November 20

To be nobody but yourself in a world
which is doing its best, night and day,
to make you everybody else means
to fight the hardest battle which any human
being can fight; and never stop fighting.

e.e. cummings


Today's Meditation:

While I'd like to disagree with Edward here, I really can't.  My own experience tells me that over the years I've had a great struggle trying to be true to myself and my feelings and my wants and needs and desires.  I've so often found other people's ideas creeping in and trying to become my own that it has required constant vigilance on my part to make sure that the thoughts that I'm thinking actually are my own, that I really do want the things that I think I want, that I really believe the things that I think I believe.

And with the incredibly intrusive nature of marketing and advertising these days, I find that it's at times even more difficult to be sure that I'm being authentic.  And I can only hope that the young people--who have been exposed to much more advertising and marketing that I have--are able to find their authentic selves in the midst of so many people telling them who they should be and what they should want.

You are you, and you are a wonderful person.  Perhaps there are many layers of defense and fear hiding all of your wonderful qualities, but one of our most important tasks in life is to work our way through those layers and allow our wonderful attributes to shine through--and to make sure that we're showing our unique attributes rather than showing what we think others want to see.

It is a battle to be ourselves, but it's not necessarily a battle against others.  It's more like an internal battle to be sure that we're being authentic, that we're making decisions that are true to who and what we are, and that we're not letting others influence us to a point of taking away our uniqueness.

Questions to consider:

What are some of the most important motivations for the decisions that you make?

Why do so many others feel that it's their right and duty to make us think and feel in the same ways that they think and feel?

What is one strategy that you can adopt that will help you to be aware of your uniqueness and authentic wants, needs, and feelings?

For further thought:

We need to find the courage to say NO to the things and people
that are not serving us if we want to rediscover ourselves
and live our lives with authenticity.

Barbara De Angelis

More on authenticity.


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