“I simply feel that a human being must always recognize that he is qualitatively more than any system of thought he can imagine, and therefore he should never label himself. He degrades himself when he does.”
— Alan Watts
I am statements are powerful. When we use the words “I am” in conjunction with any other words, we say that we so identify with the object of the sentence that we use that phrase as a boundary of our existence. I am Christian. I am black. I am female. I am gay. I am straight. I am male. I am a follower of Thelema. Any and all of these may be true but what else are you?
We are all unique expressions of the all. Mapping ourselves in a one to one relationship with any one philosophy, religion or orientation created by another limits us. What’s more we also give others the power to limit us as well. Far too often, we dismiss each other with a series of labels as if to say that once we know that someone is a Heterosexual Conservative we know everything that could be of interest about her. Somewhere along the way, we forgot that she practices the Rites of Spring with a group on the equinox or talk about how she raised a child with Downs Syndrome.
We are all so much more than the sum of our labels. I find that I describe myself less and less with I am statements as the years continue onwards. I am and that is enough.
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