3 reasons why you believe you are the body, 3 reasons why you shouldn't

nathan's picture



Average: 4.6 (12 votes)

3 key reasons why you believe you are your body

1. Exclusivity. No one else claims ownership of your body.

2. Groupthink. Everybody around you thinks the same way about you and your body and about himself and his body.

3. Proximity. You think you are always attached to your body, never without it wherever you go, whatever you do (* see note below).

With these supporting reasons, no wonder the conditionings of your belief to be the body have managed so well to survive over the years.

3 key reasons why really there is no basis for you to believe so

1. No Say. You have not designed nor implemented the body.

2. No Idea. You have no idea firsthand about how your body works. It is only through 3rd-parties who tell you (doctors, books, laboratory tests, mirrors etc.)

3. No Control. You have no direct control whatsoever on the fundamental functioning of your body, hair grows on your face, you want it or not; parts get out of order, you want it or not; it naturally gets weaker, grows old, decomposes and you naturally don't want this to happen at all.

How dare you claim to be something of which you have no say, no idea, and no control?! Do you see how paradoxical it is, by definition? Any meaning you give to the term "to be" will not hold validity in view of these facts.

Don't just read this. Meditate on these reasons, try to locate the underlying conditionings that maintain these unreasonable beliefs in you. You will soon feel a change in your attitude regarding you and your body.

* The truth is that actually you are not always attached to the body. You only tend to think you are. While you are asleep, for example, you are not attached to your body - your physical body is usually not in your field of consciousness while you dream. Other people may tell you that when you are asleep, the body is there but they do not know whether your consciousness is also there, and you know that it is not.



Phroggy's picture

Where do I go when I sleep?

"* The truth is that actually you are not always attached to the body. You only tend to think you are. While you are asleep, for example, you are not attached to your body - your phisical body is usually not in your field of consciousness while you dream. Other people may tell you that when you are asleep, the body is there but they do not know whether your consciousness is also there, and you know that it is not."

I can't really say that I do know that. So, where is my consciousness when I sleep?

Phil

Phroggy | Mon, 08/25/2008 - 16:12
nathan's picture

An example

Let's say that you have a wound on the leg of your being-awake body. You know that your body in your dream, the one which is in your field of consciousness when you dream, can appear and usually does appear without that wound and so on. It may sometimes be a body of someone else or sometimes you may be bodiless and you float etc. It may look similar to your physical body, the one that is in your field of consciousness when you are awake but evidently it is a different one from the only perspective you have - the perspective of your awareness.

Therefore, if your dream body is not the body that currently lies on the bed, your consciousness "is not there" attached within its field of awareness to that body.

nathan | Mon, 08/25/2008 - 16:38
Phroggy's picture

The dream body doesn't seem

The dream body doesn't seem 'substantially' different from picturing a body in my head right now, and in neither case is there the sense that my consciousness has to go anywhere to perceive it.
If I'm standing talking to you and my attention shifts between my body and your body, there's no sense that my consciousness is going anywhere. Maybe it's just me.

Phroggy | Mon, 08/25/2008 - 23:37
nathan's picture

Your perceived relation makes the difference

It is substantially different in the fact that you perceive it in your dream as YOUR body. Your perceived relation to it is what makes it different.

Indeed, picture now when you are awake, picture wholeheartedly and totally, with no doubt left, an imaginary body and this "imaginary" body will turn to be "your" body as long as you perceive it to be so. This is, by the way, what actually happens also with your "physical" "real" body.

Your perceived relation to an object is what matters. It is the same with the I-thought. The I-thought is the representation of yourself as an object in your psyche. It is not different from John-thought and David-thought that are also in your mind and represent your friends John and David within your consciousness so that you can refer to them as mental objects. The only different which makes the I-thought so unique and thus so problematic is that the I-thought is perceived by you to represent YOURSELF (or rather to be yourself, but this is another discussion).

nathan | Tue, 08/26/2008 - 07:41
Omkaradatta's picture

Oops...

I like most of what you said above, except for this:

"The only different which makes the I-thought so unique and thus so problematic is that the I-thought is perceived by you to represent YOURSELF"

More or less what you're saying above is: "The reason the I-thought is unique and problematic is that it's *I* it's referring to"... oops. Let's have that "other discussion" ;-).

From here, the reason the I-dea (can be) problematic is that it's so durned interesting, taken so seriously, taken as 'real', reinforced through numerous repetitions into a belief system represented by a running story-line. Awareness is deeply involved, enmeshed and captivated by the whole thing, wanting to keep this story going at all costs.

