The recognition of our true nature of ever-present, unlimited Awareness is instantaneous or, more accurately, timeless. The realignment of our thoughts, feelings, activities, perceptions and relationships with this understanding, is endless. 

The Real And Only 'I' Of Presence

I feel like I am going around in circles trying to find out the source of the "I-Thought" which Ramana says is the self.

 

Dear Rupert, 

The part I am struggling with has to do with the “I-Thought” and seeking its source. I have been reading Ramana’s books and instruction to seek the source of the “I-Thought”. I feel like I am going around in circles trying to find out its source which Ramana says is the self. 

I am also struggling with is Nisargadatta Maharaj teachings of staying in the “I AM” and negating everything else (thoughts, feelings etc). My mind or I can’t stay in the “I AM”. I feel trapped when I start negating.

Your help will be highly appreciated. 

Cheers, 

Kamlesh

 

Dear Kamlesh,

Kamlesh: The part I am struggling with has to do with the “I-Thought” and seeking its source. I have been reading Ramana’s books and instruction to seek the source of the “I-Thought”. I feel like I am going around in circles trying to find out its source which Ramana says is the self

Rupert:  The ‘I’ thought is an object - a thought. 

Can the thought, “I’d like a cup of tea” seek its source? No! 

Can the thought “I am a separate entity” seek its source? No! 

The ‘I’ thought is simply that - the thought, “I am a separate entity.” So, the ‘I’ thought, being an object, cannot seek its source, any more than a table or chair can seek its source. 

So the question about the ‘I’ seeking its source is only valid as long as we believe that the ‘I’ is an entity that can choose, seek, do, think or decide etc. etc. 

If we believe that we are such a choosing, seeking, doing, thinking, deciding ‘I’ then it is true, the best thing we can do is to seek its source. 

However, when we do this, we discover that there is no such ‘I,’ cut off and independent from its apparently absent source. 

Imagine a street scene in a movie. Searching for the ‘I’ is like a character in the movie searching up and down the street for the screen. 

That is, the apparent ‘I’ (and all other apparent things) are already made out of the very thing that the imaginary ‘I’ is seeking. In other words the apparent ‘I’ it does not find its source, it dissolves in it. 

In other words, the apparent ‘I’ is already the real and only ‘I’ of Presence, but seemingly veiled by the belief in being something other than Presence. 

So in fact the imaginary ‘I’ doesn’t even dissolve in its source, because there is nothing there to begin with other than the real ‘I’ of Presence. 

When this is seen clearly all attempts to find the real ‘I’ cease spontaneously and the apparent ‘I’ stands revealed as the real and only ‘I.’ 

Kamlesh: I am also struggling with is Nisargadatta Maharaj teachings of staying in the ‘I am’ and negating everything else (thoughts, feelings etc). My mind or I can’t stay in the ‘I am.’ I feel trapped when I start negating. 

Rupert: You are quite right, the apparent ‘I’ cannot stay in the ‘I am.’ If ‘I am’ is conceived as something which can be stayed in or not, then such an ‘I am’ must be an object. At very best the apparent ‘I’ (that is, thought) might be trained to focus on an object called ‘I am.’ This would be a mental state. 

However, it is not necessary to focus on or stay in the ‘I am.’ Are you (whatever you are) not present now? The answer ‘Yes’ to that question comes from the certainty of your own being. In other words, you know that you are - I know that I am. 

In other words, ‘I am’ is already and always present. It is not a state. It is that in which all states appear and out of which they seem to be made. 

That is, it is already the Presence in all that seems to be present, such as a mind, body or world. 

We are always that, whether we recognise it or not. 

And when we seem not to know this, it is only because a thought has arisen which seemingly obscures the ‘I am’ that we intimately know ourselves to be, but in fact does not. 

See that clearly and remain as your Self. 

With love, 

Rupert