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A Communal Lens to Our Sense of Identity

Updated: Aug 28, 2022

How we define community informs our sense of identity.

All to say, most of us adopt the communities we were born into.

We passively consume, and passively partake.

We accept the communal rules and rites, traditions and conventions; rarely questioning the alignment, or lack thereof, with our evolving sense of self and our growing understanding of the larger scheme of things.

We make every effort to fit the mold; we make the effort to keep things simple.

Then, we experience a catalyst.

An event that forces us to take a look at the roles we've played, and have allowed others to play, in our "inherited" communities.

We find ourselves asking, "Do we belong, here?..." "Do we want to belong here?"

In time, we become grateful of the life events that force us to question our fit in an evolving societal landscape. We develop the awareness that community runs deeper than common appearances and calendar holidays. Rather, in the face of catastrophic events, solidified communities forge around shared values and beliefs.

In truth, if we do not know where we stand, we do not really know where we belong.

When circumstances take place that create disruptions in our existence, requiring us to step away from the norm, these situations also give us an opportunity to reassess.

What do I believe in? What do I value?

Questions that are uncomplicated in and of themselves, though require depth of thought.

Give yourself the time and space to determine where your stand. We do not always have a value and/or a belief pre-established.

We do not always have a perspective fleshed out, ready to be acted upon and vehemently discussed.

Much of present day society requires us to think on topics, issues and politics that our predecessors did not question, and instead dogmatically upheld.

Topics, issues and politics that we find ourselves deliberating, as cracks break across the once placid surface.

So we do the work.

We introspect and align ourselves, accordingly.

We align communally based on shared thought and action; recognizing the inherent duplicity of attributing community to superficial commonality.

Our communities are ours to create and to dismantle.

Both with the times and against them.

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