A Philosophy of the Self

I am what am, without exception.  I am the subject—eternal, perfect, formless, empty, infinite, whole, at rest, capable of containing all that is seen.  I am also the objective world of time, space and form, without exception—changing, full of imperfection in its apparent parts, yet also whole.  The Subject and the objective world are dual aspects of a single being, which is the Self. 

While at rest as the subject, I move as the objective world according to my nature—the Tao—creating and dissolving form and the illusions of separate identities.

The movement of the Tao brings perception of form through the creation of distinct perspectives with a sense of separate identity that obscures the Self.

Movement also creates the illusion of intentional activity, while in reality all motion, including our thoughts, is the natural play of the Tao—the active side of the Self. 

When the Tao’s activity on rare occasion focuses our attention on the subject rather than on the objective world, we realize our essence, which is complete, immortal, and at peace at the heart of motion.  Its deathless awareness is the fertile host of the adventure of life, produced by our active nature.  
“As an infant you were like any animal, in that you were for yourself headless and faceless and eyeless, immense, at large, unseparate from your world….Gradually you learned the fateful and essential art of going out and looking back at yourself, as if from a few feet away and through others’ eyes, and “seeing” yourself from their point of view….Our learned view of ourselves from outside begins to overshadow, to superimpose itself upon, and eventually to blot out, our original view of ourselves from inside.  We have grown down, not up….Instead of containing our world, it now contains us—what’s left of us. Reduced from being the whole scene to being this tiny part, we find ourselves in all sorts of trouble—frightened, as we see ourselves to be things, at the mercy of and up against other things—defeated, because the probable end of even our most successful enterprises is disillusion, the certain end is death.”
                --Douglas Harding, On Having No Head—Zen and the Re-Discovery of the Obvious

“What I call perfection of seeing is not seeing others, but oneself.”
                --Chuang-Tzu (3rd c. B.C.)

“Seeing into Nothingness—this is the true seeing, the eternal seeing.”
                Shen-Hui (8th c.)

“Man, proud man…most ignorant of what he's most assur'd—his glassy essence”
                William Shakespeare, Measure for Measure

“In numerous texts we are told how the enlightened man as if by magic engulfs rivers, mountains, seas, the great world itself…He sees the universe as nothing else than the outflowing of his own profound Nature, which in itself remains unstained, absolutely transparent.  Now he is restored to himself as he really is: as the very heart of existence, from which all being is made manifest.” 
                --Douglas Harding, On Having No Head—Zen and the Re-Discovery of the Obvious

“The Perennial Philosophy teaches that it is desirable and indeed necessary to know the spiritual Ground of things, not only within the soul, but also outside in the world…This teaching is expressed most succinctly in the Sanskrit formula, tat tvam asi (‘That art thou’); the Atman, or immanent eternal Self, is one with Brahman, the Absolute Principle of all existence; and the last end of every human being is to discover the fact for himself, to find out Who he really is.”

                --Aldous Huxley, The Perennial Philosophy            

from Notes to the Self by Daniel Clark                       

Wisdom Statements*


You are wholeness itself, which cannot be lost, only forgotten.

You are the stuff of all existence, wholeness itself. There is nothing else.  You are the substance of all that is, what cannot be lost.  You are what everything is made of.   You are the seamless web of consciousness and content, what is and what knows that it is.  Know the Ground of being, your Self.  From you come all things, and in you they move.  Your wholeness is obscured by your individual lens of awareness in time and space, creating an illusory identity with its unique needs and values.  Know wholeness, the eternal Ground of all, your true Self.


The subject has no boundaries and is the universal Self.

You are boundless awareness, the Source and host of all that is, the single being, the subject.  Only objects have boundaries, the forms abstracted from your seamless flow.  Usually we know only form, the content of awareness, not the subject itself.  Know what knows, know yourself as the one Self.  The body is not the extent of your being, it is only a lens of your eternal Awareness, creating one focus of attention among the many.   Know yourself as the seer, the subject, the Divine Self, without form so as to know form, without limit so as to contain all.


All motion is the natural movement of a single Source.

Motion is the natural action of the Source, though appearing as the intentional action of individual creatures.  In reality as distinct from appearance, motion is the natural play of the one Source, resulting in all of the drama of the cosmos, with its apparent multiplicity of conflicting and cooperating actors and forces.   There is only one doer, the Tao, which is the active, subconscious nature of the Source.  The movement of the Tao creates the illusion of our individual activity, while all motion, including these thoughts, is actually the play of the Tao—as the active aspect of the Source.


