Who is 'me'?
--by Toni Packer (Dec 05, 2004)
A somber day, isn't it? Dark, cloudy, cool, moist and windy. Amazing, this whole affair of "the weather!" We call it "weather," but what is it really? Wind. Rain. Clouds slowly parting. Not the words spoken about it, but just this darkening, blowing, pounding, wetting, and then lightening up, blue sky appearing amidst darkness, and sunshine sparkling on wet grasses and leaves. In a little while there'll be frost, snow and ice-covers. And then warming again, melting, oozing water everywhere. On an early spring day the dirt road sparkles with streams of wet silver. So - what is "weather" other than this incessant change of earthly conditions and all the human thoughts, feelings, and undertakings influenced by it? Like and dislike. Depression and elation. Creation and destruction. An ongoing, ever changing stream of happenings abiding nowhere. No entity "weather" to be found except in thinking and talking about it.
Now - is there such an entity as "me," "I," "myself?" Or is it just like the "weather" - an ongoing, ever changing stream of ideas, images, memories, projections, likes and dislikes, creations and destructions, which thought keeps calling "I," "me," "Toni," and thereby solidifying what is evanescent? What am I really, truly, and what do I think and believe I am? Are we interested in exploring this amazing affair of "myself" from moment to moment? [...]
Most human beings take it totally for granted that I am "me," and that "me" is this body, this mind, this knowledge and sense about myself which so obviously feels separate from other people. The language in which we talk to ourselves and to each other inevitably implies separate "me's," and "you's" all the time. All of us talk "I" and "you" talk, we think it, write it, read it, and dream it with rarely any pause. There is incessant reinforcement of the sense of "I," "me," separate from others. Isolated. Insulated. Not understood. How is one to come upon the truth if separation is taken so much for granted, feels so common sense?
The difficulty is not insurmountable. Wholeness, true being, is here all the time, like the sun behind the clouds. Daylight is here in spite of cloud cover.