Not the Body, Not the Mind, Not the Emotions (#37)
Before we discuss who your Real Self is, we must understand who you are not:
You are not your body
You are not your mind
You are not your emotions
Here's why: Your body was first simply one cell that began dividing. Then you were a fetus, then a baby, a toddler, a child, a teen, a young adult, middle-aged and finally old. That means you have never been consistently in just one type of body over the long term. But even in any given moment, your atomic and sub-atomic composition is in a never-ending changing mode. Every inhalation brings trillions of atoms into your body and with every exhale, trillions leave. You have never been your body. Your body has never been a stable thing that you could call your own and possess for any given amount of time and yet you have maintained an identification with your body. When you think it looks good, you feel good. If someone says your body doesn't look right in their eyes, you get depressed. You constantly seek ways to stimulate the sense receptors in your body in ways that you have judged to be pleasant, but you have never found a lasting pleasurable sensation from these sense sensations. For instance, you seek to find pleasure from your taste buds and get and eat a chocolate ice cream cone. The sensation seems wonderful but soon after, you find you want another sense sensation and the chocolate sensation was at best just a momentary good thing and at worst, the cause of a stomach ache, a dripped-on or soiled garment, or even a weight gain. So, why do you chase after visual, tactile, sonar, odorous and tasty excitement and pleasure? Because you have an inate subconscious understanding that bliss is your eternal abode. But trying to experience bliss through the body is a mistake, a misunderstanding, an act of ignorance of your Real Identity.
When you have a stomach ache, you cannot enjoy anything in life. But what happens when you fall asleep? Your pain and discomfort are gone. As a matter of fact, you may even dream that you are eating and enjoying chocolate ice cream and your stomach never felt better. From this example, it is clear that we think we are our body only when our mind is attached to it.
We are also not our mind or emotions. This can be demonstrated by observing them for any amount of time. It will quickly become apparent that they change constantly. One moment, we are thinking of one subject and in a blink, we are thinking about something else. This is true even when we are meditating and trying to be one-pointed. Let's say we are meditating about water and are reviewing everything we know about water. Our inner sound track may go something like, "Water is fluid. It fills the objects that hold it. When you freeze it, it turns to ice." Now here comes a typical diversion -- "Ice is in ice cream. Boy, Ben and Jerry make good chocolate ice cream. I know they sell it at the 7-11 down the street ... etc." And there you are -- well away from your goal of meditating on water and in your car heading for the 7-11 to begin the process of acquiring another stomach ache.
Your emotions are changeable. One minute you're feeling quite happy and the next you see a commercial on T.V. that implies that your will stink if you don't use one particular brand of deodarant and then you get depressed because you have been using another brand and now fear everyone will reject you, etc.
So, because the body, mind, and emotions are constantly changing and thus can't be said to be the permanent you, who are you? You are the consciousness that can witness your body, mind, and emotions in action. This is your Real Self. Please appreciate what good news this is -- you are not limited to your sense perceptions, your thoughts, or your feelings. You are the infinite awareness. The more you identify yourself with the Inner Witness, the freer you are and the more potential you have to control your body, mind, and emotions. You can act instead of react. This freedom is far greater a wealth than all the gold in the world, for if you had all the gold in the world, you would instantly begin worrying that you would lose it. By not attaching yourself to anything that can be lost, like your body, mind, or emotions, you cease being a reactive slave and begin being at Peace, for your Real Self, your Witnessing Pure Consciousness is infinite, eternal, blissful Peace.
Meditating on the reality of not being the body, mind, or emotions has brought Truth, Consciousness, and Bliss to practioners for thousands of years. You need not sit in any particular pose or breathe in any specific pattern. Any time is the right time to do this illuminating meditation. Your heart has been yearning for this Wisdom. Filling your mind with these transcendental concepts is certainly more beneficial than worrying about egotistical desires or rehashing the past or fantasizing about the future. Try it, you'll love it and live happily ever after.