“No being is so important that it can usurp the rights of another.”
-Patrick Stewart as Captain Jean-Luc Picard
At first, I thought as an individual that we all had rights and privileges that imbued us with superiority. After learning what it was like being part of partnerships and team efforts, I’ve had such a humbling experience to find out that my individuality isn’t a priority as much as theirs is.
I’m not going to sit here and say that what we want for ourselves isn’t important. I’m not going to sit here and say that what others may want for us isn’t relevant. But, what I will say is that there has to be some point where the old saying “Agree to disagree” doesn’t apply. I don’t feel like it solves anything. Even more, a way to victimize each other.
We all feel like we should be the center of our own lives. We’re the ones living it, right? The problem with that is that we aren’t mature enough to handle our own spotlight. It’s part of the human condition. If we are made to be held in such reverence and importance, we will naturally want to stay in that reverence. As it stands, we are one amongst many. It’s a big reason why we are attracted to celebrities. They have money, power, influence, material possession, and the one thing our social selves require most: attention. Well, isn’t only sought by our social selves. Attention honestly seems to be an imperative. We have to be attentive to our own needs.
Sadly enough, our own needs can’t always be met by our own actions. Sometimes, we have to take what we need from others who don’t have it. There are times where we can amicably trade. There are other times we have to resort to stealing or taking by force that which we need. It isn’t always a proud moment for any of us but we have to do what we have to, right? Sadly, there is no balance in it. There’s no honor, either. Personally, I think that’s the pinnacle in which we should exist.
To me, the problem has always been that being self-oriented gave the right to do what we wanted to do without fear of consequence. Though, I’m not saying that there isn’t any to bear; however, what I am saying is that through that same sense it allowed us to not care about who it affected. Why should we? I mean, there have been instances in our own personal histories that attest to exactly that. Who we hurt or what we have to sacrifice ultimately doesn’t matter as long as those consequences don’t interfere with our personal goals and ambitions. I tell you… that point of view will only leave us empty on so many levels.
There has been, and perhaps it still continues, a time that I found my life to not be worth the trouble. I don’t mean the sum of my experiences. I found that the act of living became unbearable. It’s one thing to be unhappy. It’s quite another to find yourself not wanting to live. However, it does give some unique and humbling insight into your own life and how you’ve chosen to live it. First off, I’m not necessarily advocating that suicide should be considered as a primary option for those who feel that their life isn’t worth living. I understand and personally relate to anyone who feels that way. But, having that consideration forces an unpleasant and unnecessary confrontation.
It’s hard to find value in your own existence. Mainly because everyone else you share it with is doing the same. It just creates a need to compare your own life to the sum of everyone else’s. There’s no honor, dignity, or respect in doing so. All that speaks to is that the person in question isn’t worthy of those around them. As soon as we do, we take that worthiness away from them and their choice isn’t really the same anymore. It isn’t a matter of living and making choices that would stand to improve their quality of life. It’s a matter of if that quality of life is better than those around them. It’s difficult to be free of such a thing.
One of the things that make us invaluable as an individual is our own uniqueness. Granted, there’s a lot of people around that are like us in tangible ways. I’ll acknowledge that but what separates us from each other is our intangibles. We can only be ourselves. Sure, we can do things in the same style as someone else. We can walk the same paths but we’ll leave our own signature on those paths.
All too often we take away that ability for the sake of our own benefit. We usurp someone’s happiness in favor of our own. We sacrifice someone we care about or someone we don’t even care about at all for the sake of our own. Quite frankly, we’re just not that important. Sure, something invaluable can be lost. I understand that taking the defense of that may be necessary. However, not at the expense of another.
Personally, I just don’t see the worth in stripping a person’s value away from them. I think we are all special and that we all have something to offer. I just don’t think that the price paid outweighs any personal advantage to be had. It just feels a little too… heartless. I don’t have the heart to hate someone. I don’t have the heart to take someone’s nature and make it any less significant by trying to make mine more important.
To be perfectly honest, I don’t even really know what my heart really is or what it wants. I’ll find out one day… maybe.