Who do you think you are? How do you self identify? Are you your job, title, family, relationship, status, gender, race, your thoughts, your feelings? Who are you? Who have you been when you were 5 years old? Who will you be in 5 years? Who are you if you were to lose your job, title, status, family? Would you then be someone different? Or still the same?
Are you someone who is good in speaking, sports, relationships, making money or friends? What if you were to loose all that? Would YOU be the same?
Are you someone who cant do x? Who is shy, insecure, lacking confident, broke, broken, stupid, incapable, insignificant, powerless, ugly? Are you unworthy? Not lovable? What if that werent true? What if thats only a self limiting definition you took on based on your experience? What if you had had a different experience? Are you your experience? What would you tell someone else giving you that self identification? Would you convince them otherwise? Why then would you identify yourself differently than someone else?
What happens after death? And what is the purpose of your existence? Is there one? What is the meaning of life? Where do I come from?
As touched in the introductory post such a simple question but not such a straight forward answer. But incredibly important to discuss and understand. Without it you cant get a deeper understanding of who you really are, and there is absolutely no chance of true freedom.
2 Identities: Core vs. Shell
Authentic core identity: What we truly are!
We are consciousness having an experience in this physical reality. Being incredible potential and energy, literally!
“Physicists John Wheeler and Richard Feynman calculated that there is enough […] energy in the vacuum inside a single light bulb to boil all the world’s oceans.”The Guardian
Physical matter being nothing else than energy vibrating at different frequency. Matter is an illusion.
“Everything we call real is made of things that cannot be regarded as real.”Niels Bohr, Nobel Price Physics
We are existing beyond physical death as referenced in most religions and documented by psychiatry (Brian Weiss). Our body and mind being our vehicle; our Higher Self (spirit / soul) being the driver and observer of that experience. That is what we really are: our authentic core identity. (I will lay out in another post, what reality could be and that our perception of it is surely not.)
Inauthentic shell identity: The lie we are believing
The problem is we have forgotten that we are NOT the vehicle. We identify ourselves with our thoughts, emotions, past, experience, stuff, titles, what others think about us or project towards us. We are imprisoned in 5 sense perception and (mostly) left brain dominant thinking. Trying to make sense of life, not realizing that we are literally blind and missing the complete frame of reference. Using a fraction of our potential. We identify ourselves with the figure in the computer game, not realising that we are the person using the computer and playing the game.
We are stuck in our inauthentic shell identity, an unconscious autopilot executing programs, patterns and beliefs with no idea of what we truly are.
But how did we get there? And how can we break out? Whats our true potential & Self?
Is the process of how we become ‘individual’. As a soul we incarnate into the (physical, mental, emotional, etheric) body, an ‘egoic’ vehicle. And as a baby we have no sense of individuality. Still connected to our true authentic core identity, we can’t differentiate between our mother or environment, we perceive everything as extension of us. Our ego needs to orientate itself to make sense of the situation and investigates how everything ‘is’. And we seek to validate our pure nature with our parents.
- From conception to ca. 2 years of age: Seeking nurturing from the mother. ‘Your mother lets you know you have a heart.’ ‘The mother must hold the baby close so that it knows it belongs in the world.’ (Mayan myth)
- From 2 -4 years of age: Seeking acknowledgment from the father: ‘Your father lets you know how to bring the heart into the world.’ ‘The father must take the child to the highest hill, so that it can see how the world is.’ (Mayan myth)
But there is no such thing as perfect parenting. Also because the child seeks validation according to its unique sense of Self. Which by definition can’t occur. The degree of unmet validation is guaranteed, only the degree might differ. And that causes hurt to the child. It unconsciously asks ‘Why do I hurt?’ and wants to understand ‘How is the situation?’. There is a serious need to know and make sense.
Resolving tension by creating beliefs
The child solves the equation by making up a limiting belief about the world, men, women, itself e.g. ‘I am not worthy’. Limiting beliefs are defined by resolving this tension and creating separation and sense of individuality as a result. They ‘limit’ our identity. Unconsciously ‘I am not worthy’ literally equates to ‘I am dead’ – every limiting belief does! For reference triggering a limiting beliefs activates the same brain areas (brain stem) as the attack of a predator: fight, flight or freeze. Because evolutionary babies which didn’t bond with the mother, were thrown out of the group and wouldn’t survive in the wild on its own.
