How much of self is just habit?

December 26, 2013 § Leave a comment

Mask

How much of self is just habit?

A thought arises and, out of habit, I identify it as me, not me or a stray that is none of the above.  I encounter someone new and automatically respond in ways that I identify as “me”.  I tell myself stories, replaying them like a broken record.  All these habits, how long have they been going on?

Have I not been like a man who sees his foot jump when his knee is tapped and exclaims, “I am that!”

It is said that only after we’ve let go of the habitual self do we come to know how deluded we have been.  That the self we believed in is nothing but an illusion that masked our true nature.

Our true nature is completely beyond anything we could possible conceive.  It is not just the absence of any thing.  It is also the absence of that absence.  It is not just the absence of any existence.  It is the absence of non-existence, as well!

Where the western mind would call this nothingness, the Buddhists call it emptiness.  But even these descriptions create another mask to wear, another delusion.  In fact, even trying to drop the mask is yet another mask of one who drops illusion.

The more you think about finding your true nature, the more impossible and hopeless it becomes.  Every new thought, every new strategy, every new attempt only creates another mask.  Yet seekers of the way continue to search for a way to open the Door.  Never quite realizing that it is not the Key of Knowledge that opens the Door, but the empty space into which it is inserted.

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