Monday, March 28, 2011

Proving grounds...

One more way of slicing up humanity: People who have something to prove and people who don't.

This proving thing is fascinating. It's a kind of "closed-circuit" philosophy by which an individual constantly reverts his or her energies into achieving some ongoing ideal. Whether this ideal is truly desired by the individual or imprinted as an expectation from an outside force is a key factor that can be hard to discern. When I see someone living this way, I sometimes perceive it as a kind of reactionary existence - a code of living that is meant to prevent that person from becoming whatever they don't want to be.

People who don't have something to prove can seem a little lost by contrast. They tend to be confronted by broad existential quandaries. Since there is no fixed ideal, there is no rote pattern of behavior. Life is upon them. What to do? When one isn't obsessively compelled to be a hero or a real woman or a superstar or a bandit or a punk or an evil genius or a Muhammad, all of the magnificent and daunting stuff of life is right there in front of you. How you engage with it, if you engage with it, is a fluctuating mystery that can become an obsession in its own right.


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