What Makes Me Me?

Throughout my life, I have unraveled and unearthed many layers of my identity.  A constant work in progress is what my life feels like.  Yet, somehow this shapeshifting seedbed of personhood often brings me back to a concrete self. 

The perplexity of my existence fascinates me. The continuum of my personal identity is the journey I am currently on.  I am asking myself what makes my childhood self the same person and me?  Considering I have had a lifetime of changes transpire, from my cells to my values.  Harvard psychologist Daniel Gilbert captured this question brilliantly: “Human beings are works in progress that mistakenly think they are finished.”

To understand this paradox perfectly, I recognize it will not happen.  There will never be a theory to examine or an experiment of logic that will ever offer a lucid explanation.  We will grapple with this puzzlement until the end.  Rene Descartes, the French philosopher, and mathematician previously explored existence and the nature of reality by way of Plato to no avail – yet we continue to study their rationale.  A responsible thought experiment is attempting to discover me.  The ultimate question is will my results bring me closer to the illumination of my perennial question of who I am?

As I continue to parcel myself out into various social, biological, and psychological contexts, my identity will constantly be in flux.  What I hope to unveil is my interpretation of my agency through the conception of who I am.  This is a complicated biological fact of my character.  My basic biological understanding is radically different than the emotional, intellectual, and social spaces I inhabit.  My objective will be to interpolate between these various modalities of my being for my further identity development. 

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