Compensating limiting beliefs
Therefore compensating for our limiting beliefs is an unconscious survival mechanism. We need to resolve our inauthentic shell identity = who we believe we are. We believe to be victims and dedicate our life to compensate for our limiting beliefs – struggling & surviving instead of flowing & thriving! Seeking external validation, approval, proving our worth and wasting our energy building a life to compensate for who we think we are – an expression of our wounds.
‘It is my observation that 98% of the people are spending 98% of their time focusing on the 98% of things that don’t matter.’Neale Donald Walsch
And the meaning of our life becomes unconsciously to resolve our beliefs. That is what everybody is doing! Instead of saying ‘screw that, I do what I want to do!’ and being in touch with what we really love, what we are at our core and create!
We end up victims & slaves to an unconscious autopilot, instead of drivers & creators! (I know that sounds harsh, but the truth sets us free – bear with me there is hope!)
Individuation is an evolutionary mechanism to create a sense of Self. Ancient civilisations and indigenous cultures had (and have) a form of ‘initiation’ (rite of passage or vision quest), also called the Heroes Journey or second birth, to introduce us to how to ‘turn off the autopilot’ and leave childhood to become adults. And start waking up to our true nature and potential.
Throughout history and to this day ‘hero myths’ reminds us that we are not what we believed we are, but literally heroes: That we all have a heart & dreams we deeply care about and the power to manifest them!
Let’s dive into the different stages of Heros Journey and how it relates to our lives directly. It is both archetypal for our lives but also everyday situations and an amazing map to truly understand where we are in life.
A new hero is born
It all starts with birth. Think of King Arthur, Jesus Christ, Luke Skywalker, Hercules, Superman or you as a newly born child.
Hiding in the known (or comfort zone)
Mythology: Nobody, including the child, knows yet it is going to be king. Because of possible intrigues it is not safe to know the truth yet. And the fact is hidden to protect it’s life. Until the child is grown up and can claim the throne it is not safe to express its gifts and powers. Think of Superman hiding on earth or Jesus Christ in Egypt (I am not implying Jesus is a myth).
Indigenous traditions: Children being junior members of the tribe, protected by the elderly.
Context for us: Our human experience is one of individual existence and we have to create that. Its not inherent to us, as we are Consciousness connected to everything throughout all time and space. We had to manufacture our sense of individuality (see Individuation above). Resulting in forgetting who we truly are. Our true Self hidden to us.
Catalyst or venturing into the unknown
Mythology: Once the hero grows up and is ‘ready’, the call to action appears. Usually a wise man appears, who reminds the hero who he truly is and whats his mission. Think of Jesus Christ meeting Jon the Baptist (and performing the first wonder afterwards turning water into wine), Luke Skywalker meeting Princess Leia / Obi Wan Kenobi or Frodo meeting Gandalf. A usual first response is denial of the call, as there are doubts or duties to be overcome. The start to discover Self.
Indigenous traditions: The first stage of the ‘rite of passage’ is called separation. Where junior members of the tribe are separated from their position and prepared to move from one place or status to another. E.g. the Maasai go through a period of separation from the tribe at around age 15 before they are facing the ‘rite’.
Context for us: Knowledge about who we really are is not common sense anymore. In our society we neither have understanding nor a process to facilitate the transition from childhood into adulthood. We are left within our inauthentic shell identity on autopilot – eternal emotional & mental children – until we either crash by facing massive pain or just die. Most of us never truly waking up. (That is exactly why I do what I do here: To facilitate and guide through the ‘second birth‘ to claim back your power and become the hero of your life!).
Mythology: The hero faces the dragon, challenge or enemy. Which represent our identity, ego, Shadow Self or the unconscious parts of our Self (however you want to label it). It’s not even about killing the enemy or dragon (‘for every head chopped off, the Hydra would regrow two heads’), it is about coming to terms with our ego.
Indigenous traditions: The second phase is called ‘liminality’, the transition period between stages (childhood and adulthood). Here it is about facing fears and inner ‘demons’. The Maasai were sent out on a solo lion hunt (not a current practice anymore), while native American cultures sent their juveniles for a multi day fast into nature isolated from their tribe.
