Noticing Sense of I as Ground *


One of my (irregular) practices is to be with whatever is experienced, for instance through asking myself can I be with what I am experiencing right now? Any content is OK, and whatever arises is something I can be with.

Of course, there is a duality here of I and Other, but this too can be included. The question can I be with what I am experiencing? becomes the starting point, and then even the sense of I can be included. There is a being with, a noticing, of this sense of I. Where it is located in space, what sensations and textures it seems to refer to.

And in this, there is the seeing of this sense of I as Ground as well. That too is part of the landscape of what is happening right now. That too arises within and as awareness.

There is no need to make this sense of I into and Other (!), there is no need to resist it, to try to make it go away. All that is needed is to notice it as arising within and as awareness, within and as Ground, as everything else happening.

There are many aspects to all of this, many ways of looking at it.

Being with and release from drama

First, by being with whatever is experiences, the struggle and resistance falls away. More precisely, it is included in what is being been with (!). The center of gravity shifts to the seeing of it all, and there is a disidentification with and release from the drama.

Allowing the content its own life, allowing the mud to sink to the bottom

At the same time, if we use the muddy water metaphor, the mud is allowed to sink to the bottom and reveal the clear water. As long as center of gravity is in the content, the drama, then everything continues to get stirred up, the mud fills all of the water. It is unclear, confused, muddled. When the center of gravity shifts into noticing the seeing of it, the content is allowed to live its own life and the mud sinks to the bottom, revealing the clear water – which was there all the time.

Including the sense of I

In being with whatever is experienced, we find ourselves as the seeing of it, as pure awareness, as Witness.

In this, there is a sense of timelessness. I am timeless, and that within and as time unfolds. There is also a sense of spacelessness, that within and as space unfolds.

There is no time, no past and future, yet also the conventional unfolding of time. Time unfolds within and as timelessness.

There is intimacy with everything arising, no separation, unity, oneness, yet also the conventional sense of space. Space unfolds within and as spacelessness.

At the same time, there may also be a sense of I floating around, variously placed on this human self (out of habit) and the seeing (it has to be placed somewhere, right?).

And this sense of I can be included. That too can be seen as arising within the world of phenomena, within space and time, arising within and as awareness. The sense of I becomes a part of the landscape of everything happening right now. That too is Ground manifesting as something. Although now noticed primarily as Ground, and secondarily as a sense of I. Its nature of Ground is in the foreground, its manifestation as a sense of I in the background.

Accident prone

As Richard Baker said, awakening is an accident, and practice makes us accident prone.

Noticing the sense of I as Ground is one way to make ourselves accident prone. We are just noticing what already is, what already is alive in immediate experience, what already is more true for us than trying to believe in ideas of I.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *