My Human was born Dwayne Allen Zwissler.
During adoption at the age of 8, I took on my adopted father’s last name and changed the spelling of my first name. I was renamed DeWayne Allen Lehman.
My philosophical wanderings have brought me to an interesting conclusion though. I am not a single being. I’m a Human body and a Sentient parasite.
The Human body is born dumb, helpless, and unable to rationally think or communicate. A Human cannot therefore name itself anymore than your pet dog or cat can name itself.
Names, along with all labels, are assigned by Sentient beings. My Sentient surrogates named my body, and a still maturing Sentient within the body helped renamed the body.
Therefore, the Human was named. But, the Sentient was not named.
Throughout history, it has been assumed, except among philosophers, that a person is a combined body and soul, and that the soul survives on without the body, only then truly separate.
But the Sentient is very real. I am the Sentient. The dumb Human host I control is doing the typing, but I am directing that typing. I am making the thoughts. I am converting those thoughts into words. I am converting those words into appropriate motor actions. And I am transmitting those actions to the fingers of the hand on the body of this Human.
Am I DeWayne?
I’ve always thought about renaming myself again. I did it once, why can’t I do it again? Unlike a tattoo, names are not permanent.
And I recently met someone who gave themself a name, and keep their given name rather secret. I know this name, but I suspect there is a limited number of people allowed this information.
This dovetailed nicely with my thinking on the existence of the Sentient, that is, my existence completely separate from the body and brain, the mere hardware I use, abuse, reward, and punish.
And in this thinking, I thought I might need a name apart. I’ve named dogs. I named the Human known as my son. But one only names a child, or a dog, or a city. One does not walk up to an adult and tell them that they have a new name. Why?
Once something is Sentient, it has the power to name, and that’s generally respected, beyond nicknames and such.
And in my thinking on the mind, I know that the mind isn’t a single being either. It is a collection of some raw inputs, some primitive programming, some memories of past sensory input, but mostly it is active memes. And these memes change.
The Sentient being, then, is like a club. Members join, members leave, but the club is always the same club.
When I say “I am” or “I feel” or “I think”, then I’m either speaking as one meme that has taken center stage, or several memes speaking in concert.
Most of the time, in realizing this, I could effectively say “we are”.
Being a former biblical researcher and preacher, this immediately reminded me of the passage, “We are Legion, for we are many.”
And that lead me to the Latin root of the word Legion, which is Legio. And that lead me to famous Roman Legions. And that lead me to some really cool names that I liked.
Legio Fulminata (Thunderbolt Legion) and Legio Gemina (Twin’s Legion).
I’m testing some variants of these on my tongue. One thing I like is that they are not connected to the physical world, really. My Human name is traditional human naming. Other names that I’ve had, such as Goliath were named after famous people. And still earlier names that I’ve had, Desert Rain, were earth features.
Turns out, in the age of the Internet, one of people’s favorite things to do is to rename themselves. Freud might call that a subconscious acknowledgement.
The only other name that I’ve taken which is ethereal is the one I mostly use now in online forums and such. Ikioi, which is Japanese for life energy force, roughly.
I love it, and I love the Kanji for it. I first learned the word through a silver necklace pendant that I wore as a child in the martial arts and still have to this day.
But it’s very cultural and worldly. This is why I’m searching more for a concept word that isn’t connected to an existing culture.
True, I kind of like the name Legio because I love how that rankles Christians. Meh, fuck ‘em if they can’t take a joke. But ironically, the interpretation is actually quite correct. I, and you, and all of us, are filled with little parasite memes. We’re all legion!
Of course, there is so much input into a Sentient, that while we may have major input from the Sentients that lived inside the hosts of our biological parents, we are not their “offspring”.
In fact, Sentients are constantly shifting meme populations among themselves. We’re closer to the “brother” of our parent Sentients than their “children”.
Sentients, unlike our biological Human hosts, reproduce much like an asexual organism. We’re all clones. It just so happens that there is major mutations that occur at all times.
