Thursday, April 26, 2007

One Way People Loose Themselves

We should accept who we are.

That is so easy to say and so difficult to do.

It is difficult in part because society makes it difficult. Much of society is geared towards helping us be just about anything -- except who we are.

Perhaps you couldn't care less about prestige, but you have a job in which it matters that you drive a prestigious car. You know you are going to work harder to buy that prestigious car. And you know you are going to sacrifice the vacation to New Mexico in order to buy that luxury car. In one way, it's worth it. Who cares if you have to make little compromises like that every now and then? What matters is you have a job you like. If it means you need a prestigious car for the job, so be it.

Yet, in another way, the example is more disturbing. It's not just about that one car we don't want. It's about the way society so often expects us to be someone we are not. Today it's a luxury car. Tomorrow it might even be a job we don't really want. And the day after, something else. The danger is that sooner or later we have made so many little compromises -- and sometimes big compromises -- that it's become a habit with us to act like someone we are not. People loose themselves over the years in a thousand little acts: In a thousand little compromises between who they are and what society expects of them.

Society isn't the only force that often works against our accepting ourselves. Not by far. There are many other factors too. You could write a whole book on the problem of society alone. But if you wanted to be truly comprehensive, you would need to write whole companion volumes on other factors as well.


laurie said...

Excellent points Paul. Oh, the comment about the car really hit home. My husband is struggling right now with a boss who is, to put it as polite as I can, a p***k who eptiomizes all that is unethical and wrong about the business world, IMO. Any, long story short, this p***k made a comment about everybody working toward the bottom line and getting their bonuses this year blah blah blah (meanwhile, he's the only one that gets a bonus, being the CEO), so that they don't have to go around driving Subarus. Well, I drive a Subaru and I love my Subaru, it's good in the snow, my labrador fits in the back, and the gas mileage is not too bad. Grr, grr, grr...this p***k had the nerve to $$complaine$$ that he had to buy new Mercedes for both himself and his wife so they would not be an eyesore in their neighborhood...grrr grrr grrr. And on my husband's salary I'll hopefully be driving it a good many more years. This guy has the sensitivity of a pile of c***.

Oh, I know this is off topic, but I am seeing first hand how pressures from the "business world" (greed and total lack of repsect for anyone or anything)punish and crush people, and I'm mad as hell over it.

(hehe, I bet you didn't think I had it in me)

Anonymous said...

That's a lot of asterisks. :)

laurie said...

But not nearly enough. :-)

Paul said...

Rock on, Laurie! That boss is way out of line!