WHO ARE YOU
Body and soul contain thousands of possibilities out of which you can build many identities. But in only one of these will you find your true self that has been hidden in Christ from all eternity. Only in one will you discover your unique vocation and deepest fulfillment. But, as Dag Hammarskjold argues, you will never find this "until you have excluded all those superficial and fleeting possibilities of being and doing with which you toy out of curiosity or wonder or greed, and which hinder you from casting anchor in the experience of the mystery of life, and the consciousness of the talent entrusted to you which is your I." We all live searching for that one possible way of being that carries with it the gift of authenticity. We are most conscious of this search for identity during adolescence, when it takes front stage. At this stage of life we try on identities like clothing, looking for a style of being that fits with how we want to be seen. But even long after adolescence has passed, most adults know the occasional feeling of being a fraud-a sense of being not what they pretend to be but rather precisely what they pretend not to be. With a little reflection, most of us can become aware of masks that we first adopted as strategies to avoid feelings of vulnerability but that have become parts of our social self. Tragically, we settle easily for pretense, and a truly authentic self often seems illusory. There is, however, a way of being for each of us that is as natural and deeply congruent as the life of the tulip. Beneath the roles and masks lies a possibility of a self that is as unique as a snowflake. It is an originality that has existed since God first loved us into existence. Our true self-in-Christ is the only self that will support authenticity. It and it alone provides an identity that is eternal. Finding that unique self is, as noted by Thomas Merton, the problem on which all our existence, peace and happiness depend.
'Nothing is more important, for if we find our true self we find God, and if we find God, we find our most authentic self.'
David G. Benner. The Gift of Being Yourself: The Sacred Call to Self-Discovery (Kindle Locations 69-71). Kindle Edition.