Paul Nervy Notes
“Jokes, poems, stories, and a lot of philosophy, psychology, and sociology.”

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Psychology, personality, self.  ---  .This section is about the self.  Topics include: ( ) Change of self.  ( ) Development of self.  ( ) Multiple selves.  ( ) Time and self.  ( ) Self identity.  ---  1/24/2006

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  .Thoughts about the self perhaps do not belong here in the personality section, but I put them here for convenience.  ---  11/20/2001

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  (1) Causes.  (A) Primary vs. secondary.  (B) Direct vs. indirect.  (C) Why did this happen to me.  (2) Effects.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  (1) Me defined as my body.  Me defined as my mind.  (2) Bodies without minds are either living flesh or dead meat.  Minds without bodies does not sound as bad.  (3) Me without my mind is either a vegetable or a madman.  Me without my body is the Notes(?).  (4) The solitary mind vs. the mind interacting with other minds.  Without others would there be any conversation?  Without conversation would there be any thinking?  Thinking can thus be defined as an ability that we develop by interacting with other people by using language.  Thus, thinking can be defined as conversation or communication with self.  ---  1/7/2000

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  (1) One view holds: I am my thoughts (or actions).  When my thoughts (or actions) disappear I disappear.  When I don't think (or act) I don't exist.  When I think (or act) poorly I exist poorly.  (2) Several other views hold: (A) I don't exist.  Or (B) I am just a grain of sand on a beach.  Or (C) I'll be back (reincarnation).  ---  3/16/2000

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  (1) See also: Psychology, personality.  See also: Psychology, pathological.  (2) See also: Philosophy, identity (metaphysics of body and mind).  (3) See also: History, past me's.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  (1) What is self-identity like for those people with no memory?  (2) What is self-identity like for those people with no emotion?  (3) What is self-identity like for those people with no thinking ability?  ---  5/27/2002

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  (1) Who am i, what am I?  (2) Why am I (causes), why am I the way I am?  (3) How do I happen, how did I happen?  (4) How am I supposed to deal with it?  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  (1) Who am I?  Do not lose yourself.  Do not forget who you are.  (2) Ways of defining yourself: (A) Defining yourself by your goals.  (B) Defining yourself by your abilities.  (C) Defining yourself by your accomplishments.  (D) Defining yourself by your friends and enemies.  (E) Defining yourself by your occupation vs. not allowing you occupation to define yourself.  ---  7/16/1999

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  (1) Who you are psychologically objectively vs. how you see yourself, your impression of yourself, subjectively, which can be accurate or inaccurate.  (2) Self respect: I am good vs. I am not good.  (3) Self worth: we are not worthy!  Believing I am a failure, I am worthless.  I can't make it in life, I am better off dead.  Others are better off if I am dead, I am a criminal, crazy, stupid, etc.  (4) Self confidence: I can do this vs. I can't.  (5) Self love: I care about me vs. I hate me.  Depression destroys all of the above.  Believing you have failed can destroy all of the above.  A failure can be something as simple as giving in to addiction.  ---  12/03/1997

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  (1) Why study self, or anyone?  (2) How study self, or anyone?  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  An identity crisis, with all its attendant feelings of depression, anxiety and anger, can occur at any age, but especially at midlife, when one considers what one wanted or expected to accomplish compared to what one actually accomplished.  ---  5/5/2004

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Analysis: ways of (1) Empirical measurement.  (2) Philosophy description.  (3) Quantitative, qualitative.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Appearance.  (1) Some look their best during childhood.  Some look their best as teens.  Some look their best as adults.  (2) Some undergo major changes in their appearance.  Some stay constant in their appearance.  ---  3/1/2000

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Appearance.  Some people's faces, when at rest, fall into a natural smile, or frown, or neutral face.  It affects how others react to them.  Thus it affects how they see themselves.  ---  09/10/1994

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Buddhism and self.  Buddhists claim there is no self separate from other things.  ---  3/15/2005

