Dec 1, 2019
As a child, I was taught by my parents to believe in the imaginary person called Santa Claus. I never questioned this, why would I? I trusted my parent’s word. I would wait up every Christmas Eve in the chance that I might catch a glimpse of my generous friend, who for some unknown reason always seemed to elude me. Exhausted, I’d finally fall asleep and wake later to find the proof of his visit, wrapped gifts carefully placed under the tree and half eaten cookies which I had placed out for him.
I defended him to other children who claimed he didn’t exist, because there was no doubt in my mind. That was, until one day, while playing hide-and-go-seek, I stumbled across all the wrapped presents and holiday paraphernalia in my parents closet. The validity of this person was immediately called into question, and realized to have been a constructed idea that my parents were behind. I confronted my parents about these findings, and yet they still attempted to reason them away. However, the story for me was over, I could not unsee what had been discovered, that Santa had only ever lived in my imagination.
Though most have grown out of such fanciful fairytale characters, there is yet one that the majority of mankind still believe in without question. “And who is that?”, you might ask. It is the imaginary person referred to as ‘I’.
This ‘I’ is just another Santa Claus, another fairy tale character, who lives only in the imagination and survives through its own elusiveness. It’s never even thought to question the validity of such a character, for the mind has established this, and in the innocence and ignorance of a child, we have blindly accepted whatever the mind has told us is true. And thus, the I-idea which the mind fabricated is proliferated and bought into without question.
But is it true? What evidence is there to support the idea that thoughts, which come of their own accord, and whom refer to an ‘I’, is actually a person speaking this mental narration? Where is the person behind those words? Have you ever seen this one, independently of words? Have you ever considered that the words which are appearing are no more than noise being produced by the mind? That there is no one there who speaks them? More importantly, who are you who notice these I-thoughts arising?
With a little investigation, a little looking, the story upon which the ‘I’ is built is quickly found to be resting on shaky ground and will easily collapse upon scrutiny. Opening up doubt as to its validity is the beginning of an honest inquiry.
Once it’s seen that thoughts have been creating a character, the ‘I’, whom we have believed all of our lives to be, the story is over. It will be seen that the ‘I’ character only ever lived in imagination. The mind will try to reason these findings away, but once it has been investigated and discovered as false, there is no going back to belief in fairytales over the fundamental and experiential truth of our being, which gloriously shines on forever untouched by the stories of the mind.