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Archive for June 8th, 2021

GC Myers- Inherent Dignity 2021

“Inherent Dignity”- Now at the Principle Gallery



What people regard as vanity—leaving great works, having children, acting in such a way as to prevent one’s name from being forgotten—I regard as the highest expression of human dignity.

― Paulo Coelho, The Pilgrimage



How do you want to be remembered?

That’s a question I think most of us don’t want to be asked because it raises the specter of our own mortality. Besides, some may say, we will be gone so what does it matter what anyone thinks of us, if they think of us at all?

Even so, it’s an interesting question, one that might say more about how we should live our lives now than how we are thought of when we are gone.

I was going to say that I believe most of us desire to be thought of in glowing terms– thoughtful, loving, generous, fair minded, patient, honest, loyal, and so on. These positive traits come easily when we think of ourselves and our legacy beyond this life.

But not many of us want to be remembered as vindictive, small minded, petty, hateful, dishonest, stupid, or any of a thousand other traits with negative connotations. But many of us find it hard to shake these negative ways while living the only life we are guaranteed. Actually, it seems as though our culture almost celebrates these negatives now, that being ignorant, selfish, and angry is a point of pride.

A moronic badge of honor.

Is this how we would wish to be remembered in the future? Is that the legacy we wish for our name when we are gone?

I hope not.

I hope most of us would like to be thought of in terms that dignify our existence, ones that show we were worthy of our time spent here.

The tragic part of this is that this is not a difficult thing to accomplish. Opting for a dignified legacy is often just a matter of choosing to do so. It comes in simply thinking before reacting and in rejecting our worst impulses when faced with simple daily decisions and interactions.

We can choose to lead lives of dignity and nobility. Both are part of our makeup if only we choose to exercise our right to choose them.

We have an inherent dignity, which is also the title of the new painting at the top. I know that my choice would be to live my life like the Red Tree in this piece– straight and forthright and out in the open so that my flaws and strengths are visible to all who might look my way.

I figure that if I use that example in living my own life, someone will; remember me for my good points rather than my worst impulses. Or so I hope.

I wasn’t planning on writing this this morning. In fact, I almost skipped today. But I decided to push forward and write a bit. I hope it makes sense since it is off the cuff.

Maybe consistency and persistence will be part of my legacy?

I’ll never know.

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