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Kalyx ######

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Just finished the series, and I would be interested in having a discussion on what people think happened with Lain at the end of the show.

I have a personal hypothesis, although my mind is still confused about all the things that happened over the series. Let's get started.

If you recall (I'm sure you do), people only exist if others have a memory of them; yet Lain wiped all memory of herself at the end. However, when Arisu should be April despite the voice acting meets her, there's a vague recollection. How is this possible?

If you're familiar with the work of Julian Jayne's; specifically ``The Origin of Consciousness and the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind``, you might know about the idea of bicameralism of the mind. TL;DR - at one time an area in the right side of the brain gave early humans the "voice of god" since they did not yet have consciousness. This voice was responsible for what we see as "the gods" in ancient literature. That voice gave them something to accomplish when they were under stress or weren't sure what to do. You can read more by looking up "bicameralism psychology" with the search engine of you choice, if you care.

I think that this idea can help us understand how Lain can have erased everyone's memory of her yet still be present in the world. She hasn't really been forgotten- with her position as "goddess" of the Wired, she's now taken a place in the right hemisphere of the brain that was previously unused in modern society. In other words, people still remember her, but not on a conscious level. This remembrance, even if other people aren't aware of it, is enough to keep her around.

I'm sure there are other hypotheses out there and I'm interested in what others think.


That is really an interesting connection to bicameralism. I had always interpreted her dim recollection of Lain at the end more as the "last dying ember" of a fading memory, but now I want to rewatch the series. Thanks for writing this up and sharing.

Less original interpretation: the phrase "everyone is connected" seems like dependent origination (Buddhism) in which objects have no internal essence and are just products of a causal web of relationships (sometimes mistaken to mean nothing is "real").

Lain's identity crisis seems like the realization of "anatta": there is no Self if everything is dependently originated. This explains why the end of the series has that "attaining Nirvana" vibe to it. Lain unlinks herself from the The Wired (samsara) and ceases to be "recognized" since she is outside of causality.


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Thanks for the feedback. I like the idea of the Buddhist undertone to the end of the series. It seems to make sense with how things work out. I'll offer another interpretation.

Lain's monologue in the beginning of Episode 13 is her coming to terms with the way her physical body has another "voice" inside her head. She's not really aware of it at this point, but knows that something is wrong.

Lain is the first person to become "conscious" in the sense that we know it. Throughout other episodes, we see people who do things and don't understand why - take the shooter in Cyberia as an example. He's seen the "Club Lain" as an abstraction (a god) and doesn't really know why he's doing what he does. It's just a voice, or command, in his mind. This is the first time that we see the ability of Lain to affect the real world by being present in the right brain. When she speaks to him it drives him mad, outside of the Accella.

All that being said, I can't argue against the Buddhist interpretation either. Good post.

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