Brief Philosophy: Illusions of Worth

When we talk of "deserving," the inevitable concept that goes along with it is value. As value is ascribed to one thing, the value of another thing diminishes. So too we ascribe value, or "worth," to people.

When a person is worth something, it determines their treatment. If we perceive someone to be worth a lot, we treat them well, while those who we believe to be worth little get treated less well.

In order for the system of worth to function, we inescapably must apply it to ourselves as well. Because for someone else to be worth little, we must project greater worth upon ourselves.

Every interaction takes, sub-consciously, into account the status of our worth in relation to whomever we are interacting with. This means that our worth is relative depending on whom we are surrounded by. Some people make us feel like we are worth something, while others make us feel worthless.

If it is in fact true that all humans are inherently of the same worth, thereby being equal at birth, then this would contradict the self-worth inspired way of being.

While we may hold to the ideal of being equal, our actions are based on judgment of the worth of our selves and others. This, I would argue, means that self-worth, and its consequent system, is little more than a construct of the mind. It is an illusion by which we obscure the equality of all beings.

Realizing this I find liberating. Catching the machine at work each time it happens, is a monumental challenge, and a long time pursuit. Yet in the awareness of this process, we may find the power to break free from it.

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