Who are you? How would you answer that question upon asked? I challenge myself with this question often just to ensure I keep perspective in life. Discovering yourself often turns into a lifelong journey. Our careers, names, birthplaces, personalities, and material possessions are just parts of the physical reality puzzle of our lives. All of these collectively make up how others see us in this physical existence; but are they us? Do they define us?
What is the part of us that defines our true self? How do we identify with our being? Discovering yourself is a deep and inward journey that will contain learnings that can help you define your purpose in life.
For the better part of 10 years or so I’ve been asking myself these inward-dwelling questions. If you get to this point of life where you’re asking yourself these types of questions – congratulations…the real work is now beginning.
When most people ponder the question of “who they are,” they are quick to think of what they do for a profession in life. That helps define a person right? What about where they come from, such as – country, city, place of origin? Do those identifiers define us? What about likes and dislikes; maybe even throw our religions and political backgrounds into the picture. Food we enjoy eating and places we like to travel, sports teams we’re fans of, types of clothing we prefer to wear. Surely all these things should help us describe who we really are.
The truth is we are NONE of these things. Actually, all the above mentioned items describe “physical” aspects of our lives. The things we do while in this physical existence. They are not at all what we really are. So what truly are we? Are we the voice in our heads – our thoughts? Maybe that would make more sense.
My best attempt at answering this question with my understanding at this point in my life is this; we are the awareness that stands in the background, that observes the conscious thought. Now, some people may read this and wonder what on earth I’m trying to say. All I can say is there is conscious, subconscious, and unconscious thought. All of this exists in the mind. The mind is energy through which the brain (conduit) sends thoughts and signals through the body that both consciously and unconsciously guide us through life. What I believe we really are, is the energy behind all of it. Call it Soul, Higher Self, Consciousness, or God itself…
Whether we realize it or not, this energy is always there. Discovering yourself can be an awakening of sorts. The ability to “step back within yourself,” and “watch the daily movie play out.” This, in my eyes, is the best way to describe who we really are at our core.
The question is, who or what is running the show?
Are we on auto-pilot as we aimlessly fly through life, or have we begun to look inwards to truly try and understand how this thing called life really works? Once we begin to understand “mind,” we can begin to tackle the ego. Trying to understand the ego, is perhaps the greatest undertaking in ones personal journey of awakening. For as long as we only identify with “our mind,” the ego will continue to run our lives. Ego is the source of many problems in our lives. It goes well beyond conceitedness and into fear, anxiety, depression, and all other aspects of lower based consciousness. Ego is full of wants and judgements. As long as the egoic mind is running us – we can never truly be at peace.
When it comes to pondering the question, “Who are you?” – pause and consider the consciousness that has experienced your life. Discovering yourself can be a very rewarding journey, but like all journeys we have to be prepared for what we may discover along the way. Not everything we discover is going to be what we want to find – but it likely is what we need.