My name is Annette Kim and I am 29 years old. I was born in Texas to Korean parents. I was raised in Connecticut for most of my life, specifically central CT. I am interested in philosophy, religion, art, and science. For most of my adulthood, I have been asking the question, “What is the meaning of all this?” I’ve always felt like I never fit in anywhere.
What I’ve underlined above are parts of my identity and personality that I think speak to WHO I AM … when in actuality these are the stories my ego tells me. So I have this new project going, titled “Deconstructing Ego” where I deconstruct constructs and ego. These constructs can be the characteristics that I know myself to be, my identity, or the way I believe the world works. These I identify as Spheres of Being. I’ve identified the ones that are most prevalent for me as the following:
The general idea is that I am not limited to these identity markers, these Frameworks within which I live that are used to define me and, unfortunately, to confine me. And who am I really? I am a puff of smoke. I am an ether in the wind. I am not even the voice in my head! I am GLORY AND MAGNIFICENCE , TRUTH AND RADICAL BEAUTY. And with that said, my first post will be on VANITY.
Am I Vain?
Yesterday, June 4th, 2019, was Move In with Jim Day and here I am, moving in my things and I realize how little of my personality and who I am is made of my Things. The big T-word. Things and Stuff. I have clothes and books and they are an indication of my interests and style. But at the end of the day, I could throw it all away without a second thought and I like the thought of that ALOT! This is another part of Deconstructing Ego and Constructs. So what does this say about me?
Who is this Ego of Self that is attached to Things and Stuff? It is my Vanity personified who says the following, “Pay attention to me! Look at how cool and special I am- Look at the Stuff I have! Check out my cool sneakers, my pants that make my butt look good! I am Someone Worth Knowing. I read good authors and smart titles.” It is a self-preservation technique. My Self wants to know that she is worthy! That she is someone other people like to have around. And there’s a part of me who fears letting it all go. I think about when I hit the road with even less Stuff and Things and what clothes will I wear to show people who I am? How will people see this creative me? How will I make myself known to the others? How will people judge me without all the shiny pretty things to drape on my body and my personality to make me shine and sparkle? What if I am dull without all this external circumstance? Well, I think that it is quite GOOD then that I do this, eh? To be real with myself about what it is that is me? Who is the unadulterated, raw kernel of soul that is me? Because it isn’t necessarily even the voice writing this right now. These words are going through a distillery of self and personality, filtered to produce an intended effect, despite my best intentions to not!
Pleasure in Vanity
My vanity is feeling threatened right now. I feel the concern hedging into my consciousness. My concern of not having enough pretty outfits to wear. And gosh, it really sounds so silly in the open but I’m happy to have it out there as it is true to me. I throw my hands up at the feeling I have because my higher being is feeling how vapid it is. And yet, my emotional being and intellect feels something all the same.
My vanity is a huge concern of mine. I like to look good. I take a lot of pleasure in it. With my face scratched up a week ago, it did bother me a little bit. My skin was scabby and bumpy and I did not look like myself. I found myself washing my face and feeling the cuts and scrapes, and wishing for my smooth, smooth skin back. Youthful. It has me wondering about old age and whether beauty fades. And if beauty fades, where will I be? I have seen gorgeous older women. The ones whose beauty never faded. They never lost their light. Or it grew and grew into a halo around their affect. It became a part of their being. Their living life so BEAUTIFULLY created BEAUTY. It is unspeakable Beauty. And this is where I find myself. Living Beautifully.
This is what this exercise serves as. By getting to know my Egoic selves, by writing them out. By seeing what ticks them off, what pushes their buttons, what cause produces their effect, I may know myself. “Know Thyself” Oracle of Delphi. The ancients transcribed this maxim on their temple walls. I am getting to know myself. This is my Inward Journey.