The False Self

15 Mar

Richard Rohrer’s Meditations:
The False Self

Your False Self is your necessary warm-up act, the ego part of you that establishes your separate identity, especially in the first half of life. (Sunday)

Your False Self is what changes, passes, and dies when you die. Only your True Self lives forever. (Monday)

Your False Self is who you think you are. Your thinking does not make it true. (Tuesday)

Thomas Merton rightly recognized that it was not the body that had to “die” but the “false self” that we do not need anyway, precisely because it is only a part of us, but trying to pass for the Whole. (Wednesday)

All mature religion must and will talk about the death of any notion of a separate, and therefore false, self. (Thursday)

Most souls are initially “unsaved” in the sense that they cannot dare to imagine they could be one with God/Reality/the universe. This is the lie of the False Self that dies slowly.

Rest: Drawing Empty Space

It’s difficult to see what is not manifest, what is intangible and yet the most objective of all reality. Yet we can learn to see differently, to be present to Being. This simple practice shifts our usual way of literal seeing and invites an inner change in how we see ourselves, the world, and the Divine.

Sitting at a table or desk with a pencil and a piece of blank, unlined paper, look at a nearby object. Turn your attention to the empty or “negative” space surrounding the object. Rather than focus on the object’s contours, look at the lines and curves of the space butting up against the object, the places in between and around the object itself. Breathe deeply and begin to draw these nooks and crannies of air and emptiness. Keep your focus on the negative space as you draw.

You might draw all of the spaces around the object or spend just a few moments drawing. When your pencil comes to a stop, observe the form and detail of the “nothingness” you’ve drawn. Know that your True Self, though perhaps less visible than ego and persona, is spacious and objective. Let your inner witness quietly observe the “negative space” within yourself. Rest in this abundant emptiness, full of Presence.

For further study:

Immortal Diamond: The Search for Our True Self (book)
True Self/False Self (CD)

Gateway to Silence:
I am who I am in the eyes of God—
nothing more and nothing less.


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4 responses to “The False Self

  1. Denine Taylor

    March 15, 2014 at 9:52 AM

    Love this! God keeps telling me its time to let go of something. I grew up in fear. But I am no longer fearful. I learned to act a certain way “submissive to controlling and abusive parents.. Meek and weak. I am still meek, but far from weak, for I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Still, My outer self (false self) doesn’t reflex my true self. Oh, I guess God is making me grow up. I will be 46 this year I guess its time. LOL Thanks and many blessings to you.


    • Little Monk

      March 15, 2014 at 10:28 AM

      Dear Denine,

      What a wonderful comment to see as I open this today. It is a fabulous Truth that God loves us totally and utterly, intends only and infinitely our good, and is about the work of raising us as His beloved children every moment. Whatever background we came from, whatever “childlike” stance and perspective we initially viewed Him from, we are ALL about the task of “growing up”. So I’m right with you there, (as you frequently see in my posts, I hope).

      I think the single most important point that can possibly be made by any Christian commentator is that we can wholeheartedly TRUST God. He is not out to “get us” for sin. He is not out to “test and catch us out”. He is not arrogant. He is not neurotic. None of that. In fact, we all love ! Corinthians 13 so much, and the “love” passages so quoted at weddings… but we so seldom see that those verses “Love is…” are not only ATTRIBUTES of God, like “characteristics”… but the very NATURE of God.

      I think The False Self tries to keep us locked in the “fear (terror) of God”, where the True Self (and God Himself), is so urgently trying to migrate us to relationship and constraint by the Love of God alone.

      Hang in there, we’re all in this together! Grace to thee — LM


      • Denine Taylor

        March 18, 2014 at 11:27 PM

        Thank you for your kind words!


  2. vwoods1212

    March 17, 2014 at 9:21 PM

    Of a truth, we are nothing before God if only for His blessed Son. Thanks for sharing another insightful post of our realities. VW



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