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I have read books on true/false self. They helped a great deal in articulating the sources of anxiety and unhappiness. Struggling with true/false self issues, I have always wondered how I can live in a culture/society where competition is not only valued but actively encouraged. I am a parent of two children. In schools, in their activities, all of their endeavors are geared toward doing their best and coming on the top, in competition with others. I struggle with this value. Am I normal? I just have hard time even as I am living in this culture. Any input would be appreciated.
Miryung, I think you bring up a good point about how cultural influences can play to the tendencies of the false self. The issue of competition is a tricky one, however, for I don't think it's competition per se that is the problem, but the judgments we attach to winning or losing. Perhaps that seems an impossible nuance to realize, but I'm not hopeless about it. The message, here, ought to be to compete as best you can, and if you lose, to give credit to your competitor, learn what you can from the experience, and move on. That kind of practice actually helps to dismantle false-self attitudes, perhaps more powerfully than ignoring competitive practices altogehter.
What do you think?
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