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Lojong 3.) Analyze the unborn nature of awareness

2. Formal Practice (2-10)

3) Analyze the unborn nature of awareness. (There is no "Me" independent of momentary perception)

This saying reminds us of the true nature of that which we perceive to be the self.  Because our experiences seem so clearly consistent with Philosophical Dualism, we rarely question if it could be another way.  How can we know the actual nature of the self?  Unfortunately, the most correct answer is that we cannot know with certainty. That is why the saying suggests we analyze the [unborn] nature of awareness.  It is through meditation, mindfulness, and rational analysis that it becomes clear the self is probably an illusion.  Whether I know the answer to this question is less important than the opportunity for release from clinging (suffering) that comes to me when I allow the possibility that my self is just another illusion.  (And that my insistance that I am "a separate independently existing non-physical self" is merely another of the things I accept in unawareness, like dreaming.)

If you would like to know more about how it is possible that you are not your thoughts, consider reading Eckhart Tolle's The Power of Now.  Another good resource on how you can be released from suffering by developing a more accurate understanding of the true nature of thinking and language is Acceptance and Committment Therapy (ACT)

The Summer, 2009 issue of Buddhadharma has a nice article, Beyond No-Self - based on the soon to be released book by the Dali Lama (trans. Thupten Jinpa).  I will post links when these become available.

Believe nothing, no matter where you read it or who has said it, not even if I have said it; unless it agrees with your own reason and your own common sense.

The Buddha

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