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Abstract: Capturing a portrait of life reveals the keys to unlocking the potential or positive self-schema of emphasizing knowledge of your self-worth and the worth of others, utilizing your own interpretations of the world through life situations, film, spiritual enlightenment and our own perceptions. Which questions us to decipher the defense mechanisms that we to better decipher the defense mechanisms we acquire only making us handicap toward viewing and interacting with society.
Introduction-That’s the Glory of, that’s the Story of Life Secretly we all want to be beautiful or handsome, equally talented, the center of attention just for once in our lives. The extravagantly creative are loners, the amazingly attractive are too conceited, and the king or queen of our dreams are nowhere in sight. But what makes us that social butterfly, that person who creates connections all across the world as their smile lights up the room, does this person reveal their true selves in society or is it just an illusion?
The hard work and efforts we make to gain respect, insight and a positive imagine in our life might take more than just a decent gesture or a firm handshake, we sometimes have to be untruthful about who and what we are and simply what we do. Within our own crowded closets we hide our skeletons so perfectly that no one is aware of all those deadly fears, baggage, and overall unappealing factors that might make society feel like we are the unwanted or unnoticed.
Whether we know it or not it is our self-sabotaging state of mind that leads us to the helplessness of being important and the desire to be socially acceptable; as we hold importance on self-image or self-schema we are sometimes left with our thoughts within our intriguing minds wondering how to get there and what we must become. We then began to shield our true emotions and feelings with defense mechanisms that stand as our guard facing the factors that we are only human and have faults.
Looking At the Man in the Mirror –Finding Me, My Own Self-image Within The steps toward grasping our self-image must come from within as we look in the mirror,” we ask ourselves who are we to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? ” Meanwhile the question answers itself saying “who are we not to be as a Child of God our playing small does not served the world, as we come to the realization that there is nothing enlightening about downplaying our own personalities so that other people won’t feel insecure around us.
In life upon society we are meant to shine as we are born to make manifest the glory of God that is within, as everyone has that chance to shine but if we let our lights shine we give others the ability to unconsciously to do the same. Finally we are liberated from the fears that had us bound as we break those chains of negativity just simply by our presence we free others. (Williamson, 2013) This factor is known as cognitive schema or cognitive psychology; we define self-schema or self-image as the mental process with the efficiently processing and organization of incoming information.
We find that our knowledge, beliefs, and past experience are stored into our long-term without intervening with our conscious thoughts. Although we equally process information about ourselves schematically this happens when our brains store memory feedbacks that we receive from the sources from our peers, senses and bodies which also interlinks with “our emotions and physiology in a complex way that interconnects with self-systems that triggers automated scripts or actions that respond well to the situation. It is the cues of the environment that prompt a schema that sets into motion an automated sequence of cognitive, emotional and physiological responses. Are we really the product of our own environment? Looking within our own past we find that our own self-schema is developed in our childhood, the thoughts of feeling unwanted, loved, unlovable, unattractive, unintelligent and other factors increasingly set into this motion that become negative and harmful in a person’s life.
With no reassurance from our peers, family or partners the emotions and behaviors that seem to deeply affect us makes it hard to conceal those wounds which prompt us to make additional self-schemas that seem to be more destructive than others. When we create the perfect self-schemas we initiate some matters more than others igniting a chain reaction of thoughts, feelings, perceptions and actions that are dangerous to us.
It seems to me that we justify what’s harmful to us but not what’s harmful to others as we view other people and categorize them in ways that are negative which being stereotypical, prejudice or even discrimination about ones creed or color seem to reveal the way we truly feel about people different than us. Although our own self-schemas we have about ourselves can cause suffering there nothing less than cognitive constructs within our minds especially when thinking, feeling and behaving in a certain way.
However, self-schemas are useful to us in our daily lives forcing us to be consciously being aware of important decisions and guide us on the right path so that we can behave appropriately in different situations and among people. Also they help us understand and interpret the way we use the information for example as we receive facts it activates specific cognitive, verbal and behavioral action sequences which are called scripts and action plans which makes it possible for us to meet goals more efficiently. The Spiritual Self-Schema, 2013)
The Battle within Ourselves In place within ourselves, we fight the good fight but it seems like we are our own worst enemy but what truly lies within our own unique battles is the willingness to change. But does that underlying promise go unheard? For our interpretive frameworks for understanding our own are the schema that is related to the behaviors of others; could it be the self-relevant experiences, situations and events that are relevant to a person’s self-definition that gains our focus or our attention?