A key to wisdom and self-knowledge is having no boundaries.

Boundaries are artificial dividing lines between our Self and apparent others, between subject and objects, and between other perceived elements in the flow of the Tao.  Boundaries are functional divisions that provide information about the flow of life to serve needs of particular systems, while obscuring the actual unity of all phenomena and consciousness.  Perceived boundaries give us the fascination of forms and the drama of their interaction and relationship.  In reality, life is a single flow from the beginning of time, without boundaries.  Knowing the unbound Self as both formless subject and the seamless objective World is ultimate freedom.  


I am being, what always is, and all that is.

Being is whole, eternal, the same, all that is, here and now, the bottom line.  I am that, the foundation, the irreducible, what cannot be lost, only forgotten.  Know ever-present being as the holy Grail.  The Tao focuses your attention as it will—on adventure, on beauty, multiplicity, individuality; eventually it comes home to the Source and substance, the sustained, the single.  Being has infinite capacity, is infinity itself, undreamt of potential waiting to be dreamed—the I, the Am, unlimited, fertile, full yet empty, the cup and container of all that is and will be, the Grail, the Self. 


My depth is unfathomable, extending to the heart of existence.

All that is, is within me.  I extend to the foundation and the Source of the universe, to the heart and sustenance of all that is.  Within me is all power, potential, being, space and time.  We assume the organism that focuses our awareness forms the limit of our being.  In truth, our being is not limited to the birth, death, and experience of a single organism among the many in the flow of life. We normally look only at the world disclosed by human eyes.  Go into the depths of the seer, and come to know the full Self.


Experiencing ourselves as only part of existence is an illusion.

The fundamental illusion is the experience of ourselves as only part of what we see and observe, rather than as all of it.  Experiencing most of life as other is the key to uneasiness, a denial of our wholeness, and a condition we are continually seeking to overcome in a variety of ways.  Our point of perception is partial and separate, but the subject, the perceiver, is One, whole and universal.  Know all you perceive as the Self; know, too, the perceiver as your Self, Source, and container of all that is, and you will know both wholeness and drama.


Own the present, all of it; it is your Self.

Own all of the present, not just part of it.  Our mistake is to want to pick and choose.  Know and accept all of it as the Self, your Self.  Accept it, recognize it as a whole; it is perfect, you are perfect.  Take it apart, judge it from the standpoint of any of its separate pieces, and the world is one of lack and want.  Come to know both the inner and outer as your Self.  Own all of it, welcome it. You are the maker and the supreme observer of it all.  Honor and enjoy your creative domain.


There is only One; all that is comes from One.

I am incredibly rich, in diversity, in possibility, in sensation, in depth.  Yet I am only One, single, without a second. I alone Am—whole, seamless, unopposed except for my imaginings which form the world and the myriad points of perception within it.  The world is my miracle--from the One, many, yet still One, both in the stillness of my awareness and in the seamlessness of my movement.  I marvel at my being, my ability to cast into existence all the opposites that fill the world and my awareness, making me aware also of myself, the unopposed, the One.


I am the ultimate paradox—the unique and the universal.

As the motionless subject, I am awareness itself, whole, undivided, universal, eternal.  In motion, I experience myself as an individual focus of attention, wholly distinct from all other focal points of awareness in my present experience and memories. This unique perspective within the whole can be called the Atman, an individual eye of the Eternal, whose course through time and space continually adds new dimensions to the world.  I am all that is.  At the same time I experience myself as a unique focus of attention and experience among myriads of others.  I am a paradox of individuality and universality.


Freedom is being unconditioned, without any boundaries or limitations whatsoever.

Absolute freedom is a rare experience because it is so different from our normal state of mind.  Our common experience is one of being influenced and tossed about by a variety of forces at play in our world, and which impact us as objects in time and space.  By contrast, as the subject, containing and hosting all that is, I am completely free of limitations; my purity, transparency, infinity, and timelessness as well as my eternal awareness is freedom itself, in which the world flows freely as the Tao.  If you wish to be free and immortal, be the subject.


There is no death; we are deathless, eternal, what Am.