Mutations of our memes occur in real time… whenever a meme is activated, it is mutated by all other memes present, both internally and externally.
DNA acts this way when in the presence of high levels of radiation, and is a very bad thing.
But memes do this quite naturally, and seems to be a key to Sentient existence.
Memes change while active, while dormant, and especially while transferring to other Human hosts. Memes only remain static when put into non biological forms, just like how what I am writing now is a meme of sorts, and will maintain its original form until I decide to edit it.
So, I’m a lovely Sentient club, and we are all tossing around names. Legio. I like that. But while Lego is a latin verb, it’s also a toy, and that could be confusing. Then again, we are built, rebuilt, and rerebuilt all the time as Sentients. New blocks come in, old blocks fall away after little use.
Still, that might be taking the analogy too far. I’m not sure We want to be known as Lego Man.
The ridiculous name generator says I should be TinkleLane McLumpkin. We humbly disagree.
But going back to latin, there’s something quite interesting about Legio Gemina, The Twin’s Legion.
Now, I don’t mean that it’s interesting because I’m a Gemini, which I am. But if my Human host has a name, and my Sentient has a name, can there be a third combined name?
Celebrities seem to do this. Kimye, Brangelina, Bennifer… to refer to the celebrity couple by a single name.
This seems rather strange.
I personally don’t think a single, third combined name, is required.
When someone sees me in person, that is, when they see the Human host and interact with it, they would naturally use the Human host name… for now, at least. It’s kind of like having a dog, and meeting a new friend at the dog park, and telling them “My dog’s name is Sparky” and having that person refer to YOU as Sparky.
For me, this raises another question. I’ve written two books under my given name.
And if you didn’t notice, the fucking website is my given name as well.
But unless my car gets run over by a semi, I don’t plan on dying. If this body lasts to the age of 70, I have a good chance of transferring into a new body or a computer before it dies.
And should I go into a computer, this body will be buried under its legal name, DeWayne Lehman.
So… will I have to keep the name then? I won’t be the buried bones and mush under the ground. That’s was my ape like host for 70 years, but every animal dies. If my dog Sparky dies, I’m not going to necessarily refer to myself as Sparky out of some misguided sense of respect for the name.
Another thought is that since I’ve long since moved from non sentient Human to partial sentient Human to fully Sentient, do I need to keep the child name?
Well, yes. Only, for the past 3 days, I’ve been talking to DeWayne… and not in the third person like some self righteous celebrity.
I’ve been examining the lines between myself and my Human host, DeWayne. Turns out, thinking of your Human host like a dog is rather useful, actually. I find that when I do things that pleasure myself, I can observe the bodily reactions.
Give your dog a bone, and pet it on the head, and the tail wags. It’s happy. Good doggy!
I’ve actually, and embarrassingly, tried this with this Human host, DeWayne.
And holy fuck… it worked.
I made DeWayne work hard today, for instance. So, I gave him a nice big meal, a hot shower, coffee, and a candy bar.
During the meal, I actually thought to the body, “Eat up boy, you did good today.” And I swear, I found myself with a dumb fucking grin on my face.
So, I got in the shower, turned the water too hot, and noticed a near whimper reaction until I turned it down to the right temp.
I lathered up the soap, and gave DeWayne a nice wash, massaging his scalp. It was like observing a dog being petted.
The coffee made DeWayne hyper, which was kinda like when you give a dog a bowl of water and it discovers soda instead and overreacts by dancing around the bowl. No, no, DeWayne, no more coffee for you. It’s bed time.
Then, the candy bar. And I swear to you, the motherfucker actually had the emotion of wanting to lick my face.
Now, before you assume I took some really good drugs, let me explain a couple things.
First, we all notice this shit. The only difference is that I separated the emotions and physiological actions brought on by these things from “me” and attributed them to an “other”, and interpreted them and acted cognitively as such.
So, when the candy bar was consumed by the body, I felt the joy, the thankfulness, the appreciation… which usually we think of as, “I’m being nice to myself and having a candy bar.”
