Question: Have you ever understood yourself best only after destroying yourself?
Answer: I would refine your definition saying, that we can understand ourselves only when we annuled ourselves.
Due to our inherently egocentric, self-serving, self-justifying nature we can’t actually perceive the world as it is, neither can we get to know ourselves.
In order to acquire an objective, truthful viewpoint on reality we have to exit our inherently selfish, introverted bubbles. And this requires purposeful, methodical self-annulment in a special closed, mutually supportive, mutually complementing environment where everybody aims at this.
Our “true self” is a perfect, selfless, altruistic cogwheel that unconditionally serves others, facilitates perfection around itself.