The world demands we compare ourselves against its definition of perfection. Displayed by Hollywood actors, powerful players on the world stage, the rich and financially secure, homesteaders and city dwellers. Whoever or whatever ideas are currently in vogue and on public display.
We begin to compare ourselves against those who are unlike us.
And we always fall woefully short.
Despondency sets in as we attempt to make ourselves conform to the “norm” – that which we are constantly told we must be like.
We are all made perfect. From the moment of conception, we are made complete. And that form of perfection differs from anyone else.
It is unlike the world’s concept of perfection.
It is in that we need to take our comfort.
The influences we allow ourselves to be drawn in by, those bewitching, seductive alliances between media and its players, align against us. We are rarely allowed to see the truth. Those ideas pull us away from our surroundings and immediate connection with what is genuine.
Because of this willingness to go along with the narrative foisted upon us, that image becomes the source and summit of what we conclude our reality to be. Not the truth of what reality is. The reality that surrounds us every day.
Not meeting standards…
It is by rejecting what are seen by the world as “imperfections” – those things that do not meet those standards and definition of “the ideal”. Body images not meeting society’s perceptions of “beauty”, thinking differently than the masses, notions of “happiness” being other than those of society…the list goes on.
But we will truly never meet the ideal.
But should we?
Perhaps we are seeing things from the wrong angle. Perhaps we should, instead, embrace our imperfections and “flaws”.
Indeed, in doing so, we will actually gain an understanding of who we really are. These seeming imperfections are what make us uniquely individual. Our personality, our looks, our way of thinking and perceiving. Those differences that characterize us as unique individuals provide the gateway for our understanding of who we are. And what we are.
Those distinctions give us the ability to see variety and uniqueness in the world and in our human family. We are each pieces of a giant puzzle, if you will.
For if we were all the same, how bland and uninteresting life would truly be! Everyone would be the same; predictable automatons performing each task exactly the same as everyone else. Thoughts never varying from anyone else’s. Innovation would becoming stifled, for there would be no desire to change the status quo. Creativity disappearing, for there would be no incentive to design anything new.
Do we see that happening around us?
Yes. Unless we are willfully blind, we can see it creeping in to our world today.
Hollywood has not really come up with new storylines in decades. Music for the most part are only recreations on what already existed. Innovation exists in countries outside the western world or in the Indie communities, but has all but disappeared on our modern societal front.
Even our ability to think differently is challenged. In schools, the very concept of rational thought has been replaced with the idea that everyone must do things exactly the same. Anyone who strays from those ideas is censured. And doing so to the young who have no ability or experience to question the status quo willingly fall in line with what they are told.
We need not look much further than the recent graduates from our college campuses to see the results. Or the way math in taught in Elementary School “Core Curriculum” so rampant in our modern schools to see this very concept of mediocrity at play.
Can we regain our human dignity?
Yes. But it will take effort.
We must first embrace our differences. And I am not speaking to the “differences” we are told we “must embrace” by the world. Nor in how we think we should change ourselves to fit in to whatever our neighbors think we are. Or should be.
The differences I speak of refer to how we were created. From the beginning of our existence – from our very inception.
In one sense, we are all the same. We are all human beings, all cut from the same cloth. Part of the same race, family, species.
Yet we are each unique. Our imperfections are what set us apart from each other. Those differences in how we look, our ability to process sensory information and rational concepts. Our beliefs and view on spirituality. And our abilities, both physical and psychological, that set us apart from one another.
Of those things we should embrace and not be ashamed. We don’t have to “fit in” with the crowds.
Additionally, how do we know the masses are right anyway? That any part of ourselves is not perfect enough? Is it because we are told over and over again what we should think, feel, do, look like, eat, drink, operate our every waking hour to some subjective norm?
Remember the words attributed to Nazi propagandist, Joseph Goebbels, “Repeat a lie often enough and it becomes the truth.”
Repetition makes a fact seem more true, regardless of whether it is or not. Understanding this effect can help you avoid falling for propaganda”, says psychologist Tom Stafford.BBC, How Liars Create the Illusion of Truth
Perhaps it is time to turn off the media, the devices, the literature that all play the same songs. Perhaps it is time to begin to question what we believe and challenge the narratives we are taught.
Those who have done so have become stronger when they encounter Truth. They begin to accept themselves, their seeming imperfections, and realize that is is those very things which set each one of us apart from one another.
And complement (to make complete or whole) those around us, filling the areas in their lives in which they may lack.
None of us will every be complete in ourselves. We need each other. Without our differences, we cannot fulfill the design in which those differences were created. That is why we have community as a species.
God doesn’t make mistakes. Not even in what we call “birth defects”. Each one of those details that make us unique are what completes the human family and makes it a perfect whole.
Embrace your imperfections. It is in them that Perfection can shine the brightest.
And in doing so, happiness and true joy will emerge within the peace you gain inside. It comes from real self-acceptance.