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Defining "I am"

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posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 01:19 AM
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What are these levels that I think I've reached? Why do I have this sensation of a "level"? It's because I feel something has become me. Has entered me - or I entered it. It's a feedback loop propelled by an ordinary, yet extraordinary meaning. I am this thing. I am.

Something like the above would have made me sneer 5 years ago - I would repeat to my brother and imitate it in a condescending way. I - related - to it, as us monkey-like humans so shamelessly do, as if the word "I AM" was trite, dumb, insignificant.

It amazes me how disconnected we can be from the conveyed meaning content of a real interaction with another human. The other speaks - they say their words, but what do we hear? We hear our own emotional needs at the moment; we enact our typical comedic routine, feel those good emotions - or conversely, enact a surge in annoyance and irritability. The main thing is: we act like we really know the truth of things.

Now, 5 years later, I look upon myself in my present mind and wonder, what has changed? What has changed is my felt conviction of being 'held'; but by what? Who holds whom? Or what is held? I find myself related to myself with a burst of compassion; but yet a calm awareness lurks in the background, taking things in, mindful of the flow of it's breathing, of it's chest region.

My thinking mind derives its strength of conviction from the 'content' in that perception - in my sensing some 'strength' radiating from my heart region. I know I gain access to it by attending to the regulation of my breath; yet it's the feeling itself which I find myself becoming attuned to. Its from there, from the neurons (presumably) where I sense a sort of homeostatic organization, radiating outwards, like a sun, with my mind, above, attending to it.

But what is this mind above? As much as I like to think about a cosmic center in my heart region, My also plays a part, structuring, knowing, in awe of the design, of the form, of the colors and intensities - and the meanings they convey about the world. Within my being, I embody an odd relationship - ontological in nature, between a "perceiving screen", and a felt, interfaced-with reality. The one charges the other, feeling, acting as the conflagration in the background, giving the perceived concept an expressed luminescence in mind.

And ultimately, "I Am", really just gets to the point. If this world is as it is - and resisting its way produces these sorts of effects - and affects; then why suffer in resentment, in opposition, in anger? Why hold up a dispute; and to whom, exactly are you angry at? The question is posed this way because our brains are constructions over millions of years of biological evolution. The minds we have represent the self and the other as basic constructions. The outer world, the world of interactions, is represented within us at the most basic level: we talk to ourselves, as if we were someone other than the one who is talking.

We fail to take account of this habit when we speak and communicate. The imagined 'other', in all its ways, derives from our past interactions. Within us lies the worlds and words of other minds; in us, lies an imagined intentionality - an assumed orientation to the world, which is reflexively projected in our every act of perception. We relate to one another, and in the 'how' of how we relate, is expressed the forces that acted upon our development. Our behavior speaks about our past and the ways we've had to adapt to the world. In our every action, in our every presence, we can learn to know worlds of meaning, intimations, and whispers from the past.

The mind sustains itself in feedback loops. Just like whirlpools, they twirl. Like the dervishes. Like the milky way. The universe dances in circles, twirls in chemical feedbacks, social feedbacks, mental feedbacks. One reality pulls all things along these paths; and then, the paths lose their form, and what remains is all that there is. I am.




posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 01:48 AM
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a reply to: Astrocyte
And ain't it a gas to know it.



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 02:26 AM
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a reply to: Astrocyte

You know, really, all it is, is when, you simply can differentiate between what is apart of yourself, and what is outside of it.

A long time ago, a small monkey tribe would not really be at the level of awareness to bother with looking at their hands, to them, they are just like all the other hands that their cousins have. When they started to explore themselves, they could look at their "own" hand, and "say" to the other monkey, "see, my hand has different lines on it to yours" - and in that discovery could identify their hands compared to the hands of another.

When we reach much higher levels, we can even tell between thoughts - what you have figured out about certain things could be different to what somebody else has, so, therefore, "your" thought, originating from your brain, and "theirs" likely originating from their brain.

That is of course under the common assumption that thoughts originate in the brain.



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 03:58 AM
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a reply to: Astrocyte

Read what you wrote with interest. You made me think of several things one of which was when a lecturer patted me on the head and said "Remember life is cycles within cycles following throughout the cosmos."

The ancients thought of themselves not as an individual 'I', but as an intrinsic part of the whole of the planet with everything connected. They blended in with basically what was planetary will. If you got eaten by some horrid beast it was part of the planet's natural world etc.

Suddenly out popped the realisation we were separate entities with wills of our own. I suspect that is probably the meaning behind the Tower of Babel, which tells of man's major separation from something.

I think your 'I am' relates to something very basic actually and its when the umbilical chord is cut and suddenly 'I am" - no longer a baby dependant and living off my mother's body, its the time when my body takes over and I become a separate entity and evolve slowly through the process of self-realisation.

