posted in full on his website).
I share a shortened version here as I think it makes a really nice counterbalance and even antidote to my blog of yesterday.
All those characters (demons, goddesses, fires, blood, whatever) and me running all around…
That is quite a Story.
It’s good to realize that it’s all just part of the novel of my life:
The Novel of Life
When you read a novel, and you read about various characters, you may like some and not like others… —but you’re not finding your sense of self in them. You’re not referencing your self-worth by the characters in a novel or when you turn on the TV.
You just have your thoughts about them.
But imagine if you turned on your TV or you read a novel and you actually completely derived your sense of being and your sense of self from one of the characters.
Immediately your perspective is very different, isn’t it?
Now your perspective has gone from something that’s very vast to something that’s very limited… Sadly, that’s how most human beings spend their lives.
They have this little character in their mind called "me,"
and they’re actually viewing that “me” as personal when it’s not.
The “me” is very impersonal,
not meaning cold or distant,
but just meaning without inherent self nature, in the same way that when you read a book, the characters are without self nature.
They actually don’t exist outside of your imagination.
They don’t even exist in the book, because the book is just words.
And without someone reading the words and bringing it all alive within imagination, nothing even exists on the printed page.
It’s all within the reader, all the life.
When the Buddha talked about the realization of no-self,
he was talking about the self that’s an image in the mind being completely seen through.
And when there is no image of self, experience has nothing to bounce off of.
Everything just is as it is, because there's no secondary interpretation.
The one that’s interpreting is the one that’s in pain.
And that’s the one who suffers.
That’s the one who causes others to suffer. …
Am I wise? Am I stupid? Am I clumsy?
Am I courageous?
Am I enlightened about this?”
That’s the movement of consciousness reflecting on an image of itself that doesn’t actually exist. It’s always measuring each and every experience, and then believing in the interpretation of the experience rather than seeing
“Everything just is.”…
You start to see that the only thing that goes into resistance, a story, or an interpretation of what is—whatever it is—is this mind-created persona.
It's like a character in a novel.
When you read a novel, every character has a point of view.
It has beliefs. It has opinions. …
Our persona is literally this mind-created character that’s always making itself distinct.
So it always needs to evaluate everything against its preconceived idea…
You don’t have to destroy the character called “me” to wake up from it.
In fact, trying to destroy the character makes it very hard to wake up.
Because what’s trying to destroy the character? The character.
What’s judging the character? The character.
So you leave the character alone.
The character called you, just leave it alone.
Then it’s much easier for the awakening out of that perspective to happen.
You don’t lose the character; you just gain the whole novel of life.
It’s not like you lose anything. You just gain the whole book.
You gain the whole universe.
As Buddha would say, “Lose yourself, gain the universe.”
It’s not a bad deal. …
Wake up from your character, and then you see your self nature in all characters—
not just one, but all of them.