#1:  Know Thyself

     Throughout the 5,000 years of Earth’s recorded history, there is one piece of advice that was consistently taught by our species’ greatest philosophers and sages. In 1400 B.C., this advice was inscribed on the walls of Egypt’s Luxor Temple; in 700 B.C., it was etched above the temple entrance to Greece’s Oracle of Delphi; it was infused in the teachings of Socrates and Plato; it featured prominently in the Hindu texts of ancient India and in the teachings of Confucius from early Imperial China; and later, it was echoed yet again in the writings of William Shakespeare, Walt Whitman, and even Benjamin Franklin. This advice, quite simply, is to know yourself. The reason this wisdom refuses to leave humanity alone is that life, with all its perceived complexities, can be boiled down to this one endeavor. Every time we pre-judge our life experience to be a random crisis, a pointless difficulty, or meaningless suffering, we are misunderstanding who and what we really are. Not knowing our true self inescapably results in painful confusion about why life unfolds in certain ways. 

#2:  Be Honest with Yourself

     Regarding this Know Thyself business, we shouldn’t be too hard on ourselves because - despite 5,000 years of recorded history to learn from - most of us still don’t know who we really are. As a result, we are subject to forces that cause us to behave, think, and feel in ways that are not always under our control. But the unflappable inner peace and self-assuredness that come from truly knowing ourselves cannot be obtained if we keep hiding from ourselves. To come out of hiding, we must honestly and objectively reflect on how we’re living our lives. This is done by constantly asking one simple question:  Why am I feeling what I’m feeling? During life’s trials, instead of playing the victim, your honest answer to this repeated question incinerates your ego, decloaks your insecurities, and takes you straight to the core of who you are. It does this by revealing false beliefs about yourself and about life that keep you from experiencing your true self. Answering this question will show you when your fears control you, when your negativity shackles you, when your need for validation from others enslaves you, and when your self-centeredness is suffocating you. Conversely, during life’s magical moments, answering this question will show you how simple happiness is and what little it requires, how empowered you feel when you live your truth unapologetically, how invigorating it is to be courageous, and how true joy comes from being in loving service to others. Why am I feeling what I’m feeling?  This is the key to self-awareness. 

#3:  The Big Reveal

     This millennia-old quest to know thyself will ultimately reveal that you are love itself. And the more you choose to act from love, the more of your limitless self will you experience. Everything you need to be happy, everything you need to be fulfilled, and everything you need to feel complete is already within you… you just don’t know it yet.  Knowing yourself is not an achievement, it’s a realization; it’s not a creation, it’s a discovery. Who you are, who you’ve always been, as well as the self you’ve yet to experience is encoded in your soul… not in the temporary rental equipment you call your body. There is purpose and meaning buried deep within each one of us. But until we honestly reflect on how we have allowed forces in life to dictate who we are, we will continue living a character that isn’t really us. We are made up of pure joy, unconditional love, and timeless truth. And whether we’re conscious of it or not, we’ve all come here to know ourselves as that… and to be it.


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