Born into the world, early life memories are not retained, and a living area of the familiar present becomes framed within a narrative of non-existence on both sides of us, from before birth until at death. We struggle to develop and maintain an identity and purpose that ends in death. Inner knowledge hidden from the world transcends these limitations, showing us a greater identity that has logic and purpose.
Finding an identity
Identity does not come into the world with us at birth. We begin a worldly journey having no visible characteristics but those given by parents. We are our mother’s child and are soon identified with a host of varying qualities: cute, athletic, doesn’t like broccoli, friendly, a good student in school, or whatever. Such may be nurtured by parents or be inherent or developed over time. This identity is false because it is not truly ours. Much is ingrained in us by outer world influences: parents, teachers, counselors, peers, church and more. Effectively we’ve developed an identity that is temporal, dependent upon the circumstances and environment we were born into, and we may know and feel that the projected identity is not truly us.
Can we know who we are and our purpose for living when we don’t know where we came from before birth or where we will be and what we will become at death? Western Christianity assures us that we will live after death when we live a proper life now, and yet offers no useful details of what such a life will be like. Without knowing, we will fear death, for it is well reasoned to fear the unknown. Our physically created identities will be like a noose around our neck, for the more certain we are of who we are, the more fearful we will be of losing such identity. It is paramount that we observe a larger narrative and come to understand our inner natures that are not fearful of death and know where they (our inner selves) are going because they are there now.
The Inner Knowledge
Our world recognizes only what it sees, denying the larger parts of us not visible to the eye. We hide and deny the inner selves from which this world springs. Yet, recognition of the internal as source creator of an external world will clear our confusion and eliminate fear of death. Our identity expands from the closed physical world framed by birth and death into an open-ended living space of infinity before and after. What seemed a meaningless exercise of living a short life in a temporal world brings a fresh vision to our physical identity.
Awareness of eternal life ends the dire sense of hopelessness by man’s certain death but presents a new problem. A narrative cannot be maintained that is open-ended with infinity facing us everywhere. The inner knowledge will be fluidic, offering no lasting form or substance, revealing a perpetually temporal present, a reality without structural foundation, having no beginning or end. The fallacy of what was thought a legitimate world is exposed: once cherished father and mother, sisters and brothers and family are false constructs, creations of the author’s imaginations. “God”, a yet loosely defined construct becomes our only father, forever and ever. The inner knowledge alone is not enough for forming present-moment stability and purpose; it is why the false constructs of birth and death were needed in the first place.
We appear to be in a quandary between fear of death and inability of constructing and comprehending life without death. Yet a new and different path is firmly in place awaiting our notice. The physical world we experience at every waking moment must be viewed as symbols created and developed as narrative; the telling of a story, our story. The story is myth, it is a construct of us and the many other people and entities surrounding us and making up our physical world. Our living experience is useful but not really true. What is true in regard to the physical world is the underlying values and qualities emerging from the lived narrative. “All men are created equal” is one such truth revealed or denied in the unfolding storylines having various themes of virtue and villain. The lived narrative brings out the character of participating actors. The beliefs are false, there is no hero and villain, they are roles being played inside the closed world drama that will end with the various actors embracing and going out for a drink. Yet beliefs are useful to us. Use beliefs, do not believe beliefs, is practical foundation from which stability can be achieved. It is not unlike French philosopher Descartes’ “I think therefore I am”, a foundation assumed for further exploration.
Our elusive identity is found inwardly; our physical world identity a mere tool for identifying the qualities embedded deep within our being. Having the best of two worlds (outer and inner) a greater identity takes shape, a collecting of narratives and storylines from all the ages by the inner thinker. The collected assemblage gives the greater self a vast reservoir of living spaces, memories from which symbols may be drawn at will and experienced in full three-dimensional space as though we are at a cafe table chatting with others.
Taking on and shedding identities as seamlessly as a change of clothing, we will not fear loss of identity knowing it is replaced at the bat of an eye, and eternal life cannot be frightening as we, at will, surround the essence of our awareness in temporal living spaces. The inner self knows this already and so does not fear.
The inner knowledge now works favorably for us, and we live fully and securely, with a physical world identity reaching into the beyond, for wherever we are and wherever we go and become, our identity is secure and changeable.
About the Author
Arthur Telling has written numerous stories and articles on religion, philosophy, and metaphysics. His article, “A Different Jesus Message” appeared in the Nov. 2011 AMORC Rosicrucian Digest. Telling is author of nine books, including the untold stories of Cleopatra and Jesus, a just released novel based on true events titled: “THE INCARNATION: Cleopatra’s Story of Jesus”. His website: www.arthurtelling.com and Facebook page “Philosophy for a Modern Era: www.facebook.com/philo30