Can we ever say there’s only one way to be human? One set of thoughts to think and conclusions to reach about “life”, what it means and how we should live it. Or, are we each our own version of all life can be? The distinct configuration of our own personal experiences “being” what’s made us who we are, shaped our understanding and led us to interact with life as we currently do.
As if each human is poured into their time, their place, their family and, living through it with their own unique nature, becomes the person they then are with all the interests, wounds or concerns that most preoccupy their mind. All these individually-experienced perspectives on life that emerge from whoever’s standing at every given point within all the complex systems and realities now making up our lives. (Notes One)
It seems no two people are ever going to see everything exactly the same way; each having a slightly yet significantly different set of experiences, ideas or values nestled behind whatever broad similarity may appear on the surface. That, digging even a little underneath anyone’s views, you’d find a world of difference in how we’re seeing things, what we think matters and why we’re holding to them.
How do any ideas make their way into our minds? Stacking themselves up over the years into the solid or precarious constructions that make up our worldview or blueprint for how we’ll be living life. How many of the conclusions we’re building our lives upon might’ve been mistaken, misguided or the product of imperfect sources, situations or reasoning? Strange building blocks we might be wise to reconsider. (Notes Two)
Life starts to seem like a strange dance of humans taking up their parts and playing them out as they will. All the interactions between us and choices we’re making “becoming” the realities we all have to live with: the ideas we have of one another and awareness we may or may not have about how exactly “we” touch upon others and convey to them our sense of what their life’s worth. (Notes Three)
How can we ever really know what another’s life is like? All that’s made them who they are. The face the world’s turned towards them through the opportunities, prejudgements or assumptions they’re met with. Almost as if we’re living among countless strangers, despite having a great many things in common, with very little time to develop genuine interest in or understanding of one another. (Notes Four)
In all the complexity of modern life, isn’t there an equal complexity to each human existence? The lived humanity of each point in the picture as people hope to be met with love, respect and the freedom to be who they are, heal all their wounds and forge a future. Living these increasingly distracting and pressured lives, might we lose sight of those around us and what’s being asked of them?
What, within it all, is our idea of the human life?
Notes and References:
Note 1: Do we live in different worlds?
Note 1: Humans, tangled in these systems
Note 1: Integrity and integration
Note 1: Valuing people more
Note 2: The thought surrounding us
Note 2: Where do we get our ideas from?
Note 2: Shaping the buildings that shape us
Note 3: Value and meaning in our lives
Note 3: Mutual awareness and accommodation?
Note 3: The battlegrounds of our minds
Note 3: Giving others space to be
Note 4: All that we carry around with us
Note 4: These ideas we have of one another
Note 4: Treading carefully in the lives of others
How we might work around such struggles was one of the questions of Can there be beauty in communication?