More and more as I’ve been investigating my own experience I repeatedly arrive at a place of understanding where my perception of the ‘I’ that I am in reality and the way all of this experience is the shape consciousness is taking is exactly my experience of what a dream is. I’ve had this sense for some time that dreams are a kind of clue I’ve left for myself; a dream is me telling me what’s really going on.
A dream is an experience that happens within my mind. It has no reality outside the confines of my mind/imagination. It occurs over time, though that’s distorted from my ‘normal’ experience of time. Space appears to exist within the dream but from my awake state I know there is no space. In the dream I am always the main character but I’m not always me. I’m often a different personality than I recognize myself to be here in ‘reality.’ However, this ‘I’ that’s always present, that has no age, that’s not male or female, is equally present in my dreams. The same sense of I-ness I experience ‘here’ I experience ‘there.’ Whatever personality I possess in a particular dream it’s always ‘me’ behind-the-scenes. Within the dream there’s always a scene in space and usually other characters along with me in that scene. I don’t remember ever seeing my own body but I do see everyone else’s. The scene always has other objects but mostly I only remember being aware of other things when they ‘matter’ to the dream. Regardless of what I imagine I see within a dream there’s nothing actually ‘there’ in the way I perceive things to be ‘here’ in my waking state. There are no three dimensional, independently existing objects occupying a 3 dimensional space. There isn’t any ‘thing’ there!
This logically leads me back to see that all that I’m experiencing within the dream is the shape my consciousness or imagination or awareness is taking. I am never physically there seeing a physical scene through physical eyes. The very experience of seeing is the shape consciousness is taking as the experience I’m having. The I that is ever present, the exact same I that is present here in this ‘reality,’ is present and that which is ‘seeing’ in the dream, the witness. ‘Seeing’ is the shape of the experience and a mind turns that into a me and a not me, eyes in a me seeing a you out there. There is no me and my eyes, there is no you and out there. There is a single shape of awareness as the seer and that which is seen. This is a single scene occurring as an experience which my mind interprets as 10,000 things. Whatever I’m experiencing as the dream is the shape my consciousness is taking as a single experience.
The really incredible part of this is that it isn’t just that consciousness is creating a scene which is seen but that seeing and seen are a single thing. It isn’t creating a me that sees a that. Me and that are a single experience. In exactly the same way as my hand touching a wall is a single sensation of hand/wall experienced within consciousness rather than a hand and wall the same is true of the dream. I am not a seer seeing. Seeing is all there is. There is no seen. There is only seeing occurring and the ‘I’ that is the ever present witness is what experiences the seeing.
This still isn’t quite it, though. In saying the ‘I’ is the witness I’m still creating a subject and an object. I don’t think that’s correct. As Spira would teach, it’s a provisional understanding but once grasped must be discarded as well. Ultimately there is only a single something (here words become less and less able to describe the indescribable). ‘I’ is not the witness to a that but rather to itself. There isn’t an ‘I’ perceiving a that. Rather this ‘I’ that I know myself to be yet can’t turn around and see is inseparable from that which is experienced. I think through my mind that there is an I which perceives a that. Yet when I ‘see’ I realize that ‘I’ am the very seeing. There is no separation between this me that is seeing and that which is seen or experienced. I am the very experience I illusorily perceive to be a me and a that.
There is a placeless place of awareness where I realize all that I experience is experienced. No matter what it is I perceive to be experienced, a sound, a taste, a touch, a smell or something I see that which perceives those experiences always perceives them in the same ‘place’ of awareness. As an imagined physical entity I conceptualize that this physical presence is experiencing that physical presence in a single point in my brain. However I never actually experience any of that. ‘I’ experience thinking, sensing and perceiving. I don’t experience brain. Brain is a concept. My experience of each of these is experienced in exactly the same placeless place of awareness. I experience the presence of a body in exactly the same place as I experience ‘my’ thoughts. ‘I’ experience this keyboard in front of me in exactly the same place of awareness as I do my body and my thoughts. The entire thing is being experienced in one placeless place. My mind turns it into a me and a not me, a here and a not here.
As I contemplate and look deeper and deeper into my experience I find that I am the very experience I experience. There is not an I which perceives the experiences in that placeless place of awareness. The I that I experience is experienced in that very same placeless place. All that is ever experienced is all in that same place. The I that I perceive myself to be, the I that perceives all that I perceive to be not me is all being experienced in exactly the same ‘place.’ There is a single experience perceived. There is no distinction between the perceived and the perceiving. Perceiving is all there is.
All of this is a dream and dream is all there is. Dreamer and dream are one. Dreaming is all there is.