Most of us do not really know who we are. We’ve been told who we are—by our parents, our family, our teachers, our governments, and society—and we believe we really are the identity given to us by our culture. We believe in a certain story about ourselves, an idea of who we are, attached to a certain name, with certain likes and dislikes, certain interests and beliefs, with a certain role to play in society.
Believing that we are this story, we go on looking for ways to prove this story and have it validated by others. We try to improve our story, improve our self-image, make it more attractive, more significant, more loveable. People will spend their whole lives trying to gain social acceptance and approval of the story that they identify with. In doing so, they overlook the truth of who they are. Being attached to a story about their identity, people needlessly suffer trying to protect and defend this imagined sense of self.
When you have a nightmare, you suffer in the dream, but once you wake up your suffering ends because you realize that the dream wasn’t real. In the same way, when you wake up from the dream of thinking you are your story, all the suffering associated with that story ends because you realize it isn’t actually who you are, and it does not affect your true Self.
This course is designed to help you awaken to the fundamental truth of your existence—to answer the big question "Who Am I?" It is for those who genuinely want to know who they are at the deepest level, not as another belief to add to your self-image, but as an actual realization that you can directly experience.
It is not intended to add to your knowledge or to help you learn more about yourself, it is intended to help you unlearn every idea you have about yourself so you can recognize the truth of who you are.
You already are your true Self, and there is nothing you need to learn or gain to realize who you are. You only need to remove the concepts and beliefs that you have mistaken yourself to be. This course is a guide to help you do so.
Self-inquiry is an ancient practice of questioning everything we identify with as "I" or "me," recognizing the many beliefs we hold about our identity, and seeing beyond limited views about the self.
Learn to recognize the essential nature of your being and practice guided meditations for helping you gain stability in it.
Transcend the ego, awaken to the truth of who you are, and learn how to embody your true nature in daily life.
Lesson 1: The Two Truths. In this lesson we explore an ancient teaching known as the "Two Truths" that helps to orient us in the right direction for our journey inward.
Lesson 2: The Biggest Obstacle to Self-Realization. In Lesson 2, we explore the biggest obstacle that people face in discovering who they really are.
Lesson 3: Who Am I? Inquiring Into the Nature of the Self. Here, we begin the formal practice of self-inquiry, examining commonly held beliefs about the self to come to a deeper realization of who and what we essentially are.
Lesson 4: Your True Self. In this lesson, we expound upon our true nature to bring it into greater clarity and to explore the implications of what it means to discover our essential Self.
Lesson 5: Distinguishing Awareness from Mind. In this lesson, we outline the essential practice of Self-realization.
Lesson 6: The Essence of Meditation. In Lesson 6, we discuss the true essence of meditation as well as how to properly develop your own meditation practice.
3 Guided Meditations. Together, we will practice three powerful techniques for awakening to and resting in your true nature.
Lesson 7: Integration. This lesson wraps up the course with a discussion on the essential need for integrating our realization into our daily lives, and offers tips and guidance for how to do so.
Joseph P. Kauffman is an author, mindfulness teacher, and the founder of Conscious Collective. He has published 9 books on mindfulness, meditation, and spirituality.
At age 16, Joseph had a spontaneous mystical experience that gave him a deep insight into the oneness of life. After this experience, he began passionately studying and practicing Eastern philosophy and spirituality.
Joseph has studied extensively the philosophies of various schools of Buddhism, Zen, Yoga, Vedanta, Taoism, and Shamanism and has sought to integrate these ancient philosophies with modern understandings of psychology, neurology, and physics. His curiosity to learn has drawn him to travel abroad and study in India, China, Japan, Nepal, Peru and Guatemala, participating in numerous trainings and retreats and learning from many different teachers and traditions.
Joseph’s journey has brought him to a deep understanding of life and of the importance of mindfulness and meditation as tools for self-discovery and liberation. Now, it’s Joseph's mission to share the wisdom he has received from his studies and to help people experience greater happiness, health, connection and freedom in their lives.
“Learning meditation with Joseph has helped me transform my life. He's a great teacher. I have incorporated his teachings into my everyday routine, and I carry that inner peace I have always craved and bring a new level of focus and intention to each day.”
-Adam Healey, West Virginia
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