The separate or personal self that is seeking is the hinderance or roadblock to uncovering what is already present. It’s a simple case of mistaken identity.
There simply is no separate self or personal identity, only appearances of impersonal awareness appearing as what is. The personal self is an illusion. There are no separate selves, no separate objects, only a seamless, edgeless, uncaused and spontaneously appearing aware presence as everythingness in an edgeless and illusory appearance. But why do I feel separate, you might ask…
We’ve noticed the intimacy and sense of an immediate and unique presence since we were small children, and we’ve been taught that this presence is personal and specific to us because this is what most believe to be true.
Small children are always in touch with the impersonal awareness they already are.
As older children and adults, we’ve simply forgotten what we are, and/or we’ve never explored our identity and only accepted what others have told us.
The concept of “I” as a separate or personal being with a name is a learned concept taught to babies and small children by well-meaning parents, family, teachers, neighbors and society.
Most humans follow the leader and embrace the beliefs and customs passed down from authority figures through the ages.
Those who question the deeper nature of identity, beingness, awareness and consciousness, are usually few and far between, and for those few, it’s often a catastrophic event that launches the deep inner journey to examine reality and self through self inquiry
Most understand the state of unconsciousness found in dreamless sleep, while under anesthesia, or in a coma, as the state of being unaware and unable to process sensory inputs from the body. There is no sense of a personal or separate self to be experienced in dreamless sleep, coma, or unconsciousness.
On the other hand, during periods of dreaming while sleeping, the brain/ mind is active and the sense of being a watcher or observer is experienced. Occasionally, lucid dreaming occurs when the sense of beingness as a dreamer senses that dreaming is occurring. Upon waking each morning, ordinary awareness arises and we take this awareness or consciousness to originate within and belong to a specific person, “me.”
Considering we spend at least one third of life unconscious, it appears this routine period of unconsciousness each 24 hours is critical to health and wellbeing. Scientists and physicians validate this need for deep restorative sleep. Is the source of the unconscious state during dreamless sleeping the same source that experiences dreaming sleep and the conscious state in waking hours? Where is the personal “I” in dreamless sleep? How does the personal “I” arise when waking from sleep?
If you explore these questions deeply you will eventually discover the personal self is an illusion, a concept or complex set of beliefs reinforced by the widely-held beliefs and concepts of time and location. When the beliefs in the passage of time (past/future) is dissolved, the beliefs holding together the personal self eventually dissolve as well.
Beliefs are mental constructions, shadows on the wall, the stories created and claimed by the mind. There is only aware presence appearing, but the brain/mind must objectify all appearances. Seeking arises spontaneously, to no one in particular, as fleeting appearances in the vast, empty, uncaused and spontaneous appearances of what simply is.