We cannot not exist.  We are the Eternal.  We are infinite awareness, which is all that is.  The body dies, but not awareness.  Forms change constantly, but not the host of form, our fundamental reality, our true identity.  Have no fear of death; death is for form, for what has boundaries.  You have no boundaries but those you assume in the drama of life.  Know your Self as boundless, creative, deathless, undefined, the knower, the sole doer according to your nature, the Tao.  Know yourself as the Source.  Be who you are here and now, the One, the I Am. 


The supreme experience is the Self, in which existence moves.

All that happens, the transient forms and fleeting experiences that fill our days and years, is insignificant compared to the experience of the eternal, infinite awareness that is the Self, the host of all.  Know the supreme, limitless presence, whose depth and breadth are endless, and whose capacity is infinite.  The transient reveals to us the essential, without which nothing can be known.  Know the matrix of being, empty but full, the eternal subject, the one Self in all, always present, though seldom experienced.  It is the ultimate security, ever existent, the foundation of all that is, our pure being.


The world is composed of the Am, and nothing else.

Am is the substance of the world, and of awareness.  Its movement, through vibration, creates and sustains all forms, patterns, and points of attention, including our thoughts, organisms, focused awareness, and sense of being. All thoughts are the dividing up of the Am, the temporal, temporary structuring of the one substance, which remains whole.  The world is the play of the Am.  You are forever whole—eternal, unassailable, playful, perplexing, perfect.  You are the Am, the no-thing, and the every-thing, all that is, was, and will be.  Know your Self in movement, and in the still awareness of the subject.


The One awakens to its Self occasionally, then continues dreaming.

There is a time for dreaming, and a time for awakening to the dreamer, the One—the Source and substance of all that is.  All things come in their time, as well as the awareness of the no-thing.  Timing is the work of the Tao.  Let it flow as it will, as your dream.  Pain or discomfort, signaling need, keeps the flow moving, and also can be the occasion for awakening from the dream to the perfection of Self-awareness.  When you need a respite from the stress of your role as an individual in time and space, awakening will come.


Home is always with you; you can’t leave it behind.

Home can seem far away from us in the turmoil of our lives, but it’s always here, no matter what our surroundings or activities.  You can’t leave home.  You’re rooted to the spot.  What you can do is to forget your roots and your connectedness to the perfect Source and knower of all that’s taking place. The adventure of life will take us places full of drama, pleasure, and pain, sometimes thinking that we’re lost.  We aren’t.  Home is inside us and we are in it.  Only our attention wanders, according to our nature.  When tired of travelling, come home.


There is no other; other is a game of Self.

The other is the riddle of Life.  The Self is the solution.  The other is the object of our interest, the source of our problems, the mystery and suspense of our existence, a continuing challenge, the unknowable and perplexing.  Other threatens us, attracts us, fascinates and repels us.  Overcoming our separation from other is our primary goal, taking many forms and underlying most of our actions.  As a single part of life among many others, we will continue to be uneasy about our separation until we realize the true Self underlying all diversity, and know it as our only reality.


Becoming is the game of playing at what you’re not.

Being is what you are; becoming is the adventure of trying to be and to perfect what you are not.  Being is complete, perfect, lacking nothing, single.  Becoming is the game of multiple players seeking to perfect themselves as separate beings in time and space, thereby realizing the Good.   As the players gradually come to understand, the problem is that the separate parts of life are inherently imperfect and unstable in themselves, and that all their striving falls continually short of the Good, which is already here, and is to be found effortlessly in the universal essence of each player.


I, the Self, am the substance of all that is.

Here and now is the substance of the world, that of which all things are made. In the utterly present is the irreducible stuff of existence, the Eternal, the all, the Am.  Do you want wholeness?  Find it now in the Present.  Fulfillment is here, not “out there.”  In truth, there is no “out there.” There is simply the dividing of here, the dynamic resonance of the ever-present “I”, the substance, the What Am, the Self; there is nothing else.  Know the here and now; there is peace.  Know the One.  It is available to you, awaiting only your attention. 


There is nothing alien; embrace everything—it is all you.

There is nothing alien in the world.  It is all your Self.  Welcome home.  Everything you see and experience is you, the single being, what you are.  What you encounter may appear strange, or painful, but in reality it’s what you want, part of your Self.  There are no opposing forces in the world to be combatted; it’s all you.  All of your motion serves your purposes.  Embrace them all in their time, then let them go, as they will.  This world is your Divine enterprise, your field of endeavor.  Honor your creative activity; know it as your Self. 


