What Does It Mean To “Be Yourself”?

The secular mantra is that in order to achieve the maximum amount of happiness, we must learn how to be ourselves. Being yourself is one thing but in order to achieve that one would argue that we need to discover who we are in the first place.

Being oneself can take on various different meanings according to the likes and tastes of the individual engaging with the philosophy. For the policeman, it’s protecting the city, and for the criminal, it entails being a nuisance and building a living out of making the cop’s life a misery.

The truth is, that while we all have a self, we are always imitating something or someone. The manner in which we behave all depends largely upon where the circumstances into which we’ve been born. For us humans there is this desire to be the self, but how can this be achieved when we lack the capacity to know who we are in the first place?

To make matters more confusing we’ve to deal with our fallen minds. Furthermore, there’s a never-ending stream of new age gurus and religions all claiming to help us be ourselves. The truth is nobody is ever really being themselves, don’t believe them. They’re the product of their upbringing and the influence of other people they’ve met along the path in life’s journey.

The first step to being yourself is to admit you’re not yourself. Own up to the fact that you’ve never in any situation whatsoever been yourself. The primary leap towards the treatment of any illness is to at least acknowledge the wound exists, right? right.

The next one appears confusing, but it requires we transcend the lowly earthly way of thinking we are tied to. We must sacrifice the philosophy of “be yourself” as it’s taught by the world. For liberation is not found is simply being the self as you perceive yourself to be. We must accept that freedom and the nature of the self are actually found in the imitation of another.

Who would that be? That, my friends, is Jesus Christ and his closest followers. Hear what Saint Paul has to say about that:

Be imitators of me as I am of Christ

1 Corinthians, 11:1

Here’s what Saint Paul didn’t say, “Be yourself as I am being myself”. Why? Because there’s no truth to be found in being the self only more confusion and alienation from who you really are. This is especially true for all of us who are fallen and corrupt. When we nail to the cross the false philosophy that one can be the self, only then do we truly discover who we are. The true nature of the self is to repent and discover for the first time, the reason why we exist and are present in this world.

I wonder what the 14th-century author of “Imitations of Christ” would think about the philosophy, “Be yourself”? It sounds so pleasant, doesn’t it? Yet, it presents to us the illusion of freedom when really it’s just another cage over the existing prison we currently reside in. To conclude this post I would like to repeat some important points for the sake of implanting the teaching into your heads that it doesn’t become lost.

Nobody is ever able to be themselves for as long as they do not embrace Jesus Christ. A true version of the self does exist. However, it requires a rejection of the secular philosophical understanding of what it means to, “be yourself” to gain entry. Finally to achieve the ultimate goal of being yourself you must imitate Christ and his closest companions. In doing so you’ve finally broken free from the philosophical teaching (cage) the world placed over you being presented as freedom and happiness.

Never mind entertaining the mantra, “Be yourself”. Instead, meditate upon and repeat, “Be imitators of me as I am of Christ” by Saint Paul to the Corinthians. Once you’ve freed yourself from the concept then you can make that arduous journey to discovering and becoming what you were born to be, a child of God and another Christ by participation in the Divine Will of He who placed you here.

God bless

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