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Challenges to traditional Western notions of the self.  PART ONE.  The traditional Western notion of the self is that there is a one and only you.  A single enduring you.  I call it the "Only You" theory, after the Platters song by the same name.     PART TWO.  The "There is no self" challenge.  One challenge to the traditional Western view of self is the Eastern, Zen Buddhist view.  There is no self separate from everything else.  All is one.  The ego is an impediment to enlightenment.  Without ego the "I" seems to disappear into enlightenment.     PART THREE.  The "Many selves" challenge.  Another challenge to the Western view of mind is the view that we have many selves (roles, faces, attitudes, sides, etc.).  We have multiple selves and that is a healthy thing.     PART FOUR.  The "One big mind" challenge.  Another challenge to the Western view of mind is the view that we all tap into a type of Jungian collective unconscious.  The collective unconscious exists in a current, present mode and also in a historical cumulative mode.  There are some scientists today who believe humans may actually have the ability to read or sense each others minds.  Humans make up one big mind.  ---  4/26/2001

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Change and self-identity.  "That was ages ago.  I was a different person then.  That seems like another lifetime."  These are phrases people used to describe how much they have changed (psychologically and physically), or how much their situation has changed, and how much they have forgotten their old selves.  The questions become: How many people can one be in a life?  How long does it take to turn into another person?  How different can we become?  ---  5/15/1998

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Change and self-identity.  (1) The big challenge to self identity as a concept is the change we all undergo during puberty.  Is the child the "same person" as the adult?  (2) Effects of age (other than puberty) on self identity.  (3) Affects of hormones on self identity.  When transsexuals go on estrogen, how does it affect their self identity.  And when they go off hormones also.  ---  10/10/1998

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Change and self-identity.  (1) The philosophical problem of the person is that of who (or what) is a person and who is not.  This is a metaphysical, epistemological, ethical and even a legal question.  (2) The psychological problem of the person is...  (A) How do I remember who I am from moment to moment and day to day?  This may be a result of background memory.  (B) What prevents major, frequent changes of the personality or self?  This is perhaps a matter of consistent brain chemistry, because even with a memory I could remember a series of radical personality changes, and yet most people do not experience continued radical personality change.  Most people have a fairly stable personality that gradually changes as they age.  Perhaps only radical physical change (of brain biochemistry) would result in radical personality change.  (3) Legally.  What are the rights that a person gets?  And what are the entities that get "persons rights"?  Do humans in comas get the full set of  human rights?  Would a conscious computer be given persons rights?  Do any animals get any of the persons rights?  When we say "persons rights" is that the same sense as we use the term "human rights" in political discourse?  ---  11/25/2001

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Change and self.  (1) How much of yourself can you change without changing your "true" identity?  Do we have a primary essence vs. secondary qualities?  (2) If you never change you never improve or grow.  (3) Changes you can't control (ex. puberty) vs. changes you can control.  (4) If you get a haircut, or buy new clothes, or improve your voice (timbre, vocabulary, grammar), how will it change the way you view yourself, the way others view you, and how do the two effect each other?  ---  05/06/1994

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Defining yourself by "What you stand for" and "What you fight for."  This can also be accomplished by defining "What the problems are" and "What are you fighting against".  The details of most of our peaceful suburban lives are relatively insignificant.  What is significant are the ideas, attitudes and causes that we value.  Therefore, "I" am not so much about my body, my mind or my experiences as I am about a set of ideas, attitudes, meanings and values.  That is one abstract proposition.  ---  7/16/2002

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Development.  (1) Past: was vs. potential.  (2) Present: am vs. potential.  (3) Future: will be vs. potential.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Development.  (1) We need a complete world view (metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, and aesthetics) for every level of development, and for every level of mental capability.  Each individual is unique in the areas of (A) Abilities, skills or tools; and (B) Needs of areas in which to grow.  But they must all cohere.  (2) Because every individual is unique, people must be more proactive and self directed in their total mental growth and development (not just intellectual knowledge).  It is a self-responsibility.  You must figure out what you know, what you don't know, and what you need to know.  You must figure out how you learn best.  You must figure out your strengths and weaknesses.  ---  1/25/1999

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Development.  Actual change in you and your life vs. change in your (or others) perception of you and your life.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Development.  Change (1) In all areas and sub areas.  (2) Speed, direction.  (3) Evolution, stagnation, devolution.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Development.  Change and develop.  Evolution, stagnation, devolution.  Growth, stagnation, decay.  Development of attitudes, and development of knowledge in all areas.  What do I want to become, how to get there?  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Development.  Chose to be vs. was forced to be.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Every year its a different you, and every year its a different world.  For example, Paul age 41 in 2006 is different from Paul age 14 in 1978.  Not that much different.  ---  4/17/2006

