The book is an introduction to practical humanity. It is the first part of two books, and the second one goes into detail defining our general mentality: consciousness, instinct, thought, emotions, etc.
This book, the introduction, explains what is needed to approach the subject of our'selves' accurately. It mainly expresses the importance of opening up your perspective and seeing that you don't see all that you can within a day to day social/external existence. It is meant to get the reader honestly considering their mentality/humanity, opposed to automatically accepting their surroundings, because that is most certainly what we are used to.
As for the cover, I want something simple yet catchy. I don't like those super busy book covers, and I am someone who likes being straight forward. I want someone to be able to look at it and understand how the image connects to the subject/title (The Introduction Of Self) in some way.
I have a couple ideas, but don't want the artist to think they have to be bound to them.
First I was thinking of a man, or the POV of a man, sitting on a rocky outcrop, looking out at an endless ocean. There is nothing but water but in the distance there is visible but blurry sliver of land. This image has to do with a story I made up in the prologue. There are two people on an island, until the man sees land where there 'wasn't any before'. It has to do with everything being relative, including our perspective, and that even everything we 'know for sure' can be wrong. This doesn't directly connect to the subject clearly, but a part of the book also has to do with letting go of or stepping away from your distractions, so I think it could be seen on both levels.
My other idea is of a person lifting a tarp over a cage. The person outside is clear and defined, but the lifted tarp shows a blurry/undefined version of them trapped within a cage. This relates to an analogy I use in the second book. It is basically saying that we keep half our true selves, our mentality, trapped within us by living almost purely subconsciously during our lives. It would have to clear that the two figures are the same person while keeping the one in the cage undefined, whether that means gray, blurry, shadowed or whatever.
I hope that helps, and feel free to contact me anytime and even come up with a new idea if it fits with my message/content.