Know Thyself?

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richrf
 
Reply Wed 29 Jul, 2009 06:26 pm
Know Thyself has been attributed to many Greek Philosophers.

Heraclitus is said to have written: I have inquired of myself.

Jung says that individuation, the act of knowing yourself, begins in the second half of your life, and it starts by accepting your Shadow.

Is knowing yourself worthwhile? Why or why not? Do you try to know yourself? How do you inquire? What have you learned? Has it changed as you grew older?


Rich
 
Theaetetus
 
Reply Wed 29 Jul, 2009 07:23 pm
@richrf,
Knowing yourself is totally worthwhile. How else would you know what you ultimately want out of life. Without knowing yourself, you can never be sure that you are living life to the fullest.
 
richrf
 
Reply Wed 29 Jul, 2009 08:12 pm
@Theaetetus,
Theaetetus;80275 wrote:
Knowing yourself is totally worthwhile. How else would you know what you ultimately want out of life. Without knowing yourself, you can never be sure that you are living life to the fullest.


Hi there Theatetus,

What have you discovered you want out of life?

Rich
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Thu 30 Jul, 2009 11:03 am
@richrf,
richrf;80266 wrote:
Know Thyself has been attributed to many Greek Philosophers.

Heraclitus is said to have written: I have inquired of myself.

Jung says that individuation, the act of knowing yourself, begins in the second half of your life, and it starts by accepting your Shadow.

Is knowing yourself worthwhile? Why or why not? Do you try to know yourself? How do you inquire? What have you learned? Has it changed as you grew older?


Rich


'Know Thyself" was written on the portico of the Temple Of Apollo in Delphi. So was, "In Everything, Not Too Much".

It is vital to know what you can do, and what you cannot do.
 
richrf
 
Reply Thu 30 Jul, 2009 11:08 am
@kennethamy,
kennethamy;80371 wrote:
'Know Thyself" was written on the portico of the Temple Of Apollo in Delphi. So was, "In Everything, Not Too Much".

It is vital to know what you can do, and what you cannot do.


Yep. So how do you go about knowing yourself?

Rich
 
Mr Fight the Power
 
Reply Thu 30 Jul, 2009 11:11 am
@richrf,
If there is to be free will, it can only come about through self-awareness. We must be aware of who we are to decide upon which actions will make us who we want to be.
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Thu 30 Jul, 2009 11:19 am
@richrf,
richrf;80373 wrote:
Yep. So how do you go about knowing yourself?

Rich


Ask a mutual friend to introduce you.
 
richrf
 
Reply Thu 30 Jul, 2009 11:28 am
@Mr Fight the Power,
Mr. Fight the Power;80375 wrote:
If there is to be free will, it can only come about through self-awareness. We must be aware of who we are to decide upon which actions will make us who we want to be.


Yes, I agree. Awareness helps you become a better navigator in life. But how does one increase awareness of oneself?

Rich
 
jgweed
 
Reply Thu 30 Jul, 2009 11:34 am
@richrf,
To ask about knowing oneself assumes that there is something like "oneself" to know, and that each of us can, in fact, know (in the sense of being somewhat objective about it) oneself. Do we know anything else but the many masks we wear, or is there "something left over" and behind these masks?

There are things I can know about myself that Others cannot, and Others can know things about myself that I cannot know, and there are things neither knows, as Rumsfeld might have mused.

And, assuming the Self grows or changes over time, is the Self known say at 18 the same Self known at 66?
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Thu 30 Jul, 2009 12:02 pm
@jgweed,
jgweed;80384 wrote:


And, assuming the Self grows or changes over time, is the Self known say at 18 the same Self known at 66?


Yes. It is the very same self (or person) but it has changed. For instance, it is 48 years older than it was.
 
CygnusX1
 
Reply Sat 1 Aug, 2009 02:18 pm
@richrf,
 
Khethil
 
Reply Sat 1 Aug, 2009 02:35 pm
@kennethamy,
Of course we change over time; I'm not the same person I was not too long ago. But the foundation and the elements built, one on top of another with experience, remain the same and become familiar.

It's extremely worthwhile; the endeavor to know one's self. The very best way, that I know of, is through critical thought/humble self examination. We can't do it alone - our filters are too 'tainted' by self-view - so trusted others that we can ask, talk with and see our own reflection in their reactions all can add to self-knowledge. Even with these efforts; unfortunately, we'll never *fully and completely* know; it's those few insights we do gain that make it worth the trouble.

