Who I am is more than just what I’m good at, what I like to do, my thoughts, feelings, actions, how I look and what I do everyday.
Who I am goes deeper than the so-called essentials of living.
Who I am is more than my name, where I come from, how others perceive me.
It’s an essence that pervades all those things but is both more and less than all things that seem to make up who I am. It’s a totality and nothingness at the same time.
Been mulling over these thoughts for a while now. No I’m not going crazy or getting in a little over my depth here but just asking some questions to keep myself on my little toes. Allow me to explain. It all began a couple weeks ago when I began, in prayer, thinking about why I’m here. What began as questions about how hard I should push myself in studies rolled into serious ‘who am I?’ questions. Who I am would help inform what I’m doing here and allow me to respond better to the challenges to be faced in the weeks and months to come.
So who am I really? I remember defining myself as an educator (and here) some time back and I still hold that as an important part of who I am but then again, I’m much more than what I do. The past few days have been spent commemorating the feast of St Ignatius of Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus, of which I’m a part of now. The feeling of belonging and ‘rightness’ at being here was strong and most palpable – was very much consoled by the Society that’s so diverse and international yet so single-minded in its pursuit of the greater glory of God. So am I a Jesuit? I’d say yes, almost.
And then there’s the other little bits about myself – about how I like philosophy, reading, endurance sports and nonsense in general. Does this sense of identity change as time goes on or do I just respond to the world but keep the core of my being the same? I can see bits of both going on as I grow and develop but then again, it’s hard to pin down. Am I just chasing my tail or is there something more to this?
I’m nowhere near resolving that but suffice to say recognising that this is something that’s important may be a good step forward. I’m sure you’ll hear lots more bits of this around these parts as I try to put some of these thoughts into words. I’ll leave this post hanging a little – it seems apt not to bring this to a close because after all, the search does indeed continue.
Today marks my 3rd month after the vows and as it happens, it was ‘commemorated’ by the day’s gospel (Matthew 13:44-46) about the treasure in the field and the pearl of great price. Have I found the proverbial treasure and how would I know if I have? I just know that I’m at the place that I’m supposed to be and will revel in that for the moment. The treasure might not be a huge pot of gold but could just be the relative peace and joy that one lives one’s daily life, in the Lord.