Identity is Gone, is This Common?

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ThatAwareness
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Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by ThatAwareness » Wed Mar 14, 2018 1:12 am

Hello,

Today I was noticing the usual existential thoughts and so I realized either this body will have to die or the identity with my thoughts will have to die. I love this life, so I chose to end the 'ego'. And then it was gone.

My awareness is deeply rooted in all the life and beauty found in everything. It's impossible to describe this ever-present vibrant experience. It's as if every breath is a breath of fresh air, and the slightest movement is a dance. Thoughts still appear, but they are much more kind and gentle. Negative thoughts come too but are powerless and are often funny. I've sat in periods of complete mental silence, but this world is too fun and joyful to sit still for long. This is a state of pure effortlessness.

I don't know if identity can come back, even if I wanted it to. And if it does, I know the way back; it's like having a magic trick spoiled, no longer able to be illusioned.

Has anyone else experienced this? It's so fun to put into words.

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Re: Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by kiki » Wed Mar 14, 2018 5:03 am

Welcome to the board, ThatAwareness, and welcome "home". I enjoyed reading your post. Is this common? It seems like more people are discovering this now. Putting it into words to help (so-called) others discover this for themselves is the challenge now.

In my experience, identity does come back, but in a different way. It's no longer hanging around all the time to give the kind of familiar "structure" to your life as in the past. Instead, it's an identity that is temporarily used to move about and interact/negotiate within the world of forms and with whomever you encounter, and when not needed it drops away.

In other words, ego returns, but it's seen through for what it is, as a kind of "persona" that makes it seems like there are separate and distinct "others" out there. It's just a mask, but it isn't what "you" are, so what you feel and realize is the expansiveness of consciousness instead of the confinement of prior identity.
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd
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ThatAwareness
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Re: Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by ThatAwareness » Wed Mar 14, 2018 3:46 pm

Thanks for the warm welcome, Kiki. I'm glad you enjoyed reading that. Happy to hear more people are realizing the illusion of identity, I'd love to share and hear about other's experiences.

Fascinating, in the couple of face to face interactions I've had, there was still no sense of an identity. Words just came out when they needed to, but there was no past or history, no relationship between 'I' and them. Maybe that will change, maybe not. I can see the mind trying to grab onto thoughts as if that was 'itself', but it is always failing, poor thing. If the ego or identity ever comes back, I'd look forward to it, all experiences in its many colors are so valuable.

I appreciate the sharing of your perspective, it's helping this mind understand things better. Thanks, Kiki!

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Re: Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by kiki » Wed Mar 14, 2018 4:10 pm

I would say your awakening is more atypical than most people’s. Usually it is more gradual. Sudden awakenings can be quite disorienting if you don’t have any idea of what’s going on. It sounds like you have enough background understanding to where that isn’t a problem.

Explore the forum and jump in when you feel so moved. I look forward to your contributions.
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd
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Re: Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by ThatAwareness » Fri Mar 16, 2018 8:16 am

kiki wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 4:10 pm
I would say your awakening is more atypical than most people’s. Usually it is more gradual. Sudden awakenings can be quite disorienting if you don’t have any idea of what’s going on...
Interesting that you say that, for I first came into contact with Eckhart's teaching almost a decade ago, and it awakened 'that awareness' just a little. It slowly became more and more present in my life throughout the years. And because presence or absence of the mind became increasingly common, there weren't (seemingly) many radical shifts in the way this body/mind now lives and interacts.

In 2013 the ego wrote a note saying: "I reached 'enlightenment', but then I left it, I wasn't ready. It's always there for the taking and it can never leave me." In retrospect, the 'I' failed to realize there was no me, and that you cannot take what you already are. Right before the recent disappearance of the ego, the mind remembered back to the moment the ego chickened out from making that leap to allow itself to die in 2013, I suppose consciousness wasn't desperate enough back then.
kiki wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 4:10 pm
Sudden awakenings can be quite disorienting if you don’t have any idea of what’s going on...
I can see that. Nothing new is gained from destroying the ego. It's only the false belief that you're the mind or body that disappears. And if the mind's behaviors were highly dependent on identity, then it may have to relearn many behaviors to function smoothly, at least according to the world. This mind was surprised at what the body started doing and not doing since the 'awakening' as if it were 'someone else' inhabiting it, now that there is 'no one' home.

