An Essay on the Worth of Self

            This blog is brought to you by introspection.

            Thesis: you are worth something even if you are nobody. The thesis stated another way: the self as mere existing consciousness has value. Because: if one has realized that the greatest possession that one can have is love of one’s own being, then one knows that the bare existent self is valuable. Because: we don’t know how consciousness comes into existence, but having a consciousness is of value.

            Why have I bothered to geek out on the merely existent consciousness and its worth? Feeling value and worth of yourself makes life bearable, even joyful. It is egotistically unbearable to have a worthless self. So I must answer for myself whether I am worthwhile. I have lost the ability to identify myself as something, as a position in society. I have no label like parent or engineer or writer or vowed religious sister. My life has become so simple that it has nothing to point out as its function. Most mornings, I sit and look out my window at a bush. This morning, I permitted myself to just be a consciousness sitting and looking at a bush and to value that consciousness. I experienced being-as-itself. Being-as-itself is a kind of poverty, poverty without the possessions of important actions, societal position, material wealth, etc. But also, a richness. My wealth and self-importance are turned inwards, towards self-value. I get to feel and choose to value that consciousness that is sitting in this body, even if all it possesses are thoughts and feelings. It is at this moment that I come to own my soul. I didn’t read about owning my soul in a book, but I experienced its being and its poverty and I took it as mine.

            Conclusion: This essay is about unravelling the societal conditioning and finding one’s inner truth. It is not the first time I have looked at some facet of self-worth. I experienced a glimpse of self-love and self-worth. Writing helps me to focus, but long term answers seem elusive. It is good to put together the words from my own thoughts, not as a research project based on other people’s books.

Photo by Rostislav Uzunov on

To Care for My Soul

 That long essay regarding failure to understand a philosophy exam helped me to feel better. This activity felt like I was caring for myself. Instead of letting my emotions rage, or trying to bury them, I worked them out in writing.

Your soul is not some mysterious thing. It is the entity that lives here in you, with all its various levels of awareness. 

Taking the time to process your emotions. Taking the time to listen inwardly. Taking the time to reason things out. Taking the time to become aware of yourself, who you really are. These are examples of taking care of your soul.

It seems to me, at times, that my whole job here on earth is caring for my soul. All my relationships enhance and expand this activity. So caring for my soul must be a relationship with my soul. Does it help to call my soul my inner being? That being which is quieter than my emotional thoughts? Become aware of that quieter presence inside. It helps a lot to pay attention to it. 


Satisfaction with yourself and your life, that is the dilemma of my generation.

We began with Vietnam, women\’s lib, black panthers and peoples park. Then, we became white collar yuppies because money helped a lot. We raised kids in protective custody since those child molesters were out there. We divorced.

I never partook of family life, marriage and parenthood. But I got the money. I joined the running boom and never left it. Now, 3 decades after college, what of my life?

My life has shaped its meaning around a search for God and for self esteem. As I sit here now, I can consciously grasp admiration for myself. I came from an impossibly alcoholic and dysfunctional home. I made the best of college and was employed. I began a spiritual path.  I got sober. I lived four years in a monastery.

The real story is inside. Do I love myself today? Today, right now this morning, I realized that I need to feel satisfaction with and for and as that soul which has adventured through this world in its own way. I look at my life and all its emotional journeys and admire all that I have done and been. The thing about this morning is that I realized that being dis-satisfied with myself has been a lurking secret inside. A secret, a whisper. A tiny grain of self hate always lodged in my energy pattern, always irritating. But as soon as I felt it, it vanished. When I look consciously, there is nothing about me to hate. That soul which I am is fantastic. That soul which I am has had a great life. My life long spiritual life has brought me to this moment: satisfaction with the soul that I am. My own soul is good enough. My soul is loving.