Meaning today: By facing our unconscious parts (= our inauthentic shell identity), we can truly understand our true ‘Self’. In order to do so, we need to understand the ‘Shadow Self’, which is nothing ‘evil’ but a defence mechanism to protect existing beliefs, values and identity. It is not about fighting the Shadow Self or our beliefs (that would just give them more energy and importance) but understand and integrate the unconscious part of us. Once we know how the Shadow Self operates (using doubt, delay, denial, distraction, deletion, distortion) we can claim back our power. Facing our perceived limitations and deepest fears (ultimate one being the fear of the unknown, which is fear of death) enables us to understand that they are illusions (because we exist eternally and every experience is created by the Mind). And to reconnect with our core authentic identity accessing our Superconscious Mind (Higher & Astral Self). There is what we really are and what we want, all our talents and abilities to create. The abyss can manifest both internally and externally either as shiny object & pleasure (‘Ignorance is bliss’) to distract us from our real purpose or as challenge, trauma or pain to keep us in perceived safety – our comfort zone.
The return or integration
Mythology: It is never just about us. It is about sharing the treasures found with society. As service is the highest form of existence.
Indigenous traditions: The last phase is called ‘incorporation’. After completing the rite the new identity and re-entry into society with the new status is celebrated with rituals and ceremonies. The child is now a man and steps up in seniority and takes over responsibility in the tribe.
Meaning today: Going through the Heroes Journey and withstanding the abyss transforms us. We are gaining knowledge & understanding about us and the world. It’s now about closing the circle by sharing and applying the insights to transform the experience into wisdom (TRIVIUM). Realising on a deeper level that life is not just about you but about all humans and creation. We are all connected and in it together. Closing the circle equates to a raise in consciousness, an increased frequency of thought.
Society and major belief systems
We are the first society which does not have this mechanism anymore. And as a consequence most remain eternal children. We are not just going through the process of individuation, but we are born into and exposed to an egoic society on steroids. A negatively competitive environment, where moral relativism, rigid scepticism, social darwinism and self preservation are perceived norm – where its about ‘whats in it for me’. That we are ‘not enough’ and need to achieve more ‘to be enough’, further strengthening our inauthentic shell identity. Instead of seeking to know the truth and find it in ourselves, we are running on autopilot outsourcing our responsibility by blindly following the ‘big 5’ belief systems or religions (etymological origin is latin ‘religare’ which means ‘to bind’): cultural religion, government, scientism, new age religion and money. Promising us illusionary salvation by following their rules.
Discourse: The process called ‘normal life’
Soon after we are born, the ‘education’ system gifts us with a restrictive left brain dominant, reactive world view, leaving our creativity, intuition, critical thinking & empathetic understanding on the table. Trained to become obedient order followers and little wheels in the system of wealth creation benefitting a few, we are now fitting perfectly into the job ‘box’ provided to us for the next 40 years. Nothing else than a rat race of the same daily routine of a 9-5 job ended by pizza, wine & Netflix. Repeat, repeat, repeat, repeat. Then the weekend to recover and a few hours with your loved ones (living side by side without actually really knowing each other), before it starts again. A few weeks of holidays the highlight of the year: Party, travel, ‘fun’! Distraction of the everyday misery. When we retire and finally are ‘free’, we are old and sick and don’t even know what do to with our time because we never learned to be independent. Everything but time we can recover. But we traded our most precious assets time, attention and dreams against a paycheck fulfilling someone elses’ dreams.
Its time to face the truth: Nobody is coming to do it for us. It’s on us. A first step is to take responsibility for where we are and where we really want to go. Without a map of whats possible for every single one of us and our position on it, we have zero chance to get anywhere close to where we want. And get an understanding of whats possible for every single one of us!
Its time to Self Actualize!
Lets explore what that really means and what our true potential is! (To be posted soon.)
Again, don’t believe me or anyone. Make up your own mind. Consider the information with an open mind and heart. It might appear negative, though it isn’t. Its the ultimate empowerment. Once you recognize that what you categorized as normal, is actually totally suppressed and limited – and you having the power to change it – leaves gigantic upside of potential, fulfilment and purpose to be discovered and manifested! Is it easy? No! Is it worth it? Hell yes! The biggest adventure life has to offer. Welcome traveler! The journey begins!