Thanks for shedding more light on this experience. These thoughts are still having trouble understanding it.

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Re: Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by ThatAwareness » Sun Mar 18, 2018 4:47 am

Some good news, the ego came back. So consciousness had gotten the opportunity of killing it again. I can describe the process again with more detail now.

After an eventful day, awareness became lost in the external world of form and identity. It had forgotten itself. The biggest sign was a negative feeling that felt personal, as if an ‘I’ was hurt. The mind recognized this and felt blindsided.

After laying in bed and becoming still, I felt the ego’s attachments again, like black roots innocently wanting to exist in the soil of the mind. I decided to become utterly aware of it, letting it suffocate in the light of consciousness. And then it was gone, once again, with only the pure silence of nothingness left.

But I hope the ego comes back once more, to better understand how and why consciousness gets lost in the world of things. These experiments are such a joy.

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Re: Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by kiki » Mon Mar 19, 2018 1:09 am

But I hope the ego comes back once more, to better understand how and why consciousness gets lost in the world of things. These experiments are such a joy.
Don't worry, it will. Also, I wouldn't think in terms of "killing" the ego; doing that implies it is an enemy to be eliminated, and that can create an adversarial relationship with it. Instead, think of it as a fraud or a trickster to be seen through as a temporary illusion. It is real only to the degree that you believe it to be real. But, when you actually look for this thing we call "ego" it's nowhere to be found. It only exists as a matrix of thought that is identified with and clung to. Without the support structure of thought it falls apart because it IS only thought forms that are woven together to provide the "storyboard" of "my" life.

All in all, it sounds like you are doing great!
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd
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Re: Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by ThatAwareness » Mon Mar 19, 2018 4:33 am

kiki wrote:
Mon Mar 19, 2018 1:09 am
Don't worry, it will. Also, I wouldn't think in terms of "killing" the ego; doing that implies it is an enemy to be eliminated, and that can create an adversarial relationship with it. Instead, think of it as a fraud or a trickster to be seen through as a temporary illusion...
Thanks again for the guidance Kiki, your contributions to the forum are outstanding.

Interesting, this mind uses the word 'killing the ego' as if it were pulling lifeless weeds from a garden bed of vibrant flowers. From what I've noticed, there is no relationship with the ego per se, it's more like the roots that connect consciousness to believing it is the thoughts that appear. In a way, ego appears to be born from consciousness itself.
kiki wrote:
Mon Mar 19, 2018 1:09 am
... It only exists as a matrix of thought that is identified with and clung to. Without the support structure of thought it falls apart because it IS only thought forms that are woven together to provide the "storyboard" of "my" life.

All in all, it sounds like you are doing great!
This sounds true from what I've observed. Though, it is fascinating to watch thoughts arise and multiply without the illusion of identity. I appreciate the encouragement!

kiki wrote:
Wed Mar 14, 2018 5:03 am
In my experience, identity does come back, but in a different way. It's no longer hanging around all the time to give the kind of familiar "structure" to your life as in the past. Instead, it's an identity that is temporarily used to move about and interact/negotiate within the world of forms and with whomever you encounter, and when not needed it drops away.
I notice the ego arise when the mind dreams during sleep, or when the the body's survival feels to be at stake. It is difficult to replicate those experiences, so more testing is needed. But it has yet to arise from interacting with others or from doing things in the world of forms, it seems in the day-to-day it is fairly absent.

The mind has sat in silence with the question of 'why the ego is needed', but no answers arise. Perhaps these thoughts are not meant to know, or perhaps more research in the world of forms is required. All in all, these experiences are a pure and utter joy.

Thanks again Kiki, for sharing more wisdom and knowledge.

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Re: Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by kiki » Mon Mar 19, 2018 4:43 am

In a way, ego appears to be born from consciousness itself.
That's right. Everything arises out of consciousness, is witnessed by consciousness and dissolves into consciousness. This is called "Lila - the play of consciousness". In other words, all is consciousness.
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd
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Re: Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by ThatAwareness » Wed Apr 04, 2018 11:31 am

That's right. Everything arises out of consciousness, is witnessed by consciousness and dissolves into consciousness. This is called "Lila - the play of consciousness". In other words, all is consciousness.
That sounds very poetic, thank you.