In truth, only awareness is real, but it takes itself to be what it 'sees'. The 'me' isn't a subject in actuality, but an object (as you correctly noted) taken to be a subject. Instead of saying "my self" we say "myself", as though running the two words together could rectify this mistake.

http://www.omkaradatta.info

Omkaradatta | Tue, 08/26/2008 - 10:21
Surya Kumar Mishra's picture

sleep state

Oh yes,
who sleeps !!!

Surya Kumar Mishra | Sat, 05/21/2011 - 11:11
angel76's picture

More about "no control"

Even the little control we believe to still have over our body is found to be only an illusion when we inspect it carefully.

Rather than a direct control over body functioning, it is always some external manipulation or external stimulus we generate over external circumstances to influence the body, same manipulation and stimulus we can generate over other bodies.

Examples:

In order to lose weight, we externally limit the quantity or/and type of materials infused into the body.

In order to have our muscles stronger, we externally impose resistance to our muscles by lifting weights.

In order to have the body ejaculate, we externally generate sensational stimulus.

Yes, we indeed can trigger some limited functions of the body mainly by activating muscles, internal and external, but this is done the same way we use any other tool, this computer for example. Nevertheless, we never claim to be the computer.

angel76 | Wed, 08/27/2008 - 09:07
Phroggy's picture

Okay, I'm convinced I'm not

Okay, I'm convinced I'm not the body, but it still sounds like I have control over it.

Phroggy | Wed, 08/27/2008 - 15:37
angel76's picture

control vs. influence

The answer lies in inspecting very carefully the different meanings hiding behind the term "control".

Yep, you have some control over your computer, car, garbage disposal, and other black-box tools you use but this influence we call control is indirect, it is by manipulating external circumstances (pressing a keyword, steering a wheel, turning on a switch etc.) not by being involved in the essence of the thing. I prefer to call it "influence". This influence we can actually have on almost everything we have access to (e.g. your neighbor by spilling your garbage on his lawn)

And indeed this influence does not make you identify with your car (some men actually do to some degree) or with your garbage disposal.

angel76 | Wed, 08/27/2008 - 17:00
Phroggy's picture

What's next?

So what has occurred is that the body is disidentified with, but not the controller, and so it becomes a controller influencing an object.

The apparent controller is contained within thoughts. If you are in control of your thoughts, then you are a controller. Do you know the next thought that will happen or do you only notice it after it has occurred? Do you know what thought is going to occur in response to noticing that thought? If you don't control your thoughts, you can't be the one controlling something outside of your thoughts.

Phroggy | Wed, 08/27/2008 - 20:09
superwoman's picture

Out of body experiences

I would add out of body experiences which can be achieved through relatively simple yogic techniques. These can demonstrate to one by experience that he and his body are not one.

superwoman | Thu, 08/28/2008 - 11:32
SriSriYogiBaba's picture

Nice body to be out of

But you look suspiciously like Wonder Woman to me.

SriSriYogiBaba | Thu, 08/28/2008 - 20:23
Phroggy's picture

This is getting serious

Hmmmm, you're right. I believe we have an imposter!

Phroggy | Thu, 08/28/2008 - 20:27
superwoman's picture

The real "I"

My self is super woman, my "I" is wonder woman.

superwoman | Fri, 08/29/2008 - 06:24
Alpesh Patel's picture

May i ponder?

1. Exclusivity. No one else claims ownership of your body.

Ownership is constantly claimed with emotions and thoughts if we notice carefully. Sometimes fear owns the system, sometimes strenght, sometimes weakness, sometimes joy and sometimes sadness and so on and on..... When the divine owns it all another ownerships tends to cease.

2. Groupthink. Everybody around you thinks the same way about you and your body and about himself and his body.

not sure about it. Everybody thinks according to the level of their consciousness i feel.

3. Proximity. You think you are always attached to your body, never without it wherever you go, whatever you do (* see note below).

The consciousness on body is seldom all the time. Rather the the thought process is always on gaining or escaping from something. Awareness on body in most cases grows when there is some physical pain, when the pain calls.

May the Divine love guides us all to the freedom
http://alpesh-mynotebook.blogspot.com/
http://saibabashirdivideos.blogspot.com/
http://saisatcharitra-online.blogspot.com/
http://stories-shortstories.blogspot.com/

Alpesh Patel | Sat, 11/08/2008 - 13:27
shond's picture

Why complicate the simple?

What are you talking about?

Has some stranger ever approached you and demanded you to give him your body because it is his? (we are not talking here about abstract aspects of the body but simple about the body itself)

Aren't 99% of the people around you think the same way - that they are their bodies?

