Familiar Self

Familiar Self

A Story by siddhartha288

I am no longer familiar with myself. Well… not as familiar as one would like to be with one’s self. But then again what exactly is this thing called the “self”? To be fair no one really knows.


  I am no longer familiar with myself. Well… not as familiar as one would like to be with one’s self. But then again what exactly is this thing called the “self”? To be fair no one really knows. But I tend to digress much. Many psychologists throughout history have painstakingly tried to pinpoint the exact origin, or origin of some kind, of the self.

  But perhaps it is not as important as we’ve made it out to be. I used to believe I was my generation’s Van Gogh or Hemingway. I probably could still be but I’d rather just be myself; if such a self should ever present itself. Of course, selves like Van Gogh and Hemingway are usually overlooked more than once. I too have been overlooked; both voluntarily and involuntarily. I suppose it is kismet.

  Some of you might say that I should stop all of my lollygagging and just get a job. Some of you might be correct but some of you might be more wrong than you could ever imagine. If every problem in the world could be fixed by “getting a job” than life in general would be a hell of a lot more miserable. And I mean that, truly.

  The other day I saw a homeless man underneath an overpass begging for spare change. As usual people chose to ignore him. I didn’t have any change to give him but I found myself imagining what it would be like to be in his shoes. Would I suffer as much as him? Who’s to say that he is suffering at all?

  The way I see it… he is living life his own way. Carefree and unchained by society’s antiquated bullshit. And I do mean bullshit in the most sincere manner. We all buy into it at some point. So, it seems only natural that we should all grow out of it at some point as well.

  I believe I’d like to someday live in an isolated cabin in the woods. I could live off of whatever food I grow or hunt. I’d commune with nature on a much more intimate basis. More importantly, I’d have plenty of time to gather and collect my thoughts. Not that I don’t already have enough free time to collect my thoughts. I just prefer to do so when I’m not being bombarded by so much external stimuli.

  I do write down my ideas and thoughts quite frequently. Sometimes they turn into something more and sometimes they morph into eclectic abstract poetry. Either way I still make sure to get them out and documented.

  Individual personalities do tend to play an important role in my writing. But I guess there’s nothing surprising about that. Many writers before me have employed the same technique. I happen to find human foibles fascinating. People in general are quite fascinating. Perhaps too fascinating for their own good.

  Take for example… a morally corrupt rich man and an incorruptible homeless man. Which one does society consider to be most successful? I think we all know the answer. But that does not mean we have to accept the answer. I know, I know it can be rather difficult to go against the grain of society but it is usually those that do who end up changing society for the better.

  This is more than another dreamer’s wish. Most of my dreams taunt me or tempt me. It is rare when I actually learn something from a dream. That is… anything readily useful.

  Do I know what I speak of? Maybe I do maybe I don’t. Does it really matter?

  I mean when one stops to ponder a little over the entirety of existence and all that it is supposed to entail one may discover an entire lexicon of unknown unknowns. We are all grains of sand passing through the great cosmic hourglass. We are no more than a barbeque stain upon the shirt of eternity.

  If I were to try to walk off the edge of the Earth and straight into a vat of liquid contradictory would the splash make a sound? Yes… I am serious. Really… quite serious. But then again what is this concept known as “seriousness”? Must it imply that there be absolutely no humor what so ever?

  Chances are likely that during deep moments of “seriousness” one is in dire need of levity of some sort! But there are plenty of other moments that do call for more than levity but in a world of limited constructs and perspectives levity seems to be the best antidote. Break away! Break away from those limited constructs! Do it! Do it now! You know you want to. You know you can.

  When a tree needs to grow taller it does not get tied down by false pretenses. Nope! The tree grows taller when and where it needs to grow taller! There are no groups or organizations that can limit its growth. There may be some that will try but they will always inevitably fail.

  You’re probably saying to yourself “I’m not a tree!” or if you happen to speak in layman’s tongue “I ain’t no tree!”

  And if trees could talk they’d probably respond with “We are not human beings! We recognize our growth as something necessary!” But I believe that they would be more likely to not say anything at all.

  Stars are another constant in our reality. By stars I mean those twinkling balls of gas in the night sky. Don’t you ever wonder what they are thinking about? How could you not wonder what they think about?

  Why just the other day my little nephew asked me “How come stars are not people?” I replied with “Because they are better than people. They twinkle and shine a lot more.” Then he replied with “People can shine just as much as stars can.” I then laughed and said “Perhaps you’re right. Perhaps… you’re right.” We topped off our conversation with a couple of ice cream cones.

  Where shall I go next? Shall I maintain some kind of un-assumed equilibrium within society’s dysfunction-ality? If that makes some required sense to you then congratulations. You probably understand more than you know.

  Once upon a space I went for a long rigid walk off the edge of the Earth. For centuries people believed in such a place. I don’t understand why it is we should have ever stopped believing in such a place. My insanity informs me that we need to believe in the mystical. Life would be far too unbearable otherwise.

  If I were Superman I would fly around and around and around. I’d help everyone help themselves. And if some villain were to emerge and cause turmoil I would first talk things over with him; perhaps over a cup of tea. And then if he still insisted on causing turmoil I would do my best to try to alter his perspective. I’d probably have to injure him pretty badly but such is the way of the world.

  I don’t agree with it. I don’t agree with a lot of things. But one of the things I do agree with is the possibility of an intrinsic self.   


  I suppose we must all reside in hope’s recesses. Though, I sometimes wish it did not have to be this way. But I am grateful for the challenge that life brings to the table. Even if the table is in dire need of varnish. My arguments might not seem like much but they are my own. And who is to say whether they are right or wrong? Just because one individual believes something to be wrong doesn’t mean that the majority must also believe it is wrong.

  When you go to a shoe store and try on different styles of shoes you rarely come across a pair of shoes that promises to fit every size foot. And if a salesman tries to coax you into buying a pair that you do not feel comfortable in you usually just don’t buy that pair. Do you see what I am getting at? Of course you do.

  Perhaps I am being far too reflective. I have no problem admitting that. This is the mind that I was born with. I am surrounded by incompetence. All levels of incompetence. I guess that is the way it is supposed to be.

  What is the self? It could be much more vague than we realize. It could be staring into our very core every second of everyday. Ultimately, we are the ones who must choose between suppressing the self or setting it free.


© 2012 siddhartha288

Author's Note

This piece consists of different musings I tied together. It was also a bit of a writing exercise.

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Added on July 6, 2012
Last Updated on July 6, 2012
Tags: self, examination, analysis, ponder, philosopher, hemingway, van gogh



El Paso, TX

I read and write and write and read. I intend to do so for the foreseeable future. more..