Discovering Me, Myself and I

Whose responsibility is it to develop the self? Who is going to make the difference? Who will confront the tough realities of life? Who will rise to better his economic and social condition? Who will choose to be happy and let others be happy? Who will dream and dare to make the dreams come true? Who will cooperate with others in worthwhile endeavors? Who will pray? Who will forgive? Who will apologize and mend fences? Who will listen? Who will lend a helping hand? It is the ‘I’, the ‘self’ that has to perform. The ‘I’ came to this world; the ‘I’ will die to this life; and the ‘I’ will do whatever it takes, in the interval between birth and death – no matter how long this time happens to be! There is no escaping the ‘self’, the realization that it is you, and no one else, that must initiate all thoughts and actions. This is what calls for building the ‘self’. What does it take? Where do you begin? How about starting with ‘self’ awareness!

To understand the self is to understand the universe. It is a very tall order. Whenever I ask some one: ‘do you know yourself?’ the typical reply is a spontaneous ‘yes!’. If you think in the same way about yourself – beware, your mind is shut. Know that you don’t know yourself to the extent you think. It is very likely that your current understanding of yourself is superficial. I am aware that you will find accepting this proposition difficult. You are not alone. In fact, you may be in a state of what is best known as ‘denial’ – a kind of invisible shell that rejects any idea which threatens your own concept of ‘self’.

Consider some extracts from a book, ‘The Fountainhead’ by Ms Ayn Rand:

“the way people generally live today, have no self. They live within others. In what act or thought of his has there ever been a self? What was his aim in life?

Greatness – in other people’s eyes. fame, admiration, envy – all that which comes from others. Others dictated his convictions, which he did not hold, but he was satisfied that others believed he held them. Others were his motive power and his prime concern. He didn’t want to be great, but to be though great. He didn’t want to build, but to be admired as a builder. He borrowed from others in order to make an impression on others. There’s your actual selflessness. It is his ego he has betrayed and given up. But everybody calls him selfish.”

MS RAND asks,

“Isn’t this pattern at the root of every despicable action? Not selfishness, but precisely the absence of a self?”

“look at them. The man who cheats and lies, but preserves a respectable front. He knows himself to be dishonest, but others think he is honest and he derives his self-respect from that, second-hand. The man who takes credit for an achievement which is not his own. He knows himself to be a mediocre, but he’s great in the eyes of others. The frustrated wretch who professes love for the inferior and clings to those less endowed, in order to establish his own superiority b comparison. The man whose sole aim is to make money. Now I don’t see anything evil in a desire to make money. But money is only a means to some end. if a man wants it for a personal purpose – to invest in his industry, to create, to study, to travel, to enjoy luxury – he’s completely moral.”…. aren’t they [those who claim selflessness] all acting on a selfish motive – to be noticed, liked, and admired? – By others. At the price of their own self-respect. In the realm of greatest importance – the realm of values, of judgment, of spirit, of thought – they place others above self, in the exact manner which altruism demands. a truly “selfish” man cannot be affected by the approval of others. He doesn’t need it.”

“it is so easy to run to others. It is so hard to stand on one’s own record. You can fake virtue for an audience. You can’t fake it in your own eyes. Your ego is the strictest judge. They run from it. They spend their lives running. It’s easier to donate a few thousand to charity and think oneself noble than to base self-respect on personal standards of personal achievement. It is simple to seek substitutes for competence – such easy substitutes: love, charm, kindness, charity. But there is no substitute for competence.”

This extract is meant go get you thinking about who you are. Why you behave the way you do? Why you seek security outside of yourself? Think for a moment. Look at all the investments you make: buying a house, a car, saving money in a bank, putting money in defence savings certificates, gold, stocks and shares – all with the expectation of a decent return and having peace of mind from knowing that it is ‘secure’. Ask yourself: what is safe? You know that you are the instrument through which everything happens, yet you have greater confidence in people and institutions outside of yourself?

Building self is a process which begins with believing in yourself, caring for yourself, knowing that you have infinite potential. It also means being aware of others and knowing that we are all different. We all have preferred habits of thought that influence how we make decisions and interact with others. Discover your uniqueness by asking yourself, what you do well? Once you have the answer, maximize on it.

Confront your ‘self’ because it is your job to become and achieve!

Just enjoy and form an opinion. Maybe it will help in making sense of the world around us. Maybe it won’t. But in the end, please remember, this is just food for thought.

But then again. What do I know?

20 Replies to “Discovering Me, Myself and I”

  1. Thank you for quoting Ayn Rand. The Fountainhead is an amazing book. You’ve given a lot of people something to think about, if they’re still capable of doing that anymore.

  2. “And this above all unto thine own self be true and it shall follow as the day the night – thou can’st not then be false to any man.”
    – William Shakespeare

    Couldn’t help it! 🙂

    It’s an interesting thought. Also reminds me of a quote by Gaucho Marx

    “I wouldn’t wanna belong to a club that would have me as a member!”

