Who Are We?

Who are you? Such a benign, common question…Please spend a minute before you read to give a few answers. We usually respond with our name, followed by gender, race, nationality, social or family roles, followed by some traits that define us. The truth is that we are a complex set of relationships between mind, body, soul/spirit and the external world. We all know what the body is because it is material, but what are the mind, soul and spirit?

Some people use the larger concept of the mind or consciousness to include all non-material aspects of who we are: thoughts, beliefs, emotions, perceptions, values, etc.

Other people like more clarity so they define the mind as the conscious processing of thoughts, sensations and perceptions. Soul is seen as the unconscious processing of emotions and spirit as our connection to something larger than ourselves (nature, God, universe, etc.). Our Western worldview was based on the difference between the body and the mind, with a fair amount of suspicion versus the soul and the spirit. They have been seen as these mysterious aspects of who we are that until recently science has abandoned to the domain of religion.

Who we are as human beings ranges from the unique aspects of our individual names (and traits) to what we share with other people and ultimately what we share with the entire world.  There are also core, unchangeable aspects of who we are and there are aspects that change with our life experiences. Each part of who we are asks for its right to existence and the more we allow each part to manifest and to transform, the more whole we are as persons.

I started this blog in order to help readers understand the complex set of relationships between body, mind, soul, spirit and the external world that make us who we are. I believe that health and well-being depend on the integration of the body, mind, soul and spirit.


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