It's good to love ourselves....
and it's good to know what we want so that we can better serve others.
Yes. But we must be careful. All things in moderation.
Greek Mythology teaches us that there is a tragic tale of self love, taken to extremes.
Narcissus was the son of a river God and a Nymph. They had a handsome child they named Narcissus.
Oh, he was beautiful, yes.
Very handsome he was.
Many fell in love with Narcissus and yet...he spurned all of them. He only loved himself and no one was good enough for him.
Once a Nymph named Echo fell for him too. So in love for him was she, that she pined away for him, hoping to have her love messages returned....but he would not, did not, could not return her love.
Echo wasted away until nothing was left of her but her lonely whispered unanswered call....
(which you can still hear echoed back to you when you call.)
So tragic were her pleas for his love, and cries for help to the Gods... that when unanswered, her broken heart turned to vengeance. She sought justice for her pain and the way that she'd been treated. The Goddess Nemesis took pity on the lovesick nymph and her tragic tale of love given but unrequited from so selfish a man.
The Goddess sought out Narcissus and found him, yet again, gazing lovingly at himself in a quiet pool of water. It was his favorite pastime....so in love with his own self, that is all he did. The Goddess then put a fitting spell on him.
"If you love yourself so much, and spurn others, then SO BE IT. Love yourself forever and no one else."
Narcissus was then so magically engaged and enthralled with his own reflection that he could not leave it...
he was spell bound to his own projected image....and he died there, gazing at his own mirrored self.
A flower grew where he died.
It is the Narcissus....which is often seen gazing head down at the water.
So it is that there are those among us who are afflicted thusly, even today.
This ultra self love is now officially and scientifically and psychoanalytically called a "Narcissistic Personality Disorder"
Those afflicted disdain the real love from others, have an over emphasized image of self, put themselves on pedestals, use others only to fulfill their needs, and the afflicted are never satisfied with what affection they receive because their need for adoration is too great.
While they may feel that the accolades and affection that come their way is their due....
in reality, though, they are starving themselves to death- by not partaking of LIFE and not being able to digest what love is given freely, nor are they able to return it to anyone.
They die a vain glorious life just gazing at themselves and never learning about the world or others.
In sooth, the majority of those afflicted actually do not love themselves as much as they hate themselves inside, and they project an image that they think others will like instead. They then try to be a chameleon for whomever will find them attractive, so that they will have their needs met by others.
I feel sorry for the person that was Narcissus...
No one could tear him away from himself much to his own demise.
He ruined his own life. The Goddess just made it happen faster based upon the injustices and harm he caused to others.
While I do feel sorry for those afflicted with this disorder as well, nothing is incurable IF they want to break the pattern. Psychotherapy is the only means to do this. That, and a lot of work on their part, and true love by those willing to aid them.
Otherwise, they will lead a fruitless life, which is a disservice to themselves, and to the world.
Let's learn from this tragic tale to be open to others, listen and learn from them, and to take ourselves lightly.
For it is in the giving of ourselves that we truly receive love.