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Factors.  Life factors.  (1) Environments: nature, manmade, social.  (2) Experiences, history.  Things done to you: by nature, by others.  Things you did, actions done by self.  Good vs. bad.  Past, present, future.  (3) Where am I headed?  Where do I want to go?  How to get there (steering)?  (4) Problems, challenges, mistakes.  Luck, opportunities.  Swot.  (5) Work, leisure.  Like, lust.  (6) My perception of me vs. others perceptions of me.  (7) Could be, should be, want to be, and not.  (8) Actual me vs. potential me.  (9) Resources: time, energy, materials, money.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Factors.  Life factors.  (1) Life, what is it, why do it, how do it?  (2) What could life be given (A) I do something: effort.  (B) Something happens to me: luck.  (C) Probability of both.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Factors.  Mental factors.  (1) Abilities, attention and interest, memory, drives, emotions.  (2) Thinking.  IQ.  Knowledge.  Philosophy: metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, aesthetics.  Structure, contents.  Mechanism, methods.  (3) Attitudes.  (4) Personality types and traits.  Stability vs. drive for freedom.  Conformity vs. rebellion.  (5) Biochemical factors: hormones, food.  (6) Energy and fatigue.  Stress resistance.  (7) Pathological psychology.  (8) Behavior.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Factors.  Physical factors.  (1) Genetic: inherited, or personal mutations.  (2) Effect of environment on physical: nutrition, soft/hard.  (3) Sex, image, health and illness.  (4) Size, strength.  (5) Physical athletic ability: body and mind coordination.  (6) Acuity of senses.  (7) Face, body shape.  (8) Endurance, power, size.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Growth is about change.  To change is to leave some aspect of yourself in the dust.  To grow is to create a new you.  Many new you's.  Static personal identity is unhealthy.  ---  1/1/2000

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  I (my mind): (1) Is not static.  It is ever changing.  (2) Is not a unified whole.  It is a collection of parts.  (3) Has no beginning or end.  The brain fits in your skull, but in your mind you can go anywhere.  (4) Is not isolated from other people and the environment.  I am open, not closed.  (5) One could argue, therefore, that there is no me, no individual.  This is an argument very much influenced by Eastern philosophy and Zen.  ---  10/10/1999

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  I am not my body.  If there is something I do not like about my body then I can change my body and still remain me.  For example, eat healthy and get fit.  (2) I am not my mind.  If there is something I don't like about my mind then I can change my mind.  For example, change my thoughts, change my attitudes.  ---  4/23/2006

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Identify with positive, not negative, traits, actions, and experiences.  Use the good to motivate and guide your vision, and build.  Do not use the bad things in your life to depress, lead astray, and destroy.  ---  11/27/1993

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Is the "self" the same thing as your personality?  Some people would say no, arguing that personality is just a predisposition to behave (and "mentalize") one way rather than another, while the "self" involves personal identity, a distinct and whole mind and body, and includes everything you ever did.  Other people would argue to the contrary by giving "personality" a broad, inflated definition and giving "self" a narrow, deflated definition.  For example, they would argue that there is not really any fixed "you" and that even if there was, the "you-ness" is not the most important thing about you.  ---  11/20/2001

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Judgment.  How you compare to (1) Your best and worst.  (2) Others in your class or group.  (3) Others in your time and place.  (4) Others who ever lived.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Judgment.  Your best and worst (1) To date.  (2) Possible now.  (3) Possible in your life if you start trying full time now.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Labeling.  Why not to label yourself.  When you label yourself you limit yourself.  (1) Limiting yourself means less freedom, which is bad.  (2) Limiting yourself means less ideas and less growth, which is bad.  (3) People who do not like being limited.  If you are a megalomaniac you do not want to be limited.  If you are manic you do not want to be limited.  If you have a big ego and strong drives you do not want to be limited.  If you want it all you do not want to be limited.  If you want to be free and if you want to grow you do not want to be limited.  The last case is perfectly understandable.  ---  12/29/1997

