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The TV experiment

Here is something I have found useful just to undertand why it is so hard to know if you are looking at yourself. Try to make this experiment:

Sit down in front of your television set (TV turned off) and look at the black screen. It is easy to see, it is not of much interest, it does not change. Try and look at it for a while and notice how long it takes before your attention starts to wander to more lively objects.

Then turn on the TV. Look at the changing impressions that comes to you from the screen. Then try to look at the screen, not at all that which is appearing on the screen, but at the screen itself, just the screen. Is it easy?

Strangely enough, you are looking at the screen all the time, but it is hard to get a glimpse of that which you are looking at.

This is also how it is when you try to look at yourself. You are looking at yourself all the time, but because of all that is coming and going on you, which are thoughts and sensations, it is hard to get a glimpse of you, although you you know you are there all the time! Like with the screen, you don't go away just because something else is taking the attention.

So when you are trying to look at you, you are looking at you, but you have a hard time getting a distinct, clear glimpse of you. It is not possible to look at anything else than you, since everything is coming and going on/in you as the permanent background for absolutely all that is coming an going.

I hope this is helpful.

With love,

Caspar

 

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