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I watched a video on YouTube in which you say...

Hi John,

I watched a video on YouTube in which you say, "taste your sense of being", or something to that effect, and I just want to ask you 1 or 2 questions regarding it.

I want to make sure "I am doing it right".

There is a hum or vibration in my body and there is also a sense of existence which I can't give any description or property of. Is this what you mean?

Every since watching the video last night my mind has silenced right down. My attention is inwards on my sense of being.

How do I recognise myself if I don't have any quality?

If I stay it the realm of "tasting my own sense of existence", will self-recognition just happen?


Thanks for the videos :-

Actually, you can't do it wrong

Actually, you can't do it wrong

Actually, you can't do it wrong.

Consider this: what I am suggesting that you do is to try with all your might to bring the beam of your attention inward to touch the you in you. Sometimes I say to taste what it feels like to be you, but what it feels like to be you is you.

There can be no better word to describe what I want you to look at than you, and more developed descriptions such as 'a hum or vibration', 'a sense of existence without charteristics', even 'lacking in any quality' are all steps away from the simple radical self-evident undeniable presence of you that I want you to touch with your conscious attention.

These efforts at description are not bad, and engaging in them cannot hurt you or keep you from succeeding, but neither are they of any use. After all, what I want you to look at is you; who better than you could know where and how to do that?

The main idea I want to get across is that you should see if you can look at yourself directly, just for a moment that will be so fleeting that you may not even notice that it has happened. This is precisely because you are so ordinary, so lacking in qualities, and so profoundly uninteresting to conscious attention. Active, moving, conscious attention has evolved primarily to keep you safe from danger and capable of taking advantage of any passing opportunity; it exists to see and follow phenomena that move, have color, make noise and otherwise call attention to themselves.

So far as I can see, the only confiming sign that that first contact has happened is that, if it has, your attention will continue to turn inward from time to time--no matter what opinion you may hold regarding whether you are or are not succeeding.

Since the outcome of this looking is not the appearance of something new, like 'self-recognition', or 'realization', or the transformation or transcendence of ordinary life, or the sweeping away of confusion and the arrival of permanent peace and clarity, but is the disappearance of the murmur of dissatisfaction and anxiety that you now barely notice, it may take some time for the reality of what has happened to sink in.

Turns out that when that whisper of dissatisfaction and fear of life finally is gone, life turns out to be a deeply interesting and wild wonder of arising and unfolding that speaks for itself and needs no special understanding or insight to behold.

Self-recognition cannot be something that will take place, self-recognition is already and always here--how else do you know that you are at all?

Thank you for writing,



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