Often lately, when I think of the sense of self, I'm reminded, instead, not to think about “me” or “I,” and return my thoughts turn to a vision of a flow of light and lines and pushes and pulls between what is considered my body and the things around me. The feeling of being confined inside my head starts to drift off, and as often in meditation, I feel an expansion, as if I am part of much more while still being separate.
It’s a concept I like to toy with and explore. And one that is valuable in when practicing Thinking less like am the little pile of bones and muscle and blubber (Oh, too much blubber…) that comprises my body, nor am I the energy or feelings or even soul that resides within that body. Instead, I am lost in nowhere just part of the reactions – the play between these little lines that connect “me” to all other things.
I enjoy my logical mind because it gives me the play to ponder these things and consider them carefully question their meaning. But, with that very necessary logical mind, there is thinking and thought - actions created by reactions, and it is clear that this not where intuition (universal connection) lies. There is a very different moment just outside of logic that happens clearly and precisely lacking name or form. A spring of insight. It comes from emptiness and needs to be given form to interpret.
The mind then turns to interpret with words, colors, sounds, smells, feelings and all the different worldly senses that give rise to the “clairs” – clairvoyance, claircognizance, clairaudience, and so on. In this respect, all senses including “clairs” are illusions - necessary illusions to define our interactions with the world around us. How very Zen. But not very helpful, honestly, because what do you do with that?
Again, it’s one thing to use logic and try to math and science your way to answers, but weren’t the answers there just before you started thinking about them? A clear intuition comes without need for explanation. It happens feels real and you respond, without getting in your own way. There was a very wise man once. He created landscapes and forms from nothing but paint, brush, and canvas. With a few sweeping gestures – a mountain, a lake, some happy little trees, and happy little mistakes. Mistakes that weren’t mistakes at all. His mantra was so perfect in the philosophy behind the worlds he created, “Just let it happen, just let it happen.” Good ol’ Bob Ross.
I joke. But, think of the parallel with him and other creators. They gave form to something from nothing. So, isn’t nothing or void or emptiness or whatever words you use to describe it where I draw that feeling of certainty in the guidance I seek for myself and others? The clairvoyance, clairaudience, claircognizance – don’t they just interpret that in the “real?”
Where am "I" in all of that? So many have felt it, right? That moment without moment when suddenly the feeling of self dissipates and you almost echo and become wider, part of a whole. It’s a big feeling, until I say, “I am big.” You've then given words to it, a shape and form and shrink back to the size of you leaving a shivering dust speck full of doubt over what just moments ago felt natural and right and without obstacle. The vastness felt seconds before seems so expansive all I can say is, “I am little.”
It’s here intuition gets stuck. “I am.” I am big. I am little. I am worthy. I am worthless. I am right. I am wrong. I am.
I think it’s quite a lesson to draw from that I am at my clearest when I am “not.” Nothing is broken, and nothing needs to be fixed. But, I don’t think that means that “I” isn’t there. There’s just a better definition of it when I let go. I can just settle into “I” and live effortlessly in between the bigs and the littles. Then, in the immortal words of Bob Ross, “Just let it happen.” Then, when I need to hear something, it will be heard. When I need to say something, it'll be said. Wouldn't that be so simple just letting it happen? Isn't that the essence of what is sought by growing intuition?
Maybe Ross had some intuition hidden under that fro of his. Are there any mediums in the house?