Essay On Character And Reputation

966 Words 4 Pages
Human beings have always been curious as to what and who they are. Both divisions have received far-reaching investigation and inquiry into their dimensions and inner workings. The “what” of humanity, for example, is denoted and defined in many scientific studies and theorizations that are based on evolution and religion. Charles Darwin is credited for his evolution theory that explains the origin of humanity. On the other hand, creation stories evident in many Christian dialects have always held the view that a supernatural being is responsible for our existence as human beings. However, while the “what” of humanity has been significantly answered, the “who” of humanity, in this case who we are as human beings, has been given far less attention, …show more content…
At this juncture, it is important to distinguish between character and reputation, because often these two wordings are used interchangeably while in fact they have completely different meanings. Put simply, character is what we are, while reputation is what other people think we are. As such, character precedes reputation and is the fundamental basis for all success – success being the ultimate outcome of the actions we undertake to satisfy our thirst for self-importance. In this case, and as it pertains to the previous paragraph, wealthy people get their importance by building skyscrapers and donating money to the poor, car-lovers get their importance from the image their cars reflect, parents get their importance from seeing their children succeed, and criminals get their importance from being famously …show more content…
In essence, as human beings, we generally express the truth about our characters through our actions. Actions, on the other hand, also impact character formation because they soon turn into carefully constructed habits, whether conscious or unconscious. However, character alone does not expressly define the “self”, even though it implies who a person is. This is mainly due to the fact that character, unlike the “self”, is innate, while the “self” is mainly affected by an individual’s external interactions. This discrepancy is captured squarely by the following quote; “when riches are lost, nothing is lost; when health is lost, something is lost; but when character is lost, everything is lost” (Billy Graham). This quote essentially implies that character (everything) is innate. However, in application character has only but a partial bearing on the “self” because according to Leary & Tangley (2012), the “self” is a product of external situations that shape behavior and ultimately reveal character. So what exactly is the

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