photo by the author
For almost a year now, I have been preoccupied (perhaps even obsessed) with the search to realize who ‘I’ really am, beneath the illusion of self, beneath the stories of life history, beyond ego, time and separateness. I have tried many practices, and come to appreciate that this realization must not require a lot of practice, just the capacity to see what really is.
I have been listening to this 2014 ‘meditation’ by Eckhart Tolle a lot over the past year. I think it is, for me, the way to that realization, possibly the most succinct and articulate explanation of this simple, infuriatingly elusive truth ever produced (at least from where I am coming from; my mind seems to work the way his does, and I find his terminology meaningful, coherent and accessible).
A feel I am so close. Every day (except when I get too discouraged) I sit outside and look at the natural beauty around me and listen, starting from the awareness and appreciation of external sense perceptions to try to move deeper to the awareness of the inner body/energy field, and then deeper still to the spacious awareness of true nature, totally present, here, now, as part of the universal consciousness of all life. But I’m stuck at the doorway.
I don’t ‘feel’ the inner body/energy field; I cannot sense it as real, beyond a conceptual level. And although I intellectually appreciate the goal of ‘being aware of being aware’, it is beyond my ability to realize it. My ego, my constant stream of habitual thoughts and propensity to (over-)analyze, perhaps my many fears (notably the fear of letting go), my long-reinforced neural pathways, my well-entrained pattern of blanking out when I get anxious or outside my comfort zone — all of these are blocking me, holding me back from taking the simple step through the doorway to realization.
I sense that this realization is the first, necessary step to the discovery of how to be and from there how to know what to do, that will inform how to best be of service to the world for what’s left of my life (and keep me healthy as I do so).
Perhaps I am banking too much on this intuition; it’s possible that this realization will never come. I’m not ready to concede that yet.
In the meantime, if I’m not writing much, or doing much of any perceived value, if I seem restless, impatient, distracted, indifferent, lazy or inattentive (and I do get the irony in that), that is why. I know that’s no excuse, and I’m sorry. It’s now or never for this.
This is my healing journey.