  3. Ahmed, the way you have motivated the reader to beleive in him/herself is amazing…beautiful usage of words and sentences…

    Once, I read a quotation from a book named “How to boost your self esteem”…the book says:

    “HAVE FAITH IN YOUR ABILITIES”

    The fact is you are independant in yourself. The motivational remote control of yours is in your hands.You dont need a third person ot boost your esteem……You are the master of your emotions…if you keep revising your good abilities in your mind..you will feel confident and if you keep revising your negative points..it will become very hard for you to take decissions…!

  4. If we put the question..
    Why people dont have confidence in themselves or why people depends on others?

    To me, it is because of no encoragement or dis-couragement from people around you..it is ok that you are the master of yourself but we cannot deny the fact that self esteem also depends how much does people consider your work…!

    It is also necesary for all of us to encourage others for there work…self esteem will work but not every time..when a third person put some nice comments at your work…you will have more confidence in yourself…

  5. One correction…

    In my second comment, I have not disagreed with the writer rather i have given the answer of question why people are not confident of themselves?

    At first we place self esteem and a little bit of encouragement can do the rest of the work…that was my point..!

    ——MISTAKE CORRECTED———-

  6. i dont care whether you were aganist it or in favor of it . all i was saying that you have got a point there dawg.

    by the way i totally agree with you but, if you arent getting any sort of admiration or adulation to boost up your morale then in that case i believe practing this act of discovering yourself in order to know the potential you have in terms of doing every thing in the world in short your versatility , then i think that would be the perfect step taken by anyone right ..

    special message to ali hakeem if he think this comment is senseless too plz let me knw i would take it back again thank you .

  7. …..encyclopediaz on confidence..lolz…good one hira…….i think everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves……very well written ahmed…..i will like to quote this i don’t remeber who said it…..
    Remember what Socrates taught us? “Know thyself.” He was on to something. We must know ourselves to thinkarete….

  8. really . any conjecture where can i get the copy. by the way what is so special about it that my whole perspective towards life is going to change …

  9. It’ll teach you that ‘laffazi’ is the talent of the talentless. And that the prime movers of this world are people who ACTUALLY work. that’s a pretty deep thought, wouldn’t you say?

    You can borrow Atlas Shrugged from me if you want. And after that, read Sophie’s World. You can find that at Liberty Books too 😀

  10. I am sorry Hira that here you have said something very strange.Logically “laffazi” can be the talent of the talentless but pratically the people who are great debators and even the so called democratic politicians in Pakistan also does this “laffazi”…But Look?

    These corrupt leaders gains a heavy vote bank on their “laffazi”.

    What you say about this?

  11. i’ll say that your point strengthens mine. you used the term ‘leaders’; name 1 whom you would honestly consider a man/woman of integrity, intelligence and ability. ‘laffazy’ is not the ability to talk well, its the ability to sprinkle your language with words and terms which mean nothing.the best debaters don’t use more words then necessary to prove their point because honest answers don’t need to be sugarcoated.

    And read Atlas Shrugged. you’ll get the answer to the second point you raised.

  12. That is ok but we cannot just ignore the power of these words.These words have changed the political situation of the world.And as far as I know debators not just raises the points but they also uses cross questioning and confusing sentences to drag the other party from their focus of speech.

    And what about the lawyers..they do the same thing..I agree that at the end of the day it is your strong and right points which makes you a good debator but there are examples of successful people who have got success on the basis of there besutiful and sentimental statements.

    And also pass a look at our very beloved Quack!.Here we mostly play with words and cross questioning.

  13. first of all hira thank you for the offer and the advice. by the way when can I have the book.

    secondly
    @ A.O. ABID BHAI it was just a tafree comment didn’t mean to use the word conjecture to prove my vacab is to grandiloquent. I was just teasing here since, she said IF YOU GET THE COPY.
    The way she said I thought its short in the market therefore, I said to tantalize her any conjecture and just because of one word you people considered me as a person who resorts to laffazi all the time to prove my point

    ‘laffazi’ is the talent of the talentless
    as hira said.

    so hira wat you are trying to say is that ‘laffazy’ is not the ability to talk well, its the ability to sprinkle your language with words and terms which mean nothing.the best debaters don’t use more words then necessary to prove their point because honest answers don’t need to be sugarcoated.

    in this case I am not going to argue much on this not because I cant, Because I dont want to warna abid bhai is going to consider my comment again as my ego which I dont have it at all. so keeping this comment very simple I would request you to refer to my first article(LACK OF LEXICON) in which I wrote about explaining bangra to the alien. I believe after reading you will get all the answers you need. same goes for abid bhai as well infact I Believe abid bhai reading that paragraph would stop him from being fretful about my vocabulary and even if he or others are not satisfied please check these website out

    http://members.tripod.com/simonstacey/vocab.html
    http://www.exforsys.com/career-center/english-vocabulary.html

    anyways hira thanks again for letting me borrow your book

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