Written by Tony Hsieh.
Out of the 769 quotes that I have currently, I’ve decided to start with this one, because it tells us that the universe is with our own bare hands, metaphorically. All of the people in this world have often conformed to the definition of words that others have placed for them. “Freedom requires the death of another.” “Happiness requires massive amounts of wealth, women who are often ravaged and lusted for by other men, and a plethora of objects that will do you no good in having them.” “Marriage is nothing more than a signing of papers saying that two people are bound together.”
Too often have I seen the eyes of those who must live their lives under the unwavering words of someone who has deemed themselves to know the true definition of said words, but this quote, defies them. The greatest people of history, saw something that often the masses didn’t, what they had observed was that no one was subject to the words and definitions of another. That if they were willing to put the time, blood, and tears, they can change what something means, that they can change the meaning of a symbol. This is observed throughout history, for example a swastika, mostly known as the symbol of Evil and of Hitler and therefore tied to death and destruction. However in Buddhism, Jainism, and Hinduism, it is known as the symbol of good luck. Also take a Bible, so many people have so many definitions of what a Bible means, Some view it as the “Basic Instuctions Before Leaving Earth” others, as a reference for answers, some as a weapon to damn the sinners, and others as a paperweight. The definition of symbols is entirely up to you to define. And this extends to far beyond objects and actual symbols, drudgery can be re-defined, the Passing of a loved one, a new job, even food, can be redefined in any image that you’ve chosen to designate it. What one person defines something, another can either take it or leave it. Even actions can become symbols in their own right, one of my favorite movies embodies this perfectly, V for Vendetta, if you haven’t seen it, you must. It’s the story of a man who makes himself into a symbol, and redefines his own universe, causing everyone to open their eyes to the world they live in. Hugo Weaving, and Natalie Portman stars in it.
The world is open to our own interpretation, this is why everyone says pursue your dreams, and similar inspirational words, because in your hands, the very essence of the universe is forged, albeit your universe.