To be satisfied with my own self, has always been an available choice or decision to feel good. The problem has always been that I didn\’t know it was up to me. I looked out at the world and was jealous of seemingly better people. I didn\’t know that I could at any moment, grasp my own inner being and feel love. And maybe this morning was my most conscious ever realization that I was secretly feeling dis-satisfied with myself but could just turn that around in a heart beat. My secret, now not a secret, was killing me. I\’m glad that I don\’t have to go out today and feel dis-satisfied.

I admire the inner me and all my life\’s exterior journeys.

Today, when I stand at the window at Starbucks and hand out wonderful drinks, the smile will also beam its way into the heart of the people I meet. I hope they feel good by osmosis. My smile will be genuine.

Morning Pages

Yesterday, I discovered a new book, \”The Artist\’s Way\” by Julia Cameron. For those of you in recovery, it does not mention AA, but it does mention that she got sober in 1978. And the book is filled with \”higher power\” and \”spiritual experience.\”

I\’m sharing this tool, Morning Pages, with you because I think is helps me to feel better. If you are an Abraham Hicks fan, I think this tool will help you to get on a high flying disk, write rampages of appreciation, get in alignment, stop doing that thing you are doing, get all the way to San Diego instead of stopping in Yuma and going back to San Antonio.

Lets review where I am coming from. I quit my job because I wanted to become a writer, yes. But also because I want to be the real me sometime before I die. The corporate engineer me is a logical brain construction and mainly exists to earn money and protect me from the world. Very little joy, or happy consciousness is allowed by the logical me. I\’ll be 60 in January. It is time to let go and find some joy in life. To find some happy reason for my existence. Yes, I can die as a millionaire, but did I experience The Universe\’s love for me?

Truly, I\’ve sought Love for most of my life; and only caught glimpses. The logical brain always calls me down.

\”morning pages are 3 pages of long hand writing, strictly stream-of-consciousness…\”

Right there, I become unstuck. I was trying to write a rampage of appreciation when I had none. Or I was taking my inventory and only feeling worse. Or trying to write a novel instead of getting in touch with me.

\”These morning pages are not meant to be an art. Or even writing. I stress at this point to reassure the non-writers working with this book. Writing is simply a tool. Pages are meant to be simply the act of moving the hand across the page and writing down whatever comes to mind. Nothing is too petty, too silly, too stupid, or too weird to be included.
     The morning pages are not supposed to sound smart….\”

But I will share further promises.

  • All that petty stuff you write down in morning pages is what stands between you and your creativity.
  • The morning pages are the primary tool of creative recovery.
  • We are victims of our own internalized Censor who constantly criticizes us. The morning pages are a way to evade the Censor and find your Artists Brain.
  • The morning pages are meditation because the stream of consciousness writing gives us insight and helps effect change in our lives. Moving from the logical Censor to the Artist Brain is meditation.
  • We meditate to discover our own identity, acquire a connection to our inner self. Morning pages build a link to the inner creative identity. (What wouldn\’t I give to have that. I\’ve spent my life wanting that.)
If you made it to here, google \”morning pages\” or go to the library and get the book The Artist\’s Way. I\’m not going to type entire directions for morning pages here. But I GUARANTEE YOU WILL BE INSPIRED. A being inspired feels good. Inspiration is good energy and I love it.
Today was my first attempt to get 3 pages written and I was successful. I couldn\’t do this when Abraham said to write 3 pages of a rampage of appreciation every day. Because, I don\’t appreciate that much or I am too afraid of the Law of Attraction looking in on my crummy thoughts and sending me more. Judgments and restrictions on my writing allow the Censor to shut everything down. And then I have nothing. But if I just free flow write with no restrictions or judgments, I find that the positivity does come out. Free flow writing is a way for me to dig myself out of my negativity. My negativity is mainly fear. My life has sort of mainly been about fear. What if I could dig out of feat and actually love being alive?
In any case, it felt good to let go and just write whatever. I feel better and that is important. This morning, I realized an important point: the life I created here in KC, post career, has room for the Artist and the point is that I need to learn who I am and be who I am. So working at part time jobs  with a hap hazard schedule does that. 
Also, I have created in my life some people I need. Like last night I met my tax office boss. But who I really met is a young guy who is extremely creative. By young, I mean really young. But he shared alot of his creative activities and explained why he like working for the tax office: to have time during the off season to be creative. So, I had the same life I have now 15 years ago, but went back into engineering because of the money. Also, 15 years ago, I had no creative projects so no reason to have a life with room for creativity. Now however, financial insecurity is not an issue and I do have creative projects. So, while this kid is my boss, I can surreptitiously watch a guy have a creative life. A real person, not a book author.
I feel inspired now. I feel good about my life. What could be more important than that?

