It is the choices we make that show who we truly are, far more than our abilities


“It is the choices we make, Harry, that show who we truly are, far more than our abilities,” said Albus Dumbledore to Harry Potter in JK Rowling’s The Philosopher’s Stone.

It’s always been a little intimidating, having all these doors open. It can be a struggle to find and listen to the small voice of my intuition when I’m surrounded by so many good suggestions and opportunities. I need to make sure that I’m growing at a sustainable rate, that I don’t overcommit or burn myself out, that I don’t lose myself. I need to make sure my priorities are right, and that I actually follow them.

  • L

    Hi there,

    i was wondering if i might use the image in this posting for a flyer. I wrote a play for my thesis project and am trying to make flyers for the show called “The Choices We Made.” This little image really doe sthe trick and i was wondering if you made it or got it from somwhere and if i could use it.



  • That one? I drew it on my Nintendo DS. Go ahead and have fun with it. =)

  • L



  • Choices, when studied by economists, show up as revealed preferences. Normally there’s a difference between what a person says and what a person does. Economist try to observe what people do.

    Abilities are somewhat different from choices. In systems theory, this can be expressed as emergy, or embodied energy. In physics, that’s generally expressed as potential energy, which can be put to work.

    On setting your personal priorities … that’s really different for each person. You need to find the way that is true and natural for yourself. This is best understood through Hubert Dreyfus’ understanding of authenticity in Heidegger’s writing.

    Heidegger can be tough to read, so I was interested to find an 11-minute clip of Dreyfus speaking about authenticity on Youtube as “Hubert Dreyfus on Husserl and Heidegger: Section 4” , which may almost be understandable by a layman. I’m amused (a) by the 1970s-era dress in the video, and (b) by the language that Dreyfus uses … which is consistent with his study and writing, making the philosophy natural to him … and probably only to others who have studied the Heidegger class at Berkeley.

  • You, sir, are an awesome commenter. =D

    More reading to do!