“This I Believe.”
I believe in a lot of things. Some things I believe in more than others. I believe everyday a murder occurs that is never reported. No news story, no weeping mourners, no casket, no hearse, no grave. It is the murder of the person that lives within us.
Some people aren’t brave enough to fight one of the world’s toughest battles, the battle against yourself. Many have two identities, themselves and who they are for others. I’m sure that many of you listening to me read this are thinking of that person inside because you know you’re hiding them right now. People want to be ideal for other people, not themselves. Many wear certain clothes, listen to certain music, and act a certain way, just for acceptance. This is why I believe the word’s greatest battle is not fought on any battle field; it is fought within and against others, and everyone’s enemy is personal opinion.
Personal opinion is the true downfall of our society. Not opinion of ourselves, but our opinions of others. We spend more time critiquing others than we do getting ready in the morning. Imagine a world were individuals aren’t scared of being themselves. Many fight through life for the acceptance of others and the people that surround them. In the end life is not won through others; it is won through self. What kind of life have you lived if you hate the person you’ve become? Live your life as the person who is intended to live it.
I just hope that the people in this world can change. And it starts within them. Who are we to set an example for the upcoming generations, when half of us don’t even know who we are? Political leaders run campaigns based on what the public wants to see. They live in the public’s eyes and opinions. Give me a leader who knows who he is. Give me someone who has conquered self and the fight that many of us fight today. Don’t give people what they want. Because if it’s not who you really are, then they’re not even accepting you. They’ve accepted a whole other being.
The world can change with just the acceptance of ourselves, followed by the acceptance of other’s selves. Free will is one of our greatest gifts. However it also comes with the free will to have a personal opinion of someone. So this I believe, one of our greatest gifts, can also end up destroying us all. Inside and out.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.