Self-reflection is the key to attaining a real and profound change within yourself. Without adequate awareness attempts to change oneself by imposing different behavior cannot sustain lasting results.
A deeper knowledge of the source of manifested reality is required. The questions; "Why my life is the way it is?", "Why do I make choices that aren't best for me?", "Why I feel trapped?" lead to a major question: "Who Am I?".
Ancient Greeks placed self-knowledge as penultimate prize of learning. Indeed knowing yourself directly affects outcomes in your life, your ability to respond to life's events with courage, clarity and determination. Self-knowledge is the path to genuine happiness and freedom.
When we move into self-reflection we direct our mindful inquiry toward answers about the quality and nature of our existence. Our willingness and fearless honesty will determine the depth of the answers we receive.
One of the valuable reasons travel provides for self-refelection is that our typical structure of everyday life is disrupted. Whether we plan it or not, we are "nudged" out of comfortable sleepwalking of everyday life and presented with the opportunity to peek behind the image of our world.
That includes a broader perspective on our relationships, our values — where we spend our time and resources, and internal responses to other people and situations. Travel journey may provide natural conditions for self-reflection and answers to the question: "Who Are You?".
WHO ARE YOU?
If someone were to ask you this question, what would be your answer?
- I am Jim, or Ellen, you would answer.
— It is the name others call you, but Who Are You?
— I am a man, or a woman who is a research assistant or a high school teacher, married or single, who is a vegetarian, enjoying running marathons or solving crossword puzzles.
— It a gender of your body, and that is a function you perform in a society, you mentioned a social status and activities you like perform, but Who Are You?
And you continue self-reflection until you put aside all the labels and roles with which you were taught and conditioned to identify yourself.
Go even further and ask yourself how do you know that you are a man or a woman. You will come ahead noticing that a gender was assigned to you to identify you according to the anatomy of your body, but WHO ARE YOU?
You may answer: — I am my "self"!
To the question of where or what is this self, most would begin to provide a collection of numerous descriptions of type of personality, preferences and behavior. But with a more scrupulous investigation you will notice that those are beliefs, crystalized forms of a limited perception and reactions caused by them, but it is not the self.
Any definition of self appearing as a result of self-reflection comes from a had experience, which is our past and therefore is not real. Essentially it is only a biased mental selection with a label. It is a psychological attachment to something that is imagined in the present moment. Is that real? What is real only happening in this present moment.
But what is this self?
Self is empty; any imposed definition of it is only a frame cast upon the fullness of experience. You can say that there is no self, only the experience. This moment of awareness is what we refer superficially as self. Single present moment awareness - is what you are! It's nature is boundless, yet it rises and falls like a wave in the infinity of an ocean.
Awareness of emptiness of independently existing "self" is absence of resistance to the flow of life. No self is not imagining a self devoid of structures and boundaries, but a direct experience of awareness that is spontaneously and creatively engaged in life.
You may find out that you are here, you are conscious of YOU, but you cannot find YOU, your boundary: beginning or the end; nor can science. You exist but you are immaterial. You are a consciousness, a single present moment thinking only, having an experience of a limited human form.
You are an individuated part of The Whole, Spirit, Universal Consciousness, God or Buddha Mind. In fact you are That, which is beyond claim of any word of duality or implied separation.
Knowing of your infinite nature, awareness of reality as it is is reflected in a liberated experience of one's life. Self-reflection is a guiding method to merge with a vast continuum of it, translated on three levels of a human experience: Physical, Mental and Emotional.
Though unexamined and limited interpretations of reality and attachments shaped on a Mental and Emotional levels create consequences of unhappiness and struggle reflected on the Physical plane of experience.