What are we in our own first-person experience? What do we find in immediate noticing? What do we find through logic?

What are we to ourselves, in our own first-person experience?

This is a question that, quite literally, is central to our existence.

We can explore it in two basic ways.

We can explore it in our own immediate noticing. To the extent we keep noticing and exploring how to live from this noticing, this can be profoundly transforming for what we take ourselves to be, our life in the world, and our human self.

We can also explore it through logic and thought. This, in itself, can be interesting. Although it’s not very transforming. And if we have a deeper interest, it can lead us to explore it in our own immediate noticing.

WHAT ARE WE IN OUR OWN FIRST-PERSON EXPERIENCE?

What are we to ourselves, in our own first-person experience? What do we find if set aside any thoughts and ideas about this, and look more directly?

Many of us may not know how to even start this exploration, so it’s helpful to have some structured pointers and a guide who is familiar with the terrain and guiding others in noticing.

The most direct and effective approaches I have found are the Headless experiments and the Big Mind process. These guide us in noticing what’s already here and in finding what we more fundamentally and already are in our own first-person experience.

What I find is that I am this human self in the world, in a conventional sense.

And more fundamentally, I am capacity for the world as it appears to me. And I am what the world, to me, happens within and as.

I am what this human self, the wider world, and any experience, happen within and as. And a thought may label this consciousness. It’s a rough pointer and works for some purposes.

Noticing this once may give me a kind of reference.

And it’s transformative to the extent I keep noticing it. Explore how to live from it. And invite more of my human self to align with this noticing. (Many parts of my human self and psyche are formed within and still operate from separation consciousness, so a part of this process is to learn how to invite these parts of me to align with oneness noticing itself.)

WHAT DO WE FIND WHEN WE EXAMINE IT THROUGH LOGIC?

We have all adopted a conscious worldview that tells us who we are in the world.

In this context, these worldviews don’t matter so much. (We may tell ourselves we most fundamentally are a physical human self and consciousness is somehow created by the biology. We may tell ourselves we are a soul. We may be a spark of some kind of universal Spirit. We may think of ourselves as having a soul or consciousness as some kind of appendage, without considering the specifics of how that may work. And so on.)

Seeing that aside, what are we to ourselves in our own first-person experience? Can we find something that’s simple and essential, and perhaps even so fundamental that it’s independent of these worldviews?

Here is a set of statements that, to me, make logical sense.

  • There is consciousness.
    • We experience something and that means there is consciousness.
  • There is content of consciousness.
    • Something is experienced and this is the content of consciousness.
    • This content typically consist of this human self, anything connected with this human self, and the wider world.
    • To us, whatever happens is within consciousness.
    • To us, this human self and the wider world happen within consciousness.
  • To ourselves, we are consciousness.
    • Even if we – in some objective and third-person sense – most fundamentally are a physical being of flesh and blood, to ourselves we have to be consciousness.
    • To ourselves, we have to be the consciousness that all our experiences happen within and as.
    • Whether we notice or not, we are consciousness and the consciousness the world – to us – happens within and as.
  • To us, the world happens as consciousness.
    • The wider world happens within and as consciousness.
    • This body and human self and anything associated with it happens within and as consciousness.
    • Any content of experience happens within and as the consciousness we are.
  • To us, we are oneness and the world happens within and as oneness.
    • To ourselves, as consciousness, we are a seamless whole and the world happens within and as this seamless whole.
    • Thoughts create imaginary lines within this oneness so we can orient and navigate.
  • Our nature is more fundamentally capacity.
    • We are capacity for the world as it appears to us.
    • We are capacity for all our experiences.
  • We can also take this a step further…
    • In many cases, we as consciousness take ourselves to most fundamentally be a separate self in the world. This is an experience created by and within the oneness we are, and it’s often quite functional although also inherently stressful. Although it’s not wrong in a conventional sense that we are this human self in the world, assuming that this is our most fundamental nature is out of alignment with our reality.
    • As oneness, we can notice ourselves as oneness and even learn to live from this noticing. This is typically a long process because of our previous habit of taking ourselves as most fundamentally a separate self.

