"A person is not what he knows, a person is not what he does. A person is what he is longing for."
Rabbe Nachman of Breslov

When making an acquaintance, it is common for people to ask each other what they do for a living. Occupations can somewhat define us, often indicating our talents and interests. They highlight our skills, and passions, and even reveal our character traits. But jobs that support us financially should not define who we really are on the inside. They are just a living, means to an end.

A Person

The same is true with education. Opportunities to gain knowledge may pass us by. Life circumstances may not allow us to pursue studies that intrigue us. Perhaps Rabbi Nachman was acutely aware of this. His belief was that a person is best defined not by something already achieved, but by something he or she is presently and actively seeking. Thousands of years before him, Rabbi Jesus said something similar, "first and foremost seek the kingdom of God and all other things will be added"

Thoughts like these should cause us to ask ourselves, what is it that we long for the most? What is our yearning? What is our innermost desire? When we answer this honestly, we might discover who we really are. If that is not something worthwhile, we have a chance to alter our course and set a better one. Let your longing define who you are!