Over the last months I have explored various forms of inquiries. The most recent one – which is also an traditional Buddhist inquiry – is to explore what is as composites.
First, I look for what currently appears most as “I”. For me, it is a sense of “center” in the throath and lower part of the head.
Then, I explore what is there in my immediate experience. I find sensations (a sense of warmth, density, slight movements), feelings (of a center, density), slight emotions (anxiety somewhere in space), thoughts in space somehow associated with this area, attention and focus on this area (as a searchlight), and the stainless awareness it all unfolds within and as.
Then, I explore if there is an “I” in any of these segments or any of their combinations. None of these appears as an “I”, nor does their combination appear as an “I”. The initial sense of an “I” here dissolves when I explore it this way. It vanishes as a mirage. What is left is just what is – all these segments which can be discerned out, as they are, with no “I” anywhere.
Doing this over and over, with interest and sincerity, there is a gradual familiarity with this. It becomes more and more clear that there really is no “I”. What first was an idea becomes an immediate and tangible realization, as real as anything in the world of phenomena.
Repeated looking reveals no “I”, and a growing familiarity with it. What at first seemed so outrageous and counterintuitive, and against anything we have ever been taught in our culture, gradually becomes more clear. It seems undeniable. There really is no “I” anywhere here.
There is just what is, as a field with no center anywhere, and still functionally connected with this human self.
And it is all just happening. There is no doer, only the doing. No seer, only the seeing. No experiencer, only the experiencing.