ik ben een ik!
someone wrote a book❊ about people who remember the exact moment, as children, when they realised they had a self — when they had the thought, i am an 'i'!
when this happened to me it was like a new version of the operating system had been installed in me and i had been rebooted. a vast number of things about the world and how it was organised which did not make any sense to me up until that point, suddenly did.
when i've spoken to people about this they often look at me in a puzzled way. mostly people become aware of 'being', and being a specific individual being, in a more gradual way but apparently this type of experience is not uncommon.
for me it was unique especially because i also remember how i experienced the world and being in it before the reboot which i would describe now as inter and intra-relational, with humans, animals and things that were all equal, none intrinsically more or less important and without power relations, no subjects and no objects – and without a 'me' at the center of it all; also no discrete units of time, no days or hours or minutes, no yesterday or tomorrow simply an ebb and flow of light and dark, activity and sleep.
this has influenced my entire life although it took me half a century to put two and two (or one and one) together.
❊ Dolph Kohnstamm — Ik ben ik: De ontdekking van het zelf.
Apparently he became interested in the phenomenon after seeing a film of an interview with CG Jung where he describes his experience of this at age 11. He recently published a new expanded version of this book called Plotseling Zelfbesef.