wineofwisdom said...But the quote doesn't define the scope to the dream, why did you constrict it to Plastic surgery?
The context of the quote, which is from "All about my mother", is a pre-operation transsexual having a speech about her looks. She does talk about her plastic surgeries (fake breasts, lip job, etc.). It is true the quote refers mainly to dreams of transsexuals to look in a certain way but it does touch on plastic surgeries which I think is a similar phenomenon. I do believe that if a person cannot come to terms with her/his looks, and if this she/he has an idea or a "dream" of how best to look like, they will be more authentic when or if they do, not only because they will resemble more their dreamed image about themselves but more because they are no longer obsessed with how their looks does not reflect who they really are. This is a long discussion anyway. And discussing plastic surgeries, beyond the "Haifa wanna be" phenomenon, or even with such phenomenon included, is not a shallow topic, it can get you to some deeper arguments touching on feminism, LGBT issues, and human nature.
No, it is not a shallow topic. My own journey has been one of redeeming an integrity which I have felt to be violated after my realization of how much of what I call "me" isn't really "me." Incorporated in the image of who I am were the opinions and desires of others, what I was "supposed" to be. We tend to treat ourselves as commodities and hence attempt to better those traits which we think, in turn, would better our price and value on the market. Be it the market of love or work doesn't really matter for the instrumentlization is one and the same; and treating our selves as means is an inherent part of an economy which has so distorted our view of who we are — our humanity — that we easily waste our lives in quenching the resulting anxieties — but never to succeed. For a life thwarted in growth and built on illusion can never offer genuine satisfaction.
If a person needs a certain faith or requires a certain image in order to feel good about him/herself, then that is ok as long as that person remembers and keeps the doors open for change and possibility. As long as he/she knows that the human is something different from what is being proposed(though he/she may not know exactly what the human “is”), and that it is towards that human that he/she must strive.
"We tend to treat ourselves as commodities and hence attempt to better those traits which we think, in turn, would better our price and value on the market. Be it the market of love or work doesn't really matter for the instrumentlization is one and the same":
It is a non ending struggle, striving to be or to look like the dream image or what people call self realization (which as you rightly said is an illusion) but it doesn't negate the fact that it does give you self satisfaction, albeit short lived. But isn't this illusory struggle that keeps us all going somewhere? We are bound (no cursed) with something called "time" that can only function in a linear way. Once you undo that, let's say when or if science finds its way to a time machine (by finding a way to making m=0 in the e=mc² formula, as someone explained to me, but that's another story), so unless we do this, we are all doomed and we will keep looking forward to things, waiting, longing, looking, wishing, and dreaming. I am not going to say that the truth lies back in the start under Santiago's pillow (as Paulo Coehlo believes), no I trust that our fate, yes fate (in a non-religious sense) is to be beaten by time. Remembering is maybe the only gift we were honoured with. But I also have faith in science.
You know, I think I will post this discussion if you don't mind.