Read This If You Judge Yourself
There’s no such thing as a flaw. To be flawed means there’s something about you that isn’t perfect, that’s not ok as it is. We think to be human is to be flawed. We define ourselves in this way. We say things like, “I’m a flawed human being.” We know we’re not perfect because we think that would mean that we do everything right, we have all the answers, our skin is taught and blemish-free, our bodies are slender and toned, and people laugh generously when we joke and listen intently when we offer insight. Being flawed means that something doesn’t work just right. It’s dysfunctional. I think what’s really flawed is the way we think about ourselves.
Our bodies are manifestations of biology, and we cover them with nice clothes and makeup to create the illusion that we’re not animals. Our minds are a tool of evolution, conditioned by our past, our family, our culture. These things do not make us flawed.
They make us beautiful creatures that have developed the sad condition of self-judgement.
To consider ourselves a flawed species means that there’s something perfect outside ourselves that we’re comparing ourselves to, and it’s not God. We’ve created a cultural image of what perfection is and whatever doesn’t fit within that box is labeled flawed. We allow others to make judgements of ourselves that we adopt as truths. Those truths destroy our sense of self. They leave us with the belief that who we are isn’t ok, that something with ourselves is wrong. If we continue to reject who we are there will only be more division between ourselves and others. There will only be more dysfunction which we’ll inevitably project onto others. The only way to grow as individuals is the only way our culture can grow. We have to accept ourselves for the mistakes we’ve made, to embrace the features of our bodies for the mysterious shapes they’ve formed. We have to find love for the unibrows we pluck away, for the short height that men hide with platform shoes, for the faces women conceal behind layered masks, for the truth of who we are. We have to love all of the things about ourselves that culture has taught us are wrong.
What if, instead, we looked at ourselves as magic? This universe that we’re all a part of is mysterious. Our minds and culture may have done a good job at tricking us into believing we’ve got this thing figured out, but we don’t. There’s so much going on that we’re unaware of. As Brian Swimme has said. “This is the greatest discovery of the scientific enterprise: You take hydrogen gas, and you leave it alone, and it turns into rosebushes, giraffes, and humans.” That is magic. It’s mysterious, amazing, awe-inspiring, magical…And if we can really be in that awe we can begin to see how beautifully perfect everything is—just the way it is.
I’m not talking about the egomaniacs that walk around flaunting their amazing attributes in order to hide the sad truth that they are unbearably uncomfortable with who they actually are.
I’m talking about seeing the undeniable beauty of the human species, a part of this awe-inspiring universe. Maybe if we spent more time in awe of our bodies and minds and less time in opposition to them we’d have a healthier society. The key in having a process perspective, I think, is that you have to recognize the truth that there is perfection in each moment and who you are in this exact moment is exactly who you should be. It’s just too easy to get caught up in the unconscious belief that who you are right now is not ok. And this belief is poison.
So I hope you’ll let go of any of the so-called flaws you think you have. Love those things about yourself instead. Realize that this body is an amazing living thing and, in its natural form, it has nothing to do with culture. Allow yourself to reject culture’s idea of perfection. If we can begin to see ourselves as whole maybe we’ll be able to see that flaws don’t really exist. We’re a part of a gorgeous process that is full of magic and beauty. Nothing has to change for it to be good enough. It’s perfect just as it is. And you’re a part of that. So, that means you are perfect. Imagine that. Really. Imagine it.