Solid, stolid they appear. A certain kind of self-assuredness. They seem to be persons who know, promoters of things that are good; well-meaning, liberal. But, with them, I seem to lose energy. Self-doubts enter in, as I find my self doing a self-telling that these particular persons seem not all that bright. But here I am, heavily into self-doubt, finding myself accusing them of what I am experiencing. What is going on? Within this melange of self-doubt, the accusations directed as well toward the others, I become captive to a concentration of ideas and thoughts which aren’t even very interesting.
My own life, full of doubts, full of overcoming, I seek well-motivated criticism. But, here amongst these energy sappers, I have fallen into some trap of banal self-justification; the kind in which I find myself defending the worst in my self by seeking the worst in them. Exhausted, ashamed to rediscover a me I had thought was behind, overcome. Perplexed.
Then, last week, a gathering of the perplexed: in which we discovered that another was dealing with these self-same energy thieves, and reported…exhausted, ashamed…the same internal experiences. And ruling-out coincidence, we decided to justify self and to externalize blame against these masters of the art of self-doubt. The problem is revealed and remains, that we are susceptible to others’ depiction of our selves, in some ways that seem self-destructive.