In Ancient Greece, the philosopher Plato declared that “the unexamined life was not worth living” and was put to death for corrupting the minds of the local youth. His plays had featured a wise character named Socrates who when asked to sum up ancient philosophical knowledge replied with the now famous quote: ‘Know yourself.’

Then and now there remains extraordinary power in knowing yourself and many feel that this is literally the meaning of life.

Plato’s encouragement for reflection and self-knowledge was judged so great a danger to society and he was executed. What were the elder Greek leaders thinking? Most likely they were protecting themselves, as we now know that real danger comes with a lack of self-knowledge.

When we speak about self-knowledge, we’re alluding to a particular kind of knowledge, generally of the emotional or psychological kind. For this exercise we’d like to focus on the areas of self-knowledge that matter most in life, the areas concerned with the inner psychological core of the self.

 

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