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Spiritual Time Management » Blog Archive » Who are you?

Who are you?

In one sentence, can you say who you are?

In my last blog, I suggested that you envision the ideal spiritual person.  Does your sentence encompass that ideal?

Self-definition is by far the highest spiritual practice.  In the Biblical story of creation, G-d creates humanity in “G-d’s image.”  A classic interpretation of this verse is that G-d created humanity with freewill, the ability to choose.  Specifically, we have the power to choose who we want to be, who we are bringing to our relationship with G-d.

Think about this. 

What is your way?  Do you define yourself in terms of roles – as a mother, father, sister, brother, spouse, member of a certain occupation, or other type of function – or in terms of being?  If you define yourself by a role, consider who you would be if that role was taken from you.  What then?  What is the essence of who you are that you express in your roles?

It is precisely our ability to define for ourselves, who we are and who we want to be, that makes us uniquely human.  Animals do not have the capability. 

When you go deeper, you will also see that all you have are your decisions and your deeds that result from your self-definition.  Nothing material is really yours – not your money, not your possessions, and not even your body.  All of it disappears in the grave.  You cannot take the money in your bank account with you; but you do take the merit of what you have done with your money.  If you have given to good causes and done good works, you take that with you and the effect lasts eternally beyond your physical existence.

Dr. Victor Frankl, a Holocaust survivor, taught this lesson clearly when he observed that you can strip a person of everything, but there is one thing that no person can ever take away from you – and that is your freedom to choose how you will react to what happens.  Dr. Frankl wrote further, “We who lived in concentration camps can remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last piece of bread.  They may have been few in number, but they offer sufficient proof that everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms — to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”

Thinking about the question again!  When all else is stripped away, who are you?  Who do you want to be?  That is the person you will bring to G-d.

This entry was posted on Sunday, July 31st, 2011 at 5:45 pm and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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