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What Are We Really?

It’s obvious that the only Vern here is held in the memory which is quickly recalled as needed.

Climbing up the mountain today I couldn’t get the question out of the mind.

What is Vern? What is he made up of? Where is he located in the body?

If Vern sits here still and the flat-line mind returns, where is Vern?

Vern is just the body and the memories in the mind.

Is there anything more though? Is there anything supernatural about Vern? About any of us? Is there any part of us that is special?

Or, are we just bags of cells?

Is there anything that transcends the innate selfishness we all have? The jealousy? The need for power, for respect, for acknowledgment, for companionship, for love?

Is love a special attribute that is not from within us, but that comes to us as part of our consciousness?

Is curiosity from that same place?

I’m trying to get at what is our consciousness? What is our soul if there’s such a thing? What is the special part of us that might live on after death of this body and mind?

Since I was 25 and I was introduced to Buddhist thinking and the philosophy of other eastern religions, I believed that we just died and that was it. Nothing more was ever experienced. The body died and nothing more went on. Nothing was even known – how would you know the body was dead, there’s nothing to experience it when the entire thing is dead.

But then I wondered if there was something else beyond the body, that was here in me, but not of me. When the body dies and the brain dissolves into the dirt, is there some essence that moves to somewhere else?

What would that essence be?

Universal consciousness?

How does it manifest inside us? In the form of the ability to love? To share? To help people without expectation of return? Agape love?

Can it be found in curiosity?

I’m constantly curious. I want to learn about many things. I enjoy it. It gives me something positive to do. It gives me a focus for my energy.

That doesn’t seem to come from memory.

Here’s something interesting! Just got on facebook to see messages from family. Saw this from the UG Krishnamurti group, posted at exactly the time yesterday when I was thinking about this topic.

What I am trying to say is that there is no individual there at all. There is only a certain gathering of knowledge–which is thought–but no individuality there. The knowledge you have of things is all that you are capable of experiencing. Without knowledge no experience of any kind is possible. You cannot separate experience and knowledge. The “I” is nothing sacred; it is the totality of your knowledge, and you are, unfortunately, stuck with it. Why are you interested in separating the knowledge you have about yourself–whatever you call yourself? Knowledge is all that is there. Where is the “I”? You have separated the “I” from the knowledge it has of the things about you. It is an illusion.

This is exactly my point. There is no “I” separate from the body and the memory of all that the body has been through over these 53 yrs. The I is the collection of all the experiences, environments, genetic makeup that one has.

Where is the separate I or supernatural? Doesn’t seem to be something in addition to this bag full of cells with memory.

What directs us to do this or that?

Isn’t that the I? The Vern that decides what to do?

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