by David Kurtz
As we experience our surroundings, culture, behavior, ethics, we soon discover that life isn’t thought about as much as the additional amenities that are added to it. These amenities are all around us and have become us: Cars, TV’s, I-Pod’s, Cell Phones, Houses, and nice clothes. It is these amenities that we regard as what describes someone’s personality and behavior. Imagine a person walking along side a street with a Tuxedo, a clean-cut appearance and a cell phone “talking business.” You can already imagine what this person does and who he is. Now if we look at history or other cultures, we will soon discover what you own doesn’t make who you are.
Child Birth a few hundred years ago or more, was a very bittersweet occasion, mostly because many children didn’t make it past 3-4 years of age. Bach had many brothers and sisters, many who didn’t make it to see 10 years. He also had many children that didn’t live to see their teenage years. Imagine all the natural deaths that surrounded people in history and other countries while growing up. It was normal. If you made it to twenty years of age, life was somewhat of a success.
Nowadays it is expected that all children are to be well, and if they become sick, there is modern medicine to better them. Even still, many foreign countries don’t have the medicine to help their people, so death is still prevalent around their communities.
The Hopi Indians of Native America, is an ancient tribe that has seen the cycles of history and has written about it, so to help their people. In their culture, they live on what we would consider horrible conditions, as to better their individuality and ethics, than to be complacent with the “extras” of life.
In other countries where nothing material is really expected (because they have nothing), you will see great personalities. This is what they have to offer and this is who they are. After getting to know these people, you stop looking at what they’re wearing and start noticing how they wear their smiles, their stories, their great life experiences that make them who they are. Their wisdom through life is shown through, because they have regarded IT and looked at it in the face. Because whether they wanted to or not, they had to deal with life’s difficult obstacles it presented, instead of turning on the TV and tuning out of life.
As most people’s goal in school is getting a degree to get a job, to get…ect, the search for truth and knowledge diminishes, which starts as a child through their curiosity. As we become less curious as we grow older, our identity weakens as an individual. One stops thinking about WHO he is to the world, and becomes more involved with what’s around him and WHAT makes him who he is, ie. his brand new Corvette.
As each new morning comes, it is up to you to be who you are or what you are. Life is not a means to an end unless you make it one. Einstein wrote, “The man who regards his own life and that of his fellow creatures as meaningless is not merely unhappy, but hardly fit for life.”