Love and life revisited

I guess the reason I don't get upset if people don't like or accept me is the fact that I have a reason for being the way that I am which originates from my own choices. As far as my physical phenotype, I find that less a part of my self image than any other feature. It may be the fact that I am somewhat exo-centric in my understanding of the universe. The sum and total of my being is not determined by what others are capable of measuring, but what I understand to be the reality of the universe. If I were to judge myself on the basis of what others perceive of me, I would have to exclude the fact that I am familiar with myself and my motives and I can't avoid liking that as it is what I have chosen. If I were to base my self worth on the opinion of others, I would first have to accept that they are a good judge and secondly they would have to have a complete knowledge of me. The first part of that equation can't be true, and the second part is never true. Even if I tried, it would never be possible to relate every aspect of my existence in context to another person. It is nice to be appreciated for what you are. I guess what I really mean is that because of the complexity of human existence it is not possible to know someone else completely, as a result it is not possible to determine their true motive for any decision. I can only guess and if I have to make a mistake, I will err on the side that favors me :) This is very helpful for me as I have realized some very key elements of how I deal with others and how they deal with me. I see that people's motives can be far from direct and clear and that many times the perception of truth is more important to others than the truth itself. Mainly I am making this post to see if it shows up in Google reader and why my statistics for users does not exist :)

3 comments:

Jessica said...

I agree, and that is my biggest challenge: dealing with being judged on things that have nothing to do with my actual character or worth. At the same time, I'm not perfect, so I try to give people the benefit of the doubt whether I'm judging or being judged.

Another reason I try to give the benefit of the doubt is that I don't assume I know the reason(s) why someone alters a superficial aspect.

When I was younger, I wore make-up because I wanted to fit in. Perhaps on some level I felt more secure being accepted.

When I left home and had trouble making ends meet, I was venting to my father about how expensive things were. I mentioned that make-up was expensive and I was considering going without. But, he told me that I needed to wear make-up because it is important to look nice and that I shouldn't stop wearing it. (I was 19 years old.)Over time, I minimized the use of make-up and only stopped wearing it completely about three years ago.

My point is that I wasn't hiding something, and wouldn't want to be judged as such.

At the same time, I could be judged for being weak and wanting to fit in a group of people who put value on the act of wearing make-up, including my father, apparently.

When I feel I'm being unfairly judged, I try to realize that I have no control over how I will be judged, as I will be judged differently on the same characteristic or action by different people.

Jessica said...

The key difference between our perspectives is in your first sentence which concludes with, "I have a reason for being the way that I am which originates from my own choices."

So much of the way I am originates from choices others have made (not placing blame), and in order to be responsible, I need to re-examine as many aspects of myself as I can and determine if it's the way I want to be. The challenge comes when it's not, and I have to change somehow and it's rarely easy.

Paul Mohr said...

To paraphrase,some of the choices we make can be driven by information and events beyond our control and once accepted, become difficult to reverse. I can see that point.
As far as makeup, I am not sure what I might have done if I was a woman. I did a lot of things just to fit in when I was younger and so I wasn't claiming that it represented some great evil or deception , I guess my biggest problem with makeup is that it doesn't taste very good :) , and so if I am not required to taste it, then it probably wouldn't care.
You have a lot of valid points there, it isn't always possible to understand why people might alter their appearance.
I perhaps was thinking of things in the extreme, such as the person that was having cosmetic surgery to look just like Elvis Presley, it seems to deny their own existence. It does remind me of an X-files episode on a person who was a shape changer.

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