How am I not myself?
This is, perhaps, the most mind-boggling question posed to a generation of social chameleons. Are we who we have been created to be, or simply the product of the current scene we have chosen to dwell in? I’m finding, for myself, that I grow a little more comfortable in my own skin everyday. Still, I find myself struggling to be completely unfettered when dressed in my true colors.
Is it admissible to tweak the diminutive details of one’s self to better ease into a stuffy social situation? This method of camouflaging seems more widely customary to an insecure group of twentysomethings, searching for some depth of acceptance from a mere acquaintance, rather than the authentic sanction of a lasting companion. Why do we not believe ourselves worthy of such friendships? Why do we sell ourselves short by pursuing temporary approval? Why do we find it conventional to suppress the backbone of our being to blend in? And is it our calling to conform; to, essentially, be what the world would like to view us as?
We are all living the lie. We are all jaded from this tainted perspective of being. Somewhere along the rutted road to acceptance, we were given the green light when we chose to delude the truth about who we were becoming and the principles that we adhered to. It’s a little less tolerable to sit at the red lights, now, knowing how to coerce the green.
"Every man has forgotten who he is. One may understand the cosmos, but never the ego; the self is more distant than any star. Thou shalt love the Lord thy God; but thou shalt not know thyself. We are all under the same mental calamity; we have all forgotten our names. We have all forgotten what we really are. All that we call common sense and rationality and practicality and positivism only means that for certain dead levels of our life we forget that we have forgotten. All that we call spirit and art and ecstasy only means that for one awful instant we remember that we forget." -G.K. Chesterton
Have we reached this level of oblivion? Is it too late to turn back, grasp on to some sense of self and run in the opposite direction? Or have we gone on living in such a pattern that we have become the jaded images of what we once only projected, but now embrace?
I once considered myself an idealist. I have come to realize that my license for optimism has since expired. The more seasoned I become, the more I understand the realist I have ripened into. I have been weathered down by this world. I am jaded, as you are jaded. I am not who I say I am, just as you are not. I am a liar, a beggar, a thief, a fake, just as you are.
An idealist might say that it is better for us to all be weathered pieces that have now formed to fit the abstruse shape of the next. As a realist, I will tell you that the Maker has cultivated far too much beauty in each individual heart for us to toss aside to blend in. We were created to be concentrated beings, rather than the deluded personae we often portray. If we could live to this standard of potency how much better might our world actually be? How many people might not go hungry, if we were to acknowledge the tug in our hearts to settle for a less extravagant meal, ourselves, to feed an extra? How many lives could we save if we chose leaders who truly pursued the abolition of abortion in America?
Ask yourself: What kind of world do I want to live in and what am I, personally, doing to bring that idea to fruition?