If you follow the Fourth Way teachings of Gurdjieff, you might call the process “facing the false self.” If you like the Jungian paradigm, you might call it “facing the persona.” If you are a follower of Tyler Durden, you might call it “facing your khakis.” If you are into Qabalah, you know it as facing yourself at Binah or, if you are doing Qliphotic work, an experience resulting from a meditation on Satariel. Into Alchemy? This is Saturn, Fire, part of your Magnum Opus. And if you are a Christian, this is Humility, the process of shedding your vanity (as in Matthew 6:2, or the entire book of Ecclesiastes).
Whatever you call it, facing your persona is an important step in realizing who you really are. As the bard said, “All the world’s a stage and each of us is a player.” Everybody wears masks. I challenge you to take yours off for just five minutes.
Dim the lights and sit down in your favorite chair. Let your eyelids droop. Breathe slowly and deeply and calm yourself utterly. When you are very relaxed, close your eyes and imagine that you are wearing a mask. Think about it deeply, and imagine that your mask contains all of the things you do and say — to fit in, to be successful, to perform in your chosen fields of work and play, to impress others, and so on. When you have that image solidly in your mind’s eye, imagine that you are removing your mask. Look at the mask. Examine it thoroughly in your mind’s eye. What do you think of it? How does it feel to have it off?
Do you really want to put it back on?