It nearly took my breath away the first time I discovered how deeply programmed the brain seems to be. It’s appears to be hijacking attention by spinning a story of what is unfolding each moment as life.
I watched my thoughts for years in meditation (believing these thougthts were personal to a me at the center of perceiving. I could begin seeing how quickly the brain jumps to label what is appearing and adding commentary to each raw moment, hiding the perfect silent brilliance of what is naturally and always present.
I initially seem to have occasional glimpses of the peacefulness that is always present when unfiltered sensations of life simply arise as they do. Usually the occasional glimpses of complete and utter peace were fleeting and quickly vanished when the commentary of the brain rushed forward to analyze the source of the quietness. And of course, as soon at thinking begins, quietness ends.
I slowly began to see the labels created by the brain were also creating the interpretation of each moment. I noticed the raw moment, and then there is the brain’s label or evaluation of that moment.
In my experience, the tendency of the brain to comment on each moment is what caused suffering as I believed I was at the center of perception as a personal me. When I attempted to ignore the brain’s commentary, I noticed slowly, over decades, all sense of personal suffering seemed to disappear. Yes, it’s easier said than done and I feel this Grand Mystery works beyond the brains’s limited understanding.
The brain has great trouble looking beyond “itself” to see its patterns and tendencies. Practicing self-awareness cam seem to reveal how much we are ensnared by the brain constantly naming, labeling, claiming, and commenting on the raw sensations of every moment. And the bottom line is there is no personal me, no sense of time and space, and there is only this fleeting appearance that remains a great Mystery, regardless of what and how I attempt to write about it.