Can we change bodies and souls to different bodies as we wish? Is Body-swapping possible shortly? Are scientists getting any closer to this technology? To find the answers to these questions, let us explore this topic more as we read the article.
What Is Body-Swapping?
A body swap—also known as a mind swap, soul swap, or brain swap—is a plot device used in many works of science fiction and paranormal fiction in which two individuals (or beings) swap minds and end up inhabiting one another’s bodies.
Different kinds of Body-swapping exist. Switches for non-technology swapping can be brought on by magic objects like amulets, sincere wishes, or even just peculiar cosmic occurrences.
The switches usually flip back once the subjects have broadened their perspectives, developed a deeper understanding of one another’s struggles by genuinely “putting themselves in one another’s shoes,” and generated enough farce.
Technology-based switches, excluding devices that are sufficiently advanced to appear magical, are the domain of mad scientists. Body-swapping technology is typically known for its highly experimental status, straps, helmets with numerous intricate cables running to a central system, and a propensity to fail before their effects can be undone catastrophically.
Those without access to such resources might turn to brain transplants. These experiments may have eroticism or horror undertones.
The other Body-swapping variations could be:
- Brain Transplant: Brain transplantation is a biophysical variation in which the recipient’s brain is physically transplanted into the body.
- Mind Exchange: Changing one’s mind.
- Multiple Bodies: The user has access to and can create a variety of bodies.
- Soul Exchange: Changing the user’s souls.
What Happens When Your Body or Soul Swaps With Someone?
A person discovering themselves in a completely different body is typical in fiction, usually resulting in wild and crazy antics. However, according to current scientific understanding, the consequences would likely be traumatic if such a thing were feasible.
Sometimes a person ends up in an anonymous form, and other times its two people who are acquainted with one another who end up with swapped bodies. We are still determining the science involved in body swapping and how it would be carried out if there is any.
Even if you could reconnect the millions of nerve cells between the brain and spinal cord, a “brain transplant” would be less than ideal because it would be unbearably tricky; additionally, nerve cells don’t regenerate very well.
And this assumes that the eyes and optic nerves are transferred with the brain because the eyes are anatomically part of the brain, and the connections between the eyes and the visual cortex are just as, if not more, terrifyingly complex than those between the brain and the spine.
However, the majority of fictional body swaps don’t involve brain surgeries. Instead, it seems more like a mind-swapping, suggesting a dualistic philosophy in which the mind and the brain are seen as distinct entities.
This is in contrast to a monistic position (the brain creates the mind), which the majority of pertinent scientists are likely to hold, given that, as far as we are aware, a particular reason is not observable, making it impossible to conduct a scientific analysis of it.
But let’s presume that the brain can be removed from the body and transferred through whatever process into another, meaning that a new consciousness now resides in the body. The fact that the mind requires a body to inhabit suggests a Cartesian dualist framework in which the mind and body are distinct but interdependent, necessitating using the brain by reason.
Therefore, there would still be a lot of problems to deal with. There are numerous options. Depending on the type of body swap, they could be anything.
When a Body Swap Is Between the Same Type of Body
The brain has many features that the mind hasn’t developed alongside or from, which is the main reason. For instance, the brain has physical storage for memories. So there are now two sets of memories in one head (one physically present, the other entirely mental), even if the newly transferred mind has brought its memories with it. That will be, put it mildly, confusing.
Whether the new mind’s memories “overwrite” the old ones, the structural component itself will be different. But, again, this is because the brain changes over time due to our experiences.
Body-swapping Into a Different Gender.
Most of the issues raised in the previous section are still relevant; despite what you may have heard, men’s and women’s brains are not significantly different. But there are still some differences that must be taken into consideration.
For example, the new body’s different hormonal balance, which affects things like cognition and emotions, would be something the mind would not be accustomed to dealing with, in addition to dealing with a wholly new and neurologically complicated reproductive system.
Even if you could cope with the new body and the numerous issues it would bring, the surge of unknown hormones you’d have to deal with regularly would be like hitting puberty all over again.
Body Swap From Child to Adult or Vice Versa.
A child’s brain is very different from an adult’s, and many things that happen during adolescence are essential to our psychological development.
Clearing these connections, which are much more numerous in children’s brains than in adults, is a crucial aspect of adolescent development. As a result, a child is abruptly thrust into an environment where their brain is more rigid, qualitatively different, and subject to constant experiences and drives that they cannot understand or process.
For example, if they became enraged and began to act out, no one could hold it against them. Unfortunately, they can cause such harm when they’re fully grown adults.
It would be easier for an adult to deal with it if they ended up in a child’s body, but it would still take some time to get used to the strange sensations and mental processing. Additionally, they would suddenly become much smaller, which would be more annoying than anything.
Is a Body Swap Possible in the Future? How Far Have We Succeeded in the Experiment?
Yes. Considering that the human brain is merely an organic computer. Although we still need the technology, we will eventually be able to access what is inside. Misuse of body swapping would have enormous legal repercussions.
