self-un·​der·​stand·​ing | \ ˌself-ˌən-dər-ˈstan-diŋ How to pronounce self-understanding (audio) \
plural self-understandings

Definition of self-understanding

: understanding of oneself: such as
a : knowledge or understanding of one's own capabilities, character, feelings, or motivations : self-knowledge human self-understanding gaining a greater sense of self-understanding … while I can't choose what I feel, I do have sway over how I understand my feelings and that self-understanding can modify and sculpt those feelings …— Gordon Marino
b : one's conception of oneself especially as part of a group Central to our national self-understanding is the idea that hard work pays off.Las Vegas Sun … the attempt to put religion into a box fails to give adequate regard to the self-understanding of those religious groups …— Eduardo M. Penalver … the studies … show that adoptive parents play an important role in supporting their children's ethnic and cultural self-understanding.— Anndee Hochman … people should be free to reach their own self-understandings when it comes their status as victims (or non-victims).— Brian D. Earp

First Known Use of self-understanding

1608, in the meaning defined above

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The first known use of self-understanding was in 1608

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Cite this Entry

“Self-understanding.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 12 Aug. 2020.

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