I look at it like this: I have an iTunes library that's quite large. It has some stuff from the 60's, but mostly from the 70's, 80's, 90's and 00's. As I loaded up each song, I rated it (1 to 5 stars) and set up a rotation that played the least-recently played song as the next song. It was kind of nice. What I realized, after playing this for quite a while, is that the entire library represents the sum total of my preferences. As it grows, it expands in all directions even though it retains the oldest songs - songs I become further and further from. Many of these oldies aren't really "me" any more, even though I rated them accurately - I just don't want to hear them; they're buried under the constant flow of new preferences.

It's this kind of change that I think we all undergo; and it's this very complication that makes knowing ourselves so difficult. We expand, memories, ideas and experiences piling one upon another - influencing the "taste of the soup". Even though our early foundations are set, much changes over time. Thus this "What am I?" prospect becomes a constant endeavor.

... just my random contributions on this issue. Thanks
 
sarathustrah
 
Reply Sat 1 Aug, 2009 04:03 pm
@richrf,
richrf;80266 wrote:
Know Thyself has been attributed to many Greek Philosophers.

Heraclitus is said to have written: I have inquired of myself.

Jung says that individuation, the act of knowing yourself, begins in the second half of your life, and it starts by accepting your Shadow.

Is knowing yourself worthwhile? Why or why not? Do you try to know yourself? How do you inquire? What have you learned? Has it changed as you grew older?


Rich

i do like jung in general... but on this i think its pointless. especially about the 2nd half of life thing... see i dont know what hes talking about entirely though with the whole capitalized shadow deal.... but i think we always know ourselves... and we always know we are always changing our mind... changing our desires... upgrading our expectations... adjusting what we call good and great...

so as for it being worthwhile... i think thats an awkward way to put it... but yeah its worthwhile to reflect on all the points ive mentioned... but its also worthwhile to know that its healthy to constantly change the self that you are.

i know myself by my thoughts, desires, expectations, dreams, likes and dislikes... but im open to changing my standards and updating my beliefs...

i have good days and i have bad days... ask for me to trust you to borrow a movie on a bad day and ill be vicious about it... ask to borrow the same movie on a good day and ill think nothing of it hand it over without a problem...

what have i learned... to enjoy the updates... to appreciate my bad days as much as i appreciate my good days

whats changed since ive grown older... my imagination may not be quite as strong as when i was younger... but its more powerfully able to focus and consider.

theres no exception to the cliche that with age comes wisdom... including wisdom of insight.
 
richrf
 
Reply Sat 1 Aug, 2009 07:33 pm
@Khethil,
Khethil;80798 wrote:
I look at it like this: I have an iTunes library that's quite large. It has some stuff from the 60's, but mostly from the 70's, 80's, 90's and 00's. As I loaded up each song, I rated it (1 to 5 stars) and set up a rotation that played the least-recently played song as the next song. It was kind of nice. What I realized, after playing this for quite a while, is that the entire library represents the sum total of my preferences. As it grows, it expands in all directions even though it retains the oldest songs - songs I become further and further from. Many of these oldies aren't really "me" any more, even though I rated them accurately - I just don't want to hear them; they're buried under the constant flow of new preferences. Thanks


Hi Khethil,

Thanks for your comments.

I had a friend once, who first off always used to look at someones music collection, to get an idea of who the person is. I think there is a lot of merit to the idea that certain music resonates with a person's consciousness and mirrors who that person might be.

Rich

---------- Post added 08-01-2009 at 08:49 PM ----------

sarathustrah;80814 wrote:
i do like jung in general... but on this i think its pointless. especially about the 2nd half of life thing... see i dont know what hes talking about entirely though with the whole capitalized shadow deal....


I find Jung very relevant to my life. I seem to be always searching, and Jung suggests that this search, is the search for understanding oneself.

Jung thought that we only consciously are aware of part of ourselves. There is much, much more to us, and some of that lies in our Shadow. The Shadow is something about ourselves that we would rather not see. Thinks like selfishness, greed, belligerence, etc. We play roles, and we hide that which we do not want to see.

