The flat out truth is that there is no such thing as perfection. Truly it is a perpetually elusive and wholly unachievable state of imaginary being or existing. Now, the modern definition of “perfection” from the Oxford Languages dictionary is as follows (I’ve totally got a raised eyebrow here):
the condition, state, or quality of being free or as free as possible from all flaws or defects
Come on now, who even gets to be the judge of such things?? Us humans in all of our messy “imperfection”? Let’s be real! The raw truth is, is that the above definition was not how the word was originally used. Of course it’s not…..geez. Of course it has been turned into some unachievable state of being that we all judge ourselves and others against. Some ultra-idyllic destination as a human being that doesn’t even exist. We’re all constantly recovering from the idea that perfection is actually an achievable event or place and not the fool’s errand or the hamster on the wheel, pedaling faster and faster and getting nowhere even faster. Forever playing the fool.
SO, what did the word previously mean, you may ask. Well, from what I’ve found rather quickly thanks to Google, is that, in a nutshell, it’s had a number of iterations from a number of different languages including Greek and Latin. The biblical version and now the secular version that it has become today wavers between meaning “a finishing” or “a completing” or “that which has obtained its purpose”, to “the perfection of God”. That man should strive to emulate, knowing full well that it was unachievable, but should try nonetheless. It was not originally meant to be a term of comparison, and not at all meant as a term to be applied to human beings or anything alive at all, as it has morphed into in modern times. A term of proving and a “behavior” that is often rewarded, yet unachievable and unsustainable. It has become the common substitute for the idea of “excellence”…( thank you Wikipedia). We can all strive to be better and do better. And it is important to recognize that it is a continuous lifelong process or practice, not an absolute destination. A moving target that we strive to align and re-align with over a lifetime. Sometimes achieving it, only to slide down the other side of that slippery slope and having to pick ourselves up, yet again, to climb the next slope that presents itself. All with the knowledge that this is what life is made of, the continuous cycle of becoming and unbecoming, climbing and falling. Knowing and accepting this is a key to finding more peace and joy in your life. Along with much less resistance, judgment, fear and struggle that all lead to suffering and feelings of powerlessness and sometimes hopelessness. And these, my friend, are the places born of the ego, or what I like to call the “Trickster”.