Look for the mental representation of yourself

nancy pro's picture

Average: 4.7 (3 votes)

When you observe the world, you observe in parallel a mental representation of yourself.

In other words, you observe an object and at the same time, usually unnoticeably, you observe yourself. Actually it's what you believe is yourself that you observe, a representation of you as an object, an image in the mind, an image more or less of the same nature as the mental images of all other objects you perceive.

Without this concurrent observation of yourself, you would become disoriented, there must be some point of reference, a center, that's how the mind works, in relative terms.

You can bring this parallel observation of yourself to awareness, you can make this observation conscious. Simply notice the self image observed each time you observe an object. Start with physical objects.

This is actually the essence of Ramana Maharshi's Self Enquiry method. Gurdjieff also spoke about it with an emphasis on the awareness of both channels at the same time: the object observed and the mental image of oneself.

Sometimes it seems that you don't have this parallel mental image for a while. It happens, for example, when you get absorbed in your work or in a movie. Actually in most such cases the mental image does not disappear, it is replaced by another - a self image that is supposedly within the film or the mental image of the task.

Realized ones are not aware of this self image at no time, neither unconsciously nor consciously. They simply don't have that mental image of themselves anymore. To be more accurate, they do have some sort of functional self image just for the sake of functioning in this physical reality but this image is devoid of any mental of spiritual significance as a whole and, above all, of any feeling of identification with it. Their view can be summarized in the following statement: here is an integrated collection that functions as a body vehicle and here is an integrated collection that functions as a driver and that's it.

It is possible to have a temporal glimpse of this standpoint of realized ones, Gurdjieff called it Self Remembering. It happens naturally after some time of intense observation of the parallel self image.

silencio's picture

Excellent article

So good to have you back, I was thirsty for your valuable guidance after reading your books and following your articles here, thank you

silencio | Tue, 10/27/2015 - 07:49