Weirdness Validates Itself

One of my favorites parts of the story of the Buddha is when, deep in meditation and approaching enlightenment, Mara, spirit of deception, who asks him simply:

“What gives you the right to do this?”

The Buddha then reached forth his hand, touched the earth, and the earth herself bore witness.

Yes, I know, a very dramatic opening. Yes, I'm invoking a major beloved religious figure on a blog about geeky careers. This is one of my favorite stories, for many reasons, one of them being that trying something new, exploring, following one's curiosity really needs no witness, no justification.

Are you waiting for somebody to justify your dreams? Your plans? Your business ventures?

Do it yourself get shot down easily? Does a single question drive you into the doldrums, and drive your dreams into the background?

Stop it.

Here's the truth; you are a weirdo. You're on the Internet, reading the blog that mixes professionalism and geekyness, cosplay and corporate profits, motivational speaking and MMOs.  Your browser bookmarks probably contain links to sites that 99% of the population has never seen, you have obscure knowledge about anime from the 80s, you played original Cosmic Encounter.

You're a weirdo.

It's okay. We're all weirdos in the end. We're all different, all unique, all unusual, and at times all out right strange.  We're all weird one way or another.

So, being as weird as you are, why are you waiting for somebody to justify your dreams? Were you waiting for someone else to approve your new business, your new book, you're great and wonderful geeky career dream?

You're weird. There's no one quite like you. So why do you assume someone else can decide what you can do?

For that matter, why do you let other people who aren't as weird as you (or weird in different ways, to be fair) drive you to distraction with their questions and product? They're not you, they don't “get it” like you do. Why are you letting them shoot down your dreams?

You're not a bad person. Your dreams aren't cruel or destructive or necessarily even selfish.  They're just different, unsual, untried.

For that matter, your weirdness could be a good thing.  The world need new ideas, innovation, and so on.  By definition those things will seem a bit odd and strange.

You're weird. I'm weird. Were all weird in our own ways. There is a point where our weirdness, our uniqueness, just simply is, and we can't let that be questions or even explain it. We can just act on.

So, what weirdness are you holding back? Are you waiting for someone to bear witness to the validity of your dreams?

The fact they exist already make some valid. Stop waiting, weirdo.

Tell Mara to shut up.

Steven Savage