Saturday, November 20, 2004

Intellectual realizations may not quickly alleviate visceral sensations.

Your nature is not fixed, but things take time.

The ability of a cognitive realization to modify an emotional experience varies within and across both people and situations. For those that are looking to change once in awhile or for those that are looking to continually grow, it must be remembered that patience is required. If you have been alive for 25 years you have received 25 years of conditioning to make you exactly as you are. There have been millions and billions of events (and non-events) that occurred to create the being that is reading this sentence. Your biological heritage, the greater culture of your country, and the smaller cultures of your province, city, neighbourhood, friends and family have all had great effects. Possibly a misappropriation, I believe thinking of various socio-political places in your life as cultures may be beneficial, if only because when ‘culture’ is mentioned its impact is overt and does not require much explanation. Obviously, the climate of your school (for example) is a subsection of larger cultures, but they will all be slightly different and each will have an impact upon you, even if it isn’t noticed. Consequently, some traits are going to take some alternative conditioning and great effort to change. I still say try, because growing (not just from eating pizza) is what life is about. What else are you doing? No really, what else are you doing?

Try to apprehend that when you are attempting change, most of the time you are still within a series of influential cultures or situations. There are many salient cues and triggers that make it harder to mitigate the power of events. Do what you can to remove potentially negative influences that impede your growth. A good friend is highly beneficial; someone to whom you can communicate your goals and problems of development, but who is also there for a hug or a laugh. Use the resources available to you. Things do take time, but that isn’t too bad. Why? Because change is still possible. Sure, some characteristics appear genetically determined, but the expression of genes (which is not fully understood) describes only inclinations or tendencies to respond to certain biological, chemical, social(…etc) stimuli. Even if your overall potential is capped in one area, I doubt you have reached the ceiling, so just keep going until you hit it. How about possible? It is possible for you to do X.

In the process of self-actualization, the road can be difficult and steps are hard to make. Patience. Realize the power of inertia. Do so not to submit or acquiesce, but try to understand and contextualize situations, which in turn will give you proper expectations for the outcomes of your introspective perseverance.

Read more, learn more, change the globe.


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