Personal Mount Blanc

It is Labor Day in the US. I still had to run outside to put out the garbage since I heard the truck. The waste company has put several people out of work since they went to automated trucks.

I have time to sit and reflect. I read the blogs about the Catholic Church sex scandal, The Benedict Option. I watch YouTube videos of Ultra Trail Mount Blanc (below) and tears come to my eyes. I think of my own situation.

I am on the cusp of quitting my career. I wanted to retire before my body got too old so that I could go in lots of races. As I sit here now, one of my knees is somehow in trouble; so I won\’t hit the ground running.

The thought crosses my mind as I look at the faces of the three women winners of UTMB (video below), \”I want to be who I really am.\” This thought also brings an important point to the surface. I am quitting my career, not just because I have the money, but because I was caught in fake me.

Real me is an athlete and scholar; and has been allotted an hour or two of living each day for my career. Real me is incredibly smart, creative and peruses the metaphysical universe seeing the energy connections of life itself. Real me runs miles and lifts weights. The fake me shoves itself into a corporate box and uses the intelligence to out perform inferior colleagues, please under-functioning bosses and make money. The real me is bored with an engineering job which became rote a couple of years ago, and frustrated with the niche of expertise. The fake me continues to wish for some sort of corporate recognition; which will never come because thats not what corporations do. Fake versus Real is an emotional conflict which I am allowing Real to win. I want to be authentic.

Now, facing retirement, the real me is eager for more time to write, to work on web pages, to learn the business end of being a professional writer, having a personal brand. No one can stop me.

I, and we all, have an inner spirit, a real me, that refuses to be boxed. For the first time in my life, I have the finances to give the real me both space and time. I realize a transformation will occur. Even I, who knows that inner energy, don\’t really know what will happen.

I have my own version of Mount Blanc. I\’ve been climbing for years. Sometime soon, the next few years, I\’ll reach the finish line. And then go on.

I will keep the agreement with my inner spirit. I\’m leaving the ordinary world and stepping into the extraordinary. Yes I can.

Christmas Eve 2014

On Monday my mission to attain antibiotics was successful. Now, Wednesday, wow, I feel soooooo much better. Even the coughing seems way better.

So I took myself off for a \”Runny Nose Run.\” Yuppers! Load a fanny pack with tissues, pick a beautiful trail well stocked with garbage cans and off I go. I picked the trail from the gazebo to Pine Gully and back. I ran it twice for 5.5 miles/ 6 tissues. Good thing to get my head and lungs shaken up and instilled with fresh air. Now, 3 hours later, the coughing still seems better.

Since I have been sick and staying away from people, I\’ve been reading my spiritual books. One by Emmet Fox and one by Maggie Ross. I am astounded how spiritual truths are true and can be found in legitimate spiritual writings. Maggie Ross\’s book in particular has helped me to a new understanding of what is variously called: deep mind, the master (Gilchrist), right hemisphere, Self, and many more. I call mine soul; regardless of various other definitions for that word.

I stand and say \”Thank You\” to this higher power and this intuitive mind which seems so active for me. That is, I have enough silence in my life and my prayers for intuitive thoughts are answered and heard.

