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Fear Stomping by Jesse Gordon

PostPosted: January 12, 2008, 12:56:49 PM
by kailhofer
I read this last night, and I'm still mulling it over.

I think my suspension of disbelief is failing on it, but I'd like to make sure I understand. When they go to their special places where a fear may be quelled, they're actually jumping to a parallel universe.

When in that universe, are their consciousnesses in the bodies of another version of themselves, sort of like Being Jon Malkovitch? Or are they just in that universe at the same time as another version of themselves?

In the story, when they are there, Ken can conquer his fears by being in a place where they don't exist, so he knows what it feels like, as I understand it.

If they are transported only, why would a fear not exist? It's still the same neural pathways and consciousness that were ingrained with the fear. I realize that after a while a placebo effect could take effect whenever Vin stomps, and that may be enough to signal Ken's psyche to stop being afraid, but that wouldn't explain the loss of fear in the initial trips. If instead they were transplanted into another, is fear only hardwired, and regardless of the consciousness, they won't feel it? Or is it that they're sharing the same experience with that other version of themselves as it happened to that other version, but that other version didn't feel that fear, so Ken can still learn what the lack of that fear feels like? On reflection, I think the last option was the intent, but it confused me. Would that mean in their own universe their bodies were actually devoid of consciousness while they were gone, because they'd have to share with the ones who weren't afraid in order to learn to not experience the fear?

The obvious answer is "Duh. It's a story. Just go with it." However, I would like to know if I'm seeing it close to right.