We begin to find Self by persistently dropping our false identifications with our memories, mind, body, emotions and thoughts. Whatever we can see is not the seer. We have a body, thoughts and emotions, but we are not our body, thoughts and emotions. We need to stop ourselves from responding automatically to our own thoughts and others’ thoughts.
How can a sense slave enjoy the world? Its subtle flavours escape him while he grovels in primal mud – Paramahansa Yogananda
Strong identification points to an aspect of our shadow and once this shadow aspect is integrated, the identification should becomeless compelling. At this point, it is useful to consciously let it go.
Any emotion, sensation, thought or experience that disturbs us is one we have identified with. The ultimate resolution of the disturbance is to simply dis-identify from it. Every time we identify with a problem, anxiety, mental state, memory, desire, physical sensation or emotion, we put ourselves in bondage. We enter into limitation, fear, constriction and ultimately death. It is natural for creative imagination to want to identify itself with its creations. We can stop this misidentification at any moment by removing our attention from it – Ken Wilber
Take a step back
Because we project the world, we can change it, but we must cease identifying ourselves with it. We need to go beyond because the clinging keeps it in place. Pain and pleasure are mere disturbances of the senses. If we treat them as such, there will be only bliss.
Desires fulfilled breed more desires. As long as we identify ourselves with our moods, feelings and desires, we will experience distress and depression. When we seek ourselves in desires, we become their servant. Taking a step back from our desires and being content with what comes by itself is a very fruitful state. It may seem sterile and empty, but it is the satisfaction of desires that breeds misery. Freedom from desires is bliss.
We need to loosen our fixation. In the Castaneda series, Don Juan comments on Carlos’s proliferous notetaking. ‘When you worry about what to do with your sheets, you are focussing a very dangerous part of yourself on them. All of us have that dangerous side, that fixation. The stronger we become, the more deadly that side is. The recommendation for warriors is not to have any material things on which to focus their power. They need to focus it on the spirit, not on trivial shields. Your notes are your shield. They will not let you live in peace.’
To return to Self, is to step aside from all limitations and problems and then finally to step out of them. Our Self is God, divine, transcendent. It leads us from bondage to liberation, from enchantment to awakening, from time to eternity, from death to immortality – Ken Wilber
As we start dropping our mind, it will rebel as it gradually loses its grip. It will grasp at straws to try keep us engaged. We need to be vigilant. As the mind loses predominance over our day-to-day affairs, what we think we are, dies. Gradually, the real I, Self, comes to life until all bonds are broken, all delusions and attachments end, and life becomes supremely concentrated in the present moment.
We extricate ourselves from our minds by focussing on and staying in the Now. ‘Wake up, wake up, you’re dreaming. Deal with what is in front of you please.’ We wake up into the Working Mind. Whenever we exit the here and now for the thinking mind, we lose consciousness. We become sleepwalkers. Will we be present in this moment or do we choose to be in the world of our own minds? When our attention moves into the Now, there is alertness, clarity, simplicity and no room for problem-making. There is just this moment as it is. Everything seems to wake up when I wake up.
The stronger the thought and emotion, the more deeply we go into the here and now. Just like in meditation, we continually bring our wandering attention back to the present, we do the same as we go about our daily business. We feel what we are feeling without mentalizing it and make allowances for ourselves based on that. We devote all our energies to the task at hand and so open the way for inspirations to come to us.
Attention! Here and Now – Eckart Tolle
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