Friday, 13 May 2011

a Moment for Wisdom…


Whoever knows himself, knows God.”


“Know thyself? If I knew myself, I’d run away.”


The most terrifying thing is to accept oneself completely.

Carl Jung

Personal Wisdom:

Do you “know yourself”?

What do you know?

What is your identity?  What part of that identity has traveled with you on your life
journey? What part has been added? What part will survive when you transit out of this life?

Do you accept yourself? (If you answered “yes”… are you terrified?) Which parts/

aspects of your Being do you have difficulty

How do you run away from yourself? What would get you to stop?

Societal Wisdom:

Do you live in a society that accepts itself?

Do you live in a society that encourages the person to “know themselves”?

a Moment with Sharif…


These quotes have to deal with self-knowledge.

In a way, Muhammad’s quote is both the easiest and most difficult for us to grapple with. In one way, Muhammad states an impossibility – If we cannot “know God”, then we cannot truly know ourselves. On the other hand: the closer we get to knowing ourselves, the closer we get to the Ultimate Reality.

When I first read the Goethe quote, I laughed. The second time I read it, I stopped laughing.  How many of us “run away”? I admit I’ve done my share of running. (I may still be running… but at levels so subtle, I’m not aware… yet.) As a society, we’re doing nothing but running – over-entertained, over-stimulated, over-sensated. As a society, we are deaf, dumb and blind… and loving it!

Which leads us to the Jung quote. Knowing and accepting oneself is not a shallow or light-hearted endeavor. We need strength of character to truly face ourselves, to truly see ourselves, then to accept what we see.




All photos by Sharif Abdullah, unless otherwise noted.


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One Response to Friday, 13 May 2011

  1. Karen says:

    Knowing myself is hard enough. Accepting myself may be the challenge of this life. If I were to completely love and accept myself, I wouldn’t have any issues with anyone around me. In accepting and loving myself, I would find no aspects of another person unfamiliar, leaving nothing left to criticize. It would also involve collapsing the perceived separation between self and other, between self and Self.

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