Its debatable whether that self-realisation has become marred with religious dogma which makes the fact the story of the Tower of Babel interesting, in that its in the bible claiming God decided to separate and destroy us e.g. making God our 'mother' figure with power over us. But that self-realisation of being an individual with our own instinctive values and needs gets stamped out of us by religious brainwashing especially during our formative years telling us what to believe, how to think and what to want - or not as the case may be.

Great thread.



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 08:06 AM
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The most fundamental conditioning is that of "I am," the basic sense of self-centeredness. This is the sense that there is a thinker who thinks thoughts and who somehow lives in our bodies. This is the illusion that we have location.
Quantum physicists agree that in the subatomic universe objects exist in quantum nonseparability. Quantum objects are not located, they are not separate. Once having acted on another object, the objects continue to be connected. This connectedness is unaffected by distance, because the connecting force does not move through space. Close and far are the same in this regard.
...

namaste



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 09:43 AM
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"Before Abraham was, I AM." (John 8:58)

I AM dwells beyond ego, personality, mental formulations, wants, and desires.

To 'Be', to 'Exist', to 'Experience', to 'Observe' in the state of Tathagata (one who comes and goes in the same way) is the same as 'I AM'.

When we fill in the blank after 'I AM', we depart from 'I AM-ness' and indulge in ego.... I AM human,... I AM an architect,... I AM happy,.... I AM this or that,....

We must be careful when attempting to define 'I AM', for once we define, 'I AM-ness' is replaced by the words, concepts, and definition itself.

Exodus 3:14, 'I AM THAT I AM', beyond and transcendent of all.



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 09:51 AM
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a reply to: Sahabi

I see, you don't want to define who you are, because you plan to become god?
I think it is very important to realise the own self. The limitations as well as the possibilities, or talents.
We are each just one grain of sand, not the whole mandala.



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 10:12 AM
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a reply to: Peeple

That is not at all what I am implying. To know and have gnosis of one's self is a major landmark of spirituality, philosophy, and science. I do not deter this path in the least.

"I AM" is an established concept. It's meaning varies slightly between metaphysical and religious disciplines, however, its transcendent and non-attached qualities are common.

The op appears to sway between ego and 'I AM'. The two are very different qualities. 'I AM' is the equanimity of infinite potential, whereas 'I am such and such' is finite limitation.

For the sake of my confusion, are we speaking of ego or 'I AM'?



edit on 11/2/15 by Sahabi because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 12:25 PM
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Our true nature might have the ability to tune into higher/lower forms to experience their experiences so defining I AM might be as futile as catching wind with ones hand. Is it not enough that I AM. Is it not the ego that wants to categorize everything.



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 12:40 PM
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originally posted by: Sahabi
"Before Abraham was, I AM." (John 8:58)

I AM dwells beyond ego, personality, mental formulations, wants, and desires.

To 'Be', to 'Exist', to 'Experience', to 'Observe' in the state of Tathagata (one who comes and goes in the same way) is the same as 'I AM'.

When we fill in the blank after 'I AM', we depart from 'I AM-ness' and indulge in ego.... I AM human,... I AM an architect,... I AM happy,.... I AM this or that,....

We must be careful when attempting to define 'I AM', for once we define, 'I AM-ness' is replaced by the words, concepts, and definition itself.

Exodus 3:14, 'I AM THAT I AM', beyond and transcendent of all.


Boring. No one in this thread knows anything about what transcendant is, what cosmic unity is, what divine light is. These concepts are romanticized extrapolations of purely human experiences dipped in human imaginations derived from said experiences. It is ego we serve in anticipating such transformations, the vanity of believing we are destined for a greater existence than this reality we so ungraciously tolerate. It's so ironic that it shoots straight past "funny" and bellyflops into exasperation.



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 01:08 PM
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a reply to: TzarChasm



It is ego we serve in anticipating such transformations


lol, I rather die into nothingness than suffer living forever. You have much to learn.



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 01:42 PM
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originally posted by: TerryMcGuire
a reply to: Astrocyte
And ain't it a gas to know it.



I think OP might have been born in a hurricane.




posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 01:47 PM
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originally posted by: glend
a reply to: TzarChasm



It is ego we serve in anticipating such transformations


lol, I rather die into nothingness than suffer living forever. You have much to learn.


you have experienced neither nothingness nor forever, so you choose between two unknowns. you have this much to learn at least.



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 03:07 PM
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originally posted by: Astrocyte
The universe dances in circles, twirls in chemical feedbacks, social feedbacks, mental feedbacks. One reality pulls all things along these paths; and then, the paths lose their form, and what remains is all that there is. I am.


