Individuals may find themselves struggling with various life changes that are developmental in nature, such as the physical changes that accompany aging. If a person finds themselves struggling with such changes, they may experience what is called false-identification. The false identification is also known as the ego. The ego is experienced when we identify with the parts of ourselves that change–this includes everything from one’s mind, body, appearance, job title, marital status, income, etc. This can create various afflictions because these experiences are likely to change. The manner to experience greater equanimity is by identifying and connecting to that quiet part of our self that does not change.
As we incorrectly come to believe how we look, feel, what we do for a living, the vehicle we drive has something to do with who we are and that these experiences define us, we are likely to experience suffering as a result of those areas changing. If we can stay connected to the part of our true Self that is at our very core is unchanging, we can weather the storm of the part of experience that continues to evolve and change.
This unchanging part of our self is known as the inner voice or guide. It is referred to as the Self. It is our true essence and this essence remains stable and grounded no matter what changes happen to or around you, whether you feel connected with this part of you or distant from it. We experience the ego commonly because our external qualities impact how we perceive our self. We can identify with our gender, ethnicity, with our profession, etc. The challenge is that while it is great to appreciate and value such qualities in ourselves, if we identify too closely with the changeable aspects of ourselves we set ourselves up for disappointment and suffering. These experiences don’t define us, rather the Self-the stable, true essence of ourselves is what does and allows us to embrace change.
It is vital that we enjoy the transitory aspects of our lives. These aspects of our Self are an important part of our lives, however they are not all that we are. If we can recognize that there is an unchanging, deeper core within us that is our true, authentic self, we can connect to that part of our self which is greater than our appearance or accomplishments. When we can connect to our true self, we are less likely to be bothered by other changes that occur to us and around us (Yoga Journal).
TIP: The key to self-acceptance is connecting to our unchanging self and by doing so we suffer less from the inevitable changes of the non-self. The ability to differentiate between what is our true self and what is not, and being able to connect to our true, authentic self and to act from that part of our core self that is our higher guide, we feel better about who we are.
A.C.T. will provide free resource information for individuals and families to help promote education. For more information, please contact Dr. Drecun at Dr.Drecun@a4ct.com or (858) 792-3541. You may also visit us online at www.a4ct.com. ACT serves the Del Mar 92014 and La Jolla 92037 area.