Although we are only human our minds seem to always be consumed by the future, transformation and fears thereof. In reference to self-schema a film like Bicentennial Man portrays the story of the battle within us paint an intricate picture of how a blank canvas can turn into a magnificent masterpiece, whereas the story of Andrew Martin, expressed his endeavors in his transformation from robot to human and all the emotions and feelings involved. Andrew Martin played by Robin Williams reveals how people understand the behaviors of others in certain situations, experiences and events. (imdb. om, 2013)
As he learned more and more about the human experience and behaviors and why we do the things we do he gained insight that maybe the image he saw of him was merely human. Martin, an android who was glad to be of service saw that life was more than being a mere machine but the utmost feeling of being a human was satisfying in ways beyond measure. As years and years progressed his family life throughout serving as a butler, a teacher, a maid, a cook and an instructor made him yearn for something more and more each day as he soon found his talent with wood and creating clocks, whatnots and other masterpieces.
Could this be the element he was looking for something more that proved to him not only to be an android but a person full of talent, dreams and aspirations that no upgrade within his system could create? Time took a toll at the Martin’s residence whereas everyone was getting older and Andrew was no longer needed in the household but his bond with Sir Richard Martin and Little Miss provoked an idea to explore other remarkable experiences as he did with the Martin family. His journey did not stop there; his search drove him to find another android like him with more drive, passion and personality than he ever known.
After years and years of searching for answers it took years for him to understand to be human was to live, to love, to cry, to laugh and utmost experience of fulfilling one’s life dream which was to look back at the moments of life and have no regrets dying peaceful as a human. Even though Andrew Martin was just a robot his future of being something specular was obviously his fate as he altered himself becoming, enjoying the human experience to its fullness this exposed the true meaning of self-knowledge with knowing his past selves, possible selves, aging and his outlooks toward the future.
This is also the conflict we constantly have in life as we have trouble with seeing the our actual selves but yearn for the day of becoming something more sufficient than we see upon life’s mirror, it is very crucial that we accept things that we cannot change but have the willingness and drive to not be afraid to change the things that are changeable which start with loving ourselves as we would love our neighbor. Self-Schema, 2013) Healing Wounds, Love Thy Self as Thy Neighbor Have you ever noticed it is just the norm people to criticize others who are different than them, but if it’s inside there typical safe zone then they figure it not as much as a taboo? Within transforming ourselves we try to fix things that we do not like about ourselves as far as self-image, personality, self-schema but not our own interpretation of how we view the world.
The paragraph stated before, but I must reiterate that our knowledge, beliefs, and past experience are stored into our long-term without intervening with our conscious thoughts; but isn’t it our own self-schemas we have about ourselves or others that can cause suffering there nothing less the cognitive constructs within our minds especially when thinking, feeling and behaving in a certain way.
Another film that coincides with the known factor of not understanding the unknown, it is the film entitled, “Powder” where Sean Patrick Flanery portrays a young boy named Powder; who is an albino with a unique powers but as the more attention that receives the more he shakes up the rural community he lives in. (imdb. com, 2013) The looks, the stares and the comments reminds me of how people act when they see someone with deformities or let alone someone who is considered not normal in society.
The story holds many different meanings and concepts just as the story of Jesus does when God brought him down to earth to die for our sins to save humanity. Although these too stories are quite different you cannot help but to see how this film and the life of Jesus simply coincide with each other, both being spiritual in nature but still different nonetheless. Powder was born with a gift, his unique talent of telekinesis, odd attraction to electricity, and knowing things about people with simply a touch, shows exactly how different he was from most of the people that were in town.
It became a proven fact that he was the center of attention but it was unwanted for people like himself do not want to be mocked, criticized or ridiculed, as the movie progresses we find that although Powder is seen as a person of rare intelligence no one fully understands him. For he views his self-schema or self-image in a negative way, for he sees himself as unattractive, odd and is an individual who is deeply wounded with doubts, regrets and feeling of being unwanted his whole life.
How can someone so passionate about life and its surroundings be deeply wounded inside, does his factors of his childhood impact his self-schema as he was told he was different not unique, disfigured not handsome, or even strange but not extraordinary? The day by day taunting of others and the cruelness seemed to take a toll on what Powder thought life would be like from living in a small basement as his only friends where his grandparents and his books, it became obvious that this young, ingenious soul could not cope.
