In everything truth surpasses the imitation and copy. – Cicero
What does that mean?
I’m not an expert in how Latin is translated, and I was unable to find the exact source of the quote, so I’m going to have to guess a little. The quote, read as written, sounds awkward. I’m going to put a comma between everything and truth. That makes the quote “In everything, truth surpasses the imitation and copy.”
The first part, before the comma, says that in every possible way, manner, and form, the second part of the quote is better than the third part. The second part is the subject in the quote, the truth. With the first part, we are told that the truth is far and above anything in the third part of the quote.
The third part is what the truth surpasses, which is imitation and copy. Imitation of a true item will be a poor contrast. Yes, I like the Mona Lisa, and my son has a poster of her, but it is an imitation, a copy, and it is clearly surpassed by the true Mona Lisa.
Why is truth important?
That brings up the question: What is truth? For the purposes of this quote, it is the actual thing, rather than an imitation or a copy. Consider people. Every one is a truth, a true person. How honest they are, that’s a different matter. However, they are not an imitation of someone else, right?
Even identical twins, who share the same DNA, develop differently, and become different people as they grow, and over time. Each is a true representation of themselves, and at best a pale imitation or copy of anyone else, even their twin.
It also applies to the truth within ourselves. We are someone, and we must be true to ourselves. We are only wasting our time and effort by trying to be an imitation or copy of someone else. Instead, I believe that we should strive to be ourselves, and remain true to that inner truth.
That doesn’t mean we can’t learn from another, or make use of a skill or habit which is useful to us. But it does mean we shouldn’t try to be their biggest fan, and dress like them, walk like them, talk like them, etc. I’m sure you’ve seen some people like that. They are but pale shadows, right?
Where can I apply this in my life?
Everywhere, I would think. We all imitate and copy things we like, or would like to be. It is one thing to be an Elvis impersonator for a job. But spending the rest of your life trying to be the King of Rock and Roll, well that’s just not going to happen. At best you’ll be an imitation or a copy.
But you can still be yourself, even if you play Elvis on the weekend, right? You can still have your own life, your own likes and dislikes. Although you should probably have a late 50’s or early 60’s Cadillac in the garage, preferably in pink, although other years and colors are viable options.
Where in your life do you tend to imitate or copy someone, for no real reason? This behavior is most commonly found in teens, but exists at all ages in various degrees of intensity. Those sporting the latest hair or fashion item from a celebrity would also qualify.
I guess my point is you are someone, you are unique. That doesn’t mean you have to find and wear a color or pattern that has never been seen before. But you are a different person from the celebrity. You probably have a different body shape, height, weight, hair or eye color. You can be yourself and still borrow a little bit that you like.
How odd would it be if everyone tried to look like the same hand full of celebrities? People who abandon their personal truth and try to be ‘trendy’ and copy someone else is doing the same thing, although on a smaller scale and with fewer people trying the exact same thing.
It also doesn’t mean you should be a contrarian, and do the opposite of what is popular. Unless, of course, that is who you really are. If that’s part of your true self, then go for it. That’s kind of what I’m like when it comes to fashion. If it’s popular, I’m moving away from it.
We all have unique things about us. We have unique tastes and a unique outlook. Be true to yourself, and not become the next anybody, be the first you. Take a look, and incorporate that which fits with who you are, or mold it to fit you. Please don’t change yourself to fit it.
Don’t be afraid to be an original. It might take a little confidence and strength, but you can do it.
From: Twitter, @OprahsQuotes
confirmed at : http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/m/marcustull156341.html
Photo by Mat Honan
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