and body together. Simply put it’s just not that easy. As the mind, being such an engine of so many thoughts, dreams, ideas, attentions and processes, the mind has to control many things in and around your vessel I, as in my mindset on the decision of referring to my vessel as the “spacesuit” also enjoys believing in my spacesuit as just that. Only the spacesuit mind is trying it’s best to control is also the energy bottle of sorts. Mind feels heart giving reassurance that this energy is what I am. Not who. Who I am is what my eyes see. Your eyes see, and anything else that has perception of this combination of mind, body, and energy. If the energy piece of the combined 3 is perceivable to the form that is witness to “what” I am. For example, As I get myself ready for something that my dog witnesses as different than my normal routine, she sees/feels a difference in energy even though she sees the same spacesuit being driven by the same mind. Only thing is not all living things have this level of consciousness. As in a plant Ive nurtured with all my heart that may feel my energy’s as the same regardless. Or not, being only my perception of the plant. So what I feel,(I cant confirm these things so I steer away from using “believe”.) but what I consider myself is conscious energy made up of the same exact elements as the entirety of all things known to exist, infinitely. So because I perceive this dimension to be one of infinite, this energy unable to be ended, while conscious and controlled, and this spacesuit a lucky one to reside in, my life, I feel is an eternal one. One that has developed to what I consider a lower level of consciousness in the vast scale of things, still will infinitely exist throughout these unimaginable levels. Continue expanding, growing, witnessing all which simply is life.

    My name is Rodney- for freedom of spirit I like to be the number 9, or Icarus, or 36 whenever possible lol

    Hi Angie! Miss you, this is amazing what you’ve done.

    1. Thank you for sharing Rodney! I'm glad you're enjoying Metafoxical :) It's been a while, how have you been?


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