In a recent post, I declared myself as living a joyous life of a nuanced skeptic. This post will flesh out that description as to make you even more confused. 🙂
Now in my old age, I am convinced that it takes almost a lifetime to determine just what your personal essence is. We can all describe ourselves at various points in our lives but to find the essence of you is much more difficult. Maybe the difficult part is to do it in just a few words. I have been playing with the words above for several weeks now. Ever since I read a related post over at my friend Bob’s blog at Satisfying Retirement I have been struggling to find just the right words to describe my life. I think this description pretty much sums it up for me.
Let’s go through my self-description word by word. As Bob pointed out there is a difference between happiness and joy. If I remember it right he proclaimed that happiness is a short temporary thing whereas joy is a state of being. If you are really joyous it will get you through the darker periods that crush happiness. I kinda like that definition so it heads up my essence statement. The term“Essence Statement” is kind of provocative; I think I will use it often going forward. 🙃
Nuanced is a word that might not be familiar to all of you. I had to look it up just to make sure it is precisely what I wanted. As you can see it is about shades of grey. That is looking at the small things to make a difference in the big things. Unlike some of my more conservative friends, I am definitely not a black/white person. To me, everything is shades of grey.
Now on to the last word which is a skeptic. To me, being skeptical means that I question almost everything and try to think for myself in most situations that I encounter in life. Many of those areas are when science and folklore/tradition collide. That kind of skepticism which is very natural to me, got me thrown out of a Luthern church because I didn’t believe what I was “supposed” to. But in most other areas of life skepticism, at least my version of it has made my life fuller. I don’t criticize to tear things down, I criticize to make them better.
I lead a joyous life of a nuanced skeptic.
How about you; what is your essence statement?
2 thoughts on “My Essence Statement – Who I Am”
Evidentally Bob Lowery over at Satisfying Retirement is having troubles leaving a comment here. So, he sent the following via Twitter. “Tried twice to add comment to your post on essence but is doesn’t seem to survive. If you want to use it, here is the second try:
I appreciate your reference to my post about happiness and joy. The difference is often glossed over , but it more than semantics. I have become a fan of Richard Rohr’s writings. He makes a very strong case for the need for each of us to move from what he calls the False Self to our True Self. That is, the ego-centered self that we all begin life with, supported by religion, government and society, toward a self that understands we are part of something much bigger and more important. He makes the case for a belief in God (or whatever is the name you prefer for an Ultimate Reality) that eliminates the “us versus them” mindset and makes it clear every creature is connected. Joy at discovering this essence of reality becomes a permanent state, regardless of the ups and downs of existence. So, my essence statement is; I am part of the ultimate reality that formed, sustains, and gives life to everything. I am not separate from others, but share everything.”
Thanks, Bob for your essence statement. I like it very much. Yes, I too have read Richard Rohr and fell in love with the attachment of all of us. It is kind of like when I came across a quote by Woody Guthrie, who of all things was perhaps the original folk singer. He said in one of his early songs. “Ever’body might be just one big soul, Well it looks that-a-way to me”. If you want to see the rest of it click https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Woody_Guthrie
Yeah, we just might all be part of one big soul.
To help alleviate the problem Bob had, I will very soon be adding a “contact page” here at RJsCorner. It will appear in the header section above each page and post.