Neti Neti

I am not my body
that I cling to
but instead
let me dissolve
like the air that
in any shape can grew.

I am not my feelings
worn out by weight
but instead
let me float
like a feather
free from any freight

I am not my perceptions
coloring my judgement
but instead
let me disappear
like the glass that shares
all light without abatement

I am not my intentions
Nor the dreams they hound
but instead
let me be content
like the still water
steady in the sound

I am not my consciousness
molding a mirage wholesome
but instead
let me expand
like the rain drop that falls
to one with the ocean become.

Like we disregard the sensations within a dream as unreal, the sages of Upanishads discarded everything that was in a constant process of change as unreal. Their principle was neti, neti atma: “this is not the self, that is not the self”. When you dig into your own personality deeper, you find layers of perceptions, thoughts, emotions, drives, and memories. The sages found that none of this is permanent. In their search for a constant, they defined what was left – the intense awareness – as the atman, the Self.

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