Above the door of the temple of Apollo at Delphi was carved the phrase "Know Thyself".
But what does it mean?
Does it mean to know one's character with all its faults/virtues, failings/successes, or to know the limitations of human nature?
What is the "self"?
Our feet? Our brains? Our thoughts and feelings?
IMO, it is none of that.
This SELF, which we must know is that part of us which is a part of the Source/the Divine.
Ineffable/indescribable, yet real, which exists on a higher level than our ordinary waking consciousness.
In life, we find ourselves (or what we normally conceive to be "ourselves" ) as a being divided, incomplete and separated and we crave this union with that part of ourselves which we do not yet know.
To find and unite with this Self, is the journey.
People naturally identify with their physical bodies, but this will cause us to be weak and subject to material limitations.
But, when we cease to see ourselves simply as a physical entity moved by instinctive impulses and identify instead with the Source of Life, then we are moving out of these limitations and "self-deceptions".
This explains why the Initiates of old were so insistent that people should know their "real selves" and discussed the world in terms of illusion and dreams.
But, as long as people are content to know everything except their own "selves" they will never reach the higher goals.
So, what does it mean to Know?
In scriptures, knowing another implies physical union resulting in offspring.
In order to "know" something it needs to penetrate, through a sense organ and become internalized.
This then goes through a process of harmonization, which can take an instant, or a lifetime to achieve.
We see in the metaphor of "marriage" a symbol for knowing.
True marriage is true knowing, but people have not yet reached this stage.
We marry with all kinds of other people and things exterior to ourselves.
We plug in and make contacts in factories and offices, in politics and economics......everywhere except in our own inner selves.
This happens because people do not know how to make contact with the inner self and this results in feelings of unfulfillment and dissatisfaction.
When we do manage to become one with our higher self, we then know everything it knows, see all it sees, hear all it hears.......we shall have reached perfection.
But as long as we remain divorced and separate, identifying with the tail and not the head, then we deprive ourselves of all that true wealth.
The tail must be joined to the head, we must "make both ends meet".
This is real marriage and it is internal.
Only then can we "be fruitful and multiply", and realize the fullness of our creative power.
I was moved to write this out after reading another thread which looks at the idea of marriage from just a physical point of view.
This is the lowest rung on the ladder to see what marriage is about.
You could be the ultimate male married to the ultimate female and still, you would be incomplete as the outward marriage is just a metaphor, a symbol of what real marriage is all about and that is the internal and personal journey of your own spiritual growth.
Love and wisdom, brought to maturity, the dualities are united and truth emerges.
That is the trinity which brings spiritual creative power into our material world.
The father= Truth
The Son= Wisdom
The Holy Spirit= Love
The kabbalists use different terms, but the meaning is the same.
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3rd August 2015, 00:44
From memory it was from John in the bible know thyself imo meaning know thy mind and most early religions had a parable or two around this, how interesting it would have been to see the dynamics between those that knew their minds ( masters/self mastery ) and those mind controlled, way back in time, but in saying that, imagine what the masters back then were creating for us nowadays.