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Me, or anyone individual and their life.  (1) Total, and parts.  (2) Criticism: analysis and judgment.  (3) Objective: actual.  Subjective: perceived by me, or by others.  (4) Structure and mechanism.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Multiple selves.  (1) Multiple selves based on the multiple roles we play, even unto ourselves.  (2) Multiple selves based on our multiple intelligences.  (3) Multiple selves based on right and left hemispheres of brain.  (4) Multiple selves based on Freudian id, ego and superego.  (5) Multiple selves based on the tripartite brain (cerebrum, cerebellum, stem).  ---  6/22/2004

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Multiple selves.  As people grow and develop they often take on more roles, for example, worker, husband, father, etc.  These multiple roles are, in a sense, like multiple selves.  Diversity and complexity of the personality is healthy and good.  ---  11/25/2001

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Multiple selves.  For an individual to argue many sides sympathetically requires many points of view, which requires many personalities.  Its a good thing to have multiple personalities.  ---  3/29/2002

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Multiple selves.  Interacting multiple selves is good.  (1) The key is to develop multiple selves that interact with each other, and that are not separate from each other.  Multiple selves that are separate from each other is a pathological condition that is perhaps the very definition of multiple personality disorder.  On the other hand, multiple selves that interact with each other enable a sort of personal dialogue or conversation which can result in greater adaptability.  To acknowledge one's multiple selves can lead to the development of a personal community or a personal culture, and allows a government of the self that is a democracy, which is the best form of government.  (2) Multiple selves is a form of democracy.  However, some people feel strongly that there has to be a "head" of the personality.  These people cannot accept that they are a composite of competing roles or selves.  These people feel a need for there to be a "king" of the personality that functions as the "supreme I".  Perhaps these people feel this way because they have a great need for control in their lives.  Perhaps they feel this way because they experienced a time of strong insecurity at some point in their lives.  Regardless, it may be that the reason some people vote for monarchy or dictatorship in political elections is because political choice may be a reflection of personality structure.  If a person has only one, uni-dimensional self (ex. specialists), or if they have trouble acknowledging or accepting their multiple selves, then that person may be inclined toward dictatorship or monarchy.  ---  8/4/2000

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Multiple selves.  Rich, complex and varied personalities vs. flat, shallow, simple personalities.  The former is better than the latter.  It is good to be multi-faceted, almost to the point of having multiple personalities.  Many different people rolled into one is good.  You experience more, live more, and produce more.  Keeping it together can be tougher though.  ---  7/24/1998

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  My mental limitations.  (1) Speed I understand and memorize and retain many complex views, arguments, and couterarguments.  (2) Amount I create new, important ideas.  (3) Amount of work that I can do potentially, that I can find, and that I choose.  ---  03/30/1993

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Optimal self.  (1) Personal level, (A) Mental: making most of self.  (B) Action: doing as much as you can in action.  (2) Social level: Contributing as much as you can to society.  (3) I can do more.  I am being wasted by myself, and by society.  ---  12/01/1993

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  People "flip to the other side" or radically change their views when they accept a new body of knowledge (a set of basic assumptions and conclusions which affect mood, attitudes, personality and behavior) and then re-evaluate their lives in terms of it.  It is a personal paradigm shift.  ---  5/22/2000

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  People often ask themselves "Who (or what) am I?"  (1) You are not one thing only.  You are a set of many things.  (ex. Student, worker, etc.).  (2) Of this set of things, only a few are predetermined (must do), and only a few things are ruled out (cannot do).  The rest is up to you.  Instead of asking, "Who am I?", ask "What do I want to be?" or "What do I want to do?".  (ex. You must breathe oxygen and drink water.  You cannot travel back in time.  The rest is mostly your choice.)  ---  4/8/2001

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Personal identity.  Change of personal identity, for better or worse.  Self induced change vs. natural change.  Speed and degree of change.  Change to your insides vs. outsides, for example, attitude vs. clothes, and how change in one can affect the other.  See public relations.  Self image vs. public image, how you see yourself vs. how others see you, the discrepancy between the two, great or small, and who is more accurate.  ---  04/26/1994

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Problems.  (1) The shattered, fractured self.  The self broken into multiple pieces, roles, compartments, etc.  Viewed as bad in the West.  (2) The lost sense of self.  Those who say, "I don't know who I am anymore".  Viewed as bad in the West.  ---  5/27/2002

