Who Am I: the sum or the product?


Who Am I?

A common enough question that people fight to answer. Some people answer quite easily. Others struggle to answer. Still others can answer who other people are but have no answer for themselves.

One aspect is our past. It is our past that defines who we are now. Others say it is who we make ourselves or believe ourselves to be. Both beliefs have trouble. Our past, where we were born or what advantages we received as youth do contribute to how we turn out. But our own choices control whether we squander the opportunities given to us or make our own opportunities.

Personally, I believe that we are the sum of our past but not the product.

The advantages of my family financial position, what I lived through, and environment did make the foundation of who I am. The choices I made for myself and the effects of others’ choices shape my behavior and how I see the world.

But that is not to say my life is set and my behavior is unalterable. To say so would say that I am the product of my past. A finished person.

I am not. Everyday I make new choices of how I will behave and what I will learn to do. My past does impart experience and wisdom of a sort.

This is why I say I am the sum of my past but not the product of it.

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