The human being in his/[her] human skin is what he/[she] is, and, for us, there is no other way to know the person apart from one’s skin. You start to know the person through one’s body. You find in one’s eyes the eyes of his/[her] father or mother. Though people differ in description, yet the truth is that the newborn is attached. Genetic science teach you what is accurate, until this child comes to an age which shows the cognation in natures between him/[her] and his/[her] parents, and the cognation in certain movements, in the walk and the sitting down. Then, you perceive the unity and the distinction, until the body is, or almost becomes, completed. And whenever you look at, with great scrutiny, you will see the resemblance either increases or decreases. Such as in this family duplicity is stronger, and in that it is weaker.
In the genetic science it has been noticed, more than in the past, that resemblance is not only confined to the form, and to the skin, but rather it is about the depth of the soul, i.e. the inner formation of the human being. And then, the great dissimilarity has been revealed, i.e. the rift between you and your parent, since the souls are not cells that might resemble or accumulate. Your father might be rational, moderate or balanced, and you, would be on great or little contrast to him. You might say, for the sake of interpretation, that it is because of the environment. But you cannot analyze why and how the impact of environment came to be. You cannot relate between environment and the change that you brought about. There is something that interferes this existence from above it, or from below it, or from its sides. There is something other than the inherited skin. There are violations within you concerning what you have been touching. Your father might have been very quick-tempered while you come to be quite. What has touched you? What has occurred within you, in order that you seem to be disrupted from your father and mother? Are you the son/[daughter] of one of the people, or you are not the son/[daughter] of this earth?
Has duplicity been affected with a factor outside this human skin? The human subject becomes one whenever he/[she] feels his/[her] belovedness. One comes from one’s mother’s womb, and from all the elements that form the person, and later when the umbilical cord is cut one moves toward independence and toward his/[her] unity. As one’s feelings become harmonized, one comes to sense that he/[she] is able to say ‘I’. This state is not in opposition of the other ‘I’. Rather, one does not want to dissolve in the others, but [also] one does not isolate oneself from others. One’s ‘I’ is one’s own self in its harmony. This is what we call the dialectic of unity and multiplicity. The personality stabilizes through unity and distinction, accompanying one another. The fear is [however] in the clash [that might result] between them.
Synergy is not only among the living ones. There is no greater evidence of the continuation of the soul, after death, from that it still gives, or, you still receive from it. How many dead ones accompany your life strongly, in a way you have not experienced as they were alive? From where has this communion come? This is not a verbal dialogue. This communion does not occur as emotional interference, since such interference demands a face. Faces have disappeared. The body is no more a foundation for anything. There is neither imagination nor emotion in this issue, as we could have been felt. You are merged unity, however, it is a unity that has received different fountains, and thus, it also has to become a fountain. The one human being is humanity, though he/[she] is not a crowd.
From all this we might conclude that every one of us is unique, in the sense that there is nothing like oneself. However, to be unique does not give one any privilege. Rather, he/[she] gives you the privilege, in order that you might become through him/[her]. And one might provide you with that which one does not know, and you take according to the gift of taking, within you, and you love and know what to love in the Other. Your friend knows what to take, and in his/[her] turn, he/[she] grows through you and advances. This is the education in which no one brags about being the teacher. This is the integration of equals, where everyone complies the Other as better than oneself, since one views the Other as a giver.
To the extent of being aware of this mystery friendship is built. Someone being asked about the mystery of his relation with his friend has said: we are like this because he is he and I am I. Namely, there is that which is deeper than mental knowledge. The relationship is built through that which transcends you nature and the nature of another. This is pure love, through which alone we grow.
Other than the human element, and if you were a connoisseur, beauty might cultivate you. Some of us come from their love of nature, and some come from their love of modern or antique houses, or arts. Your personality, then, is flourishing and it can save you from grief and drought. You are the endowment of nature and you are affluent with it, or you are the endowment of art. In this way, the fountain within you gets nourished and your draught disappears. And hence, heavens [or gardens] might be implanted within you.
The ‘I’ is then both universal and sentimental. There are some who take little from nature and arts, but they take much from human beings. Whatever were the resources, the human being is manifoldly affluent and you have to discover his/[her] beauty. You might develop your ability to assimilate whatever you are eligible to receive, since, in origin, you have no limits. You are you, but you are also that which you will become.
Though you have no limits in the path that you have chosen, yet you cannot do everything. Thus, accept what you are given and expand in it, since you are called to return the multiple of every talent [or gift] that you were given to God the bestower and to the people surrounding you. God has distinguished you by that which God has not distinguish another. Thus, make use of what you have, since the ‘I’ of the Other has to grow within you your concern, in order that the world might not dry out. You cannot sleep whenever you are talented; since the Lord dislikes that the world gets deserted.
You are born of your father and mother, and then of the environment of nature, science, art and life-experience. However, above all you are born of God, who alone embraces the whole of your person to Godself. Through birth, you get separated from your mother. Birth is a departure. Nevertheless, whenever you are born of God through God’s grace, God would have been granted you some of God’s existence. The scholars of my Church say that you would come from God’s eternity and that God loves you by the same love as God loves God’s Christ. God brings about a new ‘I’ other than this which you have received from your mother. From her and from your friends you become different in degree. Only through God you become different in nature. You become deified and you would not remain only a body emerging from a body. Only “that which is born of the Spirit is spirit” [John 3: 6], namely of a different being than the one which one’s mother brought to the world. One becomes of a different world, that which descends upon you through divine love.
Translated by Sylvie Avakian-Maamarbashi
Original Text: “أنا من أنا؟” –An Nahar- 25.03.2011