Forms of identification and disidentification


A quick overview of some forms of identification and disidentification:

  • A polarized identification and disidentification with the field of form. Certain areas, such as this human self, is seen as a separate I, and the rest of the world, and awareness itself, is seen as Other. Identification is firmly within form itself, within content of awareness, and there is a sense of split within this field of form. This is the identification and disidentification that creates the whole (wonderful & terrible) drama of human life, when it is all taken as a drama of I and Other. It is also a mistaken identity.
  • Awakeness can awaken to itself, and to this field of awakeness and form as itself. Here, there is an identification with anything arising as awakeness itself, and a disidentification with anything arising as just temporary manifestations of awakeness itself. The center of gravity is within, and as, awakeness, and although anything arising is recognized as itself, it is also recognized as only surface ripples. If this is all, it is awake yet nonfunctional.
  • Within this awakening, there can still be a conventional identification with this human self. It is recognized as a vehicle for awakeness awake to itself, so it is “identified” with for only temporary and practical purposes, to allow it to function and orient in the world. This is similar to the first form of identification, only now it is free from any sense of separate I.
  • And then there is the identification and disidentification of parts of this human self. Some are actively owned and part of its daily repertoire, and some are disowned and not. And this human self can actively shift into the disowned parts, becoming more familiar with them, and bringing them into its daily repertoire, allowing for fluidity among a wider terrain of who it already is. This is the one that allows our human self to heal, mature and develop into the fuller richness of what it is and can be.

More in depth…

It is tricky to talk about identification and disidentification in the context of awakening, and also our human self deepening into itself.

Prior to Big Mind awakening to itself, the field of awakeness and form is filtered through a sense of I and Other. Certain things are identified with, such as anything associated with this human self, and other things are disidentified with, such as the rest of the world. The world is split into I and Other, into that which is identified with and that which is disidentified with.

(There are of course gray zones here, but these are not so important in this context. For instance, there may be more identification with certain sensations, for instance in the head area, and also more identification with certain beliefs and identities. And within the Other region, we may identify with parts of it as “we” and “us” and see other parts as “them”.)

When Big Mind awakens to itself, there is a release of any exclusive identification within the world of form. The whole sense of I and Other goes out of the field of awakeness and form. We can say that the polarized sense of identification and disidentification goes away, and what is left is a field awake to itself as itself.

It identifies with all of it as itself. Anything arising is recognized as awakeness itself. And it disidentifies with all of it, since the “center of gravity” is recognized to be in awakeness itself, and its temporary form manifestations are just temporary. They come and go, and all have the “one taste” of awakeness itself. Awakeness is inherently and already free from all of it.

So before Big Mind awakens to itself, there is a polarized identification/disidentification. Some parts are taken as “I” and other parts as “Other”. After Big Mind awakens to itself, this is released and there is an equal identification (as awakeness itself) and disidentification (as temporary manifestations of awakeness) of anything arising.

At the same time, there is of course a knowing and awareness of a special connection with this particular human self, which now functions as a vehicle to Big Mind noticing itself. So in that sense, there is an identification with this human self in a conventional sense, although it is also clearly seen to be inherently absent of any separate “I”. There is no more or less “I” in this human self than in anything else arising. It is all temporary manifestations of awakeness itself. This form of identification is recognized to have only temporary and practical value, to help this human self orient and function in the world.

At our human level, there is yet another form of identification and disidentification. Our human self can be quite familiar with some identities, qualities and regions of itself, and less familiar with other identities, qualities and regions. Whether Big Mind is awake to itself or not, there is this form of identification and disidentification in the life of our human self.

Before awakening, the familiar regions are what this sense of a separate self is anchored in, and the split seems real and substantial. I am this, not that. After awakening, everything is recognized as awakeness itself, yet this human self is still familiar with certain areas of itself and not other, and some are part of its active repertoire and other are not.

We can also say that some parts of this human self are actively owned and other are disowned. Some are actively known and shifted into in daily life. And there is less familiarity with other parts, they are not part of the daily repertoire of our human self.

So this human self can then shift into these disowned parts, becoming more familiar with them, bring them into its daily repertoire, and find a flow within more of what it already is. It can actively identify with certain areas of itself, to bring them into its daily lived life.

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