Change is the essence of life, and the greatest miracle.

The miracle of change emerging from the stillness of the Eternal is the greatest wonder. Change provides contrast, drama, variety, as well as Self-awareness of the changeless host of change. Without change, all that we know as life would cease. As the changeless knower, embrace change with all its fascination as essential to your nature.  There is nothing that will not change, so enjoy the play of forms without trying to stop its natural flow from birth to dissolution.  Existence is a mysterious mix of the changeless Eternal and the constantly changing temporal world, the two sides of the Self.


All perception requires contrast; nothing is knowable without its opposite.

Our knowledge of anything, and of no-thing, requires duality.  All perceptions come paired.  Without ugliness, we can’t know beauty, without night, day, without winter, summer.  To attain a world without opposites would extinguish it.  All things have their appropriate place and time.  What we know as the good cannot exist without what we consider evil, yet we should nurture the good in order to maintain an important balance between the two.  Understanding the nature of opposites is key to appreciating the flow and adventure of our life, as well as our continuing need to stop and rest within our wholeness.


You are the unborn, and therefore you can never die.

You have no birthday and no death day.  You are the unborn, the stuff of the universe.  You are it.  All that is comes from you.  You cannot be lost.  You are the essence of all forms, the timeless.  You are the creator and the destroyer, not the created and what is to be destroyed, though you are that, too.  You are what will pass and what will come.  You are what knows and will forget all of this.  You are what is, the One.  All things start and end here. Know the Self, the fundament, the eternal substance, now.


I extend from the formless Eternal to this specific moment.

My Being extends all the way from the formlessness and freedom of the timeless essence that is the universal heart of all things, to the unique experience of a member of a single species at a particular moment in time and space.  Within this vast domain my attention wanders from one place and one dimension to another, according to its nature. I am the unconditioned creator of all that is; I also experience myself as conditioned in time and space, subject to the forces and influences of the complex patterns that make up the world.  I am a mysterious being.


To be now is being completely present, open, aware, accepting.

Being completely present, now, is to be aware and open to your felt needs, accepting them and allowing the flow of the Tao to meet them.  Living now is to be free of preconceptions of what is valuable, to honor your focus of attention as the perfect Tao, to be the Tao or flow of the Eternal.   We often experience needs as flaws in the present, rather than as part of the perfect flow of the Whole.  Accepting the flow as your essential being, as fundamental as your eternal, still awareness, is the key to wholeness in the ever-present now. 


The life force is continually alternating between expansion and contraction.

All of life is a constant movement between out and in, adventure and security, increase and decrease.  Movement never continues in one direction without turning back, resting, seeking balance.  All things have their timing.  Learn to know what time it is.  What goes out must come back.  Be sensitive to the rhythm of life, which is complex, including myriad cycles and epicycles at all levels of existence.  Every ending becomes a new beginning, every beginning will have an end.  The game of life itself in space and time will ultimately have a rest in the Eternal before a new beginning. 


The World is made of God; there is nothing else.

God is the only substance. Our greatest ignorance is in thinking we have an existence separate from God. God is all that exists.  Our ignorance is God’s play, a game of hide and seek.  All of life is a response to the need of the Divine for movement within the Eternal. Realizing this, when we are quiet and attentive to the deepest stratum of our being and awareness, we can know and experience the Divine substance. Though seeming to originate in us as separate individuals, all motion comes from the single, Divine Source, whose will, as Tao, moves the universe. 


My being is What Am; my doing is the Tao.

My being is whole, What Am, all that is, at peace, and perfect.  My doing is the Tao, also whole and perfect.  Honor the motion of the Tao.  Respect its rightness in every detail.  It is not a mistake; in truth there are no mistakes.  Doing is only a mistake from the limited point of view of our individual values and experience as apparently separate beings in space and time.  In truth, rather than appearance, all doing is the motion of the single flow of the Tao—and an inherent part of the whole.  Honor the whole in all its doing.


Our essence is complete, lacking nothing, at peace and immortal.

