Who are you?

Who are you
Take a long hard look in the mirror. Who are you, what do you see?
Now ask yourself, what are you actually seeing when you look in the mirror. Skin, bones, eyes, nose, lips and ears, are any of these who you are? Are all of these physical characteristics who you are? Of course not. So then could you say that you are a product of your thoughts, your words or your actions? Are those what make-up who “you” are? I think most of us believe that is who we really are. But don’t our thoughts and emotions change moment by moment? So if you are sad, does that mean you are sadness?
I hope you are seeing my point here, and that it is impossible to define the self with any physical, mental, or emotional point. And we create difficulty and suffering for ourselves by trying to identify who we are all the time. Even if you tell yourself, “I am a good person”, what does that really mean?

I suppose the reality that I am trying to expose here, is that each time we delusionally attempt to define our “self”, we also define others around us. Thinking, “I am this, you are that”. Separation, ego and dogmas only serve in perpetuating negative thoughts and emotions. The equanimity that comes from genuine metta (loving kindness) tears down these walls of individuality and exclusivity.

As I sat outside this morning, watching the final trickles of rain fall, I noticed several worms who had washed-up on my driveway. At first, I gave this little note. Then it occurred to me this precious life that lie before me. Such a small and innocent creature who had been tossed by nature into a devastating and perhaps hopeless situation. Many of its fellow worms had already died, as they could not make the long crawl back to their home in the grass. I got out of my chair, and took the remaining living worms back to the grass so they may have a life.
I became aware that the worm and I are not that different. Except that I do not think that the worm judged me. I don’t think it cared about the color of my skin, my sexual orientation, or my religion. I was simply one living being who was able to help another living being.
And I see now how these worms also helped me. This morning they were my teachers. They offered me joy that I could be of service to them, to their life.

So who am I, or who are you? I can’t say. Only that we are living, breathing beings sharing this existence. And with loving kindness, compassion, equanimity and sympathetic joy, I remain determined on my path.

May you each be well, happy and peaceful.