I haven’t repeated this for a while – well, a few days – I call it the ’round of experience’.
Take a look at the present moment. Just relax and look at what is. There is the world around you – sights, sounds, smells. There is your body and your mind – you can see most of your body, sense your thoughts and feelings. There are bodily sensations – notice them all now – you’ll find a plethora of sensations going on from head to toe. There is the sense of being the body and the mind, the person, along with the knowledge that you are separate from the world around you. All of these appearances – the world, the body, the mind, the sense of identity, the knowledge of being nothing but the body-mind – appear in and as the present moment. It is the round of experience – all that is being known right here, right now – and you cannot be that which is known, because you necessarily stand apart from that as the knowing of it. You are aware of the present moment, which includes the first-person perspective experience of being a person in a world. But all that is known, the present moment, the round of experience, of this immersive first-person experience, is nothing but the knowing of it.
You can remove the experience from the knowing, but you can’t remove the knowing from the experience – yes?
There is nothing but the knowing of experience, the awareness of presence – so what are you? What is the knowing ‘I’ that knows the moment-to-moment knowledge that says ‘I am, I am, I am’, that I am present, that I exist?
I used to find it challenging to hold this knowledge ‘I am’ – I am and I know that I am, and the ‘I’ that I am, is that which knows – and when I could abide there, I’d find it even more challenging while walking the streets. I’d be so absorbed in being the thing that was walking through the world, and so I found it to be powerful to practice to see that movement, that walking the streets, as simply another appearance in the round. It was the immersive experience of being a person walking around in the world, appearing in and as the present, as the sense ‘I am’. Then I took it to the hardest and darkest of times and places – that perfect stillness of what is – and repeated again and again.
Life is a powerful illusion, but hey, I stand apart from that as the knowing ‘I’, and the round of experience, including all that appears within and as that, is nothing but the knowing of that experience, nothing but the knowing ‘I’ that I am – the underlying reality, the eternal unborn, undying Absolute.
It’s a great thing to get your head around – what are you really seeing? What is the state of things as they actually are? What if I look again at this present moment with fresh eyes, and then go for a walk? What if I stand apart from the hardest and darkest of times and places as the pure knowing of them?