Who are you?

your name?

your place of birth?

your job?

your things?

your friends?

your thoughts?

your feelings?

your experiences?

The honest answer is, you don’t know.

And in the broadest, most loving sense, you don’t have to know.

You are you.

That’s enough.

But, you’ll say: “Life gets in the way [of me finding out]”.

Or, to be more precise, your ego — that whiny, annoying voice — gets in the way.

And you know when the ego comes on stage because your heart closes and life feels sh*t.

Contrast this with a walk in nature, silence or sitting still.

Life feels vast, indescribable in fact.

(It always amazes me how many people wax lyrical about their environs. But it’s not the locus that’s stunning — which of course it always is — but instead, your mind has gone quiet and you’re free to enjoy the pure, joyful awareness.)

I suspect, at some stage, you’ll rush off seeking another fix for your disjointed ‘self’. Mostly, though, you’ll add to the problem by weighing yourself down with a slew of techniques. Sometimes they work, but nearly always you drop back into your thinking self, where you’re caught in one trigger after another.

Does that mean I’m offering you a fix?

No.

How can I get you to fix something that doesn’t need fixing? If there’s an answer though, it’s for you to get out the way, or as Thomas Merton said: “Stand on your own two feet, brother [and sister].”

I accept that if you’re coming at this from a logical perspective, none of this makes sense. But, dig a little deeper and ask yourself, who or what is it that witnesses your thoughts?

Presence?

Awareness?

Love?

I suppose what I’m inviting is for you to allow the feelings and thoughts to arise but not to pay heed to them. If you must dig around, then simply come back to the question:

What is there when there is no thinking?

I know that’s not immediately helpful when that’s the very thing that’s throwing you out of kilter, but it’s always a choice whether you react with anger, sadness or frustration to the feeling state. In other words, there comes a point where you need to reprogramme your neurolinguistics and in that way, you won’t be bound to your old, conditioned self.

But, in the final analysis, you don’t need any words to express that sense of aliveness that life offers. Therefore, when you next consider the question, “Who am I?”, you might realise that you’re as much your thinking self as all the other senses as well as the very presence that sits behind everything you experience.