Have they EVOLVED?
This is the question I ask myself. I would like to term it as "evolvement" rather than "changed". Lets say my views are evolving; am I now a different person? Is that disappointing? Well; one thing is for sure; words are not adequate to express why you think what you think; whats the background; whats the trigger. The outcome is what matters; not the process isn't it?
So; maybe I didn't expose the background triggers and support my views enough in such matters?
As children; we are not bound by any societal or cultural restrictions; we are unadulterated and thus express ourselves freely without any inhibition. Then, as we grow; we are bound by ways of the world; burdened with expectations. We get moulded into what the society expects out of us - constantly being judged and labeled. So much so that we become very similar to each other; imbibing what the system wants us to do; programmed to try and find success that is defined by the society and culture.
However; our core beliefs and wishes remain; which we constantly cane and suppress; because being different means being rebellious. But lets say; some of us are strong headed to not conform to the expected behaviour and be ourselves. What does that mean? To go against the clutches of conformance, of duty, of responsibility, of acceptance?
Some time back; I had a very interesting conversation with my supervisor at work. He was giving me feedback on how task oriented I am; how I should show a bit of empathy towards others and such. I was of the opinion that I am unique because of my nature; why is it that they are expecting me to be like "someone else". Then; I become someone else; not myself anymore. To which; he explained about "emotional intelligence" and "social intelligence" - to be aware of one's and other's emotions to get along with others and to handle interpersonal relationships. We also talked about how changing yourself is not becoming a different person but its evolving. Its a process.
To me; its still trying to force somebody to imbibe someone else's qualities. Dont get me wrong; I am not boasting of my lack of empathy. But I have my own ways to show empathy. So; to be liked, to be accepted, to be good and virtuous, to live upto an image and trying to meet expectations; we leave our true selves behind. Our culture likes it this way!
However; if one can lose the falsification; if one can differentiate right and wrong, if the core beliefs are still the same; underneath you can find your true self. It requires going through that process; of embracing those beliefs sold to you, of adopting those traits and images that you thought is right; that you realise whats your true self.
This would be going against the tide; being indifferent at times; being inconsistent at times. Lets face it; its not easy to be strong enough and keep up with one's instincts all the time; to be selfish and with all the forces of conformance pushing you without any trace of remorse.
In the end; what matters is if you still believed what you always believed in; even if you had deviated and are deviating and realise that :-)