“Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else’s opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation.” - Oscar Wilde
Self: what you are behind the social and cultural facade.
Apophetic knowledge will help you define what you are not… But as we will explore later, apophetic knowledge is also the gateway to revealing your projections and the shadow archetype. Essentially your dark side and the traits, beliefs, behaviors and identity that are not allowed. Knowing both your light and your darkness makes it possible for you to be the paradox because when you confront your internal conflicts you understand that everyone else is the same place whether they know it or not. This allows for a sense of inner peace and subtle confidence because no matter how much ego or bravado another person projects, you have insights into that other’s soul because you are at peace with your own.
"When I came to terms with my own skills and abilities, the realities of what I had accomplished held me to a higher principle that left me no choice but to depart from the commerce of the world, seek isolation, and tear my soul apart so that I could examine what I had already seemed to know instinctively. I practiced and meditated constantly until I came to understand the workings of the spirit." ~ Miyamoto Musashi, The Book of Five Rings
Being alone doesn't mean living like a monk. You can be alone and be surrounded by people. Be alone in your purpose... The reason why being alone is uncomfortable is because it forces you to face your dark side. Consider the painting of possibly one of history's greatest sword fighters fighting a bat. The bat is symbolic as a creature of the night that is a parasite, but at the same time the bat also has night-sight and the ability to pierce through illusion. By confronting your dark side and integrating its elements, you will also be empowered to see through the illusions that entrap so many others...
Self-awareness, reason, and imagination have disrupted the “harmony” that characterizes animal
existence. Their emergence has made man into an anomaly, the freak of the universe. He is part of nature, subject to her physical laws and unable to change them, yet he transcends nature. He is set apart while being a part; he is homeless, yet chained to the home he shares with all creatures. Cast into this world at an accidental place and time, he is forced out of it accidentally and against his will. Being aware of himself, he realizes his powerlessness and the limitations of his existence. He is never free from the dichotomy of his existence: he cannot rid himself of his mind, even if he would want to; he cannot rid himself of his body as long as he is alive – and his body makes him want to be alive. ~ Erich Fromm ( Anatomy of Human Destructiveness)
Above, the weighing of the heart ritual, pictured on papyrus in the Book of the Dead typically, shows Anubis (the Jackal-headed god of the
afterlife) overseeing the weighing and the lioness Ammit seated awaiting the results so she could consume those who failed.
To the left, a relief of the goddess Maat - the goddess of truth, balance, order, law morality and justice - is pictured. Upon her head she wears a feather symbolic of probably one of the lightest tangible elements known to the ancient Egyptians. In the myth, when a man was to die, his heart would be measured on a scale against the weight of the feather. If his heart were found to be heavier than the feather, the unworthy heart would be
consumed by the lion goddess Ammit, but if the heart was as light as the feather the
person would be allowed entrance to Aru, the heavenly paradise.
Consider for a moment, the word lighthearted... The expression exists and you've probably used it at one point or another. I believe that when you are true to your purpose, you experiences lightheartedness and you are creating your eternal paradise both in this lifetime and after...
Perhaps it is due to my religious upbringing, but the notion of judgement in the afterlife is one that I still cannot seem to let go. Judgement seems to be a perpetual theme throughout the majority of religions and even many spiritual belief systems in the form of karma. After all, aren't we judged eternally by history? Our actions or lack of action directly and indirectly impact future generations for infinity.
Your personal history
Your belief system
Your personal history
Reflect upon the words of Miyamoto Musash:
It is not for everyone to be without guidance - only a few, and they are exceptional, can make a journey to wisdom without a teacher. You must have extraordinary passion, patience, and self-discipline to make a journey alone. The goals must be understood, definitive, and no diversion can be acknowledged or permitted if you are to attain enlightenment within the sphere of a chosen art…”