Perfectionist. Needs to be right, avoids own anger. Impatient. Hyper clean. Grim-faced. Can’t relax. Mr. Helpful. Helps others, avoids own needs. Martyrs self. Needs to be thanked. Quid pro quo mindset. Winner. Needs to succeed, avoids failure. Dresses sharp. Works out. Deeper you go, shallower it gets. Purple prince. Needs to be special, avoids the ordinary. Sad eyes. Looks depressed. Artistic. Hates Walmart. Owl. Needs to take in, avoids giving out. Awkward. Incapable of small talk. Frozen-faced. Thinks he’s smart. Trooper. Needs to be clear. Avoids uncertainty. Yells at TV on game night. Conforms, obeys, pension-obsessed. Joker. Needs to laugh, avoids pain. Grins, jokes, chews gum. Lives in the future. Boss. Needs to fight, avoids own weakness. Good vs. evil, black and white, you’re in his frame or out of it. Big Easy. Needs to be comfortable. Avoids conflict. Jack of all trades. Buries his feelings. Not sure he exists.
Can a man change his character? Yes, provided he sees himself as he is and can feel in his paper flesh the sting of a cauterizing remorse.
Well, no. Character comes from the Greek word for stamped or engraved. It’s a man’s distinctive mark, that which specifically does not change. Today, character is used interchangeably with personality, referring to that hogs wallop of preferences and inclinations. These don’t change either. These, too, are fixed. They can be dropped, died to, abandoned, but not fixed. A man cannot know this without having had his bell rung.
Our thought patterns gradually etch themselves onto the face. (That’s what charaxos means—something engraved or marked.) These fissures frame the eyes. Some men have eyes like schools of fish.
Some men endure a lot with apparent ease; other men (Emerson’s “city dolls”) endure a little with great difficulty.
Endurance is acquired through hardship. There is no other way.
Life is our guru.