The Grip of Identification
Q&A -- December 2009, Atlanta
In describing the purpose of meditation
which is to discover reality, you said over and over
again that the means is to "let go". So if
I look at that word "letting go," the opposite
of letting go is "gripping", "being gripped."
So would you explain or describe what this grip is and
how the "grip" or block, which is so hard
to let go, ultimately releases?
A: The grip is the grip of identification. And it is
caused by the idea that you have of yourself as a separate
entity. Out of that idea comes experiences, perceptions,
sensations that you experience which you are identified
with. That is how it happens.
once again, the idea that you are a separate entity
which is caused by the "I-thought" or the
"I-feeling", the feeling of I, that you are
separate, you are this body having these thoughts and
feelings. Out of this experience or idea comes other
experiences which you are connected with and therefore
identified with. This is the grip.
Now the second part: How is it released? It is impossible
to be released by any mental activity because the whole
experience is born of this experience of your self as
body and mind. And nothing can release you from this.
No voluntary effort can release you from this except
a turning your "consciousness" inward to the
source of this identification. Which is not, again,
a voluntary effort. It is not an effort. It is not an
activity. It is turning your consciousness inward as
the opposite direction of the experience [of body and
mind]. It is an inquiring into this point of identification,
this turning inward of consciousness is called "self-inquiry."
And this happens through this practice of silence. In
this you are guided by the energy of silence, for silence
is the Source and that Source pulls you towards it.
That silence guides you to itself. This is what releases
once again no amount of thinking, no exercise, no feelings,
no experiences, nothing can release you from this bondage.
Because all activity is born out of bondage, out of
this identification. So as long as there is this I-thought
and no awareness of it, as long as there is a feeling
of I, the feeling or experience that you are a separate
entity; as long as this is there, there is bondage,
there is this grip.
So it is really the energy of silence that can release
you. In other words, the energy of silence, silence
is the Source from where you come.... from where everything
is created. And it is only the Source that can release
you. The Source that created you.
when you turn inwards in that direction, it guides you
to itself and releases you.