Tuesday TRUTH

So for RIL this time, this will be short!

I just had a thought. “New Age” practitioners and “spiritualists” from all over the “spectrum” (whatever spectrum that is, I’m not quite sure …) draw attention to the duality of the “self” – the fact that there is the conscious self and then there is the unconscious or “shadow” self. The definitions of the two vary wildly (I do not want to refer to specific theory here; for now I am only talking about the two “selves” often utilized by YouTube and Oprah “spiritual teachers” – I realize these “definitions” are rooted in classical theory, but that would entail a LONG post!). Often the things that we have been taught and the way in which we have been “trained” in order to function in society are referred to as existing below the level of “conscious awareness;” that is, that many or most of the things we have come to assume are our OWN belief systems are things that have been handed down to us (forcefully or covertly) by our parents, our religions, our schools, our countries, &c. &c. &c. Most of us do not recognize that the things we SAY we believe are NOT the things we believe – they are just the things we have been TAUGHT to believe or taught were the “correct” beliefs. I agree with that last sentence. HOWEVER, there is an interesting juxtaposition that manifests if we accept the idea that the “social conditioning” we receive and then “regurgitate” is unconscious in nature; that is, that the true “self” must, by deductive reasoning, be the “conscious” self – an “argument” which is definitionally self-defeating. How can we outwardly express unconsciously accepted beliefs and yet maintain a conscious “self” when that latter self is unknown? I do not disagree with the idea that most people do not realize which beliefs are theirs and which they have simply adopted or have been forced to adopt and in that regard, those beliefs and that part of the “self” is unconscious. However, wouldn’t the “TRUE” self ALSO be an unconscious self if it were not known, necessarily? That is, if one were to take on the belief system of his parents and school and religion, &c., where would his “true SELF” be – in the conscious or in the unconscious? It seems to me as if these are simply degrees of “unconsciousness;” that is, at least until the individual comes to question and understand the belief systems “given” to him or her by his or her social conditioning and subsequently decide for himself or herself which beliefs are really his or hers and which are not, he or she IS “the shadow.” Where does that leave hidden desires and further repressed wants and needs? Perhaps these are deeper in the “unconscious” self and perhaps they only appear when one examines or at the very least QUESTIONS his or her social conditioning. Perhaps one can only become “conscious” by slowly realizing what he or she believes and wants and needs, going through each and every dictate one at a time. At the very least, this throws out the bases of many of the doctrines of the aforementioned “New Agers” and “spiritualists.” It’s an interesting way to think about things, and I think a very informed way to think about things – it will certainly be a topic to which I will return!

I hope you are all having a wonderfully happy and incredibly healthy day wherever you are in the world! I will be back here when I have a little less … “gum” in my mouth….

❤ Always, Beth


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