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The Daily Dharma – April 14, 2021

Oil painting of a woman seen from a distance through a round portal behind large carved, wooden doors in Suzhou, China.

Continuing from The Untethered Soul . . .

When you were Dorothy in the fifth grade play you weren’t five foot six, you were four foot six. So, which are you? Are you the four foot six person, or the five foot six person? Weren’t you in there when you were Dorothy? You told me you were. Aren’t you the one who had the experience of being Dorothy in the fifth grade play and is now having the experience of trying to answer my questions? Isn’t this the same you?

Perhaps we need to step back for a moment to ask some exploratory questions before returning to the core question. When you were ten years old, didn’t you look in the mirror and see a ten-year-od body? Wasn’t that the same you that now sees an adult body? What you looked at has changed; but what about you, the one who is looking? Isn’t there a continuity of being? Wasn’t it the same being that looked in the mirror throughout the years? You have to contemplate this very carefully. Here’s another question: When you go to sleep every night, do you dream? Who is it that dreams? What does it mean to dream? You answer, “Well, it’s like a motion picture plays in my mind and I watch it.” Who watches it? “I do!” The same “you” who looks in the mirror? Does the same “you” who is reading these words also look in the mirror and watch the dreams? When you awaken, you know you saw the dream. There is a continuity of conscious awareness of being. Ramana Maharshi was just asking some very simple questions . . . If you try to just give honest, intuit answers, you are simply going to say, “Me. It’s me. I’m in here experiencing all of this” That’s about the best answer you’ll have.

from The Untethered Soul

To be continued . . .

Image: Portal, Suzhou, China Painting Seamus Berkeley