What is a thought?
What is thought first-hand, to the thinker?
Firstly, is there a thinker outside of the thought?
None can be found.
Thought assumes one to exist, but this assumption is embedded in the thought.
So, no thinker to be found by thought outside of thought.
Secondly, how quickly does a thought-moment arise and depart?
It can't be calculated.
The instant thought (with the assumed thinker) intends to measure thought, it has changed.
This changingness is the only constant for thought.
Thus, there is no static thinker remaining anywhere, and no static thought existing.
Therefore, the supposed "world" that thought makes, is not there, nor the thinker.
Just the utterly transitory flash of an instantaneously perceived and departed thought-moment.
Thirdly, there is no need to "get rid of thought" or "be devoid of thought."
Because thought vanishes on its own. It is vanishing this instant, even as it seemingly registers.
What does thought register with?
Only with thought.
Does one thought really touch another?
There is no touching point that can be found, because there is no other thought to a thought, only the present thought-
Thus, it is simply a matter of awareness, of clarity.
Each thought-moment is "self-liberating" so to say.
Natural awareness is ...
One's everyday mind is Tao - meaning, nothing needs to be added on to present being-aware.
Yet the thinking goes on as long as ‘we/I-my’ are here – it can’t be stopped, or can it? Perhaps temporarily, but its permanent cessation – can that be achieved by ‘us’? As long as ‘I-my’ is here, the thinking goes on – that’s what it is… and it doesn’t appear to have the power to decide whether to be or not to be.
There is the thought that thought has continuity, that thought goes on.
But how real is this affirmation by thought of its own continuity?
It has no reality, no substantiality.
It is simply the artificial bias involved with assuming a separated thinker from the thought (which could be assessing continuity and duration for thought).
In other words, the feeling and notion that thought continues is merely the content of a thought that arises and dissolves
now, in immediacy.
There is nothing to it, so to speak.
The contents of thought are imagined (imaged) for an instant.
That is all.
The self and world constructed in thought cannot be any more substantial than the thought itself.
Ok, so what’s wrong with thinking? From the angle of what is, the phenomenon of expression/awareness and interdependence/unity of subject and object – all this – just is….. including thought and memory etc.
Thought requires memory and memory requires thought.
They are the same process of imagery, of imagining, of constructing self and world through re-presentation.
Apart from thought, there is no separable subject from object and object from subject.
And thought itself is simply an imagined self-reflexive world that arises and dissolves momentarily.
So the ‘problem’ comes back to the preference for happiness. We like some thoughts and label them ‘good’, and don’t like others, which we label ‘bad’. Hey-ho, duality rules!
Again, this comes back to the imagined thinker assumed to be separate from the thought.
The doer imagined as separate from the done-to.
The knower imagined as separate from the knowing.
The chooser imagined as apart from the chosen.
Thus, the preference for something good as opposed to something bad can't be any more real than the chooser. If the thinker has no existence separate from the arising thought, than the thinker's preferences for one thought over another are utterly illusory.
And illusion is not a problem.
Once it is understood as illusion.
‘I-my’ is fine with thoughts until it feels threatened and starts to get worried. Then what? Keep on thinking, hoping this way to be prepared for any eventuality? Stop or control these miserable thoughts that are bringing us down, right here in the present?
So this is where faith or surrender to a concept of god or our pure, untouchable Self comes in – some form of ‘spiritual practice’ or philosophy like Advaita, for instance, -attempting to step back from identity with thought… all in the quest for happiness! Hey-ho, duality still rules!
Is not surrender an idea that thought has, as much as faith, god, self or Self?
All of it is imaginary and dissolves when the thought content dissolves (which is now).
The feeling of feeling threatened.
Certainly this is a key to understanding how duality seems to have a reality.
The experience of threat involves anxiety.
The feeling of anxiety involves a wish for security.
The wish for security involves wanting to establish an existence that can be protected.
The roots of duality are in experiences of abuse, trauma, neglect, and isolation, along with the
The seeing into this, within these "one's own" experience, is the very understanding that the split of thinker from thought is an
attempt to "deal with" anxiety.
That it is an attempt to form an existence that can be protected.
The unflinchingly awareness sees this dynamic at work in the contents of thought, imagined though they may be.
And thus the understanding that no protection is possible.
That the wish to be able to split a thinker from the thought, an experiencer from the experience (of anxiety and threat, of loss and lack), is futile.
No security is available.
And here, now, is freedom.
The apperception of the very transience of thought is the self-liberation of and from phenomena.
What is this holy grail of ‘enlightenment’ we think will solve all our problems and give us eternal happiness? Certainly not a function of thinking or thought, yet somehow not in conflict with thinking or whatever appears to be here, including this undeniable sense of ‘I- my’… including, but not, this ding-dong idea of preferences…
What thought imagines as enlightenment is a special state for the thinker/experiencer to be in.
So, it's a dead end.
Another example of a futile attempt to gain permanence and security.
Lots of self-serving talk about bliss and ultimate peace.
This is not to suggest that there is nothing to this.
On the contrary, "liberation," "freedom" is what is.
The talk about it, ideation about it, becomes viewed as a refuge for the thinker, the experiencer.
And spiritual programs of all kinds are only too glad to perpetuate this myth through all kinds of subterfuges, idealizations (of special teachers), rituals, practices, chants, temples, and concepts that involve continuity (for the experiencer). After countless incarnations you will blah, blah, blah. Or, you will live with God forever.
What's the difference?
A promise of continuity for the thinker/experiencer.
And it is in the "opposite direction" that truth is found.
By the courage to be honestly aware of transience, emptiness (no ground, no self-centered being to anything), and simply, silently, be aware as is.
This is the fact.
So, truth is understood simply by not attempting to avoid the fact - not attempting to avoid what actually is.
Then nothing, even though there is ‘nothing’ else to be aware of when there is nothing and no-one to be aware of ‘nothing’. Yet without the acceptance of nothing, duality rules!
Nothing in terms of good or bad, even being or not being – no meaning or substantiality – therefore, nothing.
So nothing rules!
Then what is left for what remains of an ‘I-my’ – other to enjoy the game as it is, its pleasure and pain, being the game – yet marveling at its resolution, moment to moment?
Yes, there is nothing else.
It is a marvelous game - infinite in scope.
Worlds within worlds, beginnings within endings, spaces within space.
There has to be something of an ‘I-my’ and its memory here,otherwise we’d be bumping into things all day.
There is thought-construction. Not because there has to be.
There is thought because there doesn't have to be anything.
Thus, there isn't anything. There is the thought that something has been (or not).
Good to interact with you as thought imaginarily construes content from another's thought.
While that other who is thinking already appears as if a content of the present thought.
So, you are in my dream, and I am in yours.
And this mutual appearance is a wonderful laugh.