– Alan Moore
What is an authentic life? It is a life perspective from the standpoint of Self; a life in which one is morally and spiritually answerable only to him/herself. This is not selfishness but rather Self-ness. We are born solo, and we exit solo. In between, it is a choice. The relationships that we forge can be beautiful fillers or bridges that span the shores of birth and death. When one walks over the ‘bridge’ that he built, enjoying the ‘walk’, he is still an individual. He is enjoying the panorama of life and relationships from the standpoint of an individual. He is social, but retains his authenticity. However, the problem occurs when one identifies himself with the bridge itself and tries to make the ‘bridge’ his home. This is when authenticity gives way to demeaning fakery and individuality loses itself to degenerative commonality. Just like how a point or dot is the basic unit of geometry, individuality is the basic unit of an individual’s existence. One’s society is his circumference. It may expand or shrink, or may not even be there depending on the individual’s choice, but the unchanging reference point is the center of the circle—the individual. This individuality is the Self-ness, which is the essential character of an authentic life. When the two important incidents of life—birth and death–are individualistic, then it only makes sense that one retains this individuality in between these two incidents and lead an authentic life. Above all, living an authentic life is a great liberating experience.