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Questioning the importance of the individual.  (1) Buddhists question the importance of the ego vis a vis the whole of reality.  (2) Communitarians question the importance of the individual vis a vis the group.  ---  11/20/2001

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Self and Person under the law.  (1) Under the law, if you are a (human) person you have certain rights.  (2) Habeus corpus.  You have a body.  (3) Vegetable coma cases.  ---  3/15/2005

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Self creation: how much can we control or choose our interests, what we want to be, what we become, at any age vs. how much does genetics and environment control it.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Self creation: how to create, what to create?  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Self identity.  Fragility of self identity.  (1) How can you destroy someone's self identity?  Sometimes all it takes is one insensitive remark.  (2) What is self identity?  It is who you think you are.  (3) How important is self identity?  In some fragile people the entire mind hangs upon it.  (4) Is self identity the same as (A) Freud's conception of the ego.  Strong ego as good.  (B) Buddhist conception of the ego.  Strong ego as bad?  ---  11/6/1998

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Self identity.  How you look at yourself.  When does it change and why.  Development of mind.  Effects of age.  ---  06/30/1993

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Self identity.  I do not believe in reincarnation, but consider the following scenario: Given enough time and enough growth of the human population (perhaps even on other planets), the chances are good that eventually someone will be born who, though not an exact equivalent of you, is so similar to you that they are in fact a "functional equivalent" of you.  When this happens you will essentially be reborn.  ---  2/23/2001

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Self identity.  Today it seems like everything from the neck down is replaceable.  For example, one persons hand could easily end up transplanted onto someone else's arm.  However, everything from the neck up, that is, the face and brain, is where our personal identity seems to be located.  Could someone else use my face and brain and not be me?  Surely, our hands are as unique as our faces, but humans seem to be tuned to facial differences.  (2) As a hypothetical, lets say we all had the same face.  Surely, that would only leave our brains to differentiate us.  Then, lets say we were all either trained or genetically programmed to think and feel the same thoughts and feelings.  Lets say we were taught or engineered to value conformity instead of individuality.  Where would that leave us, if we were all identical to each other in body and mind?  The communists tried it, with their uniforms and indoctrination, to no avail.  ---  4/17/2000

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Self image.  (1) Actually am vs. think I am vs. want to be.  (2) Your image of you vs. others image of you.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Self image.  (1) Overestimation or underestimation of self due to listening to other idiots, not thinking enough, or thinking flawed.  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Self image.  Self creation.  Self defining.  Tattoos.  Pro: A way of branding yourself, of claiming ownership to your body and yourself.  A way of creating your own identity, in body and mind.  Contra: A permanent way of defining yourself, labeling yourself, limiting yourself.  Doesn't allow you to change, or to grow.  ---  07/25/1993

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Self-identity.  (1) Our memory is the only thing that keeps our self identity intact.  (2) Body cells regenerate so we have a new body every few years, but DNA copies itself in each cell so that our body stays the same.  (3) The mind is always on.  Even when you sleep.  (4) Brain injury can cause change in self identity by damaging memory, emotional and thinking centers of the brain.  ---  8/9/1998

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Sum up of issues of self identity.  (1) Time and self identity.  Past, present and future self.  (2) Development, age and self identity.  Child, teen, adult, and old age self.  (3) Memory and self identity.  (4) Personality and self identity.  (5) Multiple-selves theories.  (6) No-self theories.  For example, in Zen.  (7) Self-defined self versus socially-defined self.  (8) Chance-defined self.  See: Philosophy, chance.  (9) Change and self.  See: Philosophy, change.  (10) Body-centered theories of self identity.  (11) Mind-centered theories of self identity.  ---  6/6/2005

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Terms.  PART ONE.  (1) Self identity.  Who you think you are.  (2) Social identity.  Who others think you are.  Your view of your place in society.     PART TWO.  (1) Person.  Refers to a mind and body.  Has an objective connotation.  (2) Self.  Refers to a mind and body.  Has a subjective connotation.  (3) Personality.   Is a component of person or self.  Distinctly psychological.  ---  5/29/2002

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  The question is not, "Who am I?"  The questions are, "What is the situation?  What do I think is true and good?  What do I want to do?"  ---  7/10/2006

