We are all products of our history. Genetics, sure, but how we interact with the world, how we see it is, a product of the events we have survived. We are the result of our triumphs and our losses.
Everything you have been through has culminated in a YOU, pure and perfect. Not flawless, not perfect in the sense of a symmetrical crystal. Perfect in the sense that you are the ultimate you. There are no imitations, no one who will ever out-do you in youness. In this second, you are exactly what you are.
But humans just can't seem to be satisfied with that. It's not enough to survive, remember, grieve, cherish, assimilate and grow. They have the power of memory- fragile and corruptable as it is, more a composite created than a recording. They use the memory, revisiting the past. It's not a bad thing, for most people. Events need to be remembered to be assimilated. They need to be analyzed to discover their lessons. It is important to check your actions and be sure they are in line with what you think are your ethics (the action, not the thought, will always be the truth, but you can will action to thoughts and create a new truth).
But sometimes people revisit pain to little purpose. To learn, to forgive and grow, to understand and to heal are good reasons to revisit pain. To hold onto pain as a shield and an excuse serves nothing but the little chattering conscious mind that wants to hide from its own strength and never risk growth.
The conscious mind is the weakest aspects of our brain. It is merely the words on the computer screen- the actual thinking is much deeper and in a far older and simpler code. What we "remember" is what our conscious mind can dig up and share, and research has shown again and again that more of it is created than actually recalled. The memories have been subtly (or grossly) twisted to fit our present needs.
This is the first danger of introspection. The unexamined life may not be worth living, but often what is being examined isn't the life at all, but an edited and airbrushed child's painting of the life.
Combined with the human mind's need to find patterns and our infinite creativity, excessive introspection brings a second danger. Seekers who continuously strive to go deeper and deeper into their own consciousness at some point are no longer finding insights but creating them, manufacturing not just a psuedo-enlightenment but even entire imaginary problems and life-altering events.
There is a reason why true meditation disciplines are based on silencing the monkey chatter in the mind. That is the conscious part, the weakest part, the part that can't tell an object in your hands from the idea or the word. Because everything is already assimilated... just not in the 'word' part of your mind. And the word part is too small to handle it anyway. But it's there if you can just keep the chattering monkey's hands off it.
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