Defining yourself

Defining yourself

Written by
Gautam Bakshi
Date published
May 5, 2023


I love biographies more than any type of books.  The reason is, they are not restricted to a genre.

It's nice to have the idea that our life is a contiuation in a specific direction but often it's not. Many of the best professionals did many different things before landing on the area that gave them success.  Many people have had bad relationships before landing on the one that finally knocked them off their feet.

The reason we want to define ourselves as well as others, is what's called the narrirative fallacy.  You see it everyday, everytime someone needs to explain something and prove they understand it. They try to bend reality to their rules and create more and more rules until they have the perfect model for reality that they can share. You hear this all the time, a certain country is bad, a certian enthic group is bad, etc..

The only consistant outcome of this is how wrong people are.

Most people don't know much. Neither do you or I. That's okay.

In fact, it's great. By starting and admiting that we do not know, it starts us on a journey of learning. We do not know ourselves, we do not know who we are nor who we will become.  We are no longer trying to make reality fit into our perspective, instead we see reality for what it is.

This gives you complete freedom. You can be a buddhist who enjoys can be a bank risk manager who also is in a bad. You no longer have to conform to a narrirative. Instead you embrace messy reality as you encounter it.

Reality no longer becomes something to be scared of and controlled. Reality beocmes a play ground where you engage in.

Sadly, there is a draw back. It drives other people crazy because you start to do things you aren't "suppose" to do by the people who narrowed you into a specific character. A doctor playing better music than hipsters who "know" that the best musicans are like them, or a teacher who is painting when she should be teaching. A worker at a Montgomery department store who refuses to give up her seat at a bus when it was how everyone else behaved.

This is good.  Because you are pushing prespectives of people.  You are showing them how bigger the world is.  People fight back, they argue and this is the time for you to show the world what you are made out of by not defining yourself.

You focus on reality, you build and play with the world. Not engaging with fictional models in people's head.

In the end, after the dust settles everyone in the world will be better for it.

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