Anonymous Wisdom

Anonymous made some provocative quotes during her lifetime. One of my favorites is the one about hell being the end of your life when the person you could have become meets the person you became. Motivational speakers use this concept to scare people into self improvement. But this concept works in reverse for me. I tend to envision the person I could have become as one all alone, hungry, addicted, and in jail but for the love of others.


39 thoughts on “Anonymous Wisdom

  1. I’ve always had trouble with that quote. “The person you could have become” puts such a narrow, linear, materialistic view on life. What if you COULD have become someone rich and famous (externally appear successful) but suffered from depression and spiritual bankruptcy. Or do we get to meet more than one, all Possible Selves and shake hands with them like in a parade…?

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      1. You are absolutely right. I think my scrutiny of this quote is on its attitude of comparing and hinting that incessant pushing to be better, is better. Hell suggests guilt, after all. If other traits eg self-compassion/kindness/acceptance/good self esteem are to be encouraged… why compare?

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  2. Realizing you could have done more with your life is only beneficial if you realize it before the end of your life. At the end of our lives, we are simply who we are. Hell is reserved for the others that had greater expectations.

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    1. Interesting. Now that you make me think, I realize: my expectations are too high, my competitiveness off putting, and my strong ego is always too visible. So why do I take rejection relatively well? Defeat could be an opportunity to find self deprecating humor that balances out some of my negatives. But more likely, the humor is a façade to cover up the disappointments and not give others the chance to think I care. Thank you, Brad, for stimulating this free therapy session!

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  3. That anonymous sure got around, didn’t she? I bet she’s quite a gal. This is the first time I have ever heard this quote, however. I think my grandma would have used a didactic yet technical term to describe this quote. I think the term for it is “hogwash.”

    Liked by 6 people

    1. So Jujubes are your weakness. I have great discipline until I am around oatmeal raisin cookies. If I open a package of six, I have trained myself to take one and leave the room. If I the package is with me, I will idly keep eating the cookies unless someone intervenes.

      Liked by 2 people

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