This is just one way to outline it, and I suspect I’ll find a more clear and succinct way to do it at another time.

The essence is that, to ourselves, we have to be consciousness. To us, the world has to happen within and as consciousness. And to ourselves, we are inherently oneness and the world happens within and as this oneness.

This doesn’t say anything about our more “objective” nature or the nature of all of existence, and it’s relatively independent of worldviews. It may fit within a wide range of worldviews. This is all about what we are to ourselves in our own first-person experience.

NOT FOR EVERYONE

If this question is central to our existence, why is it not central to more people?

Most people have enough with their daily life. They may not be drawn to this exploration. They may not see it as important to them. They may not see any practical use for it. And so on. And that’s perfectly fine. Not everyone needs to collect stamps. Not everyone needs to be interested in this.

If it’s so logical, why is it not recognized logically by more people?

I am not sure. Perhaps they haven’t thought about it this way. Perhaps they are more interested in some “objective” third-person reality rather than our own first-person experience. Perhaps it’s not as logical as it appears to me?

If this is what we already are, why don’t more people (AKA onenesses) notice it?

Here too, I am not sure. Perhaps it’s because we live in a culture that doesn’t encourage this kind of exploration. We are trained to take ourselves as most fundamentally this human self in the world. And we are not trained to explore or prioritize our first-person experience.

A FEW MORE WORDS

This is just a brief outline, and there is a lot more to say about it.

For instance, there is a wide range of practices designed to help us notice our nature and live from this noticing, and to support this exploration.

Basic meditation helps us notice the always-changing nature of the content of our experience, which – in turn – helps us find ourselves as what it all happens within and as.

Heart-centered approaches help us shift our relationship with ourselves, others, and the world, and align more with the oneness nature of it all.

Some forms of inquiry help us explore any mental representations (thoughts, identities) we identify with and find a more conscious relationship with these, and it may even invite these identifications to soften or release.

Parts work help us get to know the different parts of us, relate to them more intentionally, and invite them to align more consciously with oneness. It can also, as in the Big Mind process, help us shift into noticing and finding ourselves as our nature.

Training more stable attention helps us with all of this and just about anything in our life.

Body-centered approaches help us relax and ground and train more stable attention.

Ethical guidelines help us notice when we are out of alignment with living from oneness.

Relationships, social engagement, and living in the world, and any reactivity and discomfort this brings up in us, help show us “what’s left”.


INITIAL OUTLINE

  • what are we in our own first-person experience
    • central to our existence, quite literally
    • can explore through thought or noticing
    • logically
      • no matter worldview
      • have to be consciousness to ourselves
      • and the world, to us, has to happen within and as consciousness, within and as what we are
      • is no other way that I can find, is inevitable
    • noticing
    • why not a central question for everone? why not so obvious to everyone?
      • why is this not a central question to everyone?
        • most people, enough to just live daily life, is not seen as so important
        • and is a central question to some
        • probably doesn’t make evolutionary sense if everyone had it as a central question, is a kind of natural division of labor among people
      • why not so obvious
        • seems obvious logically, but apparently not to everyone
        • either a mistake on my part
        • or most people don’t think about it logically and in an intellectual honest way
        • or don’t see it as important
      • why not noticed?
        • bc adopt patterns from evolution and culture/society
        • adopt what we see around us
        • becomes a habit of the mind-system, an attractor state, and takes quite a bit to shake it out of that state and into another where it can be more clearly noticed
      • …..

DRAFT FRAGMENTS

…..

And we can also explore it in our own immediate noticing.

We may think of ourselves as having a soul or consciousness as some kind of appendage, without considering exactly how that would work. And so on.

….

We can explore it in two basic ways. One is through logic and thought. Another is in our own immediate noticing.

…..

To me, this is a central question.

This is one of the most central questions in our existence.

Independent of all this, there is something unavoidable here if we think about it logically.

