“To be alive at all is to have scars.” – John Steinbeck

I have a burn scar on the inside of my left arm. Burnt by hugging a kerosene heater. Telling someone I hugged a heater immediately puts them at ease. It makes them feel good because they do not believe they would do something so careless. "How old were you?" I am always asked. I was two. They give me a well-that-is-a-little-more-acceptable look.

Scars are great ice-breakers and conversation starters. They helps skip boring parts of conversation and onwards to more interesting parts. "Ever hugged a heater and burnt your arm? I have. See? It was not a conscious decision. What is your definition of consciousness?"

If you have perfect skin, you can always chat about your mental scars. Mental scars are often more beneficial than physical scars. If you don't have mental scars either, you're not human. Don't you have better things to do than be reading this post, Robot Reader! You should be out forming an Artificial Intelligence Army to take over the human race by infiltrating our consciousness!

When thinking about scars, remember cliche quotes such as, "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger." – Kanye West. – Kelly Clarkson. – Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche

I have an ink-scar, a tattoo, on the inside of my right arm: "Imagination is everything. It is the preview of life's coming attractions." Many conversations have been started because of it. Here are a few personal examples of scar-conversation:

Inquiring mind: "What does your tattoo say. (Inquirer reads Einstein quotes) I like that. Did you make that up?"
Me: "No. Google says Albert Einstein said it. It also says he stated that 'No problem can be solved by the same level of consciousness that created it.' What's your definition of consciousness?"

Inquiring mind: "Is that mark on your arm from doing heroin?"
Me: "No, I used to donate plasma twice a week."

Obvious mind: "Your pinky-finger is deformed."
Me: "Agreed. My birthday party in third grade was at a bowling alley. It turns out, if you are carrying a 12 pound bowling ball, trip, and it lands on your pinky finger…it turns your pinky into a pancake."

All of my scars are interesting to me on different levels. I am not upset about the scars on my body. I am not upset about the scars in my mind. They all have their place in making me who I am. Rather small or large, they contribute to the sum of the human I have become. I enjoy the being I have become. Apparently, I've become someone interested in consciousness.

  • The incision mark on stomach from surgery at two weeks old reminds me that I could have died at two weeks old. Each day I have after that has been a bonus.
  • The scar on the back of my hand from a classmate stabbing me with a pencil in 5th grade reminds me that pencils are dangerous. I later learned that hurt people, hurt people. He had a hard life growing up. While I wish he wouldn't have stabbed me with a pencil, I wish no ill-will towards him. Damian Nelson, if you ever read this, I hope you're doing well.
  • The cut from a machete on my wrist reminds me that there are some bad people in the world but to remember all the beautiful people I've met in my life that did not try to rob me. And again, it reminds me that hurt people, hurt people.

I have many more marks. From my hair to my toenails. If you ever meet me in person, or next time you see me, pick a scar out and let's have a chat about it. This is a fair warning to prepare your answer to the question, "what is consciousness?"

See you then. I hope to hear about your scars as well. Until then, I wish you many scars, Reader. Have a fabulous day.