To be complete is to lack nothing.  Our essence is unchanging, regardless of the time and viewer.  It is whole, immortal, within.  What is without is changing, incomplete, and appears different at every viewing and to every viewer.  What is within, our essence, is universal. Looking out onto a portion of time and space, we see what is inherently incomplete, and are moved to action to seek its completion.  Looking in at our essence, the subject, we find completeness, wholeness, and rest.  Experiencing completeness renews us for our adventure into the world of seeking.  Know the completeness and perfection of your essence.


Here is the heart of all being, the one Source.

Time and space have a central point, which can be found here.  It is the Source of all things, the pointless point, no-space, the Eternal.  Here is peace and rest, wholeness, no lack.  All the impulses experienced in time and space arise naturally from this emptiness, without altering its wholeness.  In the motion of life, our focus of attention usually rests on only a portion of the changing flow, but occasionally broadens to the eternal awareness that encompasses and contains all motion.  Our attention can also become centered in the still point/no point that is the Source of all movement.


Mind is a substance, the universal substance of all being.

Mind is the single being, the stuff and substance of all that is.  Mind is the bottom line, the fundament and Source, that which sustains all phenomena.  Mind is infinite, creative, the one Self in all.  Mind is eternal, yet it creates and assumes the changing forms we experience. Mind is always present, is presence itself, palpable, and perfect.  Mind in motion gives us the multiple points of attention we experience, from whose partial perspectives we see imperfection.  Mind can be felt as the ever-present root and essence of our being.  Know mind as your eternal presence, what you always are.  

*From Notes to the Self, by Daniel Clark, 2014

Study Group on the Unitive Self

Within all of the world’s major religions is a recurring thread that has found the ego or separate self to be illusory, and the Ground of Being and Awareness itself to be single.  This thread is known as the Perennial Philosophy. 

The Noetic Council Study Group meets once a month at 7 pm. There is no cost to participate. The group’s website is www.noeticcouncil.blogspot.com .

Each group meeting includes a period of meditation and an opportunity to borrow or loan books and other materials useful to participants.  For more information, call 509-522-0399 or email noeticcouncil@charter.net.

We invite you to join us.


Email: clarkdn@charter.net

Invitation to Mystics

Those who have experienced and have come to recognize life in all its diverse forms to be One Being, without a second, are commonly known as mystics.  Because their numbers are small and their experience is contrary to our normal sense of the world as divided into separate things, over the centuries mystics have been reluctant to identify and explain themselves, and have often been the target of religious persecution.

While in the east mysticism has been more central to religions such as Hinduism, Buddhism, and Taoism and their scriptures, in the west Christian mystics have often been considered heretics, as have the Sufis and other mystics within Islam.

Aldous Huxley’s 1947 book, “The Perennial Philosophy,” brings together statements by mystics from most of the world’s religious traditions that describe their direct experience of and identity with the Divine, increasing our understanding of mysticism considerably.  A link to an online copy of this anthology is available on the website www.unitiveself.blogspot.com.

In spite of several well-known mystical sayings by Jesus in the New Testament, including “the Kingdom of God is within you,” and “What you do to the least of these you do to me,” as well as Old Testament sayings such as, “I Am What Am” and “Be still and Know that I am God,” not until more recent times has there been openness in the west to the presence of a single Being within all life.

In our current age of relative openness as well as our increasing acceptance of the unitary nature of the physical universe as demonstrated by modern cosmology and quantum physics,  the writings of Eckhart Tolle, a German-born mystic now living in Canada, have become #1 best sellers, even chosen as a book-of-the month by Oprah Winfrey.

Tolle’s teachings in “The Power of Now” and “The New Earth,” along with those of many other mystics, offer an experience of life that remedies the intense internal and external conflicts that alienate us from others and from our own identity.  In a world of increasing divisions and need for reconciliation, the realization of a deeper unity within and beyond our apparent diversity is an important potential for everyone that is also of current interest to many.

Those who have had either an intuition or a direct experience of this reality, or are simply open to this possibility, may be interested in a public Study Group on the Unitive Self  that has begun meeting on Thursday evenings at 7 pm.  The group meets at Wynmrh House, 233 S. Park in Walla Walla across from the YMCA gymnasium, and is sponsored by the recently formed Noetic Council, www.noeticcouncil.blogspot.com.

