Worthy, Born That Way

What is "worth?" According to the Oxford Dictionary, worth is "the level at which someone or something deserves to be valued or rated." Apples, cars, trees, fleas, cows, ducks, trucks, dogs, humans, and bowties can all have worth. So can red-hairedness, academic ability, and physical prowess; the list is rather endless.

If we unpack Oxford's definition of worth, we see worth has levels that must be earned and deemed legitimate by an outside judge.
Endemic to the definition is the concept that a thing or person can have more worth than another. Worth has levels and must be earned and deemed "deserving." That becomes problematic when we decided to judge the value of "someones." Is a man more deserving than a woman? Or a white person more deserving than a Black person? How can that be? On what would that judgment be made?

And who is judging? Who are the judges of our worth? What earned them the right to judge? Are they accurate? Are they competent? How do we know they are qualified? How could they possibly be equipped? Can they see the total of me? How could they know all of me? I don't honestly know all of me.

If we can see the proposal's fallacies, why then do we ask others to confirm us? Why do we question our innate worth? If we know that no one human being is worth more than another if we know judgment is relative to the judges and what they value, why do we surrender our power and access to worth over to them?

Why do we constantly catch ourselves hustling for our worth, trying to look or act in just "the right way" so we are loved? I have a theory. I think we believe the story that someone else must make us worthy. Is it possible we sense but cannot confirm that we are a little "bit" separated from a great single shared spirit, aching to be invited back into connection? Can we not see our innate ability to reconnect ourselves to the whole, to deem us worthy of love, joy, kindness, and inclusion?

What would happen if we let go of the story of our need to prove our worth? What if we believed that we were and are part of something ultimately unknowable? What we just stopped believing there was anything to be judged? What if we stopped naming, categorizing, and classifying, and we just accepted that everything and everyone was worthy? What could be possible?

"Born That Way" is a 5 x 7-inch oil on metal painting in a wooden gold frame, included in the blog image. My reflection on defining worth inspired it. This painting, along with a 4 x 8-inch oil on cradled metal painting, titled "She Said, and Now" will be at the JKR Gallery's show, 'Handscapes," in Provo, Utah, from April 2 through April 30. All paintings for the show are $120 and no larger than the palm of your hand. The gallery is located at 1675 N. Freedom Blvd. Bldg. 7B, Provo, UT 84604. Opening night is Friday from 5 to 9 PM, appointment and masks are required. Hope to see you there!

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