Are we the same person throughout our lives? And if so is this change a bad thing or even necessary?

The wonders of change has been on my mind recently, it’s all around us yet can occur rapidly or over a lifetime or even a million years. Change is such an amazing aspect to observe, by which you can study in many ways. During my Philosophy & Ethics lesson a few months ago, we learnt about the ‘Ship of Theseus’ in which he talked about the changes and the essence of a ship. If you have a ship, and over time you replace certain aspects of it, until one day it is made up of completely new compartments, is it still the same ship? Does it still hold the same essence ?

This got me thinking more about human changes, when looking back at old photos I feel as if I see an entirely different person, even though there is somewhat of a spark that I feel has retained throughout my life.

It makes me feel as though there is an indefinable spark that is retained throughout, we just accumulate other habits, traits and mannerisms that can overshadow, complement or compete with that spark. It is as though our aspects change but our core stays the same, however, I do believe some innate nature and instincts do remain with us.

I believe that our personal changes are due to ->

1. The physical differences we see when we reminisce about our past selves, whether that’s literal body changes or face changes, that can give us a whole new mental attitude and therefore when we look into the past before all the body and face changes, we remember that old mentality and see it as someone else, a familiar someone else. Or the literal different physical stages in life, an adult does not feel they are physically the same to when they were a toddler.

2. The obvious explanation for our personal changes is mental side to change. We learn and grow from what we experience, perhaps our experiences act as add ons, we have one mentality and as we experience we add or enhance certain mentalities or decide to prevent and limit others.

No one stays the same throughout their lives, you can go through so much change in a single day. If someone appears not to change, they’re actually expending a decent amount of energy to change in just the way they have in order to appear not to change at all.

Every person you meet changes something in you, whether that change is big or small. Changes can either be visible or unnoticeable, even to yourself. That’s why it is encouraged to surround yourself with people who have good mentality, morals and mannerisms, because you too may adapt these beneficial changes.

Change is complicated, but thank you to Theseus’ ship who made it more noticeable. Most people sometimes feel they don’t have the willpower to change, but knowing that to successfully change you need to surround yourself with somebody who already obtains the change you want, and you’ll find that you start picking up similar mannerisms gradually.

Overall, we are literally the same person throughout our lives, but only my our genetic makeup, other than that, we are constantly changing and it can be a benefit if you make it.