Some Thoughts on the Struggle for Originality

 (It effects more than just the hipsters).
You guys. Listen. There’s no one like you. You are unique. Special. Carefully and intentionally crafted. All the quirks and idiosyncrasies that make up “you,” are like a darn fingerprint.
Yes, everyone on earth is their own brand of human, BUT… The way we interact with others, talk, dwell, dress, and think are usually not as unique. These things–our habits– are what cause us to fall in to categories. The trends and norms of culture exist and exist and exist until we have unknowingly adopted them as our own. Put a bunch of humans together and these areas of personal preference begin to rub off on each other. And before you know it, the things that we think make us special are just… Average. Normal.
It’s a crisis, really. Because there are only so many ways you can wear your clothes, style your hair, play/choose music or even select food choices. After a while the vegan guy wearing women’s jeans and listening to Mikky Eko is no longer a “fascinating anomaly,” he’s a pattern.
…And it’s not just hipsters that seek to be set apart. We all do. We go seek education, beauty treatments, weight loss/gain, travel, friendship, personal achievements, and a number of other things to put us where we want to be. We want to be in a certain category, or we want to be above a certain category of human, but we work to somehow be set apart (some people are just louder about it than most others…).
That quest for originality is not only understandable, it’s chronically human. We’ll always look for ways to be unique, because we all want to be.  Unfortunately, those shoes you bought are available to anyone else that wants to purchase them. The home-brewed beer that you make AND drink is… special (to say the least) …but let’s be honest; The hill people were making their own booze for a loooong time before you showed up and started doing it.  The city you live in might be trendy, yes, but you’re not the only cool person that thought to move there. Oh, you only eat paleo? Neat. So does my friend. So do a lot of people.
The point? People can always copy you. If you wear that unique style of yours out of the house …It’s subject to be copied. If you share your groundbreaking form of poetry with anyone, then guess what?  It can be copied. Honestly, the only thing someone CAN’T copy is your soul.
Your soul is fine tuned to be a supernova-level work of art. It’s supposed to blow people’s minds with the various strengths and weakness that were placed within it. 
And it’s in the fine tuning of this “super-nova soul” that we gain our individuality.  By drawing near to the Lord we are essentially accessing the instruction manual, not just for life, but to our specific strengths. When I press in to God for wisdom, I will undoubtedly receive a much different dose of wisdom than you might. Because God is not a therapist or a self-help author that spits out generic diagnoses and blanket statements (that are probably printed on a cat poster somewhere), but rather, He’s your architect, helping you decipher the very blueprints that make up your being. The very blueprints that HE designed.
The only true differences. The only true watermarks in our world, exist in the PEOPLE and the SOULS that were so carefully and painstakingly created by this Ultimate Artist and Author of Originality. The idea that God poured a little bit of Himself–different bits and bobs of His psyche and heart–in to each one of us at the the moment of our conception, is mind-blowing. And yet, we try our hardest to dress our exterior in a way that will make us stand out, without paying any mind to the deep well of individuality that lies within.
When we learn that originality is only truly achieved through authenticity, we can shift the weight of our “cultural quest for originality,” from our own shoulders, to God’s.


**A puzzle has but one spot for each piece in its scheme. The world is the puzzle, and you’ve been made to fit a spot in it. If that doesn’t make you original, then I don’t know what does.


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