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  There is a self for every year you are alive.  For example, Paul 2006 is different from Paul 1996.  Of course, the counter-argument is to ask if you are a different person every day, every minute, and every second.  ---  3/18/2006

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Three questions.  (1) How does it feel to be me at age 41?  (2) How does it feel to be me?  (3) How does it feel to be human?  ---  3/19/2006

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Time and self.  How an individual views themselves changes over time.  Look at a history of a individual's resumes.  Look at a history of an individual's personal ads.  ---  8/14/2004

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Time and self.  Just as important as the question, "Who am I?", are the questions, "Who was I?", and "Who do I want to become?"  ---  1/15/2004

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Time and self.  Three ways of defining yourself based on time.  (1) Defining yourself by the past.  Saying, "I am the person who did acts in the past."  Old people often have a sense of self based on referring to actions and events in the past.  (2) Defining yourself by the future.  Saying, "I am the person who will do this in the future."  Young people often have a sense of self based on their goals, hopes and dreams for the future.  (3) Defining yourself by the present, the now.  Saying, "I am the person who is here now."  This is a good way to define yourself, and one that is often overlooked.  ---  5/5/2004

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Two questions we ask.  (1) Society (people around me), is it going to help or hurt me?  (2) Civilization (education), is it going to help or hurt me?  ---  10/10/1998

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Two views against the concept of self.  (1) There is no self.  (A) All is one.  (B) There is no one there, no I, only memories emotions and thoughts.  (C) Its a deterministic universe.  We are determined.  We are machines.  (D) There is only the group, the culture, the species.  (E) There are only genes.  (2) There are multiple selves.  (See: Psychology, personality > mulitple selves)  (3) If either 1 or 2 is the case, that is, if there is no individual, then societies based on individualism are bunk.  ---  1/15/2005

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  We never really know who we are.  People constantly ask themselves, "Who am I?"  People constantly search for themselves.  The self is not fixed.  The self is always changing.  The self is multi-faceted and multidimensional.  The self is boundless, infinite.  ---  1/2/2005

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  When people define themselves or others, they become set, unchanging, codified, ritualized.  Thinking and growth stop.  Yet if we never define ourselves at all we remain amorphous.  Where is the balance?  ---  12/30/1992

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Which is the real you?  (1) Your view of yourself.  With all your subjective knowledge of what is going on in your head.  (2) Other people's view of you.  With their objective knowledge of what you are like.  (3) Often others can see you better than you see yourself.  But just as often there is a you that nobody else knows.  The you that only you know.  ---  2/21/2000

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Who am I?  (1) Social roles: chosen vs. assigned.  (2) What I am good at (excelling).  (3) What I like to do (likes and dislikes).  (4) What I am useful for (talent, ability).  (5) Chance or fate: sex, race, ethnicity, which are all arbitrary and due to luck.  (6) What makes me special and unique?  (7) What makes me fit in and belong?  ---  5/10/1999

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Who am I?  Identity crises are of two types.  (1) I am not what I thought I was.  I was deluded.  (2) I am what I thought I was, but what I am turned out to be bankrupt.  I no longer value what I am.  My self worth plummets.  ---  6/11/1999

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Who am I?  Sudden loss of self identity can be a crisis.  There are two forms of self-identity crisis: (1) "I am not who I thought I was."  Example, a person thinks they are a great "whatsit", but then they realize that they are actually a mediocre "whatsit".  (2) "What I am no longer seems so good, important, or valuable."  Example, a person is a great "whatsit", but then realizes that being a great "whatsit" is not a big deal.  (3) How much does mental health depend on self identity?  ---  5/10/1999

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Who am I?  We often ask and answer, consciously and unconsciously, the question, "Who am I?".  "Who am I?", is a question that we ask and answer constantly and till the end of our life.  The degree to which we repress and avoid the question, "Who am I?", is the degree to which we lose our sense of self.  (2) Don't define yourself by things that change or disappear, because when they do you will lose your sense of self.  That is, don't pin your self identity on trivial details.  ---  5/5/2004

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  Who am I?  Why must I have an identity?  (1) Fluid, changing chameleon is good?  (2) Amorphous blob is good?  ---  5/10/1999

Psychology, personality, self.  ---  You are your history, current situation, and your goals and potential.  ---  12/30/1995

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Paul Nervy Notes. Copyright 1988-2007 by Paul Nervy.