Thursday, June 23, 2011

Story

Oscar Thompson claimed that the most important word in the English language is “Relationship.” By that he meant that the interactions between people, the relationships, are the most important thing in human existence. He was right.

A close second, however—perhaps even tied with relationship—is the idea of Story. The human perspective of reality is ultimately always shaped in and through Story. Sometimes the Story is a product of human imagination, and sometimes it is molded from real events, but it is always encapsulated in the form of Story.

Even in the film genre of the documentary, events and facts are shaped into a form that fits into the convention of Story. Even our actual memories and the history of humanity are edited and pieced together in a form that will make sense along the rules of Story. Think of all the “inconsequential” events that do not make it into the records, the thousands of memories that we lose every single year.

The important question we must ask when we think of Story and reality is not: “Did a story happen exactly that way, or even at all?” but rather: “Is the story telling the truth.” Most of the time, stories are not ultimately about the plot, but instead about principles and truths of reality, often about truth in relationships.

Consider the stories you create, discover, recount and highlight in life. What are you communicating? Outside of the relationships in your life, the most important influence you will exercise on the world will be with your stories. Choose them carefully!

1 comment:

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