Two souls can indeed switch bodies. In actuality, the relationship between a divine guru and disciple is one in which the souls of the two parties are exchanged. This only takes place with divine direction and for religious purposes.
Twin souls or twin flames are the names given to these two souls. In this soul-swapping, both souls are present in their bodies and the bodies of their dual flames. This connection makes it easier for them to communicate silently and feel things immediately.
If we figured out how consciousness functions, it could be connected to brainwaves (brain electrical impulses). You might get some technology that transfers the electrical tasks of one brain to another and vice versa, which would then “transfer the consciousness,” but this is science fiction ideas rather than anything realistic to take seriously.
Humans have long been intrigued by embracing another body as if conscience could be transferred via a mysterious (or therapeutic) process. A play on a metaphorical transition in the “Bhagavad Gita” is likely what Paramahansa Yogananda meant when he wrote about his guru leaving his body to take over a dead man by the side of a river.
A more comedic example is the 2003 comedy “Freaky Friday,” in which Jamie Lee Curtis and Lindsay Lohan wake up to discover they’ve switched bodies, resulting in an existential crisis and a grand moment of empathy.
Researchers have hypothesized that such an act would cause severe disassociation, similar to potent LSD, as opposed to the pretty smooth physical transition in “Freaky Friday.” Your motor patterns would change, necessitating a new education to move around in space. It seems unlikely you could resume where you left off in a new body.
People will try any novel idea. Although the technology for changing consciousness isn’t ready, VR headsets are widely accessible. Even though the headset’s weight and feel make it still awkward, the sense of embodiment is quite convincing.
So 33 friends were given pairs of goggles by a team led by neuroscientist Pawel Tacikowski at the Karolinska Institutet, and they were allowed to switch places. Participants in this research assigned their friend’s personality traits to their new skin after assuming their friend’s body.
Surprisingly, this meant that the volunteer had forgotten who they were. While inhabiting a foreign body, their perception of their friend took precedence. Because of how tightly those memories are bound up with their bodies, they perform worse on memory tests about their own lives.
A significant blow to dualism. This research also helps overcome an innate biological urge to separate body and mind.
Are Body-swapping and Body Manipulation the Same Thing?
As mentioned in this article, Body-swapping is the exchange of body, mind, or soul between two people, irrespective of their gender and age. In comparison, body manipulation is a little bit different from swapping.
Users have total control over their own and other people’s bodies and anatomy, enabling them to alter and manipulate them freely. Body manipulation is possible at the chemical, cellular, and subcellular levels.
The user may also move another person through their bodies using this telekinetically. The ability to control the bodies of other species, including animals or even extraterrestrial beings, may also be available to the user.
Experienced users can communicate with and exert control over the physical manifestations of metaphysical beings like deities, ghosts, and spirits. Body manipulation is also known as Corporikinesis, Sómakinesis, Anatomy Alteration/Control/Manipulation, Auto-Biokinesis, and Body Alteration/Control.
Body-swapping in Fiction and Drama.
Body swaps, popularized in Anglo-Saxon culture by John Locke’s Essay Concerning Human Understanding’s identity chapter, have been a standard storytelling device in fiction media.
Novels such as Vice Versa (1882) and Freaky Friday (1972) have spawned a slew of film adaptations and retellings, as well as television series and episodes, many of which have titles derived from “Freaky Friday.”
In 2013, Disney Channel hosted a Freaky Freakend featuring seven shows with Body-swapping episodes. This list only includes exchanges between two beings. It thus excludes similar phenomena such as body-hopping, spirit possession, transmigration, and avatars, unless the target being’s mind is placed in the source’s body in the opposite direction.
Additionally, it does not include age changes that are occasionally advertised as body swaps, such as in the films Big and 17 Again, identity/role swaps, usually involving clones, look-alikes, or doppelgängers, and multi-personality characters.
The mention of body swaps is not only in movies and television stories but also in short stories, books, operas, video games, graphic novels, comic books, animated series, and even music. They are mentioned in every form of media, whether written, printed, or digital. They are all over the world through different ways people can know about this fantasy.
Years of neuroscience study have revealed that the self is not a static identity but a changing state of being. Your surroundings and the people you’re with can change who “you” are. Often, changes go unnoticed—at least by you. You probably aren’t aware of your dependence on everything around you. No island exists.
It’s not that you don’t contribute anything, though. Your memories, particularly your episodic memories, are crucial to perception. As a result, the definition of “reality” itself is frequently contested. Can shared reality exist? Probably not. Based on your prior experiences, you often create the present.
However, an unrestrained imagination produces fantastic stories, such as Krishna on a battleground and Yogananda by a river. Such stories are harmless as long as we understand that they are metaphors. In the interim, we imagine a future in which science fiction is once more a reality.
If you like this article, check out another related science fiction and fantasy here: ‘What Will Happen if We Face an Interstellar War in 2022? The Chilling Consequences Explored!’