Wednesday, January 29, 2003

No I

So, what was happening to him, he wondered. Well, for the first time, in all these months perhaps, he had experienced a clarity while in the experience that had seemed to stay with him for the major part of that day and in fact, through a lot of today as well. This sense of no I. The loss of a true and permanent personal self. What did that mean, really? Well, it began while he was in the car, speeding down a highway, rolling hills and curving roads signifying motion in space and time. And there was the familiar urge to want to know where he was right now. He tried to picture the moment and identify what all he was experiencing. The road, the car, his own hands on the steering wheel, the breath in his body, cars zipping past or being pulled back as he strode ahead in his vehicle. And all through this he also began to become conscious of his own feelings, and his own thoughts and his own identity. He began to point at all the things that he could sense and feel and think about. Quickly they were labeled for what they were ‘My car’, ‘My Body’, ‘My journey’, ‘My thought about work’, ‘My thought about this thought process’, ‘My thought about the thought that I am thinking’, ‘My thought about myself’. Wait a minute, he said to ‘himself’. That is a thought too, right? This ‘myself’ that I feel, is that the ego, which really is just another thought? Perhaps so, but I can see that thought as well, so that Ego thought is also not myself. Well, then what about this witnessing presence that can see all these thoughts including the ego thought? Watch in silence and you will see all these thoughts and feelings and emotions as they are witnessed by this presence. But then, where is that ‘presence’ itself? Is that not a thought, as well? Is there a being that is the ‘witnessing presence’ that is sitting inside this body and accumulating all of these experiences and is that who I really am then?
Close, one would say. But when you come down to it, isn’t that too simply a concept? That there is a ‘presence’ inside that is taking all of this in? Well, what if there is nothing there. Let’s try to look at it from the other side, the man thought to himself. What if there is no presence? What then? Who is ‘experiencing’ in this moment? Let’s call that I something else. Yes, how about No-I? That is as good a name as any, he figured. Well, then this moment is being experienced by No-I. These people who are walking down the streets, the cars rolling by, the chatter in the café, the clackety-clack of his keyboard, are all being felt/sensed/experienced by No-I. And that No-I also sees and feels internal emotions and thoughts. And they are all there as they move through this time and space continuum. Constantly changing within this eternal Now. There’s a thought about tomorrow – that he has to go to the office in San Jose, No-I registered. And here comes another one, this time of the ego’s sense of self: those folks did not even look at me. They were kind of leery and suspicious of what it was that I was writing. Well, then that too went away. This is kind of like being here but not being here. Are these folks seeing and feeling what I am seeing and feeling? Why are they all looking at me so strangely? Am I behaving strangely?

All this was being registered by No-I. But you know what? There was No No-I.