Notes on the Journey

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

"I" Do Not Exist

In my last posting, I wrote about the loss of the markers in my life that had previously defined me.  I also wrote about the possibility that no new markers would show up, and I'm beginning to think that that is more the probability than not.  It is actually my hope.  Because the markers are limitations that hold me prisoner to myself...in the small sense.

Today, I read something in "Mind Beyond Death" by Dzogchen Ponlop, that has moved me somewhat out of the need for further markers, or to think that there's any definition of who I am.  I'm going to quote it here:

"Ultimately, what we call 'life' is just an illusion of continuity--a succession of moments, a stream of thoughts, emotions and memories, which we feel is our possession.  And therefore we, too, spring into existence, as the possessors of that continuity.  However, upon examination, we discover that that continuity is dreamlike, illusory.  It is not a continuous or substantial reality.  It consists of single moments, which arise, dissolve and arise again, like waves on an ocean.  Therefore, this 'I' arises and dissolves in each moment as well.  It does not continue from one moment to the next.  The 'I' of one moment dissolves, and is gone.  The 'I' of the next moment arises afresh.  These two 'I's cannot be said to be the same or different, yet they are identified by conceptual mind as a single, continuous self:  'Yes, this is me..."

I was so grateful to read this, just at this moment, when who I am anymore is in question.  The idea of not holding on to any concepts of who I think I am is so relieving.  To die to each passing moment and to be reborn in the one that follows is so freeing.  I don't need to know who I am in any kind of mental, conceptual way.  This leaves the whole scope of being and experience open to me each and every moment.  There is no, "I don't do that" or "I do that" or "I'm that" or "I'm not that."  There's just being, pure and simple.  No preconceptions, no concepts or ideas about should or shouldn't being based on who I think I am.  The only continuity is the flow of Life itself, but who I am within it can and does change in every moment.

I suddenly feel free to allow each day to show up however it does and to respond to what shows up without the overlay of thinking I'm anything specific within it.  To drop the illusion that I am or need to be anything other than alive and present takes away expectation and judgment, takes it out of the realm of mind and into the realm of pure experience.  The mind is always trying to make sense of things and set up relativities and conistencies and categories.  When we exist in the realm of mind, we base what we're experiencing on what has gone before...we make judgments, we come to conclusions, we have expectations of how things should or shouldn't happen.  But, when we let the realm of mind drop away, along with all the inherent illusions it harbors, then we are open to the purity of whatever is happening as it happens.

I'm not saying, "Don't tether the camels."  But, what I'm discovering is that there is a way of being in the world that is about receiving each and every moment in its purity.  That I don't need to hold myself, or anyone else, to anything that has gone before.  I'm not defined by past experiences and external events and the perceptions of others, I'm not defined by anything.  Because I'm more than any definition is able to capture.  This developing awareness has freedom at the center of it, and I'm very excited about where it's taking me.  And, it not only takes me into freedom, it allows me to release everyone I know from any concepts of who I hold them to be.  Everyone is free to rebirth themselves in each and every moment.

Wow.

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