Chapter 2: Thought Birth Control
If seeing is identified with the object that is seen, it is thought; if seeing is free from the object that is seen and turns toward the seer, it is meditation. Do you follow my distinction between thought and meditation? Seeing is present in both thought and meditation but in the former it is objective and in the latter it is subjective. But whether we are in thought or in meditation, whether we are in action or in no-action, seeing is a constant factor. Awake, we see the world; asleep, we see dreams; in meditation, we see our selves - but in each of these conditions there is seeing. Seeing is constant and continuous. It is our nature. It is never absent no matter what the condition.
Seeing is even present in unconsciousness. After regaining consciousness one says, “I don’t remember anything, I don’t know where I was.” Do not think that this is a not-knowing. This is also knowing. If seeing had been totally absent, then this knowing that “I don’t know where I was” would not have been possible either. If that were the case, then the time that passed by while you were unconscious would have become non-existent for you. In no way would it have remained a part of your life; it could not have left any trace on your memory. But you know you were in some state where you were not aware of any knowing. This too is a knowing; seeing is also present here. The memory has not recorded any internal or external phenomena happening during this period, but your seeing has definitely noted, has definitely experienced this gap, this interval. And this experience of the interval, of the gap in the recording of events, later becomes known to the memory as well. Similarly, during deep sleep when there are not even dreams, seeing is always present. When we wake up in the morning we are able to say we had such a sound sleep that we did not even dream. This condition too has been observed.
You must realize from all of this that situations change, that the object, the content for the consciousness changes, but that seeing does not change. Everything in the realm of our experience changes; all things are in a flux, seeing and seeing alone is ever-present. That alone is the witness to all this change, to all this flow. To realize this ever-present and eternal seeing is to know one’s self. That alone is one’s self-nature. All else is alien, the other. All else is sansara, the world.
This witness cannot be attained or realized by any doing, by any kind of worship or adoration, by any mantra or technique, because it is the witness of all those things as well. It is separate and apart from all those things. It is separate and different from all that can be seen or done. It cannot be realized by doing but by non-doing; not by action but by emptiness. It will be realized only when there is no activity, when there is no object to be seen, when only the witness remains, when only seeing remains.
When there is seeing but nothing to be seen, when there is knowing but nothing to be known, then in this contentless consciousness the knower of all is known. When there is no object to be seen, the curtain in front of the seer drops away, and when there is no object to be known, knowing emerges. When there are no waves, the ocean is seen; when there are no clouds, the blue sky is seen.