Who am I?

by James

Under the Bodhi Tree, by Janaka Stagnaro

Under the Bodhi Tree, by Janaka Stagnaro

I am very new to meditation. I meditated this morning asking the question - who am I? I was sitting upright in my seat, but felt like I was a foetus curled up and shaking in fear (although physically I'm sure I wasn't shaking); fear was literally all I could feel, my hands were placed upon each knee, my knees felt enormous. My meditation ended and I was left with a realisation that I have lived my life from a point of fear and this must change. Has anyone had a similar experience?


Dear James,

You say that you have come to the realization that you have lived from a point of fear. This is true of everyone until they realize who they really are. Most people live by listening to the ego, that part of the mind that says that one is separate from everything, especially from God, All That Is. To exist with such a notion of course is fearful because there is always something "out there" to get you. The only "safety" of the ego is enshrouding yourself in definitions of who you are. When one starts to meditate one begins to go beyond all these definitions that were limited and comfortable--at least comfortable to the ego who likes to be in charge by maintaining the illusion of separation. This plummeting into your depth is very threatening to the ego, because when you find out who you really are the ego will be no more and you will identify with the universal I AM.

So when you start having sensations during your meditations, or when fearful thoughts arise, just ask yourself, to whom do these arise? Then answer, To me. Who am I? Keep up that question. It is the ultimate question that will lead to your awareness of your freedom. Your true Self, that which is timeless and unlimited, can never experience fear as there is nothing out there, and never the limitations of definitions. Keep up your questioning until your mind is quiet.

Meditating is not easy as we are not educated to train our minds. Our minds are allowed to run rampant. So be gentle with yourself and don't judge your progress. Allow what comes in your meditation to come and just witness it. And remember that all is well.


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