The Doppelgänger Effect – You, Meet You

Is That Me, You?
The idea of a doppelganger is an ancient concept that literature loves to this day. The term originated in German folklore. It meant a ghostly or paranormal phenomenon, usually as a harbinger of bad luck. Today it is more broadly defined to include a non-biologically related look-alike or double of a living person

It is a concept fiction writers have loved since its earliest days. I am not much of a fiction reader (
unless you count anything Trump says). But I do feast often on science fiction and here, too, the doppelganger often finds a home.
I ran across such a book recently, and it got me to thinking. How would you and I react if we ran into our own doppelganger? I can envision 4 such scenarios. How would you react to the following versions?
The Other You Walking This Earth
There is a theory that there likely is at least one more person, likely several, that look like you. They are alive over much of the same time as are you. Your personalities may have some elements in common. What if someone set up a reunion of sorts? What would you want to know or share?
Would your first instinct be to take a photo together? What if you were of different genders or wildly different body types, but the same face? You could really freak yourself out by asking about family and finding out you had basically the same families, too (cue in the Twilight Zone music….).
The Other You from Another Planet or Even a Parallel Universe
Wow, where to start with this one? The other you might look just like you, except they are made out of green metal. Still, looks like you. You might start by asking if you look as weird to them as they do to you (no offense, buddy).

Wouldn’t it be amazing to find that another you from another world millions of light years from you? And to find that they had a similar appearance and
perhaps some common life experiences with you? It could happen.
The Other You from Another Timeline
This one sort of slips into reincarnation. What if there was a version of you who, say, lived in India in the 1700’s? Doesn’t look like you perhaps, but you both feel the connection. You might have been someone else in the past. Same thing works going forward to the future.
Wouldn’t it be kind of amazing to find someone that seemed like you in important ways but was not you. What common traits do you share and how do those traits work in your very different worlds.
You, Really You, as A Young Adult
Everyone’s favorite. Sort of a Back to the Future scenario, or just good old-fashioned time travel. If you are reading this and you are in your 20’s, keep moving. This section doesn’t have much for you. But if you are in your 50s. 60s, 80s, etc., tune in.
This could be plain old time travel. Or we could find everything we know exists an infinite number of times in parallel universes. Let’s suppose you get to cross over and advise yourself in a younger state in one of those other universes.
Think about all you know now that you did not know then. Which advice and wisdom you have would you offer the very young you? What might you say to convince them (you) that this was advice they need to follow? What could you offer that might change their life dramatically? (Never mind the old question of if they changed something in the past, would it change your life here and now?
No fair giving stock tips or sports winners, but otherwise, open season. Say we applied the Genie in a Lamp Rule – You get to share only 3 pieces of advice. What will they be? (Bonus extra one awarded if one of your choices is to tell them to do what they can to ensure Donald Trump just sticks to bad TV shows and shaky business deals).
Have Fun
I hope this posting has been a welcome change of pace for you. We all need one from time to time, don’t we? Share with us what you talked about with the Other You. This should be fun.
As for me, I am thinking this was either an interesting and creative detour, or I need to stop eating such spicy food late at night. Could be both! Have a fine weekend, America.

            Bill Clontz

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2 replies to The Doppelgänger Effect – You, Meet You

  1. Hah, and you said you didn’t like fiction!
    Seriously, interesting concept. I might tell myself or the other, more about loving, and how important that is.
    Second, not to be in too much of a hurry to determine your life’s work. Experience will shape you.
    Be forgiving of self and others. It pays off.

    • Excellent advice my friend, for anyone. Thanks for sharing.

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