Something he'd gotten out of a book, among a list of about 100 other ideas, but this one stood out like a tower in a desert. I instantly realized it was true. And it hurts. I don't want it to be true. I like having idols and something to aspire to...
Or at least, that's what I want to say.
That's my knee-jerk reaction.
The problem is I know better. It's so clear how true it is. I immediately saw how I was removing from my character, all the traits I saw in them that I was telling myself I don't have. But what determines that really? What limits or opens up one's capacity? Surely, there are factors, but what's possible for one is possible for another.
I immediately saw how all those things were already in me, just crying to come out. Some more buried than others, and yes, not instinct. But they also didn't feel unnatural. I realize, personal traits one wants to cultivate are less about learning something and more about unlocking it.
I want to be like Tim Ferriss in ways, Tony Stark, Elon Musk, Ben Franklin, Buckminster Fuller... on and on the list goes. So I look at them as something to aspire to. But that's wrong. They're not made of different matter. Their brains functions by all the same processes as mine. the chemicals that produce different emotions and mental states are all the same. There's no difference in the biological substance; which is to say what's in them is in me.
It changed my thinking from seeing a matter of something I'm lacking to seeing that it's stifled. I'm holding back.
In a way.
It doesn't fully make sense yet. It seems so easy, and probably is, but then my brain is on overdrive. How can it be easy? Look at this difficult history. Look at my struggles. I can let them go like that? All that time wasted!
What a tragedy!
At least... that's the dance that plays out.
Only the first is true though, isn't it? It's really as easy as just changing my mind.
I don't see how it can be more complicated than that. There's just pain/regret that wants it to be more complicated.
I want to let go of having heroes.
Still trying to sort out what that means for having mentors (I previously have seen them as quite one and the same). This, hero worship has certainly kept my self-image small. Though I think it happened the other way around first.
Low self-image led to hero worship.
But now what?
Am I my own hero now? That seems a little silly.
Am I on the same level with my heroes?
Something about that term is rattling around in my brain now. Something seems broken about it.
Why have a hero?
They make me feel better. Like more is possible.
But it's out there.
What about me?
This relates to something I've been thinking about this. Changing the way I look at people from aspiration to something more like a reminder. Like rather than trying to improve to be more like them, just... remembering that maybe I already am. Or at least I can be.
And it's not a matter of being anything or anyone else, just a matter of finding something already in there. Some dormant capacity. A self-refinement.
If I really think about it, it seems obvious that anything that's not already in me, can't be a part of me. A person might be able to develop such things, but they will be obviously fake. A ruse. These are the people that are clearly acting, or manipulating. They've always been insufferable to me.
This is interesting! I'm thinking about it now. It's similar to a lesson I learned about weight loss.
You can't have Brad Pitt's abs, for instance. Those are his genetics, that's what his body looks like when he loses weight. There's no way to replicate that, unless that's what your genetics do.
Likewise... perhaps what confidence looks like on me is totally different from what it looks like on other people. Same with many many things. Maybe trying to be like someone else is just as foolish as trying to have their body.
Then, it's not a matter of being like other people. It's about finding those traits in each individual and helping them express the way they would in that person.
So I can't replicate my idols... in a manner of speaking.
It's not about duplication, replication, or emulation. I can't be them.
The only thing I can really cultivate then, is action.
Certain actions will develop certain traits. That's a natural law.
My mind is racing back through various lessons now. The different levels of this leading to that, ultimately culminating in what makes you the way the world sees you.
I think I'm finally starting to understand...
The importance of action.
Importance isn't the right word... it's more like... omnipotence.
It's a dictator. Everything flows from there first.
Habits are all that truly matter then. In the end.
It seems like this:
Philosophy is great. Amazing even. But we have to live in the real world. So philosophy has to flow out into action, or it's utterly useless. But action leads to consequences, and external responses which will necessarily feedback in one's philosophy. Or, at least, back into one's wisdom. Maybe, then, philsophy is the way we decide how to use wisdom.
I'm laughing at myself now.
If all this is true, for all how long I've thought the opposite, I've been grossly lacking in wisdom. At least, as an adult.
When I was a kid and didn't have adult responsibilities and obligations, I was way ahead. But I've gotten further and further behind with age.
I've lacked action. Which is unwise.
This is an interesting revelation.