Transness.org

Exploring Gender Identity

Labels, Good or Bad?

on September 13, 2011

The labels we speak of today are the ones we put on our identity and the identity of others.  We are not discussing if it is a good idea to label our food with contents and source, although that is always a good idea in my humble opinion.  Upon further reflection though maybe we are talking about all the labels we use whether they are for food, pets, neighbors, or house plants.

This world is obsessed with labeling everything!!  Even “Good” or “Bad” are labels, so let’s begin by considering what label means.  The meaning we discuss here is “to put in a certain class; classify.” (Dictionary.com)  Consider the role labels play in Gender Identity and any identity really.  What about roles and role playing?

Everyone plays roles and sometimes more than one at a time.  Mother, Father, Child, Engineer, Doctor, Maid, Saint, Sinner, Biscuit eater!  Roles and thus labels provide definition in life.  Imagine an actor being asked to act without a script or a director.  How would that movie turn out?  It could be good, but most likely it would be confusing and you would not even watch.  Life is a one person show!

You are the writer, director and actor!  This means the labels you choose are personal.  If you choose labels others can relate to then you will find popularity and acceptance, however if you choose labels others see as absurd then your experience will be very different.  Have you ever seen a cat that acts like a dog?  Following you around, fetching a ball, and chewing on shoes?  I have and it is funny, although it also sends a message that labels always fall short on accuracy.  Why?  Because life is personal, and of your creation so each person will experience life differently.

Labels do serve to provide a point of reference and provide a suggested experience, but they do not determine the outcome, that is up to the individual.  Try this exercise, go for a walk in the woods or anywhere really, and let go of your definitions of the world around you.  Label nothing and instead find an object and become it by saying “I am that, I am”.  The maple tree becomes you, and you become a maple tree.  Feel the energy and imagine the processes going on inside you (just as you probably do with your human body).  Feel the sap flowing, the sun energizing your leaves and the wind moving your branches!  Labels suddenly lose their importance, and Spiritual essence takes over.

Yes, labels serve the purpose of defining life, but do you really want to have everything boxed up and neat?  What about the joy of discovery?  The surprise in finding a treasure you never knew existed!  As my mom always told me, there is a time and place for everything.  Be careful how you use labels.

🙂 Sequoia Elisabeth

Unity in Gender Diversity

 

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