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Sunday, 27 April 2014


work of art formed from disparate sources

People have a great interest in their own identity; in figuring out exactly who they are. Why else do we have so many personality tests? Myers-Briggs Type Indicator, the enneagram, multiple intelligences, the Big Five, the MMPI, and even the Rorschach test have become commonly used to try and determine a particular ‘personality type’. Often, tests will have a specific number of types, and at the end of a test, you will be given one of those types. The number of types could vary from only a handful, to a dozen, to more. 

And often, questions are asked as an A or B situation; you must pick which option is more true for you. In some, you might have a scale that you can go between, but are often asked not to have too many in the middle. I don’t think there are many tests where you can pick both A and B, or neither A or B. And yet - often, that is actually the case. You are encouraged to try and pick which one is more true, even if both are true. Otherwise, the results would just be inconclusive, and you wouldn’t find your type, and then the test wouldn’t work!

But I think this is actually quite a common thing - perhaps not something with everyone, but fairly common. I think that all too often, what people are cannot be simply defined by a specific type; they are instead, more of a mishmash, a bit of everything put together, a pastiche.

A pastiche, as defined by, is a “work of art formed by disparate sources,” which is a great way to put it. (Also one of the best short sentences to describe me, which I found amusing.) We are each a work of art, created by God; and often, the things that make us who we are can be very different, very disparate. Our parents, our friends, our environment, our school, our teachers, our church, our work, and so many other things - each of these shout a million different things, and somewhere in the midst of that chaos, a person is made. An identity, slowly, is formed. In response to all of that. And people think they define it, confine it, simply?

Identity is never simple. If you want to discover who you are, then look inside yourself; ask yourself questions, instead of looking to others for answers.

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