March 5    

Today's quotation:

Grand theft identity began soon after you arrived on Earth.  Parents, teachers, siblings, clergy, and authority figures told you that you are inept, insignificant, ugly, stupid, unworthy, and sinful, and that the world is a dangerous jungle with threats at every turn.  Over time you began to believe these terrible lies, until the day came when you forgot your innate beauty, strength, innocence, and safety.  Eventually you adopted an identity contrary to your divine nature and have since lived as someone you are not.

Alan Cohen

Today's Meditation:

It's so hard to maintain the integrity of our own identity.  There are so many forces that seem to be determined to get us to act as they want us to act, rather than allowing us to act in our own unique and authentic ways.  And this loss/compromise of our identity hits us at the very core of our being, causing us to wonder at times just who we really are.  When we're able to be sure of our identity, we can approach our lives from a completely authentic position, and not do anything just because we think others expect us to do so.

I used to find it very easy to say things I didn't really believe if I thought it would have a positive effect.  I used to make decisions based on what other people wanted, whether the decision corresponded to my beliefs and ideals or not.  In those days, of course, I would say that I was being true to my identity, but it doesn't take a whole lot of analysis to realize that my "identity" shifted with the winds, and that who I was changed sometimes from day to day and sometimes from moment to moment.

One of our very real problems is identifying so strongly with sports teams, entertainers, musicians, and other people in the public eye.  Some people can't go outside without wearing something that bears their favorite team's logo, because their identities are wrapped up in being a fan of that team.  And then we feel closer to people who like the same team, not to people who share the same values or who have similar perspectives on life.

I'm very glad that my days of compromising my identity are gone and that I'm able to be true to who I am now.  I'm glad that I make decisions based on what I truly believe and who I truly am.  It makes it much easier to go through life when there aren't nearly as many grey areas to trip me up.  I want to be myself, and that means being true to who I am all the time.  And another benefit of being so is that the other people in my life can trust me to be who they think I am, who I've told them I am.  Because what I act like tomorrow will be consistent with my identity, and that's very important to both me and them.

Questions to consider:

In what ways do we compromise our identity?

What strategies can we use to maintain our identity, or regain it if we need to?

What are some of the benefits of maintaining our identities?

For further thought:

Be not another, if you can be yourself.


more on identity



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