During the Middle Ages, a ritual existed which dictated how an individual introduced himself or herself. This introductory process was threefold; first, it demanded that the individual’s religion be named; next, the individual’s town or community was stated; and finally, the family name was said. Even today, this method of introduction can be effective in conveying the character or identity of an individual. If I were top introduce myself, I would simply state that I am a scholar (learning is my religion); I am a contributor to the greater well-being of my community; and my family will be determined by my future plans and goals (since family includes, but is not limited, to blood relations).
While my gender is extremely important to me, I first identify myself as a scholar because intellect does not have a sex. Knowledge transcends gender. Therefore, I am a thinker, a learner and a scholar. To me, the process of learning is religious. Words are my “bible”, teachers are my ”priests.” I respect and revere words like other respect, revere, and fear the idea of God. In understand that words are alive and I must wrestle them down and tame them in order for them to become my own. Hence, I make it a habit to collect words. Then, like bangles and crystals that possess psychedelic and prismatic qualities, I hang the words in my mind for illumination. The meaning of my precious words are revealed to me by teachers, not just those who have a ‘teaching certificate’, but those who awaken my mind, who ignite my senses, who alter my perception of the world; together, as Walt Whitman says, we ” roam in through over the universe,” seeking to enlighten ourselves and one another.
The college experience, as I perceive it, in addition to it being the next stop on my journey for self-enlightenment, is to be the crescendo of my intellectual revolution catalyzed by professors who can awaken my mind, ignite my sense, and alter my perception of the world. I hope that my perception of the world will be slightly turned on its head and that I will be made to defend my beliefs and experience the true meaning of intellectual discovery. Thus, my only real expectation for college is to be challenged. I look upon the next four years of my life as an opportunity; I can either seize the chance and significantly better myself through the accumulation of new knowledge or I can merely go through the paces. achieve good grades, but never really feel the excitement of the words themselves. Obviously, I am looking for the former scenario – a place where mental gymnastics are applauded.
But mental contortions should not be done just for the sake of doing them; rather, they should be understood and applied to everyday life. For this reason, my quest for self-enlightenment itself is not limited to classes- it is the formation of the complete individual, which means developing both social and academic personalities. I have confidence that the people I will meet in college will show me and share with me the enormous zest of life. This extended family will help me to forget my identity as a scholar, as a contributor to my community, and as a member of a family. But neither my family nor my extended family nor my teachers could comprise my entire identity. Rather, I will remain like the first page of a book with the first line incomplete- a story waiting to be told.