My gift to anyone is my Course in Miracles workbook lesson for today:

The stillness of the peace of God is mine.
1 Perhaps we are now ready for a day of undisturbed tranquility. If this is not yet feasible, we are content and even more than satisfied to learn how such a day can be achieved. If we give way to a disturbance, let us learn how to dismiss it and return to peace. We need but tell our minds, with certainty, “The stillness of the peace of God is mine,” and nothing can intrude upon the peace that God Himself has given to His Son.

2 Father, Your peace is mine. What need have I to fear that anything can rob me of what You would have me keep? I cannot lose Your gifts to me. And so the peace You gave Your Son is with me still, in quietness and in my own eternal love for You.

Yes My Soul Yes

It is better to have tried to climb the mountain. There is nothing to think about. No carrot and stick reward systems. The soul can be found; even with the rudimentary spiritual tools available to American suburbanites. These will be refined with consistent use. The main thing is to stay on the path. Don\’t go to an Ashram for life. Go to work. Listen. The soul will come.

It is not a quest for the most marathons, or 100 miles in one race or money. It is self transcendence, which could look like anything.

I am but dust, and to dust I will return. Mental asceticism is for now. I will just walk this weekend.

Character Necessities:

  • cognitive restraint
  • situational consistency
  • remorselessly critical
  • Prime interest
  • mental asceticism
  • dimensions

Spiritual tools: silence, listening, ego deflation.

I sang this while running on Sunday (Peter Paul and Mary?):

How many seas must a white dove sail
Before she sleeps in the sand?

The answer, my friend, is blowing in the wind
The answer is blowing in the wind.

A curious thing happened this week. I had my annual review and all is great. As a technical professional, one doesn\’t expect advancement, but a happy career performing a function. So, I have that where I am. But, after the review, I went back to my office and received a phone call from a person I know in another division of the company. They asked if I would consider a new posting in that division.

I wondered what this meant as a result of my spiritual work. But I had mostly forgotten it on Friday. Today, I wonder if the white bird has landed or if she will sail again.

For now, its off to walk in the park.

Personal Power

I can make a right/healthy decision in the moment. But, maybe that desire doesn\’t go away, just underground to come back later. Then the only way I am ultimately powerful is to do something that eliminates that thought, develop a habit which becomes stronger than that thought, or ask for a higher power to remove that thought. Otherwise, I\’m doomed to eventually do that thing.

I need to change my momentum and keep it changed.

I want a different ruler in my mind than the one I have been allowing. I need to strengthen the consciousness which brings me success, peace, productivity, self love. That consciousness which is positive is there; I just don\’t choose it as my ruler. But I think I could. I am aware enough of my thoughts to begin a different conscious sorting process.

I went for a long run as usual for a Saturday morning (4h25 min). I thought that I want my life to be an experience of soul. What ever I do and however I think, I want it to be an experience of soul.

I learned how to just be today! I realized that I am.

That\’s it.

Conscious Soul Contact

All of us have a soul. But not very many try to know that soul. I know I have a soul because I get out of bed in the morning.

I know I have conscious real time contact if I accept that soul\’s help to get out of bed. Like this morning. What time I got up was optional. But if I want to go running for several hours, its best to get started early if its to be a hot day. But when the alarm went off at 4:45 on a Saturday, my ego began rationalizing about staying in bed.

I sat up. My eyes drooped shut again. I thought sleeping more would be great. Why be a runner anyway? Somewhere in this half asleep musing, I remembered that it is my soul who powers my life and my running. In order to run long distance, I need a significant amount of power. To run long distance on a 90+ humid day and start at 6 in the morning requires a tremendous amount of mental effort to do.

The fact that I am training for a race is not enough. Most people would look at my weekly mileage and say, \”Aren\’t you killing yourself? What is some important about doing all that?\”

Nothing, except it brings me to my soul.

Now, me and my soul are going to do sit-ups.