If you could ask the Earth to tell you about itself, what would it describe?
Would it mention oceans? Mountains? Trees? Bugs? Lava? Microbes? Atoms?
Could there ever be an end to the describing, when you’d know all there is to know?
What about everything that would change even during the describing?
In a way,
Fearing uncertainty and misdirection, we attempt to prescribe for ourselves the best possible identities to live out. Some of these fit better than others, for longer—usually when based on perceived characteristics instead of just desired ones.
But even the best selves known or chosen are still incomplete.
Who and what we are is the result of many forces moving and evolving in time.
If we can see ourselves as that, we can live more in the moment.
When reduced to sets of teeming values vs. resistances, hopes vs. fears, desires vs. counter-desires, etc. we can gain a sense of inner consensus enough to know what we should probably do next.
And that’s all we need.
That’s better than mapping unknowable futures from impermanent summations of selves we double down on and cling to just for fear of never knowing any better.