What I want to be when I grow up

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This is probably my most personal post yet. It was written as a stream of consciousness over lunch with some limited editing for grammar and spelling.

In writing it I realise I have a set of ideals that define how I see myself and the world. I’m nowhere close to reaching really living any of these in any real way, but they represent my personal utopia. 

I want to be driven by love. I want all my interactions to be loving. I want to see what I can offer others, always. I want to be able to love without attachment. I want to feel love for everyone and everything. I want to want to care for and protect strangers the same way I love family and friends.

I want peace, not justice. I want a system that is always inclined and aligned towards peace. I believe that justice should always be restorative, never punitive. I don’t want to cheer when murderers are put to death. I don’t believe in revenge as holding any value.

I want to be knowledgeable and I want to be wise. I want to think, always to think. I want the rational, measured approach. I don’t want the primal reaction, the visceral first response, to drive my interactions with the world.

I want to focus on the future, not the past. I want to learn from the past but, to be honest, I think I need to ignore it. I think we are haunted by the mistakes of the past but by fixating on them we cannot move on.

I want fewer divisions, fewer boxes, fewer distinctions amongst people. I want to strip away my prejudices. I want to see the individual, not her race, religion, sexual orientation, education or career. I want to be naive. I want to start from a place of assuming good intentions from all.

I want to focus on the system – the biggest, deepest structural things. I don’t want to spend energy on moving around the deck chairs on the Titanic, or even fixing the engine, if we are heading towards an iceberg. You can paint over the damp but it’ll come back to haunt you. But there’s no point fixing the damp if the house is about to fall down.

I do not want to fear death. Let me go further: I want to embrace death and mortality. I want the limited time frame and the uncertainty to drive me to cherish life. I want to face death appreciating every moment of life.

I want to explore who I am. I want to understand why I do the things that I do. I want to understand consciousness and the universe and nature and everything. I want to do things that help me explore my understanding of the world. I want to keep my sense of wonder and explore like a child.

I want to see and be emotionally affected by beauty in the world. I want to try new things every day. I want good coffee and incredible cheese and I want to be moved by music and mountains. I want to feel art touch my bones. I want to remain unencumbered by this beauty.  I want nice things and memorable experiences but I never want to be attached to these in any way. I want a stoic edge to shape my being.

I want to be able to look at myself in the mirror and feel like I’m doing all I can to be the best me and to be net positive in my world ledger. I want to be at peace with myself.

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