To BE or to DO?

February 2, 2009

Who are you? Who am I? Why ask? Is this an important question? What does it matter anyway? When I find out who I am, well … won’t I still have to find out what to DO with that knowledge? Isn’t that the point – to find out what to do? What to do in life, what to do with life? To find the ultimate, the one, the true thing to do that makes my life meaningfull – the life purpose? “What should I do” was a question I was asking a lot when I left Poland. In Poland there was no need to ask this question, I knew exactly what to do. I had some room to make a choice or two inside of the path that was designated for me, but not much. I was to graduate from high school, I was to graduate from the University, I was to get a job, to get married and to have children. I had some say as to what field I wanted to work in, whom I would marry and how many kids we would have … and that’s about as far as my choices went. But then I left and everything changed. There was no path anymore and I was lost. The search for a life purpose begun, the search for the answer to “what to do” question. The hope that, once I find out what I am supposed to do I will know why I’m here, I will know that I have the right to be here, I will know what is the right thing to do and I will be doing it, I will be a good girl. Safe girl. The realization was coming for quite a while now, yesterday it just popped up: “what should I do” is the wrong question. The question to ask is “who am I?”. I realized that I had it all backwards. I was trying to find out what to DO in hope that the answer would provide me with an identity, with the sense of who I am. I realized yesterday that who I am is not the result of what I do. What I do is the result of who I am. What I do will not provide me with identity, with the sense of being myself – being myself will provide me with a sense of being myself. Once I am myself – I am myself. I am not for a purpose, I am not for a reason. I am. And once I realize, or choose, or decide who I am – what I do follow naturally, I just do what I do. My dog doesn’t have to stop and consider what to do. She is a dog, she does what a dog does. What she does is an expression, a reflection of who she is. I am who I am. I do what I do. What I do is a reflection, an expression of who I am. Mind is not equipped to comprehend this idea. For mind there is only outside, the threatening outside that has to be dealt with, controlled, protected against, by doing. From mind’s point of view knowing who I am will not keep me safe and protected (mind is all about being safe and protected) therefore knowing who I am is useless. In a society organized by mind the question “who am I” is not being asked much. I was certainly not asking it back in Poland. It didn’t seem important to ask it. I was … oh, whatever … human, person, Patrycja, student, woman, what-have-you, doesn’t matter. I just was, just like everyone else was, just like all the other people around me were. Having made this choice, however unconsciously, all that I could do was what they were doing. Whatever everyone else was doing. Because this is who I was, I was who everyone else was. I had some little room to make a choice or two inside of who I was, but not much. I had some say as to how I look, what I eat, how I dress, how I vote, how good or bad, nice or mean, industrious or lazy I am … and that’s about as far as my choices went. I could not find my own path when who I am was what everyone else was. I could not find my own, unique, original purpose when who I am was who everyone else was. To find my own purpose, to find out what I should do in this life, why I was born in this life at this time, I first had to realize, or choose, or decide who I am. Once I am who I am I do what I do and doing it is simply an expression of who I am, not the other way around.

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