Within this Helical Blur...
I can list labels which might describe who I am; male, son, partner, father, sensei, healer, bipolar... I have sought to reject labels, for they can, I have found, be limiting even stigmatising. Am I simply the result of my genetics environment or both, the nature nurture debate continues like a merry-go-round while life quietly unfolds, unaware of my need to put everything into words and compartments. This leaves me musing, am I then the sum of my personality, values and the beliefs I hold about who I am and where I fit in this world. That definition would suggest that who I am is solely defined by me, which would not take into account the relationships I have with others and our interactions with each other, or even the different aspects of myself and how they also interact with each other and the world around me. It seems to me and I would like to add that this is a feeling experience not a thinking one, that who I perceive myself to be varies according to a vast variety of variables at any given point on any given day. This sense of self is then subject to my own physical health, environment, relationships, prevailing mood and the responses I have learned throughout my life. But who then am I? Am I simply a response to all that is and has been, coloured by my hopes of what may be? I would like to use the metaphor of a beautiful blue sky, this is truly who I am, clouds pass by obscuring its clarity and depth, yet slowly they pass and the sky remains untouched. I believe to get a deeper sense of self we must all learn to focus less on the clouds which in my metaphor are our hopes and concerns, which although important of course do not define us, and learn to focus instead on the infinite open blue expanse of possibility before us where we are already the best we can be, where our self is already actualised. For me, realisation of this is at the heart of life and the rift created by this dis-harmony can be a source of in congruence where head and heart are no longer in harmony, a state where one rings like a cracked bell.
There is then a clear distinction between who I am and who I would like to be…. or is there? I am a strong believer in the actualising principle, I was aware of it before finding that the the humanist psychologists had gavin words to describe it, thank you Abraham and Carl. I was born knowing it and throughout my early life found guidance in eastern philosophies. I believe in the inherent goodness in all beings, yet I am often accused by those close to me that I am quite blind to my own goodness, which leads me to think I am not the best judge of who I am either.
Simply put…. I am John