Life is Not an Assembly Line


Life is Not an Assembly Line

Have you ever watched one of those sci-fi movies where it shows robots that look so real that they resemble humans?  They are assembled and programmed to try to emulate everything that makes up a human, our movements, our interactions, and even our emotions.  Personally, I think back to a clip in Terminator 2: Judgement Day when the character John Connor is trying to make Arnold Schwarzenegger’s character smile.  He struggles with this because no matter how accurate his physical movements are to perfect the smile; he is incapable of the human element.  (0:55 second mark)

A lot of times in these movies there is usually a clip of them even being made on an assembly line.  These cyborg-like humans are being mass produced and more often than not they are always connected and created the same way so that they are capable of performing and acting the same way.  It’s like there is code the programmed to and a manual to control them.  This is where the difference with us as humans always lies.  This is humanity.

My education background involves studies in psychology and even some sociology courses.  It always fascinated me to learn about the human mind and its development and I always thought I could take that into a field I have always loved, sports.  I thought maybe even about sport psychology.  The thing I learned about psychology is that it is not a manual that is perfect.  One thing that applies to one person may not apply the same to another.  One can’t follow a step-by-step instruction and expect it to work on another.  It’s not like using a jedi mind trick on one person and expecting the same result on another.

Somewhere along the line I missed that in my younger years.  I seemed to think that you could convince someone to see things the same way or do things a certain way if only they got a taste for it.  I moved to live far away from home at the age of 22.  I thought I could convince friends to do the same if they just tried a visit.  I thought I could convince friends to travel if they would only see what I see.  It affected some of my relationships.  My brothers and I, for example, could not see eye-to-eye on certain things.  They would see life one way and I would see it another.  The key was that neither were wrong.

About four years ago I started a job with Special Olympics and the best part was I was able to work every day with a very high functioning individual with autism.  He was far from anything like me.  His name is John.  Through our differences I became enlightened to something and that discovery created a friendship.  I started to realize that even though John was born with a disability he is just like everyone else.  We are all created the same way, in God’s image, but we are created differently.

We are not all wired the same.  The fabric of each one of us is different.  Not only may we be different in sex by being male or female but it runs deeper.  Our basic biology takes pieces from our mom and pieces from our dad and those specific combinations are one of millions.  We are not either one of them, just like they are not us.  It is different from every other individual on the planet.  It really started to become ingrained in me that we are not an assembly line.  There are similarities among us all that things like psychology and other social sciences can be applied to and give us understanding, not the answer.

That is exactly what I started to understand.  I started to accept understanding of one another and the best thing I could ever do was to try to put myself in their shoes.  That saying is as old as time but it never stops being applicable to our relationships and understanding one another and each other’s experiences.

Not only are we all created differently but each one of us experience things differently.  That is the variable of life.  Two people can share the same experience but those two people may view that experience differently.  I like to use an analogy of a tree.  If you have two of the exact same genetically engineered tree and you place each one on each side of a wall with the sun directly above that wall, what is going to happen?  One of the trees is going to have branches that reach to the left for that sunlight and those branches may grow more that are on the left.  The tree on the other side is going to have the opposite effect.  Are the trees now the same?  No, they are not.

This is like our experiences.  When we experience anything in life our brain is like a tree.  The nerves are going to grow as they relate to that experience.  A person who studies chemistry is going to grow nerves in different areas of their brain as opposed to someone who studies art.  This is the beauty of each one of us!  We all bring something unique to this world.

My understanding of the differences we all share in chemical make-up and experiences has grown a tenfold in recent years and opened my eyes to a new perspective.  My relationships have strengthened and often times I find myself more at peace when I disagree with someone.  It’s allowed me to even get better myself and be open to areas where maybe I am wrong.  I’ve been able to accept who my parents, siblings, friends, and others are and that their journey and make-up made them.  Just like each one of them, my own metaphorical tree grows more every day.

The biggest thing I think I have gained by not thinking we are all some box that is wired a certain way is that it has taught me acceptance.  I don’t know what someone else is going through or their experience in their life that have formed them.  It’s removed judgement and allowed a sense of genuineness and authenticity to my life and the best of all, love for one another.

While all of this is based on my experiences and the truths, I have come to believe from it all I do trust in one truth from it all.  Life is not an assembly line and that each one of us has our own set of gifts, passions, and emotions to share with one another.  We can all find comfort and security in that and knowing we are each special in our own ways.  We are human.

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