I believe each is born with impulse to share, to bring gifts to the table of humanity. I have no philosophical/moral quarrel with expression of talent although it may seem so from a previous post.
I believe each often has more than one unique gift to share – and that study, exploration, ‘polish’ of the gift, is what we do! Some work at this in their immediate sphere of social contact; some expand the sphere, including large , even global, audiences.
A problem has developed with our understanding of what it means to be unique, to have unique gifts to offer. There is overwhelming cultural emphasis on “fame” as the measure of ‘success’. Fame in turn measured by income associated with marketing of gift.
Like true afflictees in co-dependency, we assist one another in this ‘error’, this ‘missing of the mark’. We heap praise and adulation on a well-known individual when we could choose instead to sincerely express thanks for gift offered. We pay dollars to purchase products associated with famed individuals and groups – dollars beyond good sense of appreciation.
We especially crave identifying ourselves as belonging to the lifestyle shown us by an individual of fame. We aspire to ‘belong’, to ‘be seen’ alongside, a famed individual. We practice a role of “devotee” – often for the sake of ‘being seen’ as devotee! We want self-identity by attachment.
We seem unable to explore finding our own unique center. We allow ourselves to be distracted from this by our own practices in adulation of another.
We say, “I could never do what that individual does” – creating in our own psycyology a diminished comparison. Likely it is quite true one can not produce a gift offered by another – that is the nature of uniqueness!
“Who AM I?” Who am I, as a unique individual? What are the gifts that I bring to the table of humanity – or what gifts do I long to experience myself offering? (I can assure you – you already offer these – and perhaps would benefit from noticing this about yourself!)
As for me, I want, I need to express my thoughts among others. My thoughts are not even always welcome! But it is part of my nature to explore ‘being human’, and part of my nature to share my exploration. I am aware my style of writing tends to entangle a reader. I work on it. (I have learned that in my head, as I write, I am actually speaking to an audience. The complicated sentences work better in spoken delivery!)
I spent some years practicing archery. One season my community hosted a ‘seniors olympics’. I opened the archery range for seniors to try their hand. I was moved, touched, at the number of seniors who showed up saying: “I have wanted to shoot a bow since I was a little kid and never had the chance.”
In order to express, to become self-actualized, did these individuals need to become master archers, to gain fame? Of course not! Self-actualization is developing all the time for everyone – famous or not, wealthy or not.
I have yet to meet a single individual for whom this is not true. And I have met individuals across the full spectrum of poverty/wealth, educational levels.
Appreciation, not adulation, may be a mindfulness of help if we are to notice one another’s gifts while gaining confidence in our own.
Update thoughts: July 4, 2013: I like what I wrote here. It’s at the core of my understanding of humanity – of individual in context of community as we practice our hardwired ‘social beingness’. But I must say, I’ve since become often less patient, more blunt – even strident, which I dislike to find in my own voice! Voices that propose humanity’s ‘promise’ – that suggest we need to confront corruption for what it is without pussy-footing, while at the same time without vindictive vengeful intent – don’t seem to have gained much traction just yet. First one speaks calmly in openness, eventually one may shout in anger. Maybe we need both voices. Humanity, and the earth that supports us, do seem under siege from devastating, habitual, trans-eon, “power-over” practices. See also, July 2, 2013 post: “Reminders About Ourselves” and March 2011, “Who Makes the Human Journey …“
My Best To All! MaggieAnn