‘Be yourself’, they say.
Sometimes you might wonder, ‘How can I be myself, when I’m not sure who I am?’
When you live in a time with so much opportunity for spiritual growth as you do now, sometimes you might find yourself feeling a little like an adolescent, changing by the day, not quite sure of what you might do or say next. If so, well done!
Not knowing who you are is a very empowering place to be. It’s a place where you can begin to move beyond old boundaries and definitions. As you grew up you fashioned an idea of yourself out of the materials that came to hand – the ideas others suggested to you, the way they treated you, your own interpretations of the world and so on. All of that was useful to you. It formed the vehicle that brought you out of the past into the present. But now you are here, you don’t need that vehicle – or at least it’s worth looking over to see what parts may still be helpful to you. It’s a time for recycling.
What this means in practice is that it can be very helpful to you to notice as many of the assumptions you have made about yourself and about the world as you can and ask yourself this simple question, ‘Is this true for me now?’ Let the question sink deep within and allow your answer to rise from deep within. Feel free to create new truths for yourself, based on your truest sense of yourself and the world right now, and feel free to allow these new truths to change in turn.
Above all feel free to surprise yourself. Of course, sometimes that might mean you find yourself surprising other people too! You’ve watched a child or young animal discovering something new. Their capacity for surprise, even astonishment, is beautiful to see. Grant that gift to yourself. Sometimes you might like to play at being completely new to the world, looking at each thing you encounter as if you’d never seen it before.
The capacity to see even yourself as totally new and unknown can be profoundly liberating. So next time someone says to you, ‘Just be yourself’, revel in not knowing what that might mean.