He who knows others is wise. He who knows himself is enlightened.
wise enlightened words come from the philosopher/author Lao Tzu (aka Laozi). I always strive to know myself, but I’m not sure if charging full steam ahead is the best path. Maybe it involves taking multiple paths, simultaneously, from different directions. I mean this figuratively, of course. As one moves through life, I believe a person should constantly consider perspectives from as many angles as possible. I assume that this awareness of the world, other than oneself, ties in directly with one’s self-knowledge and the ability of one’s senses to perceive. My experience as a being stems from my interaction with my environment, so understanding myself without considering these factors is impossible. Well, that’s how I see things from my perspective. In the pursuit of self-knowledge I face a dilemma: the truths which I experience can never fully be known to be true; thus, leaving me in a state of conditional cognition.
How do I know that what I know about myself is true?
I can create the clearest picture of myself possible through careful observation and interpretation with consideration of contexts, but I’ll never achieve absolute focus. If I focus too finely, the image may be sharp, but am I missing something key in the blurred exterior. The aperture of my system of perception cannot create a perfect picture. Impossible?
Understanding the philosophy of self-knowledge or the psychology of self-knowledge doesn’t mean one can achieve it. It just means that one has more info on the matter at hand. So, how can we achieve self-knowledge? Is it possible to achieve enlightenment as a human, considering the limitations of the senses we possess? Maybe true self-knowledge exists in our dreams, beyond our awakened state? What’s your stance on the pursuit of self-knowledge?