No One at Home
Who is the one that comes and goes? Just as a wave can appear separate from the ocean, we can appear separate from Oneness. Oneness is not the one that comes and goes. Remove the one that comes and goes, and Oneness shall be realized by no one.
At what time does Oneness occur? My watch stopped the other day at 10:15 am, British Summer Time. Looking at the watch, I became fascinated. The longer I gazed, the more it became apparent that time had not stopped – there simply was no time! There is just this: not a moment, not a time, not a place, but simply what is. It came to mind that time is simply a measurement we use to create and sustain the “story of me,” providing a framework so it can be told, verified and validated. Humans have been sharing stories since the beginning. When the illusory nature of time is realized, the one that comes and goes will go, and what is realized by no one is simply This.
There is Oneness and there is the story of Oneness. Oneness is infinite space, silence and stillness from which all things arise and fall. The Story of Oneness is the story of an experience or understanding of seeking. It is the story of an event not of this moment or place. It is a world of projected memory or imagination which serves only to reinforce the duality of subject and object. It casts Oneness as something to be had by someone, at another time or place, in this way or that. But Oneness is beyond the words of man.
Our extraordinary human experience is a collection of illusory movements and measurements projected by mind and thought to create a glorious felt experiential reality. And all the time, this is known by no one.
The self is other. Around 18 months of age, a child begins to perceive a separate self with a unique identity – a “me.” This me appears real and separate from the rest of the world. This self perceives non-self: other things and people. It then claims ownership of some of these, and calls them “mine”: my family, my house, my school, my money, my feelings, my future, my life. All this creates the appearance of a separate, linear existence.
But almost immediately this self perceives a lack, and begins to seek the peace, connection, wholeness and love it once felt. Initially, it tries to regain this through material possessions, achievements, relationships or adventures. Later, the seeking may become more sophisticated, turning toward spiritual wisdom and experience.
But the separate self, the person, can only see self and other. This is accepted as a fundamental truth and supports myriad other beliefs and positions. Until this premise is questioned, the peace, joy and love sought will always appear somewhere other than here, always out of reach.
The truth is that the one you refer to as “me,” “I” or “myself” is itself actually “other.” You are not who you think you are. You experience who you are through knowledge and thought, and yet this self cannot be located or pinned down. It is purely a created sense of self, an awareness of self. So who is this who is aware of your self?
The sense of self and other is a simple transitory creation of beliefs, thoughts and experiences that are all arising within Oneness, like dust swirling in a windstorm creating the illusion of something real. You have created a self that is other than Oneness. There is no self and other – only Self and other. Thus, you are the ultimate “other.”
The realization that you are “other” and not “self” is the key to the door. It is the gateless gate, the one thing going on. Oneness is already here. It always has been here. And it can be known and realized by no one. Welcome Home.
Ian Selby is a student of The Living Method. He lives in the UK.