…..

This, in itself, can be interesting but it’s not transforming. And when we explore it in our own first-person experience, it can be profoundly transforming.

…..

And it’s transformative to the extent I keep noticing it. Explore how to live from it. And invite more of my human self to align with this noticing. (Many parts of my human self and psyche are formed within and still operate from separation consciousness, so a part of this process is to learn how to invite these parts of me to align with a conscious noticing of oneness.)

….

  1. There is consciousness. We experience something and that means there is consciousness.
  2. There is content of consciousness. This human self and the wider world and any experience happen within consciousness. To us, whatever happens, is within consciousness. To us, this human self and the wider world happen within consciousness.
  3. To ourselves, we are consciousness. Even if we – in some objective and third person sense – most fundamentally are a physical being of flesh and blood, to ourselves we have to be consciousness.
  4. To us, the world happens within and as consciousness. The wider world happens within and as consciousness. This body and human self and anything associated with it happens within and as consciousness. Any content of experience happens within and as the consciousness we are.
  5. To us, we are oneness and the world happens within and as oneness. Thoughts create imaginary lines within this oneness so we can orient and navigate. To ourselves, as consciousness, we are a seamless whole and the world happens within and as this seamless whole.
  6. Our nature is most fundamentally capacity. We are capacity for all our experiences. We are capacity for the world as it appears to us.
  7. We can also take this a step further…
  8. In many cases, we as consciousness take ourselves to most fundamentally be a separate self in the world. This is an experience created by and within the oneness we are, and it’s often quite functional although also inherently stressful.
  9. As oneness, we can notice ourselves as oneness and even learn to live from this noticing. This is typically a long process because of our previous habit of taking ourselves as most fundamentally a separate self.

…..

DRAFT

What are we to ourselves, in our own first-person experience?

This is a question that, quite literally, is central to our existence.

We can explore it in two basic ways. One is through logic and thought. And we can also explore it in our own immediate noticing.

WHAT ARE WE TO OURSELVES WHEN WE EXAMINE IT THROUGH LOGIC?

We have all adopted a conscious worldview that tells us who we are in the world.

For instance, we may tell ourselves we most fundamentally are a physical human self and consciousness is somehow created by the biology. We may tell ourselves we are a soul. We may be a spark of some kind of universal Spirit. We may think of ourselves as having a soul or consciousness as some kind of appendage, without considering the specifics of how that may work. And so on.

Seeing that aside, what are we to ourselves in our own first-person experience? Can we find something that’s simple and essential, and perhaps even so fundamental that it’s independent of these worldviews?

Here is a set of statements that, to me, make logical sense.

  • There is consciousness.
    • We experience something and that means there is consciousness.
  • There is content of consciousness.
    • Something is experienced and this is the content of consciousness.
    • This content typically consist of this human self, anything connected with this human self, and the wider world.
    • To us, whatever happens is within consciousness.
    • To us, this human self and the wider world happen within consciousness.
  • To ourselves, we are consciousness.
    • Even if we – in some objective and third-person sense – most fundamentally are a physical being of flesh and blood, to ourselves we have to be consciousness.
    • To ourselves, we have to be the consciousness that all our experiences happen within and as.
    • Whether we notice or not, we are consciousness and the consciousness the world – to us – happens within and as.
  • To us, the world happens as consciousness.
    • The wider world happens within and as consciousness.
    • This body and human self and anything associated with it happens within and as consciousness.
    • Any content of experience happens within and as the consciousness we are.
  • To us, we are oneness and the world happens within and as oneness.
    • To ourselves, as consciousness, we are a seamless whole and the world happens within and as this seamless whole.
    • Thoughts create imaginary lines within this oneness so we can orient and navigate.
  • Our nature is more fundamentally capacity.
    • We are capacity for the world as it appears to us.
    • We are capacity for all our experiences.
  • We can also take this a step further…
    • In many cases, we as consciousness take ourselves to most fundamentally be a separate self in the world. This is an experience created by and within the oneness we are, and it’s often quite functional although also inherently stressful. Although it’s not wrong in a conventional sense that we are this human self in the world, assuming that this is our most fundamental nature is out of alignment with our reality.
    • As oneness, we can notice ourselves as oneness and even learn to live from this noticing. This is typically a long process because of our previous habit of taking ourselves as most fundamentally a separate self.

