I’ve been thinking more about what the self actually is.
For me, it feels like I am a sum of many traits, experiences, knowledge, and assumptions / schemas created by those things. These parts can configure in any number of ways to adapt to any number of situations.
This would mean that the Self is contextual. So a good way to learn more about the self is through interactions with others.
If how I am around others is always shifting, can I ever truly know myself?
I think of Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle. You can’t accurately measure both position and velocity. I also think of the observer effect seen in physics and psychology. The mere act of observation changes behavior.
If I know I am being observed, I am different than when I am unaware.
If I am observing myself, then I am not being myself. So that view too, is inaccurate.
The best I can do is look at the underlying mechanisms behind my actions, to see what patterns and inconsistencies are there. I can look at my narrative, the language I use, the view I have, but beyond that, perhaps I shall never know.
Having said all that… I suppose it does not matter. At the end of the day, I get lost staring up at the stars. And who am I to the stars?
I just make my way through life. Every interaction has the potential to change me somehow, for better or worse, or perhaps not at all.
Everything I add to my life has a chance to really add to my life or take away from it.
Every action has the potential to build up or break down.
So maybe the question isn’t so much about position (self) but the action (momentum) I take.
There needs to be balance.