Introspection: - observation or examination of one's own mental and emotional state, mental processes, etc.; the act of looking within oneself.Introspection is a uniquely human ability which separates us from animals and has been way of looking into an individual's mind through their experiences from the time of Socrates. However I do stand to be corrected by any of the 'lovely people" from PETA or any of the extremist tree hugging/ flower power/ hippie yahoo societies who think that animals are on par with us on every level(I am all for the protection of the environment and animals but some people take it abit too far).
Everyone has their own method of introspection and nobody can say that they havent at some time or the other done that. Introspection being a self examination is very subjective so it's debatable whether it really helps us in anyway because if we cannot recognize a potential problem how can we rectify it. If we manage to detach ourselves for just a moment we may be able to change for the better but only if we are open to the fact that we can be wrong and that it is normal to be wrong. Do we like who we have become? What are we becoming? How have we changed? How do we affect those around us? Questions like these can help us if we answer them truthfully and objectively.
Sometimes introspection can turn into a forensic dissection of ones entire life where we think back on all the things that could, should and would have happened had we done things differently. This in my opinion this is unhealthy and leads to Regret. Expanding on the philosophy Master Yoda, Regret leads to Depression. Depression leads to Fear. Fear leads to Anger. Anger leads to Hate. Hate leads to Suffering and the Dark side follows. It also leads to a very ego centric view of the life where people become desensitized to the fact that even though they may be feeling horrible they are not the only people suffering and that in the scheme of things there problems may be infinitesimal.
"No Regrets they dont work. No regrets now they only hurt" Robbie Williams - No RegretsHowever unhealthy this may be (well in my opinion anyway) it does happen and I have fallen victim to this myself. This forensic dissection usually hits people at the worst possible time and actually compounds the problem at hand. Before you know it you cant remember what sparked this contemplation on the past in the first place. People start wondering had they taken a different road in life things may have been better and start asking questions like "Why did this happen to me?" or "What did I do to deserve this?" The answers to these questions don't seem apparent but only we can answer them.
Its amazing that this happens especially since we have been blessed with the power of choice and yet we still make the wrong decisions, or do we ?. What is the purpose of being able to choose if we regret the choices that we have made. Our choices whether bad or good have made us who we are today so why regret them when we should rather deal with the present and only learn from the past. The only reason we fall is to learn how to get up and this is what life is about.
I know its easier said than done trying not to think about "what if" but it doesnt help us and only makes us take for granted what we have presently. Introspection is good when it helps us deal with things and move on but its not when it just tears of the scabs of old wounds, allowing it to fester and become worse.
The Lone Writer