This is just one way to outline it, and I suspect I’ll find a more clear and succinct way to do it at another time.

The essence is that, to ourselves, we have to be consciousness. To us, the world has to happen within and as consciousness. And to ourselves, we are inherently oneness and the world happens within and as this oneness.

This doesn’t say anything about our more “objective” nature or the nature of all of existence, and it’s relatively independent of worldviews. It may fit within a wide range of worldviews. This is all about what we are to ourselves in our own first-person experience.

Contemplating this within thought can be interesting but doesn’t do very much more for us. The next step – which is sometimes the first step – is to explore this in our own first-person experience and see what we find.

WHAT ARE WE TO OURSELVES IN OUR OWN FIRST-PERSON EXPERIENCE?

What do we find when we explore this in our own first-person experience?

Many of us may not know how to even start this exploration, so it’s helpful to have some structured pointers and a guide who is familiar with the terrain and guiding others in noticing.

The most direct and effective approaches I have found are the Headless experiments and the Big Mind process. These guide us in noticing what’s already here and in finding what we more fundamentally and already are in our own first-person experience.

What I find is that I am this human self in the world, in a conventional sense.

And more fundamentally, I am capacity for the world as it appears to me. And I am what the world, to me, happens within and as.

I am what this human self, the wider world, and any experience, happen within and as. And a thought may label this consciousness. It’s a rough pointer and works for some purposes.

Noticing this once may give me a kind of reference.

And it’s transformative to the extent I keep noticing it. Explore how to live from it. And invite more of my human self to align with this noticing. (Many parts of my human self and psyche are formed within and still operate from separation consciousness, so a part of this process is to learn how to invite these parts of me to align with oneness noticing itself.)

NOT FOR EVERYONE

If this question is central to our existence, why is it not central to more people?

Most people have enough with their daily life. They may not be drawn to this exploration. They may not see it as important to them. They may not see any practical use for it. And so on. And that’s perfectly fine. Not everyone needs to collect stamps. Not everyone needs to be interested in this.

If it’s so logical, why is it not recognized logically by more people?

I am not sure. Perhaps they haven’t thought about it this way. Perhaps they are more interested in some “objective” third-person reality rather than our own first-person experience. Perhaps it’s not as logical as it appears to me?

If this is what we already are, why don’t more people (AKA onenesses) notice it?

Here too, I am not sure. Perhaps it’s because we live in a culture that doesn’t encourage this kind of exploration. We are trained to take ourselves as most fundamentally this human self in the world. And we are not trained to explore or prioritize our first-person experience.

A FEW MORE WORDS

This is just a brief outline, and there is a lot more to say about it.

For instance, there is a wide range of practices designed to help us notice our nature and live from this noticing, and to support this exploration.

Basic meditation helps us notice the always-changing nature of the content of our experience, which – in turn – helps us find ourselves as what it all happens within and as.

Heart-centered approaches help us shift our relationship with ourselves, others, and the world, and align more with the oneness nature of it all.

Some forms of inquiry help us explore any mental representations (thoughts, identities) we identify with and find a more conscious relationship with these, and it may even invite these identifications to soften or release.

Parts work help us get to know the different parts of us, relate to them more intentionally, and invite them to align more consciously with oneness. It can also, as in the Big Mind process, help us shift into noticing and finding ourselves as our nature.

Training more stable attention helps us with all of this and just about anything in our life.

Body-centered approaches help us relax and ground and trains a more stable attention.

Ethical guidelines help us notice when we are out of alignment with living from oneness.

Relationships, social engagement, and living in the world, and any reactivity and discomfort this brings up in us, helps show us “what’s left”.

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