When we first hear them, the teachings of non-self can arouse confusion or even fear. We might fear that non-self means the loss of our self, as if we were going to die. But the psychology of non-self is quite different. In practice, we don’t have to change or get rid of anything. We merely learn to see through the false ideas of our self. We discover that we can let go of the limited sense of self, that grasping and identification are optional. This process of identification happens all the time. The Indian guru with whom I studied, Sri Nisargadatta used to laugh, “You identify with everything so easily, with your body, your thoughts, your opinions, your roles and so you suffer. I have released all identification.” He would explain by holding up his hand. “Look how my thumb and forefinger touch. When I identify with my forefinger I am the feeler and the thumb the object that I experience. Reverse the identification and I am the thumb, feeling this forefinger as an object. I find that somehow by shifting the focus of attention I become the very thing I look at . . . I call this capacity of entering other focal points of consciousness love. You may give it any name you like. Love says ‘I am everything.’ Wisdom says ‘I am nothing’. Between these two my life flows.” Our uniqueness remains, but without self-centered grasping and fear. We discover that our identity is more tentative, fluid like a river, each moment born anew. Wisdom says we are nothing. Love says we are everything. Between these two our life flows. ~Jack Kornfield
there was never a time when the call was not in your heart…..forgive the places where hope is thin and the day is long……
inquiry for today~ how do you pray? for whom do you love? who do you remember in the deep dark of despair? come back to love…….
I want to write about faith,
about the way the moon rises
over cold snow, night after night,
faithful even as it fades from fullness,
slowly becoming that last curving and impossible
sliver of light before the final darkness.
But I have no faith myself,
I refuse it the smallest entry.
Let this then, my small poem,
like a new moon, slender and barely open,
be the first prayer that opens me to faith.