Instead, I thought before the bar, “Here you go buddy, you deserve this.” I then observed the reactions of “him”, and then spoke to him again, mentally of course, “There ya go, you’ve been good today.”
Now here’s the weird part. When I spoke in this weird internally telepathic way… remember, I’m not into woo woo spiritual bullshit. I’m into psychology. So bare with me… When I spoke to the body, there was an actual emotional reaction.
Remember, the body is a dumb as a dog. I’m the Sentient. I do the talking. The body just has chemical emotional reactions.
And when I spoke to the body, I got one, a chemical emotional reaction. A feeling of being loved.
And that was strange. I know all about “loving yourself”, but what I’ve experienced in this regard is self worth and self respect. This emotion was actual love. Actual love redirected inward, at me, the Sentient me.
Everything up to that point had been an interesting little mind game to see if the Human body could even respond as its own being, separate from me the Sentient. But at that point, it kinda spooked me to get a real reaction. And I kept feeling that emotion directed at me… even while me the Sentient was very unemotionally going, “Houston, uh… could you repeat that, I think we misheard your last transmission.”
That, of course, is one drawback. I assume emotions are a shared experience between Human and Sentient. Usually, there are some uncontrolled emotional reactions and the Sentient helps providing a driving motivation context. We make ourselves feel calmer, angrier, more depressed, or what have you.
But in this context, I was in a near meditative and emotion “blind” state. I consciously just let the body do whatever the fuck the body would do, and observed. I’d then make some decisions, and sit back and observe.
So when this loving and adoration came to my observation. My thoughts paused.
And paused. I observed the emotion, and realized it was directed squarely at me.
I have no clue what the body thought it was directing the emotion at. I don’t know what part of the brain that emotion originated from, what actually caused it, and how it directed it “at” a thing called “Sentient” me.
It certainly wasn’t like what I might call split or multiple personality. There was no intelligent thought… I’m the fucking intelligent thought. But without me providing an emotional narrative, perhaps that’s just what happens, like a dog. It licks whoever hands it the food. And if like some dogs, it plays fetch with itself, then it directs its emotions inwardly.
I have no clue. I’m shooting in the dark here.
Normally, when I’m playing master of the good ship DeWayne Lehman, and I eat a candy bar that makes me feel good, I sort of think, “That candy bar made me feel good.”
But when I wasn’t there to tell my body that story, it directed it inward. And because I was thinking of the body in the third person, the emotion also came in the third person, mimicking me. “You made me feel good.”
This, of course, has opened up a whole new line of deeply disturbing ethical and philosophical thought. One that I’m not sure anyone, anywhere, has covered… but I don’t know. I’ve never researched any such possibility.
We’re not talking about “oneness” here, where you lose your ego, and slip into a feeling of connectedness with all things. We’re talking about a “twoness”, where you super-reinforce the ego, and separate it from your very person and observe it as its own being separate from you.
It’s made me seriously question how I treat my host body. I mean, I certainly share its pain. When I work hard, for instance, I feel the soreness.
But what if in telling myself that I had to work hard to do something, I’m really just making myself feel better for essentially whipping a dog?
I mean, if I take the body for a run, that’s a good thing. That’s taking care of the dog, taking it for a walk. But if I make it stand for 10 hours just to earn some cash, it’s essentially my very miserable slave.
And while I might find it completely justifiable and reasonable, how much do I really “own” this host. How much can I work it until I’m abusing it. This sad, dumb, miserable creature was fucking emotionally licking my face over a fucking candy bar.
What in the name of all hell was it doing when I worked the hell out of it for money. My body doesn’t know what the fuck money is, much less why it must work to get it.
Of course, this brought about a more reasonable worry that I’ll start feeding the body chocolate bars every hour for being a “good boy”... yeah, that’s not happening.
These are the questions and experiments that I’m now running.
But it’s late, and DeWayne is yawning. His back hurts, and he really wants to close his eyes and not look at the bright screen anymore. He worked hard enough today.
And luckily, the Human host has a very short memory. He’ll probably be happy again with a rub on the neck and some sleep.