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Monday, December 17, 2012

Mailbag Monday: sWITCHed!

Dear Carolina Dean, 

May I ask, it is possible to use magick to switch bodies with another?


Caroline Ellis

Dear Caroline,

Thank you for your question. Characters exchanging minds/bodies is a trope that has often been seen in works of fiction including television, movies, books, and comics. The exchange usually occurs through the use of spells or rituals (All of Me) or other form of magick such as talismans, amulets (The Hot Chick), a powerful wish made by one or both parties (FreakyFriday), or some unknown force (Switch); or it may occur through the use of advanced science or technology (Freejack).

The body-switch usually involves character of different ages, races, gender, or social classes (Skeleton Key). In some cases it may involve the enemies switching bodies (Face/Off) with both characters trying to undermine the other’s plans while also trying to get back in their own bodies.

This type of plot device usually serves to get one or both characters to “walk a mile in each other’s shoes”, that is, to put themselves in the other person’s situation, to develop empathy for one another. These situations often arise when one character is incorrectly judging another, for better or worse, without knowing the whole situation.

In either case, the switch usually resolves itself by reversing the spell, usually by attaining a deeper appreciation for one’s own life as well as respect and empathy for the other person’s life; or, if the switched occurred through some technological device or procedure, then the procedure is repeated again to put both parties back in their own bodies (Scooby Doo).

Though scientist have experimented with transplanting the head of one monkey onto that of another with limited success almost 40 years ago, to date, the ability of humans to switch bodies with another through science or magic remains in the realm of fiction. 

However, if you are desperate you may want to try the Body Switching Spell (Charmed) or the Algurian Body Switching Spell (Angel the Series). If that doesn't work for you, you can always seek out Zoltar.

Happy Hoodo-ing 

1 comment:

Karmaghna said...

Tibetan Buddhism preserves a tradition where a living individual skilled in a practice called “Tōng Jūk” (grong 'jug)is able to transfer their consciousness into a recently deceased individual. Tibetan stories portray Tōng Jūk as a practice that is utilized for both religious and nefarious ends.