Psychology of Self-Transformation (Was: RANT)

From: Anders Sandberg (
Date: Fri Nov 17 2000 - 10:18:30 MST

Matthew Purdon <> writes:

> Here's my feelings these days. I'm human and I'll probably die
> human. If I can accept that, I'll probably be happier.

One important point, probably one of the central in any philosophy or
psychology of self-enhancement, is that you can be happy with who you
are without having to give up self-improvement. Many seem to think
that if you accept who you are, then you will be happy and further
change is irrelevant: so either you should strive for acceptance
instead of personal change, or only unhappy people can become
great. This is of course bunk.

If you can accept who you are and your current state, then you will
have a base of self-confidence to continue from. Even your bad sides
are worth acknowledging as parts of your current self - but that self
is not sacred or impossible to change. While being unhappy with one's
current self is a reason to change, I think a much more potent and
self-supporting reason is that one perceives improved forms of oneself
as more desirable. We go from perfection to more perfection, or as
David Zindell put it:

        "All rules and boundaries must someday be broken. How else can
        we go beyond ourselves? A thallow chick must break out of his
        egg, but this does not mean that the shell is without value.
        You must remember that an oak tree is not a crime against the

Anders Sandberg                                      Towards Ascension!                  
GCS/M/S/O d++ -p+ c++++ !l u+ e++ m++ s+/+ n--- h+/* f+ g+ w++ t+ r+ !y

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