Purpose in Place, We Are Not (a product of) Our Environment
Updated: May 18
When addressing Purpose in Place, a lot of organizations speak to people who have either already found their place or are already living, doing or practicing their purpose. But these are not the people that need the help, or the attention.
Of course, those who need attention rarely get it and those who get it rarely need it. Did high-school Nancy with long athletic legs and a knack for algebra need attention from the basketball team or a scholarship based on her athletic ability in order to excel in statistics at Georgetown University? Did short, wall-eyed Jennifer with no help from anyone get either of those opportunities handed to her?
And it only gets more ridiculous… Nancy is going to have so much success that she will need to invent problems just to feel human, while Jennifer will get so fed up with being human that she just collapse under her problems. Again, Jennifer will be forgotten and Nancy will be the hero, yet again.
I’m not Nancy, I’m not Jennifer either, I’m not female, and I don’t think in these terms. It isn’t so much how I see myself, as how others see me. It’s easy to say that we are in control of our own destinies when we already have a good chance of succeeding, but like Nancy, we cannot see how poisoned we are by our own good fortune.
Since the civil rights movement, society has steadily grown more inclusive and equable, but it always comes at someone else’s expense. Someone succeeds while another one fails, otherwise who would operate the gears of society when those wildly successful people are busy consuming all the output?
To this end, it has become acceptable to point out ‘white privilege’ or merely ‘white’ or ‘male privilege’ appended simply to ‘male’. White male, yeah, that’s what I am, but answer me this, where is my privilege when I am just as underprivileged as Jennifer, just as poor as old Bob, or just as stupid as Marge?
Again, no complaints, and I do not identify with any of these categories, but my employers do, my teachers do and now everyone else does too. Attributing virtue where there is no virtue, oppression where there is no oppression.
The purpose of this post like all posts is to experiment, first with engagement, then with reception and then with return. But what do I get in return? I am not selling anything, I am merely returning these words and these ideas back to their sender. I am indicating my authentic presence by pointing to my environment and saying, I Am Not That. You do not control my identity. My identity is in the domain of the All-Mighty algorithm of the Simulation, Itself.
So go forth, be fruitful and multiply… my memes.