A few updates from what I've observed:

It seems identification with thoughts become more tempting when the body is extremely tired and hungry, and so requires more effort to stay in the effortless state. I hypothesize that ego is and has been, the best vehicle for basic survival throughout human evolution, for consciousness alone seems to have little interest or motivation for that primal survival. But once those needs are met, that most natural state returns automatically.

On another note, challenging situations where the ego would feel threatened, (e.g. someone berating my actions, failure of any sort) don't trigger anything at all anymore. Sometimes an emotion would arise, but it isn't happening to 'anyone', and the mind would think nice things like, "That person is so good at motivating others." or "That person really knows what they want, that's so admirable." That 'no self, no problem' quote feels fitting in these situations.

Also, people's behavior around me has seemed to change, sometimes drastically. They are far more relaxed and at ease, as if life's 'problems' have melted away. One time, I was discussing economics with someone where I pointed out that all things are perfect as they are and even suffering is perfect and necessary. Then, to my surprise, they gave a hearty laugh of the purest relief as if tasting the sweet nectar of stillness for the first time. None of these things are intentionally sought out, it just seems to be the natural byproduct of being around other people, and stating what seems to be factual.

Thanks to the mods for the platform to share these findings, these are a great joy to write.

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Re: Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by Sighclone » Wed Apr 04, 2018 8:18 pm

Welcome TA -

I had a similar experience about ten years ago...fortunately kiki was around to hold my hand even then! I spent the next three years deeply enmeshed here, thousands of posts, reading hundreds of books...(pestering old professors and friends at first). Ego pretty much vanished for a few months, and I was fortunate to be able to take off from work. But then work requirements and "egoic identity" re-emerged. Egos are a set of habits as much as anything. They can appear as scripts we march to, "auto-pilot" responses, etc. But the habits and conditioned behaviors will creep back in after the novelty of awakening finally subsides. In my case, "Andy" was far less frantic, much more easy-going, but observably still the "same guy." Today, if daily stresses seem to be overwhelming, which they can, I can just stop and sit in stillness...they vaporize...not immediately, but quickly.

I think it's fair to say the egoic separate self we know as "me" is best seen as a "provisional relative identity." As human organisms, we are all different, physically, intellectually, emotionally. Awakening does not change that "relative-world" fact. It is a question of how we "personally see ourselves." Am I "Andy" or am I "the universe?" Fundamentally, awakening is Self-realization. That is Self with a capital S. Way different than my little "separate inside self" (Rupert Spira.)

Another question likely to arise for you is the question of "free will." ET has a rambling audio tape on this. If the ego is a "false self" who is there to have will, let alone "free" will? Don't bother yourself with that unless it is interesting....

Please stick around - you are articulate, introspective and social...welcome again!!

Andy
A person is not a thing or a process, but an opening through which the universe manifests. - Martin Heidegger
There is not past, no future; everything flows in an eternal present. - James Joyce

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Re: Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by kiki » Wed Apr 04, 2018 11:20 pm

Nice report, ThatAwareness. "This" awareness recognizes "ThatAwareness" since it's the same awareness.

Andy, good insights.
"Miss Kelly, perhaps you'd like this flower. I seem to have misplaced my buttonhole ... Miss Kelly, you know, when you wear my flower you make it look beautiful." Elwood P. Dowd
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Re: Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by milarepa » Mon Oct 22, 2018 11:07 am

Sighclone wrote:
Wed Apr 04, 2018 8:18 pm

Another question likely to arise for you is the question of "free will." ET has a rambling audio tape on this. If the ego is a "false self" who is there to have will, let alone "free" will? Don't bother yourself with that unless it is interesting....
Hello! I'd like to ask, what is the name of this audio tape? I'd like to listen to it.

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Re: Identity is Gone, is This Common?

Post by Sighclone » Mon Oct 22, 2018 5:51 pm

It will take me a couple of days, but I will look for it. You may also want to ask ET's people on his website...it is an audio file.

Andy
A person is not a thing or a process, but an opening through which the universe manifests. - Martin Heidegger
There is not past, no future; everything flows in an eternal present. - James Joyce

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