How would you describe healthy self-love and where does it cross the line to being something else?
Is it a matter of continually finding balance and re-defining as we learn and grow?
My interest extends to reading what others feel is meant by self. For me, the physical form is the lesser part of it, as it passes and dissipates. Of course, some feel the physical is all there is, or have a Bible-based worldview & I acknowledge those perspectives.
Exploring various ways to look at what is the self, and is there a greater Self, has been a joyful and beneficial process of discovery and realization for me. May write more in my own answer later, first I like to read what you have to say...
Okay, off the hip, and mad dashes for spelling on Google. For this 'self' the self is not that of the 'self' of Freud's definition of Ego. I prefer and fall along the lines of the symbolic interactionist view. Presented initially with William James with general psychology and then later developed by others like George Herbert Mead. The self is reflexive and malleable. It is comprised of the self as object (the Me) and the self as subject ( the I). These two elements of 'self' interact as a 'self' and of a 'self' within social interactions with anything. Even talking to a rock is an interaction, since the 'I' of Self and the 'Me' of self interact with each other.
For Love I use the treatise of the 'Four Loves' of C.S. Lewis as a guide. Although it parallels the theology of the Christian mindset what is discussed is universal and discovered within other forms of theology and/or religions. And, too, philosophies both of / with gods and without.
Again, for this 'self' it is a matter of acknowledgment, acceptance, and belief of a truth, yet with the same emphasis there is not a circle, more so the fashion of a spinning top that expands with time. Time has only a significance with a point of reference, perception, sensations, and contrast while comparing. Or, both the rational and the empirical are sought while pondering the chicken and the egg.
Back to the future or Love is of Four. Each is different while being of a nature of being universal. Nurture is the key of development. I am going to work from a memory of decay.
Storge - affection
Philia - friendship
Eros - romantic for a word
Agape - unconditional or charity
Lewis explains these with brevity since most understand these as concepts through social learning and association with memory or past 'self' structures.
Storge - pet, another or others, objects, and etc
Philia - occurs with association and interactions with likeness while accepting differences with usually forgiveness, although does not have to condone
Eros - hot topic of debate, yet beyond the human, yet fueled by the sub-human seeking the sensory for perceptions projected as dream, fantasy, connectedness, and the essence of the non-material. Times up
The contrast and consideration of Freud's Ego is it is not intended from this 'self's' understanding to be a social too. It is for analysis or diagnosis of 'another' within a one-on-one setting. My feelings is it can be dangerous of the wrong minded. The Ego structures 'self' as singular.
Even though I am not fully sure what all you said, it seems brilliant to me. Informative & useful. I have read it thrice. Shhh, don't tell anyone, but I have started notes for a Hub. It will likely go beyond my knowledge, so gives me a good stret
self is the essence of who we are as individuals. It is comprised of both the physical (what can be seen and touched) and the spiritual (the things we cannot see or touch). As individuals we are unique unto ourselves.
Self love has two extremes and most of us live somewhere in the middle.
On one extreme there is our total acceptance of what and who we were born to be - both physically and intellectually, regardless of what others tells us we are, are not, or should be.
On the other end is extreme narcissism - when we perceive ourselves to be more than other people in all respects.
Healthy self love is knowing that we are not infallible and make mistakes but learn from those mistakes, and never judge another person for who, or what they are. But we also know that we do not know all there is to know and constantly seek knowledge to improve ourselves.
We cross over the line of healthy self love when we judge others based solely on our own beliefs, or the standards by which we judge ourselves.
In a nutshell how I feel about your answer, I just read your profile, browsed your hub titles & am hooked. As mentioned above to tsmog, I am in the midst of writing a hub. Will link back to the Q & A as there is richness here in the answers.
I don't like the term, "self love", because I see "love" as something that will never be about us, and will always be about the other(s) we love. I think a healthy self-respect or sense of worth, though, involves genuinely feeling, and being very certain, that we are not better or "less" than anyone else (and by that I mean, as a human being - not whether or not one person plays better tennis than someone else).
I see people becoming "independent and separate people" as a two-stage process. First there's the reproductive cell, which meets up with something "from without", which is influenced/impacted throughout the process of cell division that takes place in the first trimester. From there, it's a matter of growing bigger/older and becoming "more sophisticated"/mature.
From birth to two or three years old child is in a new environment and again starts out as a single little "being". It meets the "outside world", which from there involves yet more being impacted/influenced as the process of additional development (like forming brain connections, muscle development), learning language, takes place. For those first couple of years a child isn't really completely "independent" (not financially, of course; but food-wise, relying on what "the world" offers him in terms of teaching about things like language development and relating to other people).
Step 2, to me (and recalling being two and three) is when the child is a "whole little person". The mind and "physical stuff" aren't separate, of course, but to keep it simple let's call the exterior stuff "the packaging" and the name "the label". Those go with "self", as far as I'm concerned. So do the people I've loved or who have loved me. To me, it's like that three-year-old, simple, but separate and fully functioning little kid continued to grow and interact/be impacted by things/people "from without". Information, understanding, knowledge was accumulated; mixed in with the "me" that I was, were turned with time into layer upon layer of "depth" that wrapped around that "core three-year-old person" - and turned "her" from a "simple child" into a more complex, mature, individual, To me, "self", could start with the label, go then to the packaging, then all those layers of substance/depth, and eventually that "core little kid" that I've always been. All said and done, I suppose I really define "hard core self" as that "core" person. "General self" is everything.
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