Our life is full of certainties and uncertainties, yes or no, right or wrong, resolutions and doubts, completeness or emptiness, ecstasy or melancholy, religiosity or ir-religiosity, piety or impiety, naivety or knavery, life or death. This jugglery of binary oppositions goes on persistently as the flux of river goes on. We feel it individually and collectively.
As a person we contribute to all these binary oppositions to be happened, to be recurred in our personal life willingly or unwillingly. If any of these binary oppositions happens in our personal life, we praise or blame fate or destiny considering the individual merit of the concerned pair of opposition. Occasionally we –if we are man enough to do so- blame ourselves for our actions. Through this personal journey of life we get myriad of images of our self. We put together those fragments and try to get a complete picture of our personality. Sometimes we become complacent thinking of the success rate of drawing a pitch perfect self-portrait. But this complacency does not hold up per se forever. Because on different occasions we behave differently considering the circumstances, contingencies and privileges. Different shades of our personality get exposed in those occasions and consequently we get diverse images of our self. This causes deferment of some traits and activation of others. We become overwhelmed with the continuity of this cycle of deferment and activation which never let us to have an unalloyed picture or pristine image of our self.
As a social being we interact, do business, and roam around with family and friends. During this time we behave, act or perform differently keeping in mind- If one is not insane- different situations. In doing so, we prove someone at every time. Sometimes our behavior recurs, sometimes varies depending on time, place, our disposition and the people we interact or deal with. In this process of socialization our friends and foes at large work as a mirror where we could see the reflection of our personality. Thus we feel and replicate one of the binary oppositions or both in our collective adventure of socialization. Again like our personal journey, here we do not get any stable image of our self – in psyche and physique- in a strict sense of the term.
Individually or collectively in either way we cannot conceive a fitting image of our self. Then what do we do to have a self-portrait? We collect varied images of our self; images that we exhibit at different situations- both individual and collective; put them together to reconstruct a workable singular image, an identikit of our self- in psyche and physique; which works as a mnemonic to remind us of our existence as a man, a species with conscience and consciousness.
This is a dilemmatic situation of Identikittism, a predicament manipulated by our complex mind which is in fact very human in nature.
Md. Shahrear Talukder
9 October 2014, KSA