Category Archives: lower self

Someone asked, “What do you do to practice self-compassion?”

I don’t think in terms of a practice of that. In a deeper sense, compassion or love is a unitary entity and when we really love it radiates out to all naturally and without ego effort includes a right sense of self, or self-esteem—this latter is not the same as “self love.” See my blog post for further development of this: The Paradox of Self Love.

Love is undermined by self-hate, but self-love is not the same as self-esteem and it is a mistake, I think, to emotionalize about loving oneself or to focus on that. See the exposition of the issue here: What the Self-Esteem Movement Got Disastrously Wrong | Dan Sanchez

There is actually some research on this theme: Does Self-Love Lead to Love for Others?, and it concludes with:

“Does loving oneself lead to loving others? The answer is not the simple “ yes ” often noted in popular discourse. In fact, the opposite is often the case. Self-love as operationalized as narcissism is linked to game playing and selfishness in romantic relationships.Narcissists look to relationships as a source of power or control — not as an arena for experiencing and expressing commitment.Narcissism does not lead to loving others in any interpersonally positive sense of the contrast, the implications of self-esteem for loving others are generally positive but are still mixed. High self-esteem individuals may be resistant to negative experiences of love sickness. How-ever, they may also miss the highs associated with manic love.These individuals also report greater passionate sum, the ego can be as much of a hindrance to romantic relationships as it can be a help. Individuals looking to experience love may be best served by turning out toward the other rather than turning in toward the self.”

 

 

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The Dramatic Dragon

File:Face in the Pool-Knight Fighting Dragon.jpg

The “dragon” or the esoteric “dweller on the threshold” are dramatic images and part of the heroic metaphysical symbolism of the ”warrior of light.” On the one hand, the wording communicates urgency and arrests our attention with a matter of great importance. On the other, it can stimulate glamour. It is appealing to imagine ourselves engaged in a great heroic battle, but less striking to be working today on our personality defects. We may mention to our friend next door that today we intend to remain entirely free of irritation, while to our fellow students of matters esoteric we may speak of preparation for the great battle.

“Note this remarkable fact: when a man begins to notice around himself a manifestation of spiritual life, he never fails to call himself an occultist, whereas it is simpler to consider oneself able to see.”

Fiery World, III, Helena Roerich