#SWW: The World According to J
For this interview, I opted to interview my partner of many years. Due to my desire to maintain his privacy, I choose to keep his name anonymous. For the purpose of this piece, I will refer to him as J.
Here’s a bit of background on him (or should I say us?). We started dating almost immediately after meeting, which was well over six years ago. As is common with many couples, we consider each other best friends as well as partners in this life thing. Where I find tremendous value in him that is worthy of being shared is his perspective on the world, his unwavering optimism towards humanity, and a quiet determination (despite what others may see) to become a better man for not only himself, but his loved ones and society as well.
In his free time, he enjoys being outdoors playing disc golf or hiking, playing video games with his friends, listening to Jordan Peterson lectures, and spending time with his dog. Throughout our time together, we’ve had many thought provoking conversations on our viewpoints and despite some instances where we disagree, we eventually come to a term of mutual respect for each other. So, let’s get into it, shall we?
Maya: What is Self Worth to you?
J: Self worth, like redefined? What’s my definition of it? What’s my stand on it, like how it relates to myself and others?
Maya: However you want to interpret the question.
J: The first thing that comes to mind is, I guess contribution. Contribution to society and how useful and reliable you are to the people around you. Your integrity basically. (Mind you, J is a strong believer that we each are valuable and are capable of bringing good into the world through our actions and interactions.)
Maya: Describe your perfect Sunday.
J: My perfect Sunday? Let’s see. No responsibilities to be taken care of. Starting the day early and doing something outdoorsy with friends is always fun. And Maya making me bread, more like food. (Mind you the last bit is because I, the interviewer, stared at him since we usually spend Sundays together.)
Maya: What are three things that you want others to experience when they interact with you?
J: Inviting, respectful, and I guess good. Or honest, maybe?
Maya: Why is that?
J: I want them to feel inviting so they can open up to me and have, what do you say, a genuine conversation. I want them to respect me and I wanna come off as being honest.
Maya: Are these things that you also want people to express to you?
Maya: What’s something you wish we weren’t struggling with society wise?
J: I don’t know how else to word it, but responsibility and meaning. Life meaning.
Maya: Life meaning instead of responsibility?
J: No, both, I guess a lot of people have responsibility but more so willingness to take up responsibility and lack of life meaning in general. (In essence, we are to each find our purpose and continue to bring about good through it.)
Maya: Where do you seek inspiration?
J: I guess, philosophy, philosophers, especially ancient philosophers, if that’s what you wanna call them.
Maya: Who are your favorites?
J: Ancient Philosophers?
J: Socrates, that’s the first one that comes to mind. I wanna say Carl Jung, but I don’t think I know enough about him. Let’s just say him. Even though he’s not an ancient philosopher. And Nietzsche. I don’t know what his first name is.
J: Yeah, Friedrich.
Maya: What quote gives you the most meaning?
J: Despite the arbitrary unfairness and malevolence of being, it is best to act as if being is good.
Maya: Who said that?
J: Jordan Peterson. It’s not word for word. (Jordan Peterson is a Canadian Clinical Psychologist)
Maya: What’s the most meaningful thing somebody has said to you that still brings tears to your eyes?
J: They’re more like stories than meaningful things, unless you want a whole story, not just like phrases.
Maya: Mmm, you decide.
J: There’s something I was thinking about on the way home from work today that made me cry.
Maya: That made you cry?
J: Yeah, it’s basically the principle of this. [Proceeds to tell story about a close friend that has diabetes.] I’ve never heard him complain or use it as an excuse. In the 10 years I’ve known him, I’ve never heard him use it as an excuse to not be the best person that he can be.
Maya: What brings you peace?
J: It doesn’t take much right now. Being home in my room, alone. Or with my Schmooman (his dog). Being with my Schmooman brings me peace.
Maya: That’s it?!
J: Yup! [smirks]