Desireless Attention

Desireless Attention


Self is subjective. Subjectivity can’t be made objective. You can’t know your own self. The reason the knower can’t be known is that to know something means to reduce it to an object. So there’s a clear distinction between the subjective world and the objective world. The mind is involved with knowledge, and the very existence of knowledge depends on duality.

I can’t be you because you are in front of me; you are an object for me. Also, I am an object for you. Can I put myself in front of me? Who is “me”? The object in front of me, or the inner one who is looking at “me”? There is no “me.” The mind is “I,” and “I” can’t exist. What exists is spaceless awareness. You can’t desire to see yourself. If you desire, you are in the mind, back in the illusion of “I.” To be who you really are, you can only be in desireless attention. Unless you are completely desireless, you can’t be the real you.

Being free from desires brings you into a most peaceful state in which you find yourself filled with joy and bliss, the result of a naturally established awareness in the here and now. Unfortunately, desires drive our senses into a state of confusion, so that we are constantly looking outward in an attempt to derive superficial pleasure from sense objects.

For example, when your eyesight is focused on a specific object, decide to keep your eyes focused on the space between you and the object. Your mind will wander, moving to another object. Again look at the space. There’s always a space between you, as an observer, and the object you are observing.

When you master the practice of witnessing the space between yourself and external objects, move on to witnessing the internal—the space between yourself and thought-forms. Whereas external objects could be a chair, a leaf, a cloud, or people, the internal forms can be thoughts, emotions, bodily sensations, or sensual experiences.

Thought forms and external objects are always in relationship, and your consciousness is trapped and lost in between. Placing and keeping attention on the space, and only on the space, you break the bond between the subjective forms and the objective objects, which frees your trapped consciousness.

The more you are attentive to the space, the internal thought-forms and external object-forms will melt into formlessness, evaporating in the presence of consciousness. The internal space between two thoughts and the external space between two objects will meet in your spaceless consciousness. Try this in all kinds of circumstances.