7.24.2008

Defining "Definition"

I know this is a redundant statement, but I had an interesting thought the other day. Yes, most of my posts are a result of a interesting thought. But that's the only way I can think of starting. O well.

I find it fascinating how people define themselves. They start their lives, gaining a personality, and at some point they are labeled. If the person embraces this label, the continue to do things that fit that label because that is their natural action. Someone who is labeled as "smart" will continue to do "smart" things, like being successful in school or carrying on intelligent conversation.

At some point, a person's label is well defined. Now here is what i find to be curious: after acquiring a label, people will do things that is a characteristic of that label, not of themselves. While it may not be totally out of character, its not their normal action.

For instance. I have a friend who has always enjoyed art things. She has always been considered an "art person." But the older she gets, the more I can see the definition taking control. Things she does are more accustomed to an art person than to her.

In the end, the word can be more powerful than the user.

It starts slowly. Things like "well, I'm a science person, and that's what science people do." Or even "I'm John, and that's what I do." But soon, The person will stop controlling the word, and the word will control the person.

So remember always WHO you are, not WHAT you are. If you stop being a "who" and become a "what," then you lose your human identity and become an object. And...well, I'd like to remain as human as possible.
Part of that is being able to decide who you are. Having the free will to choose "THIS is who I am, and I will define myself. No one else."

Words have power. Extreme power. We decide what they mean, but so do other people. And it is easy to take on a description and then BECOME the description. But it takes strength to resist and be yourself. Because no one can be described in a simple definition unless we allow ourselves to fall into the mold.

That is the choice of free will: deciding who you are and who you want to be. But be careful with that choice, because sometimes you only get one chance.

I'm sure there's a good way to end this post. But I can't think of one.
So. Carry on.