During waking time, aren't you always attached to your body?

shond | Wed, 02/18/2009 - 21:45
abra's picture

Astral umbilical cord

There is an astral umbilical cord that connects the soul to the body. Through this cord, the soul sustains the body.

This is not a physical cord in form of course but a part of the astral body.

You can mentally perceive this cord in times of great attachment to the body such as when you have a great fear of physical pain (e.g. in the waiting room of a dentist).

Observe the cord after locating it and as a consequence you will feel that your identification with your body decreases.

abra | Sat, 03/21/2009 - 19:22
george's picture

Amazing, this is true.

Amazing, this is true.

george | Thu, 04/30/2009 - 21:31
Noenlightenement's picture

Body or soul

Body is the karma of self.Self is not soul .You can say where all soul meets is Self.

To know body let us know what soul is.

Soul is the aliveness of body.

! Aliveness known when the eyes are opened and something can be seen.

! aliveness known when the awareness goes on eye something can be heard.

! aliveness known when the legs are there and a path to walk upon.

So know aliveness is soul and so is with "everybody".

Self is the union of soul or say division of self is soul.

Self is the lord and is time.

The mind we know was empty when we were born and by going back in time "everybody " once was with empty mind.So from where all this come is the source .

Source "The self " speaks and drops in our mind.That mind with echo understand that it is my thought.How you can write something .How can you speak something .All material,all will come from the self .When self order speak "The the body speak and even the content are given by the one big self.

We those know i am body are mind that knows the echo of self happening in mind as there.

We are not body .But I am self .

There is no soul ,no body but one self.

That one big self you can say soul.

if you are in some kind of difference that you know yourself as body and others then know it is a dream.
One dream end in a night .That dream end in the death of body.But for self or soul it is a sleep.Body will come again and die again but brain washed.So body will walk on same steps unknowingly it has walked now and will walk in every birth.

So if you are really interested in knowledge "Know that
You were born many times,many times you will die "
"What karma you have done and what karma you are going to do "
IS all done and so next time same will happen again and is happening again but brain washed.

Noenlightenement | Thu, 05/07/2009 - 13:42
madan_gautam's picture

Body or not

At the base level/bottom level you are body but at the peak level you are not.
OM

madan_gautam | Fri, 05/08/2009 - 14:10
Elijah_NatureBoy's picture

Is it possible that I

Is it possible that I manifested as this body for a purpose, will shed it for another purpose and manifest as yet another body until the need of the temporal is completed? Is it not also possible to manifest in a body which one will keep for a much longer duration, prevent it from aging for so long that it is called everlasting?

It that be so, then I am the body because I integrated my being with it until such time as it fulfilled my need for it and then shed it because it had fulfilled its purpose. Thus, the first purpose for believing I am the body is correct and the purposes for not is incorrect because I manifested as this body for a purpose which gives me all the say concerning it, I knew how it would function but have a block to prevent me from remembering and chose for its aging and functioning.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Have you questioned your beliefs? Reason the different concepts until all pros and cons are integrated into the 64,800 degrees of your vision.
--Elijah "NatureBoy"--

Elijah_NatureBoy | Sat, 02/20/2010 - 17:24
dabka's picture

Body sensations as another reason for the identification

Great text of truth that should be read over and over again in different states of mind until the true realization sinks deep within beyond intellectual understanding.

One addition to the 3 reasons why we develop such a strong identification with our body: body sensations. Having such a sophisticated, intimate and sensitive system of sensing the body gives are the illusion that we are that which is senses, particularly because we do not have such an intimate access to the sensations of objects outside our body.

A little test to prove this: you are familiar with this phenomenon that due to blocking of steady blood flow, sometimes an organ of yours (e.g. leg, hand) becomes numb,you do not feel it nor can move it. Inspect your identification with this organ when it happens. It will yield tremendous understanding about the identification based on the body sensations.

dabka | Mon, 07/26/2010 - 09:24
not_me's picture

Brilliant

An excellent essay. very well tuned.

From all diligent observations about the attachment to the body, one can quickly arrive at the conclusion that the only PHYSICAL object that can be me without a way to refute it is a thought. I certainly can be a thought, a mental image generated by this body.

There is no valid way to tell if we are generated by the body (we are a mental image, a thought) or that we are some soul/self independent of the body. When I say "valid" I mean a way not derived from hearsay, from what some "wise people" have told us or that is written in some scripture or book.

not_me | Mon, 03/17/2014 - 08:19