Episode 76 – Who am I? Why Am I Here?

This week, Happy Road dives off the deep end into some heavy philosophy to examine the nature of the true self. But bringing things back to the useful and practical, we do a 90-degree turn and use this type of introspection to determine if we’re on the right track in life. Then, some MBTI fun and silliness, and a rather sobering fitness thought. What if you do too much?

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Show Notes:

Answering the question of “what is self-inquiry” is about as complex as the answer to the question it asks: “Who am I?” If you’re ready to dive into some heavy Eastern philosophy, start with this article from the American Institute of Vedic Studies that attempts to define the concept.

Continue along with the study on non-duality from Indian scholar Chandrakirti, using negative reasoning. What is NOT the self?

Professor Shinzen Young explains how mindfulness and self-inquiry can both result in answering the same fundamental question regarding the self.

A related Zen koan about what IS and ISN’T a part of the true self.

A great extended parable where a swami explains non-duality and the true nature of the self, using some good, concrete examples from everyday life. I especially like this explanation, as it also gets into the very nature of things — including the physical makeup and structure of the universe itself. Not a profoundly deep, nor hard-to-understand story. It makes the concepts I talk about on this week’s show remarkably approachable to the lay person.

All of the above questions that ask and attempt to answer the question: Who am I? lead to a certain introspection and are a great starting point for approaching another, related question, “Why am I here?” Derek Sivers has a great spin on the practicality and usefulness of asking and answering this question often.

Remember the MBTI? Of course you do. It was on Episode 3… Well, here is a bit of fun and shenannigans using the 16 different types to compare yourself to Dragonball Z characters, Game of Thrones characters, or U.S. Presidents. And there a zillion others too, if you have the time and desire to look at them all.

Fitness Magazine tackles the question of when is it too much? The problem of orthorexia and addiction to health and exercise. Sounds like a problem we’d like to have, but it can be quite serious and just as unhealthy as not eating healthy or exercising at all.


Music beds courtesy of Music Alley from Mevio and the Free Music Archive. Thanks to artists: ZeroV, Duane Carter Band, Gepel.