It seems so obvious that certain statements are true: that we are humans, that we are born, that we will die, and so many other things. But the most profound realisation that comes with awakening to reality is knowing that all beliefs are conditioning, and as such, all beliefs are false. This is because all beliefs exist in the realm of ideas, which may refer to something we experience, but they are not an experience in themselves. The idea that we are born is one fundamental belief that we cannot refer to in our experience: none of us knows the experience of being born as a reality. Can you find, in your self, the experience of your own beginning? Maybe we can recall being a child, but even then, that experience refers to an idea in the past which is not being experienced right now and is therefore in the realm of memory or imagination. The future is the same. What about beliefs and ideas in the present, such as ‘I am a man or woman.’ This belief is just as questionable as beliefs of past and future. The concept of gender, for instance, assumes an identity based on physical perceptions, but these perceptions are temporary and changeable and last only as long as we believe ourselves to be bodies. Are we bodies endowed with consciousness? Or are we consciousness having a temporary experience as a body? The idea that ‘I am a body with a gender or race’ is breakable. Every idea is breakable.
When belief collapses, reality begins. It doesn’t begin in time, but flowers in a timeless moment, for time is just another belief along the illusory past-present-future continuum. Time has never been experienced by anyone except as an idea in our minds. The things we demand from time are projections of our thoughts. The ever so complex interplay of form, manifestation and time is not so much our experience but our beliefs being taken for experience. What do we experience without beliefs? Emotions are the residues of decades of beliefs imprinting themselves on our physical perceptions. Without a belief in an enemy, there would be no emotion of anger or revenge. So when wiped clean of beliefs, what is left of thoughts and emotions? Nothing.
In this space of nothingness, reality is experienced. This is the letting-go we are practising: unlearning the conditioning of being born a human.