woman bending over dancing

Essential Uniqueness

By Patricia Albere

Unity and Uniqueness is a key component of the consciousness we are bringing through.  This short excerpt is from my book …

“The ultimate touchstone of friendship is not improvement, neither of the other nor of the self, the ultimate touchstone is witness, the privilege of having been seen by someone and the equal privilege of being granted the sight of the essence of another . . .”   
~ David Whyte

When you watch a great artist perform—a musician or a dancer, for example—what is it that captivates you? It’s not simply technical excellence, beauty, precision, or virtuosity, although all of these play a part in their brilliance. There’s something else that holds your attention fixated—some particular quality that is unique to that individual and their expression. You could listen to a hundred violinists play the same piece of music, and each would have a slightly different quality. The notes and the melody might be the same, but each individual musician brings some essential character to the expression that is theirs and theirs alone. And those who achieve greatness don’t stop at simply developing their craft and emulating other people’s styles—they do the hard work of discovering their own authentic sound or voice, that form of expression that touches the depth of truth within themselves. They fight what the poet E.E. Cummings described as “the hardest battle which any human being can fight”: “to be nobody-but-yourself in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else.”

Martha Graham, the woman considered to be the “mother of modern dance” put this into words when speaking to her lifelong friend, Agnes De Mille: “There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique.”

That uniqueness that Graham was describing is a key activating principle in evolutionary relationships. I use the term “essential uniqueness” because it’s not just surface individuality—all the relative differences in appearance, expression, and personality that create the wonderfully varied kaleidoscope of humanity. What I’m pointing to is something more fundamental —it is the intrinsic substance of who we are as a soul or essential self.

My experience of essential uniqueness is that I am in touch with the purest, most refined, most intimate sense of who I am. It’s the irreducible “Patricia” that exists through all the changing circumstances of my life and it’s core, its flavor is sustained as I develop and am able to express it more fully. As people age, they will often comment on how their sense of self internally doesn’t match their experience when they look in the mirror. It points to this deeper, subjective sense of self that is distinct but somehow illusive.

We each have an essence that is all our own, that is not replicated anywhere in this vast cosmos. It’s not something we invent but something we can discover—the core essence or pattern of who we each are. It is self-existent and doesn’t need any outside evidence to reinforce its truth. I like to think of it as the particular spark of divinity that is at the core of every being. When we meet another person in an evolutionary relationship, it is this essential, unique self in us that is connecting to the essential, unique self in the other. In the process of creating and sustaining an Evolutionary Relationship, we each need to learn to live more completely from our own core essence and to recognize and honor the essence of the other.

With love,