When a set of twins grow up together, it does not take long to notice the one who is apparently domineering. Beyond possible conflicts, the character of the dominant one is usually more easily evident. It’s pretty much the same for the Heart and Mind, struggling to find their place in one human being who is just getting to find himself. We know that buildings exist in various designs, sizes and for different purposes. We see some structures and can immediately tell what they are used for. For a few others, we may have a tough time trying to ascertain what they stand for. Altogether, neither shape nor size is adequate substance on which to base our presuppositions.
Our concern is to make the best edifice out of the resources available. The factors that determine the eventual outlook of a structure are the client’s taste and the architect’s prowess. Inasmuch as the architect determines, to a large extent, the outcome of the building, he cannot unilaterally make a design against the client’s specification. As regards the ‘cohabitants’ in question, we may substitute a person’s life with the edifice being built. Permit me to link a person’s background to the foundation of a building.
Some backgrounds are quite smooth while others are not very pleasant. If we all had the chance to select the homes through which we’d rather have been birthed, many might have chosen homes other than their present ones. No doubt, people have made meaning out of their lives despite ‘un-smooth’ backgrounds (italics mine; withholding the word ‘rough’). However, it is only worth celebrating when the end justifies the means.
The Encarta Dictionary defines CHARACTER as “distinctive qualities; especially those born out of a person’s predominant state of mind and feeling”. By and large, we may conclude that the only architect of character that exists is an individual’s principal philosophy about life. So, what really determines a person’s world-view? Is it social interaction or personal mindset? I have found that there are as many people on one side as there are on the other end of the divide.
Check this: You are in line one morning at a filling station, awaiting your turn to re-fuel. A highly ranked OGA suddenly pulls up from far behind, beats the queue and gets away with his car fully fueled. Everybody, including you, is annoyed at the “injustice”. There and then, comments begin to fly. Some say our Leadership sometimes leaves room for some to cheat others. Others say: “Ain’t nothing new; money speaks! Ama make some good money too!” You sit there quietly, brewing in your steam. Your heartbeat races to stop injustice. However, you cannot deny having a number of noxious statements infiltrate your mind (at least in that instance).
Fast-forward a few years or decades from then. What do you do when you rise to a position that not only empowers and enriches you, but also as much guts as to take undue advantage of people (if you choose to)? The answer is ‘not blowing in the wind’, it is right inside you. What part of you has the larger say? The natural purity in your heart or the junk ideas that you’ve otherwise refused to purge out of your mind? Needless to mention, there are a thousand and one instances that play out in our lives each day, posing a test question about who we really are. Do we often pass or fail? It is up to each person to re-invent himself.
In my opinion, a person will effortlessly and consistently pass life’s tests only when he has come to place where Heart-born values preponderate Mind-based impulses. T.D.Jakes once said “you are the subtotal of the voices you listen to. If someone’s got your ears, they’ve got your mind”. The Heart is the Client; he knows what he desires to see of the edifice-in-process. The Mind is the Contractor ; the building engineer who borrows ideas and perhaps the required materials (logical and otherwise). He has the prerogative to take instruction either from the Heart or the world outside.
Tunde Baiyewu (of the Lighthouse Family) said in the song, What Could Be Better; “I know, inside, there’s a better weather and the world outside really doesn’t matter”. Question: who pays for the job? Is it the outsiders giving shallow opinions or the Little Voice Inside who is custodian to his own counsel? Funny enough, both the heart and the mind are different faculties within separate frames of being; though they co-habit each other (both live in a person). Question is: “to whom do you give power of dictatorship over the other?”
According to my friend, Fred (@doctorfrick), your heart must be seen not just as a mere blood-pumping machine. It must become a well-guarded faculty from which issues of life flow. People who value themselves will always disregard ideas that take a big toll on the outcome of the structure; they ignore the noise outside and follow their heartbeat. We need to follow this. Otherwise, we fall on the other end of the big question asked by Coldplay in ending the second verse of the song, CLOCKS, “…am I a part of the cure or am I part of the disease?”
The two-fold responsibility of every person is to train the mind (architect) to sift ideas from outside and embrace adjustments on the inside; one valid connection. A sure formula for ascertaining the authenticity of valuable advice is to weigh all actions with the eyes of love. The only crime detective needed to judge ourselves will then be the motive for doing all that we do. Ultimately, the statement “to thyself be true” will hold effective for all time, in a world controlled by humans that actually do think, as against animals that rarely do.
★This article is an excerpt from APOLOGETIX, a psycho-analytical adaptation of Nature’s Cardinals©; intellectual property of Green Tempers Initiative®, of which Damilola MacGregor is a Registered Trustee.
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