It’s too ordinary to notice

tea leaf

It’s too ordinary for you to notice.

Whenever you’re seeking,
Whatever you’re seeking,
You’re seeking something else,
A mental projection,
A fantasy.

The self that causes all the mischief,
All the suffering,
Is an imagined entity.
It is seeking its own end
– how absurd!

No-self is already here.
To notice this,
There is nothing that you need to notice,
(Nothing you need to do)
As it is always being noticed.
It is simply the totality of whatever is already being perceived,
And in that totality there has never actually ever been a perceiver,
The perceiver being an imagined entity.

Ask yourself “Who am I?”,
“What is the I”,
And you will find no “I” there,
“I” being just an empty thought.

Reality is simply that which remains
When no actual “I” is seen,
When things are seen as they are,
Which is always the case.

There is nothing you need to do,
Nothing to realise,
Only cease adding the notion of “I”,
Only cease to believe in that “I” for which there is no evidence.

Then the notion of “I” can still appear,
The “I” can still come and go as it pleases,
(for this “I” is just a thought,
and like all phenomena,
its appearance cannot be controlled,
spontaneously appearing and disappearing by itself)
But it is no longer believed in.

The “I” being seen through,
Reality shines by itself,
As it has always done.

This is nothing new,
I hesitate to say nothing special,
As it is also truly wonderful.

Reality being everywhere and ever-present
– what is more ordinary and commonplace than that?

5 thoughts on “It’s too ordinary to notice

  1. I like this Tom, but “how do you do it?”. Of course, You (I) don’t do it. There is nothing to do as such.
    It’s like a Koan.
    Despite not having much success with meditation, I still think that for many it is the key to unlock the door. I heard a monk once saying (to a large group) that the problem is we’re not patient enough. We want a quick fix. You go on a few 10 day retreats (or even six months in my case) but are you giving it 20 years or 30 years or more.
    But then Eckhart Tolle also (like you I think) says you don’t need to go off to a cave in the Himalayas for X number of years. However, I can’t help but think, he probably did do exactly that, in a past life or maybe many past lives. Otherwise, how to spontaneously awaken? Same for Ramana Marharshi aged just 16 and a few others I’ve heard of.


  2. It is like a koan. Meaning the ego will not get this (the ego cannot get a koan). The ego (imagined-self) can learn about it and theorise about it and think it has got it, but it will never get it. Why? Because this is about seeing what is true about our ordinary experience: namely there is no ego, there is no doer, there is no separate self.

    To put it another way, this is not about being enlightened or reaching ‘the other shore’. That is all for the (greedy) ego, another proverbial carrot to chase. Instead of trying to get somewhere, why not look at what is, direct experience? Not that the ego should look…that is just more ‘greed’, trying to get somewhere…see the difference?

    No need to worry about past lives or whether or not meditation works or caves in the Hiimalayas or other teachers.These are all theoretical concepts, distractions. The ego wants a method. This is about investigating that ego without knowing what you will find (and perhaps seeing it is non-existent, if that is what you find). Are you interested in the truth of your experience right now or are you interested in chasing an idea (of enlightenment or whatever you want to call it).

    Here’s a ‘koan’ for you, see if you can understand it: you, the spiritual seeker, keep on climbing up onto a platform to speak, to ask questions about enlightenment, trying to figure it all out. The wise man does not climb onto the platform in the first place. Enlightenment is realising the platform is, and always was, an illusion.


    1. “The ego wants a method”.
      True yes, but – always a but for the ego 🙂 this ego still wants to know why the Buddha prescribed so many meditation techniques to his disciples? I mean, he was a pretty wise dude.
      It seems to me it has worked for many…

      It’s funny but listening to Jeff Foster the other day describing his experiences of going through intense terror and thinking that absolutely he was going to die for sure that night and then in the morning finding he was still alive and this process repeating itself night after night and he still thought he was going to die until one day he realised well, erm, obviously not.

      The whole process he described of living with the terror and not rejecting it in the end sounded really the same as some experiences written down as possible territories you may need to negotiate during different stages of practice (Daniel Ingram is big on “maps”. ie common experiences many people pass through). He finds them helpful. Some find them very unhelpful. (Too much expectation).

      You are right Tom. I’m still trying to “figure it all out”.
      How to stop the mind trying to work it out and let it rest in not knowing? Not trying to know. Not wanting or needing to know something which the mind cannot fathom anyway…

      I need to come back to this more.


  3. I hope you dont mind me saying that this is all ego talk. If I may make a suggestion? Dont jump from one topic to another. Slowly re-read and spend time trying to understand what I wrote above. Try to see if you can penetrate each line, each phrase and deeply understand what is being pointing to. Move slowly, with depth and understanding.


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