We here in modern Western culture find ourselves in this vortex of self-creation and total self-determination. We worry about how we are perceived and we want to be sure that we can be who we want to be. We pursue this ideal of happiness that includes our carnal appetites being satiated and, chances are, we will become models of worldiness. We hope we are a generally ‘good person,’ but we supply this desire to be ‘better’ by listening to the world around us…. be a better you by… ‘buying this self-help book, driving this car, drinking from this water bottle, owning this jacket, listening to this music.’ The static never ceases.
There is also a sense of intentionality with many people. “I am volunteering, so that I am a better person who is more attractive to society” or “I am going to fly all over the world because I don’t know what else to do and I’ll gain something valuable and people will think I am cool.”
But it surpasses this sense of ‘doing good things for the wrong reasons’ and extends to, we desire greatly both to be well liked as well as be someone of great integrity. We see these things as within our control and our right to create ourselves as we see fit.
We don’t like being wrong, and we don’t fare well with being ‘judged’ by others. Because WE are who we are #Ke$ha. Any form of critical thinking or correction is one of the worst crimes you could put on another person.
Yet, what’s the alternative?
Don’t we have agency to create ourselves? Aren’t we responsible for who we become?
But that is just it. There is a great design for us to become most fully ourselves, in a form of interpretation we see the self-made man as either as a discoverer or a sculptor.
We set out on this “Eat, Pray, Love” mission of finding ourselves and discovering ourselves. But then we settle. We become complacent once we find a fair form of ourselves.
So how do we find our best self? How do we denounce a title of sculptor and put on a title of discoverer?
One simple answer is to be in community. But not just any community, be in a GOOD community. Through community, once we accept the burdens and trials of another with a grateful heart we are able to see less of our self-design and more of the ultimate artist’s design. We are able to develop a greater sense of our true and most perfect self. Rather than an inflated or convoluted sense of who we design ourselves to be.
And to quote Mufasa…