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Defining the Self

The previous post was on the “SELF as Master,” meaning that in this context the SELF here was referring to the God-force SELF—the ALLness—the Everything.

But even the ‘ego-self’ that most of us struggle to control, is a bit more diverse than saying it means ‘pure ego’ which also has its own range of implications. There is a certain negative connotation associated with the term “ego,” and yet without any ego—or any sense of self—we can easily become manipulated manikins to whoever pulls our strings.

I was once trying to describe self-realization and self-actualization concepts to a clinical psychologist friend where I said the self-realization goal was to eliminate our personal egos, and she replied that this was very strange because she often spent hours trying to help her more subservient clients to develop a stronger sense of their own ego—to stand up for themselves—to better protect themselves from aggressive controlling partners. So from her viewpoint a certain amount of personal EGO is necessary to survive in the world.

And when I talk about ‘self-realization’ I’m referring to GOD-force SELF—making it more like the all-capped “SELF-realization” where the focus is on realizing that we are the Master SELF incarnate in this life experience, and that we are still, and always will be, connected to the Great ALLness no matter what we do or where we go.

But when Maslow for instance talks about ‘self-actualization’, he is referring to your truly maximizing who you are as a human being capable of releasing your untapped creative and intuitive greatness. Some examples:

—The Dictionary on Self-Actualization: “the realization or fulfillment of one’s talents and potentialities, especially considered as a drive or need present in everyone.”


—“What is self actualization in Maslow hierarchy of needs?

Self–actualization refers to the need for personal growth and development throughout one’s life. It is the highest level of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, which was developed by psychologist Abraham Maslow. Once you are self–actualized, you’ve met your full potential as an individual.”  (


So to fully comprehend WHO you are and WHY you feel significant to this existence, it helps to consider the personal ‘ego-self’ in relation to the ‘Great-SELF’—the God-force SELF; or self-actualization in relation to SELF-realization—i.e., self/SELF.

And whereas for many of us, the goal is to tamp down our personal egos and be less self-focused (which often means we are demanding that our needs be placed above all other’s needs); our existence here in a physical body requires that we protect and utilize our human body to explore this life experience, therefore personal ego was intended to help us do that. In that respect, ego is not such a bad thing as it is necessary for basic survival.

 What it all comes down to is the classic conundrum of “Where do I end and you begin?”

That’s a hard question to answer, because for me personally I’m not sure there is an actual ending per se for any of us. 

Maybe our problem is that while we are here in the Earth-plane, we have such a restricted perspective of what ‘the end’ means to the physical body; whereas in the higher planes of energy existence there is NO end or ending, only multiple variations on a ceaseless theme whose purpose is increasing conscious awareness.

This so reminds me of the old Isaac Asimov short story on discovering the Creator of the Universe: “The Last Question.”

If you haven’t read it, I won’t spoil it for you.


Published by Rebecca A. Holdorf

Rebecca A. Holdorf, has a Masters in English, and is a certified hypnotist specializing in Past-Life Exploration and Spirit World Exploration. She is also a Usui and Karuna REIKI Master Teacher presently located near Davenport, Iowa. Author of five books, she also conducts workshops and training in Self-empowerment, True-self Actualization and REIKI. Her company is Foundations of Light, LLC, web address is . Contact her at .

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