I have found, that when I see a reflection of myself in someone else I get angry. I note this period of anger and I consider what do I see in that other person that I don't want to see in myself?

And then there is Jung's notion of projection which Oscar Wilde who preceded Jung with his quote:

The highest, as the lowest, form of criticism is a mode of autobiography.

So when I criticize (either verbally or mentally), I think about how does that criticism of someone else relate to me and my Shadow.

The mind is a funny thing, and the way it reveals itself is quite interesting. Why? Well, I think in the process of discovery, we learn more about our Life, which Jung viewed as a heroic journey. To be or not to be, that is the question.

Quote:
i have good days and i have bad days...


Yep, I have plenty of ups and downs in my life.

Quote:
what have i learned... to enjoy the updates... to appreciate my bad days as much as i appreciate my good days


Lessons in life seem to occur in the midst of these cycles.


Quote:
theres no exception to the cliche that with age comes wisdom... including wisdom of insight.


I think we do indeed become wiser as we grow older.

Thanks for your comments.

Rich
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Sun 2 Aug, 2009 08:19 pm
@Khethil,
Khethil;80798 wrote:
Of course we change over time; I'm not the same person I was not too long ago.


Of course you are the vary same person you were, even if your properties change. The photo of you when you were a child, and the photo of you when you are an adult, are photos of the very same person who calls himself, "Khethil". For instance, the photo of the child has the property of calling himself, "Khethil" when he is an adult; and the adult who has the property of calling himself, "Khethil", are one and the same person. There is no difference in properties; there is only a difference in the time each acquired the property. Change does not mark a difference in properties, only a difference in time when a property was acquired.
 
Anais
 
Reply Tue 4 Aug, 2009 06:39 pm
@richrf,
In each moment I think we are in somewhat limbo between awareness of the past and creating the future.

We may be able to observe tendencies within our selves.
But then is it not at every step that we chose to reinforce those repeated decisions, repeat patterns of self?

So I am thinking that under the layers, the created masks of ego, there would seem to be some centralised self making these decisions of character.

But perhaps in that it is merely consciousness is able to reflect upon itself, that gives the illusion of other. This static and adaptive self.
For instance if I gaze into a mirror, and see my reflection it is not another being seperate from myself.

If the masks we create are indicational of character, or if in my own reactions over longer periods of time perceived patterns begin to emerge. Then I may reflect upon this.


***********
This turned out far more incoherent than intended.
It is no wonder I am such an introvert, I can lost in here for days...
 
richrf
 
Reply Tue 4 Aug, 2009 09:49 pm
@Anais,
Anais;81341 wrote:
In each moment I think we are in somewhat limbo between awareness of the past and creating the future.

We may be able to observe tendencies within our selves.
But then is it not at every step that we chose to reinforce those repeated decisions, repeat patterns of self?

So I am thinking that under the layers, the created masks of ego, there would seem to be some centralised self making these decisions of character.

But perhaps in that it is merely consciousness is able to reflect upon itself, that gives the illusion of other. This static and adaptive self.
For instance if I gaze into a mirror, and see my reflection it is not another being seperate from myself.

If the masks we create are indicational of character, or if in my own reactions over longer periods of time perceived patterns begin to emerge. Then I may reflect upon this.


Love your thoughts on this matter.

I too have similar feelings at times. Sometimes some deeper Self that is determining the direction of the physical self (this is very similar to the Chinese metaphysics of the Hun and the Po).

Sometimes I feel like I am an outside observer that is looking upon the a stage and trying to make what I can of the drama.

And sometimes, I find myself acting one way with this situation and another way with that situation.

So, I wonder, what is it within me.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Rich
 
Twistedgypsychil
 
Reply Sat 29 Aug, 2009 01:55 pm
@richrf,
To know thyself, Gnothi Seauton, as Socrates stated, is to know the mysteries of the self.

Change is an interesting topic and the action as well. Some people cannot accept change. I used to be one of those people, however, over the course of time, Ive come to welcome change. Most often, I dont think that change is something that comes without pain and suffering. Perhaps it is all in our perception. Do we see pain and suffering as a good thing or bad? Everything is first created in our minds and then we manifest them into reality. In a sense, we are the directors of our own dramas. We direct each scene and decide who, what , when, and where - and of course why. So why is change so hard to accept? For myself, I think I struggled so hard for a period in my life and finally developed a comfort zone. When that comfort zone began changing and I started to feel the after effects of change, I felt as if Id have to build my self esteem back up because I was basing my self worth on mundane things. it was only when I was able to see myself as my Highest Ideals that I was able to welcome change into my life.

