Our human identity is not wrong, it’s just incomplete

For me, it’s convenient to talk about who I am as distinct from what I am.

WHO AND WHAT I AM

As who I am, I am this human self in the world. I am the one others see me as and what my passport tells me I am. It’s the role I need to learn to play in order to function in the world.

As what I am, I am capacity for the world as it appears to me. I am what the world, to me, happens within and as. This is what I more fundamentally am in my own first-person experience.

DOES IT MEAN ONE IS WRONG AND THE OTHER IS CORRECT?

Not really. Each one has validity, it’s just a different kind of validity in each case.

In the world and to most others, I am this human self. That’s an assumption that works reasonably well, although if I take myself as exclusively this, it leaves a lot out and that comes with some inherent discomfort.

To me, in my own immediate noticing, I am capacity for the world and what the world happens within and as. This is my own private experience, and it’s very likely shared by all conscious beings – all consciousnesses functioning through and as a being – whether they notice or not.

We are very likely all capacity for our world, and what the world to us happens within and as. We are the oneness the world, as it appears to us, happens within and as. And it’s that way whether we notice or not.

THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN WHO AND WHAT I AM

What’s the relationship between the two?

Obviously, the distinction is mind-made. It’s created by our mental representations. It’s not there in reality, or at least not as a clear dividing line with one thing on one side and the other on the other side.

To me, it’s all happening within and as what I am. My human self and any ideas I have about my human self happens within and as what I am.

That doesn’t make it wrong. It just means that if I exclusively take myself as my human self, a lot is left out. It’s just a part of a bigger picture.

It’s fine if that’s what I do, although it comes with the discomfort mentioned above. It’s somewhat out of alignment with reality as I am already living it. Whether I notice or not, I am already living my nature as oneness, so pretending I am not inevitably creates discomfort.

HOW CAN WE EXPLORE THIS FOR OURSELVES?

If the oneness I am is pretending to be exclusively this human self, and it has a curiosity to discover what’s more real, how can I go about it?

The essence is to discern our mental representations – of ourselves and what we are and life in general – from our immediate noticing. What’s here in my mental representations? How is it to notice that it is a mental representation and not reality? What’s here in my immediate noticing? What am I more fundamentally in my immediate noticing?

And to do that, some structured guidance can be very helpful, including any number of inquiry approaches like the Headless experiments, The Big Mind process, The Work of Byron Katie, The Kiloby/Living Inquiries, traditional Buddhist sense field inquiries, and so on.

Basic meditation – to notice and allow what’s here, and notice it’s all already allowed and noticed – is also helpful. It helps me see that any and all content of experience comes and goes, including anything within the content of experience I take myself to be. And something does not come and go, and that’s something that’s not a thing, it’s what it all happens within and as. It’s the awakeness it’s all already happening within and as.


INITIAL NOTES

  • Our human identity is not wrong, it’s just incomplete
    • it’s not wrong that we are this human in the world
      • it’s just not the full picture
      • it’s the third person view
    • in our first-person view, we are something else

DRAFT

For me, it’s convenient to talk about who I am as distinct from what I am.

As who I am, I am this human self in the world. I am the one others see me as and what my passport tells me I am. It’s the role I need to learn to play in order to function in the world.

As what I am, I am capacity for the world as it appears to me. I am what the world, to me, happens within and as. This is what I more fundamentally am in my own first-person experience.

So what’s the relationship between the two?

Obviously, the distinction is mind-made. It’s created by our mental representations. It’s not there in reality, or at least not as a clear dividing line with one thing on one side and the other on the other side.

To me, it’s all happening within and as what I am. My human self and any ideas I have about my human self happens within and as what I am.

That doesn’t make it wrong. It just means that if I exclusively take myself as my human self, a lot is left out. It’s just a part of a bigger picture.

It’s fine if that’s what I do, but it does come with some inherent stress since it’s somewhat out of alignment with reality, with my reality as I am living it. Whether I notice or not, I am already living my nature as oneness, so pretending I am not that creates discomfort.

If the oneness I am is pretending to be exclusively this human self, and it has a curiosity to discover what’s more real, how can we go about it? The essence is to discern our mental representations – of ourselves and what we are and life in general – from our immediate noticing. What’s here in my mental representations? How is it to notice that it is a mental representation and not reality? What’s here in my immediate noticing? What am I more fundamentally in my immediate noticing?

And to do that, some structured guidance can be very helpful, including any number of inquiry approaches like the Headless experiments, The Big Mind process, The Work of Byron Katie, The Kiloby/Living Inquiries, traditional Buddhist sense field inquiries, and so on.

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