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.