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“I noticed this, I noticed that I had missed the most significant thing about stillness. And I notice that most people that I meet also miss the most significant thing about stillness. The most significant thing about stillness isn’t that there’s just the experience, kinesthetic, psychological sense of stillness. The most amazing thing about stillness is you lose your whole self. Your whole identity is only in thought. Your world view is just thought. All the ways we define each other, it’s just thought. And thought can stop for five seconds. And those five seconds all that disappears. And if you see it, you sense it. You can start to sense that all that can disappear, and yet, what ever you are still remains.

So clearly, thought can stop and you remain, then you can’t be a thought. So you can’t be what you think about yourself. The world can’t be what you think about it. Isn’t that amazing? I’m always surprised how people are terrified by this. The world can not, by the very nature of how reality works, the world can not be what you think about it. (laughs) If you really feel that it’s unimaginably liberating. If you’re thinking about it, it’s terrible. ‘Oh God, the world isn’t what I think about it?’ Of course not, it couldn’t be, those are just thoughts. ‘Oh what if I switch thoughts?’ It couldn’t be that, right?

It’s like switching religions you know, you go from a Buddhist to Jewish and Christian and Hindu and dabble in this, and you know. You can become all of these things, but they’re never what you are. They never were what you are. They couldn’t be what you are.

It amazes me, sometimes people will hear that I have a Buddhist background and they will say, ‘He’s a Buddhist.’ (laughs) And I think, how’s it possible? How’s it possible for anybody to believe that? How is it possible for a human being to believe they are a Buddhist or a Christian or a … How do we get away with that without laughing ourselves absolutely silly? How is it possible that we fall for a concept so easily? How is it that we limit ourselves down so narrowly? How is it we then do the religion such a grave disservice? Because it is a grave dis-service to identify with them. Then we can’t use them. Then we’re just used by them. Then we’ve just become another phony identity with a spiritual name. Then we haven’t even used them well.

So this significance of being still. Of seeing that you are not anything that you think yourself to be. And yet the question can still be there, ‘What am I?’ But you can’t be anything you can think yourself to be. ‘Well, what can I be? ‘If anything I think about is just another thought, then what could I be?’ Good question, eh. Find the answer to that and we call you awakened. But this awakening is the most simple thing, cause anybody who awakens, one of the first things that they realize is that they were, all the time, the very reality they were chasing. Anybody who’s ever awoken, that’s what they know, that they are exactly what they were seeking. No wonder they couldn’t find themselves, because they were looking everywhere else.”

~ Adyashanti

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