February 10, 2018 at 9:17 AM Leave a comment

So, what is the difference between the true self and the false self?

A number of different answers leap to my mind.

Psychologically, the answer is straight forward: our true self makes decisions based on our internal, individual, intuitive wisdom. The false self makes decisions based on what we have been taught, what others have coerced us to believe and think, what our culture and society deem important, and what our families value. Some of these things will be coherent with our own true self. Many will not be.

A spiritual perspective also determines how we differentiate the true self and the false self. Do you believe that you were born to Be a certain person, to DO a certain sort of thing, to BRING INTO THE WORLD a particular gift or set of gifts. Do you believe you have a unique set of contributions to add to this planet? Don’t answer that too quickly. Are you different from other people? Did you arrive wired?

I, for example, arrived a sensitive, kind, right brained child. I was not gifted in math, as was the rest of my family. I was more expressive verbally than they were. I “wore my heart on my sleeve,” and they were more private, less emotionally reactive and receptive. My role in the family differed distinctly from the roles of everyone else. I was Little Mary Sunshine. I was the “sweet” child and my brother was the “smart” child. This is what I mean by “coming in wired.” The Myers/Briggs Personality Inventory helps us understand that people are differently wired. None is better than another. Each has it’s own benefits and its own problems.

Here is a list of some of the indicators of the false self. These are clues that we are working against our own nature and our own wiring.

You have a narrow view of anything. (Can’t see alternatives and options.)

You are easily offended.

You have a set field of expectations. (You think others “SHOULD…….”) One of the happiest days of my life was the day I realized no one else was as enthusiastic as I was. I stopped expecting others to match my level.

You are an angry person.

You are attached to ……. SORRY…… but, anything. As in I must have…….cleanliness? organization? my needs met by others? Starbucks coffee?

You are easily frustrated.

You label things as “right” or “wrong.”

You find yourself judging others.

You compete constantly — even if only in your mind.

You compare yourself to others. Alot.

You feel irritable and cranky.

You feel superior to anyone.

You feel inferior to anyone.

You are attached to ANY outcome. “If I can’t BE (the best), HAVE (the most)…….”

If you MUST be in control. Someone else suggests ANYTHING and your immediate response is NO. Either it wasn’t your idea, or you have to tweak the plan to add your own juice.

If you want success, adulation, high marks, winning, beauty, or any “best” of anything…….

If you feel you can manipulate anyone about anything. Even if you want to manipulate anyone about anything.

If you feel like you’re the judge, jury, and final authority.

This is a partial list of false self indicators, but it gets us started on our road to authenticity.

In the present circumstances of the planet earth, nothing, truly nothing, could be more vital than that each of us look inside ourselves and find the kernel of divine wisdom and guidance. Let us  commit ourselves to fulfilling — to the best of our ability– our unique and special and, perhaps, very small but necessary, role in this amazing drama of life on the Planet Earth.

Blessings and love from me to each of you!!  Susan




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