Sunday, April 09, 2006

The Difference Place Makes, Part II

Place is landscape. But the landscape includes not only the natural and built environment, but also the relational context.

Who are you connected to, and how?

Are the strands of connection made of manipulation, control, or obedience, or are they made of love, appreciation, and respect?

Do you display your competence, your usefulness, and your reliability? Or do you display your humanness, your uniqueness, your love?

All my life, I have been trying to prove my worthiness for love. But the more useful I have shown myself to be, the more elusive real love has been.

Yes, if you work very hard, you can earn positive regard. But that positive regard is not love. It is more likely to settle into dependency.

I am being crushed under interlocking layers of dependency.

So, when I had the chance to appear somewhere new, where no one needed me, I had the chance to experience a new way of being. My appearance changed the relational landscape there, and so people looked up with interest, and saw me for the unique person I am.

We are interdependent beings. I do not want to shirk my responsibilities.

But what are my real responsibilities?


  1. Update: I wake up this morning irrationally happy. I don't know why.

    I have been trying hard to find my true self and to assert this true self into my world here. Maybe it is finally working.

  2. Wow, this post really spoke to my condition. Thank you so much.

    It is striking to me how easy it is (for me) to get off course into trying to prove myself useful or worthy, rather than focusing on just being me. I often think of myself as well-intentioned, but perhaps those intentions call for some closer re-examination.

    Hooray for the emergence and assertion of your true self! May this be true for all of us.

  3. Thank you, Droplet!

    Yes, may this be true for all of us!

    I keep finding myself thinking that what the world needs most from each of us is our true selves.