Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Man; Know Thyself

It’s very possible that some people may not want to be bothered about the subject I engage in this write-up.

Nonetheless, there are a few persons who will purse to reflect on what it is my creative mind is about to barf out on this subject matter, “Man, Know Thyself”, which is also a challenging expression made by the great colossus, Socrates of whom I am now more than ever before particularly studying his life and how he influenced his pupils. 

Socrates, Jesus (Whom the Christians call Christ), Mahatma Gandhi, Pythagoras and a host of other thought leaders opined on the importance of knowing oneself as a way of achieving great success.

However, the problem with my generation — this one that I am forever intertwined with — is that only a few persons have made conscious decisions to travel the road less taken. Others unwittingly continue to travel the route of frivolities, superficiality, trivialities, triteness and shallowness. 

The wise thought of E. E. Cummings rings loudly here. According to him, “To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best day and night to make you like everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight and never stop fighting.”

The question is: What battle are we talking about? I daresay it’s a battle of the mind.

In the words of Martha Cherian, “The Mind is a powerful instrument. Every thought, every emotion that you create changes the very chemistry of your body…”

Yes, the mind is a very powerful instrument of discovering oneself and it constantly draws one towards fulfilling their dreams. However, you will need to first do what I like to call “Exploration”, then you move to the stage of “Discovery”, after which you should “Enhance” your discovery in order to live a life filled with limitless success.

Let’s get back to that ‘mind’ thing. How many young minds today have learned or have given it a thought to peep into their mind as to think of what it is that makes them tick. Do they even know why they are here in the first place? I bet they don’t!

A certain sage noted instructively that, “Knowledge of oneself is the only real knowledge, for as one understands oneself, only then may one truly understand another.”

And Pythagoras affirmed that remark lucidly when he encouraged thus: “Man know thyself; then thou shalt know the universe and God.”

You see, you can’t truly claim to ‘know’ when you are yet to have a proper and in-depth knowledge of yourself -- like who you are; why you are here; and why you act the way you do.

Listen to this, for every global transformation, there is always a personal transformation. Gandhi said to “Be the change you wish to see in the world”. Now, that’s the gamut of self-discovery and its importance to global transformation! 

I believe that knowing oneself is a springboard for knowledge of external objects. When you have studied and know yourself, you position yourself well to know everything that goes on around you. That’s when you are able to come to the place of versatility and resourcefulness!

Okay, to go by the Socratic Rule of Questioning, what is self-discovery?

Self-discovery is the process by which one perused into their inner-recess to discover something peculiar to their person, something that distinguishes them from the rest of the packs. A very simple way of answering that question is to say, self-discovery is tantamount to purpose -- to living a purpose-filled life. 

The truth is that you are more powerful than you know and they (your friends, your siblings, your parents, in short, the world) fear the day you know it.

So, dear reader, I plead with you to take your time to explore your mind in order to discover your truest potential. And after your discovery, develop it and it will yield to an endless success. 

Before I shut down the outflow of words from where it springs, I will not shy away from emphasizing the truth. And this truth is simply that you take your time to know yourself, for it is in doing so that you truly start to move towards your God-inspired mandate (Gen 1:26-28).

Oh wait…

I culled the last stanza of Robert Frost’s poem “The Road Not taken” and I’d love to share it here with you. I’m sure it will further reinforce my challenge on the unavoidable necessity of self-discovery:

“I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.”

When you travel the road of self-discovery, you will inevitably and indelibly leave a mark on the sand of time, of history.

About Author: Sam Adeyinka is a freelance writer, business journalist, thought leader, talented podcaster, online business coach. He writes to you from the ancient city of Oyo State, Nigeria.

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