Yesterday, during Philosophy 104 class, we were talking about the “complete” life. When you say virtue or happiness requires a complete life, what makes a life complete? In the discussion, we defined “complete” as having a fixed pattern (with regard to how you think/act/react) or, for a better term, stability in the character of the person. Despite having freedom to act in any way and to adapt characteristics we want, we tend to act in consistent patterns anyway. Because of this inertia, it’s hard (though possible) to break that pattern.
A lot of people would testify I’ve “changed.” Surface changes like fashion (since I dropped wearing dresses regularly) are more easily commented upon. Before leaving for Singapore, Marv said I would change for sure and when I came back, Jopy also commented upon my having changed. And I assume he meant something more substantial than trying to be more fit (in fairness, it is the first time I tried regularly exercising). I’ve made personal decisions regarding myself as well: what I want to change and what I want to improve about myself, but I understand how in essence there is something — in that deepest, bottom-est layer of the pie — that somehow stays same.
Some have told me I’m immature and I have an unpleasant way of reacting in some situations. I sometimes am antagonistic towards some people and I write things that I can’t tell them face-to-face in places that they can, if ever, read them because I think it’s better they know even if I can’t physically confront them about it. I am trying to work on these things. I’m not immature all the time, and as much as I belatedly recognize my times of immaturity, I’ve faced bigger issues in my life where I acted mature and definitely better in principle than the other person (my God, how can I ever forgive that person?). I think I will always fawn over people I love, and people who I constantly hang out with in the moment, but I’ve also tried to be nice and tolerant towards those I particularly dislike. I mean, I think in essence I work with a simple principle: be nice to me and I will easily be nice to you, and even love you. Backstab me and all I’ll feel toward you is hatred. If you’re a douche, forget about talking to me, period. Maybe it’s not very Christian, and in Philo-terms I’d like to believe I’m a continent person (I try to do good and all, but I still have the tendency to be mean), but it doesn’t make me evil.
I think, no matter how much I try to change myself in the way I react to situations, how I feel about things stay the same. I will never be the type of person who will shut up or let things pass, or dismiss a rude comment / an impolite action in a disagreeable situation — I will risk being disliked or hated but I will react against it/the person. I will never be content if I feel unjustified or I felt like a friend of mine (or even myself) have been unfairly judged. I will always adore people who love me, and I will always break a bone just to help them. I will always act upon what I believe is right even if it will hurt me or my friend in the process — as long as I’m convinced I’m doing the right thing. I will feel brokenhearted at the smallest things. I will always find people (other people, their lives, their stories) interesting and, I think, the things that motivate me or drive me generally still are the same. I will always find it hard to focus on more than five people at a time and because of that people will, probably, always mistake that inability for a tendency to abandon other friends. And even now, even as I try to think of it, I still wonder how I can change some of the worst aspects of me: I hate as fiercely as I love, and I am as unforgiving as I am loyal.
I just have to accept that everyone who can not understand who I am now, or how I am, never will even in the future. I have to convince myself I have nothing else to prove. Not when everything in surface level is nitpicked and everything that is in essence is merely forgotten. I’m just starting to get used to things now, to adjust to those people, to be unaffected, because as much as my essence will hardly change, neither will theirs.