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Thursday, March 9, 2017

An Uncircumcised Honesty

The process of reflecting provides opportunities to take an all-around look at ourselves. It allows us to see ourselves in greater detail than we are usually comfortable with. As an objective looker I challenge myself to see me as others might.  I give myself a chance to come to understand why someone else might not be comfortable with certain aspects of the me that I present daily.

As an honest viewer of myself I might find some aspects of me that I need to fix for my own wellbeing, and for the sake of the health of some of my relationships. Useful reflection is grounded in a raw, uncircumcised honesty. It lays us out in front of ourselves in all our awkward bareness, and presses us to come to terms with the ragged parts of our personhood.

At times we tend to talk about reflection as if it were some kind of esoteric abstraction. In response to that particular approach I would say like Ludwig Wittgenstein, a disciple of Sigmund Freud...  "Don't think, look!". The truth is usually right there, unblinkingly staring back at us. Meaningful reflection is an engagement in a decidedly unflattering evaluation of self, that forces to the fore the most authentic and at times unflattering pieces of who we are. It initiates a process of personal distillation that relieves us of the froth that is our superficiality.

In meaningful reflection we allow truth to become an ally in opening us up to the possibilities of becoming in accordance with our greatest potential. By truth I mean those transcendent statements that call us to be more than any of the existing estimates of who we are, or for that matter, who we can become.

In the course of our experience we are defined by the things we do, and by the things that are done to us. To be defined thus is to be limited accordingly. As a transcendent dynamic, Truth nullifies the limitations that Experience fetters us with. Through meaningful reflection then, we are empowered to make declarations about ourselves that transcend the facts that previously operated against us to stunt our growth.

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