Once Born vs Twice Born: William James Philosophy

Once Born vs Twice Born: William James PhilosophyIf you’re having a tough time, you might be inspired by Williams James’ philosophy about once born vs twice born and how to be resilient.

William James, the philosopher, wrote about how he viewed the world as having two kinds of people:

James described Once-Born people as never wandering too far from the safety of who they thought they were.

Once Born (according to William James)

When a crisis arrives, it pushes Once Born people into a dark place –  where if they looked around, they might find hidden parts of themselves.

However, Once Born people never bother to flip those self-illumination switches.

They choose instead to remain sitting in the dark.

Twice Born (according to William James)

In contrast, Twice-Born people are folks who use a shake up in their outer world as an opportunity to wake up their inner world.

Twice Born people seek a more profound view on life  — and their purpose and potential in it.

Twice-Born people view crisis as an initiation by fire – to enter into a more conscious, more fulfilling way of living.

Once Born vs Twice Born: William James PhilosophyI have always loved James’ definition of Twice Born people.

I’ve strived to be a member of the Twice Born tribe.

Actually, I think by now I’m a member in the 20th Born Tribe!

After every challenge, I have always tried to use it as an opportunity to be re-born into someone wiser, stronger, happier.

After one particularly challenging time, I bought a journal.


I created pages for the next 12 months – describing how I envisioned each month unfolding in a joyful, peaceful way.

I made the absolute choice:

Neither bitterness nor cynicism were gonna be options.

If you’re going through a challenging time right now, buy yourself a journal.

Write in it how you envision the unexpected path you’re now on as leading you to a new, better life path.

Keep your eyes focused on finding this better future.

Soon you will discover yourself on a path to finding it!

You gotta faith it till you make it!


Think happier. Think calmer.

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