Identity Given

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Christine Bryden suffers from Dementia. She was diagnosed at the young age of 47. In her career she had been the science advisor to the Prime Minister of Australia. She had a beautiful mind, but her ability to think was and still is being taken from her. She was forced to go inward. To ask the questions about where her identity might come from. Insightfully she notes:

“At the centre of our being lies the true self, what identifies us to be truly human, truly unique, and truly the person we were born to be. This is our spiritual heart, the centre from which we draw meaning in this rush from birth to death, whenever we pause long enough to look beyond our cognition, through our clouded emotions into what lies within.”1

What she had to do involuntarily we can do voluntarily. To move from a cognitive self that we create. One where our identity is defined by our thinking prowess. To move beyond a behavioural identity that we create. One where our identity is defined by what we do and what we have accomplished. Then move towards a spiritual identity that is created for us. An immovable and nourishing sense of self that comes from a living and loving creator.

1. Bryden, C. (2005) Dancing with Dementia: my story of living positively with dementia. London, Jessica Kingsley Publishers p163

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