Some of the changes that I think I am going to need to make during my lifetime involve some pretty tedious things. As far as internal changes go, I will continue to slay my ego and pursue my highest ideals. Being a person who has begun to explore the innermost depths of herself, I can say that as with the changes Ive already made, I will continue to evolve with my life and my ethics. As far as lifestyle changes go, I plan on making several changes.

Even if we pick the petals off of a flower and examine them, they each made part of the flower. When there are no petals left, we still have a flower, only its not quite as beautiful.

Knowing thyself means being acceptable to change and adapting to it. It means exploring the innermost parts of our being and defining what we are tolerating and what we are not...what we are allowing to change and what we are not. From the inside out...not the outside in.

Jamie
 
kennethamy
 
Reply Sat 29 Aug, 2009 02:41 pm
@Twistedgypsychil,
Twistedgypsychil;86658 wrote:
To know thyself, Gnothi Seauton, as Socrates stated, is to know the mysteries of the self.

Change is an interesting topic and the action as well. Some people cannot accept change. I used to be one of those people, however, over the course of time, Ive come to welcome change. Most often, I dont think that change is something that comes without pain and suffering. Perhaps it is all in our perception. Do we see pain and suffering as a good thing or bad? Everything is first created in our minds and then we manifest them into reality. In a sense, we are the directors of our own dramas. We direct each scene and decide who, what , when, and where - and of course why. So why is change so hard to accept? For myself, I think I struggled so hard for a period in my life and finally developed a comfort zone. When that comfort zone began changing and I started to feel the after effects of change, I felt as if Id have to build my self esteem back up because I was basing my self worth on mundane things. it was only when I was able to see myself as my Highest Ideals that I was able to welcome change into my life.

Some of the changes that I think I am going to need to make during my lifetime involve some pretty tedious things. As far as internal changes go, I will continue to slay my ego and pursue my highest ideals. Being a person who has begun to explore the innermost depths of herself, I can say that as with the changes Ive already made, I will continue to evolve with my life and my ethics. As far as lifestyle changes go, I plan on making several changes.

Even if we pick the petals off of a flower and examine them, they each made part of the flower. When there are no petals left, we still have a flower, only its not quite as beautiful.

Knowing thyself means being acceptable to change and adapting to it. It means exploring the innermost parts of our being and defining what we are tolerating and what we are not...what we are allowing to change and what we are not. From the inside out...not the outside in.

Jamie

Socrates never stated, know thyself.
 
Twistedgypsychil
 
Reply Sat 29 Aug, 2009 02:43 pm
@richrf,
Know Thyself

It is said that Socrates once visited the oracle of Delphi, where he was told the most important task in his life was to know his real self. To know the real self is perhaps the ultimate goal of philosophy. If we don't know who we are, how can we solve the mysteries of life and help other people?For Socrates knowing thyself was more than a mere intellectual quest. It was an idea that shaped his life and inner attitude. He was never satisfied with accepting outer appearances and conventional wisdom, but always strove for a deeper understanding of his real Self.Above all, Socrates taught us not accept our existing thoughts as true. Step back and reevaluate the truth and veracity of your opinions and beliefs. Seek to know your real self and seek truth. It is a lofty philosophy, but one that has retained an enduring appeal and fascination through the ages.Tejvan Pettinger is a member of the Sri Chinmoy Meditation Centre. He lives in Oxford where he works as a teacher. He also offers mediation classes as a community service and updates a blog at Sri Chinmoy Inspiration a collection of articles on meditation and self improvement.


Read More Here: Philosophy of Socrates - PickTheBrain | Motivation and Self Improvement

---------- Post added 08-29-2009 at 03:44 PM ----------

- Socrates' guiding rule was, "Know Thyself." These words are of eternal significance. No better advice has ever been give to man or woman. When one begins to explore this dictate it leads to profound understandings about all of creation. It makes unhappiness, fear, sadness, doubt, and all the negative emotions meaningless.

Read More Here:
Know Thyself
 
 

 
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