Karmic feedback system is referred to as Samsara. Nirvana is liberation from samsara. When you dismantle ignorance, anger, and desire, what is left? You are.



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 03:36 PM
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a reply to: TzarChasm



you have experienced neither nothingness nor forever, so you choose between two unknowns. you have this much to learn at least.


I do hope that experiencing nothingness is an oxymoron. For it was Mark twain that wrote, “I do not fear death. I had been dead for billions and billions of years before I was born, and had not suffered the slightest inconvenience from it.”. But I don't think its that easy. The real exit is guarded. They won't let us fools out.



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 03:41 PM
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a reply to: TzarChasm


"No one in this thread knows anything about what transcendant is, what cosmic unity is, what divine light is."


You're absolutely right! No one knows what "transcendant" is, but we do know what "transcendent" is! Gamma rays, x-rays, ultraviolet, infrared, microwaves, radio waves, infrasound, and ultrasound are transcendent of the normal physical human experience, and only appeal to our awareness by technology. How much more transcends our existence that we are yet to observe or experience?

"Cosmic Unity" is a very real phenomenon. Each and every iota of existence is connected and interconnected by relationship, cause-and-effect, and elemental & atomic/subatomic origination. Nothing stands alone as an absolutely independent, sovereign, or isolated thing.

"Divine Light"? You are the only one in this thread to make such a reference.

 



"It is ego we serve in anticipating such transformations, the vanity of believing we are destined for a greater existence than this reality we so ungraciously tolerate."


No reply in this thread has promoted a "greater existence" in an anticipated afterlife. On the contrary, the theme of this thread is the marvelous, grand, and beautiful 'Here & Now'.

 



"Boring."


My brother, if you are bored, why not change the channel? Why cast insult and condescension if your interest is not aroused?



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 05:26 PM
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a reply to: TzarChasm

Do you think maybe that you've been stunned into cynicism?

Ultimately, because we exist in feedbacks, what we do becomes "hardwired" as the automatic habits of thought, feeling and action. Interpretations of experience become stereotypes - things we do to make ourselves feel better. Even right now - I'm sure you're aware - you are doing such a thing because it makes you feel a way you want to feel.

Ultimately, cynicism is destructive. Unlike all other beings that exist, we are the only one in which the concept of "up" actually exists. All other things are built from the 'bottom up", whereas humans can actually attend and represent to themselves the ways the past scaffolds the present.

So why then skirt the responsibility we have to ourselves and to others? A cynical culture puts less effort; cares less, and by caring less, creates creatures that are programmed not merely to "experience" others in a cynical way; but to be bound in reflexive feedbacks between cognition and feeling that maintain destructive ways of being.

The whole idea of "I am" is the mind becoming aware both of it's embeddness in larger systems; and the reality that this "perceiving mind" really does possess the wherewithal to change things - inasmuch as it can make explicit to itself what is perceived.

The "ego", or the notion of an individuated self separate from others or from the biochemical background that subserves our existence, is an illusion. The illusion is the source of suffering. And somehow - quite mysteriously - we seem to free ourselves from this suffering when we accept the arbitrary, momentary quality of our convictions.

The only conviction which can persist, in the end, is the fact that I am whatever it is that perceives and knows. The idea of a "destiny of a greater existence" - seems to be a mistake, or perhaps a projection on your part; the realization literally lies in a paradoxical state of accepting what is; not fighting, but accepting with loving-kindness. There is no 'expectation' of anything more - and this is probably the source for the release. If what is felt isn't dreaded, then why exactly would one get caught up in some alternative expectation? Expectations are dynamically related to reflexive desires to 'get away' from certain experiences of self. Thus, there is no "anticipating transformations" or "destined for a greater existence"; the existence is NOW, in the present moment, in the act of knowing what one must do to be with whatever is.

To say "I Am", is not to posit some hoped-for ontological heaven afterlife. It is beyond that; unconcerned with that. Discovering the meaning of such a content allows one to accept the inherent ambiguity of existence.



posted on Nov, 2 2015 @ 05:49 PM
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a reply to: randyvs

You caught it Randy. I did almost say gas gas gas



posted on Nov, 4 2015 @ 01:30 AM
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originally posted by: Astrocyte
Defining "I am"

Interestingly, when Moses asked God, in the story, for a 'name/definition', the response was that there is no 'name', no 'definition', no 'conditions' for the unconditional, the transcendental, and this was transmitted in "I Am that I Am!"
Anything else is a conditional limitation.
As soon as "I Am 'this'!", I cannot be everything else, too!
Thus, 'I Am' is not to be defined, it is to be experienced, Known!

tat tvam asi (en.wikipedia.org...)



edit on 4-11-2015 by namelesss because: (no reason given)



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