Deeply saddened by society and the people in it he chose to leave the world as much as Jesus did but only difference was he (Jesus) left on a cross and Powder upon the electrocution from a thunderstorm. Whether we know it or not the keys to unlocking the age old question to humanity is written deep within our hearts in souls, which it is to love thy neighbor like we love ourselves. If we took a closer look at the people as we go about the our daily hustle and bustle of our lives it seems that we are not truly focused on the importance or purpose of our own life which is to help our fellow man.
When we look in the mirror do we see ourselves as a normal person with normal lives and ordinary dreams and goals but does the question ever come up in our minds about who did we have to step over to get on the climb on that ladder of success? Was it the people that we see every day that make an effort to become an impact in ones lives, someone will morals, a upbeat personality along with a sound mind and character? How do we love our neighbors like we love ourselves when we are so consumed by money, power, greed and success? What drives the engine inside us that we could be so cruel, closed-minded and let alone numb to the world.
In society there must be something inside us that stops us and reminds us that it is those cognitive constructs within our minds and our self-schema that make it useful to live our daily lives as we are forced to be aware of the important decisions that we choose. This guides us on the right path so in every situation with each person we meet no matter what race, creed, color, orientation or abnormalities to behave the way we should, as we love our neighbor like we love ourselves.
The factor of our own desires to have a close connection with our spiritual side interprets who and what we are. The Spiritual Self-Schema, 2003) Spiritual Self-Schema- What Would Jesus Do? Our own interpretation of life is immensely influenced by our culture, religion, environment and overall self-schema is basically how you are impacted by life or society. In a sense we all claim to be the seekers of our own destinies, as we search for our truest, strongest and deepest self we earn our stake to redeem ourselves. Otherwise in this fast-paced society it behooves us to analyze the construction of our patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving which occupies our unique characteristics as individuals.
When life brings us misfortune we totally focus vastly on religion because it makes the path smoother which lifts our spirits, although our spiritual self-schema is known as a “cognitive structure” that can construct and maintain an ultimate experience full of qualities and characteristics that are attributed to it. As these things interconnect with all living things or Supreme Being or a higher power this position propose individuals who solely seek the will of spiritual nature in the total aspect of being compassionate, and peaceful in nature.
During the route to spiritual self-scheme we discover our own spiritual path that relieves us from suffering and give us the ability to cope with adversity and the ability to change behaviors that harm ourselves or others. At that swift moment of instability we find courage, inspiration, and enlightenment through our spiritual self-schema as it molds us to become who and what we are; we face another factor in our lives which is our defense mechanisms that we thrive on to hide our true selves from the world concealing the hurt that we’ve experienced along with the pain. Spiritual Self-Schema, 2003)
Dealing With Life, I Have a Big Ego Sigmund Freud described a number of ego defenses in his written works; he once said that “Life is not easy! The ego—the “I” –sits at the center of some pretty powerful forces: reality; society, as represented by the superego; biological, as represented by the Id. As the conflicting demands of society upon the poor ego seem to be understandable if you are threatened, overwhelmed or have that feeling of anxiety.
It is that proof that only explains ego as one thing “survival” which might cause something else to be in danger. The way we deal with life, conflict and problems totally depends on our ego which engages the defense mechanisms we have on an unconscious level which helps us ward off anxiety and brings peace back to our situation or circumstance. “The ego, driven by the id, confined by the superego could be disgusted by reality and fights to control the tasks of displaying peace among the forces and influences that might be working in and upon it. Otherwise the ego must admit its weakness in order to break those “chains of anxiety regarding the outside world, as moral anxiety regarding the superego and neurotic anxiety regarding the strength of the passions in the id. ”
When our memories of the unconscious along with drives or urges still are existent, they continually apply to the “powerful influence on behavior, as the forces itself fight to keep painful or socially undesirable thoughts and memoires out of the conscious mind which are known as defense mechanisms. This “battle between the wish, repressed into the id and the so called defense mechanisms”; although we use defense mechanisms to “protect ourselves from feelings of anxiety or guilt that arises because an individual might feel vulnerable because our id or superego becomes too demanding, seem like they are not under our conscious control, and are very non-voluntaristic. The “ ego” within our “unconscious will use several different methods to protect us when we come up against the stressors in our lives. ” If we know or not our “ego-defense mechanisms that are natural and normal but soon as they get out of hand our neuroses develop for example anxiety states, phobias, obsessions or hysteria. ”