Trying vs. Unfolding

Small Mind

Small mind is the awareness that identifies itself with the patterns of the personality. It is the awareness that gets caught up in the likes and dislikes, the thoughts and ideas, of this particular personality.

When small mind tries to follow ethical rules, it is a precarious endeavor.

Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. When it works, it strengthens the self image and we can be with the experiences that come up. When it doesn’t, it weakens the self image and we resist the experiences that come up.


There is an inherent dissatisfaction in this process that nudges us to discover a new way of relating to the world. We see that it does not work as well as we would like. We may see that it is a rollercoaster ride dependent on the configuration between outer situations and inner conditioning. That it is dependent on external and somewhat arbitrary rules. That it induces arrogance, guilt, shame and more.


The main path into a different way of being is through awareness. When awareness becomes aware of itself, it unfolds.


From being blindly caught up with the processes of the personality, and blindly acting on them, there are more glimpses of awareness of how they unfold. And as there is more spacious awareness, we have more choice in how we relate to them.

Gradually, there is a growing sense of spacious awareness in which all the phenomena of the inner/outer world unfolds. The center of gravity expands from the phenomena themselves, to include awareness.

Big Mind

This is the deepening big mind, a spacious and clear awareness in which all phenomena unfolds.
There is space and overview, and there is no separation. Awareness and phenomena are a fluid and seamless whole.

We can more often be with whatever arises, unfolds and fades. And we can more consciously choose how to relate to it, how to act and live in the world.


In this process, there is typically a deepening…

  • Gratitude
    From being blindly caught up in the habitual likes/dislikes of the personality, there is a sense of overview and choice. We have a more aware choice in how we relate to the inner/outer world.

  • Humility
    From seeing that this body/personality is no different from any other. We are all parts of the same fluid seamless whole. All the patterns throughout the universe are mutually dependent, arise together, and are mutually conditioned.

  • Compassion
    This comes from seeing how we all get blindly caught up in the processes of the personality. Sometimes often or always, sometimes less so, but always with suffering as a consequence. And we also see how all qualities and characteristics we are aware of are both in the inner and the outer world. This personality is not special in that regard. It is all there. In both cases, we are in the same boat.

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