Monday, February 15, 2010

Line my eyes and call me pretty

Random thoughts...I've been very thoughtful lately...and to think of all the work I have to do! But busywork will always be there, and the things that pop into my mind seem to be so fleeting, so best to write them down now:

-In high school a Myers-Briggs personality test I took told me that I was a very strong INFP. Our teacher had told us that most people would be in the middle for most of the categories, and that it was perfectly normal to not be a strong anything. I'm sure he didn't mean it like this, but I left the room feeling like a totally weird, unbalanced person (especially since Wikipedia then told me that only 1-5% of people are INFPs of any intensity). I mean, I love being an "idealist" as INFPs are labeled and wouldn't want to be any other way, but I feared (still fear) that having that extreme a personality would alienate me from everyone. I guess being like 97% introverted was what bothered me the most. I mean, being (or not being) thinking and sensing and judging are important, but human interaction is like the essense of life. Anyways, I'd still say that I'm very much an INFP, but that test is self-reported and I was probably in one of my many "down with people" phases...senior year of high school...yeah, definitely was. But for some reason I have a lot of faith in everything right now, even though sometimes signs point elsewhere.

TL;DR? Right about now I really like people. In another time and place, recent events in my life and the lives of many of the people I care about the most would've led me to shut myself off from the world and the awful creatures in it, but I guess I'm realizing that that's always made the situation worse for me. And this time I really didn't want to revert to being that lonely, so I looked around me and realized how many great people I have in my life. It's foolish, but I find myself forgiving everyone for everything. Life's too short to hold grudges. Some anger's good, but you don't want it to be a driving force. I can't say if people are intrinsically good or intrinsically bad...people are just intrinsically people...all living a series of ups and downs. Funny how alive you feel after a cataclysmic event; I'm just trying to embrace it all. There's really nobody I can never see myself forgiving for anything they've ever done to me(forgetting is a different story, but w/e). Logically it might be an unhealthy way to think, but INFPs aren't very logical. Really, the only people that have done unforgivable things in my life aren't people that have hurt me, but those who have hurt the people that I love. The Cancerian trait of keeping everything and everyone in my life might also play into this...also, I don't know where to squeeze this in but I just thought of how sometimes introversion/extroversion is determined by whether someone gains or expends energy from being around people, and for the first time in a while I'm seeing people as a gain and not just a drain of energy and time. So maybe I'm more extroverted in that sense, but just quiet and unassuming at the same time. If I weren't quiet and unassuming I'd be telling people about all the things in this blog instead of writing. But I am a better writer than a speaker, and maybe that's independent of personality.

-My facebook interests, once upon a time, were listed as "pretty people, pretty places, and pretty things". Part of me wrote that to be facetious, but another part actually valued that stuff. I guess I still do; well, everything in life is worth valuing and aesthetically pleasing things are so forthright that it would take a ridiculous amount of energy to ignore them that really isn't worth the missing out on something so lovely.

Okay, sorry for that awfully worded sentence. Anyways, I don't think anything in life is superficial, but sometimes I think we just label things as pretty or beautiful so that we don't have to think about what we really mean to say about something or someone we find attractive. I mean, for me pretty things aren't of value because of material worth, but because somebody took the time to make something in hopes of it bringing joy to others. And pretty places, especially in nature, connect me to everyone who's ever seen what I'm seeing at that moment; I wonder who they were and where they came from and what they felt as they stood there. And while I'm seeing God in people more and more (what would I do without Quakers?), the closest I've ever felt to a higher power was when trekking through the rocks of Capri. The walk itself that I'm referring to was actually pretty hellish, but the sight cliffs, birds, and crystal blue water are the only things that have nearly brought me to tears based on appearance alone. I mean, maybe things can come to fruition by chance, and I'm sure the islands were manipulated by humans to maximize their potential as a tourist destination (thanks, Rich Nations and Poor Nations), but that shade of blue had to have been mixed by somebody until they got it right...and people can't do that.

But what about the "pretty people" part? I mean, being attractive gets people attention and admiration and sometimes can result in a career as a model or someone's muse, but what does it really bring someone in life? I mean, there are people who I could stare at for days on end and it would bring me some sort of joy knowing that such beauty exists, and I'll admit that whenever anyone tells me I'm attractive I feel a little pang of pride. But I'm sure some of the people I find attractive are quite unpleasant and someone finding me attractive doesn't necessarily mean that they appreciate me for everything I am (though I like to think I'm a likable person in general). I consider the word "beautiful" to encompass more than just outside prettiness, but every time someone tells me I'm beautiful I wonder if they just mean "attractive". Yet I'm trying my best to believe that there is not superficial anything. I guess "attractive" is just another trait like "nice" or "honest" or "athletic" or "smart" and just another part of the world. And it should be taken as such, and should be placed on equal footing as any other characteristic anybody has. Nothing wrong with pretty things, but nothing super special about them either.

-Yet I have still felt a little empty lately. Like, I can think of all these things and I can go about my daily life and learn things and have adventures, but it seems vapid without having someone to come back and tell it all to. But I guess I'll find that someone some day. For now, that's what blogging is for...

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