The Authentic Self

Theme of the following quotations: While individuality may be an expression of authenticity, Being / True Nature / the Essential Self is its source. Being authentic is not a project to be undertaken by the ego, as in being different for its own sake. Rather authenticity is the spontaneous and unfettered expression of the deeper Self which underlies the identities, roles, thoughts, feelings, and sensations with which we might be identified. That Self is a presence to which visionaries throughout the ages, contemplative traditions, and humanistic and transpersonal psychologies attest.

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Authenticity and Approaches to Personal Transformation

Quotations theme: The drive towards self-actualization impels us towards transformation. How do we consciously cooperate with this drive in a way that complements our authenticity? Do we slice and dice ourselves according to others’ dualistic notions of good and evil? Do we subordinate the person to objective moral laws? Or might we allow the unfolding of our nature within the field of presence?

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The Worth and Dignity of Being Human

Theme of the following quotations: The seeming trajectory of contemporary life may blind us to the innate worth and dignity of a human being. Yet Buddhists suggest that it is an exquisite and very rare privilege to be human. Humanists remind us of the magnificence of human nature. Personal authenticity expresses that innate value for what it is: the inexhaustible preciousness of Being revealing itself through each distinct human form.

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Personal Authenticity and Existential Will / Choice

Theme of the following quotations: It is difficult to realize the spiritual state which enables the seeming non-action of the Taoist Wu-Wei practice which is suggested by living in process. Until that realization, we experience ourselves as separate selves which express authenticity through existential will, valuing, choice, and capacity to act.

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Authentic Presence Expressing as Living in Process

Theme of the following quotations: The Self is not a noun, but a verb; not a static entity, but a psychological process. Each instant the process reveals unfolding experience within and without, guided by a dynamic or Will which some call individuation, others self-actualization. The Taoist practice of Wu Wei or nonaction expresses how when we identity with this process, it unfolds naturally and spontaneously according to each moment’s necessity.

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