“Men go abroad to wonder at the heights of mountains, at the huge waves of the sea, at the long courses of the rivers, at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motions of the stars, and they pass by themselves without wondering.”
~ St. Augustine
“We only become what we are by the radical and deep-seated refusal of that which others have made of us.”
~ Jean- Paul Sartre
“What’s his name? Oh, I know him.” We often assume that because we are able to recall a person’s name that we know her or him. But, we are more than a name and more than the names that our families, cultures and societies have for us. We are more than body; we are soul and spirit.
Frankly, it doesn’t matter if we’ve shared the same body, home or neighborhood. There are some spaces within us that are unknown and this knowledge is not gained simply because we are in a relationship. Knowing who a person is will require more than a conversation over a cup of coffee, more than three dates or thirty years of marriage. Even if we are able to finish each other’s sentences and we share similar interests, there are some things about us that will remain a mystery. All of the whys and hows and whats and whens of who we are cannot not be answered by us or another human being.
These are hard questions that require intense thought. Quick answers need not apply because there is no rush in our becoming. The talent of quick fixes will go unrewarded as it will only support our simplistic, egotistical and narcissistic conclusions. No, who we are needs to be taken much more seriously because we possess more meaning than we are aware of. God is the Definition.
This is why we can’t accept words that we do not have a relationship with. We must know where they come from and their intention. And if not, then inspect them. Scrutinize them. Challenge them. Test them. Question them. And if we don’t like them, if we don’t need them, then we must give them back. Who we really are apart from these guesses is far too important to miss out on or pass by because we focused our attention elsewhere or were looking in the wrong direction.
Can we afford these words? How much will our accepting them cost us? Do we really need them? Is there a place for them or will we need to make room for them? There is a difference.
We must take the time to examine our lives and assess whether or not these words fit or are an oversimplification of who we are. Because we are so much greater than the words that we have created and the words that have been created for us. We have not guarded ourselves or our meaning as we should. It is partly because we have yet to fully become aware of our worth; maybe then, we’ll… you’ll take yourself seriously.