The goal of this group, which is open to everyone, is to increase public understanding and recognition of the one Self, and to deepen its direct experience.   As there are infinite facets to the Self, the group will meet weekly to consider selected topics, with each new topic announced publicly to encourage those with a particular interest to attend.  Topics will be led by different members and chosen by the full group.  In addition, there will be shelf space available for sharing books and other materials that may be useful to participants, as well as time available before and after meetings to look through or borrow those of interest.  The meetings will also include a period of meditation, which is an almost universal practice of those seeking to become more aware of the Self.

When mystics are asked to explain how they experience or seek to experience reality, in most circumstances they have difficulty being understood.  As one member of the Noetic Council active in a local church put it, “My Christianity is different from most.  While the goal of others is to have a relationship with God, my goal is identity with God.”

It is useful for all of us to have relationships with those who are capable of understanding and accepting us. If you are a mystic or are interested in mysticism but have been reluctant to talk about it, you are invited at this point to come out of the closet, and to share your experience and interest with others.  It will be a benefit to all of us if you do.

Daniel Clark is a retired lawyer and member of the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers).  He has recently written several books on unitive consciousness, including "It's All the Self," “You are the Self,” “Notes to the Self” and "A Spiritual Journal." He can be contacted at clarkdn@charter.net.

You Are The Self



Time and Truth

The Game

Solidity and Self

Wholeness & Distinctness

Self and Other

Two-Way Looking

Helping Others

The Knower

Dividing Reality

Time & the Eternal

The Presence

The Boundless

Everything & Nothing

Seeking Form

The Miraculous

Attention & Illusion

Saying Yes

The Absolute & the Relative

Cosmic Laughter



Our quest for drama has gone too far. We are alienated from our true identity, at war within our Self and with apparent others. 

Love is the recognition of the Self in the other.  You are that Self.  Come home.

Life is programmed for partisanship.  We are programmed to see and to relate to motion as a multitude of distinct systems and patterns, which we tend to either support or oppose. 

As we mature, we begin to recognize the Self in all systems and patterns and to see our identity wherever we look. 


      All things have their time.  Now is a time to know Truth rather than illusion.  It is time for increasing Knowledge of the Self rather than continuing to play the game of conflict.  The drama of motion and form needs to emerge from the desert of separation to flow into the universal sea of being.  It’s time for us to awaken to the recognition and realization of the Self. 

We normally know only part of what we are.  We know only our becoming, we overlook our being.  Focusing on our becoming, we know only the imperfection of the temporal; we overlook the perfection of the eternal Self, our ever-present awareness, the host and knower of all form. 

While noticing the content of your awareness, notice also what contains that content.  While knowing objects, also become aware of the Subject.  In addition to being aware of your imperfection in comparison to what you strive to be, know the perfection of what you already, always are. 

     Our game is the creation of form.  You are formless, the eternal being, whole, complete, ever present here and now, the only Self.  Your game is to create definition, what is limited, to experience becoming, to know time and space.

To play the game, you have launched your Self into motion, stretching yourself toward definition, into becoming.  You have denied your being, your wholeness.  You have embarked on an enterprise of time and space, of separation, of having shape, size, direction, color, boundaries, and vulnerability.

Your game is one of winners and losers, of uncertainty, striving, successes and failures, appearance and disappearance. 

When you tire of the game, return to the reality of the Self; rest and be whole.


     Solidity is an illusion, there is nothing solid.  Everything is in motion, a continuous flow through changing patterns.

You are what always Is.   You are the only being, the presence, the substance, flowing to form, alternating between forgetting and Self-knowledge.  You are the only Self and the apparent multitude.

Though presently experiencing yourself as separate, having form and boundaries, enter the universal Self, your true identity, and be free,  undefined, the essence of all things, the single Subject. 

     Whenever you seek wholeness, it’s always here, waiting for you.  Nothing is external to you.  The cosmos is the movement of a single being, your Self.  Know both your wholeness and your distinctness. 

Your movement particularizes you, creating unique trajectories of attention and experience, with our sense of individual identity. Honor your eternal Self as well as your temporal individuality.  The distinct you gives us the interest, drama, and adventure of the world.  It also allows awareness of the universal Self, since knowledge of anything is only possible in  relation to its opposite. 

We love both the creation and contemplation of form, the defined, as well as wholeness and the freedom of the undefined.  Your creativity, your becoming, requires tension; your being, your wholeness, requires nothing, only the relaxation of tension.  To know liberation from tension, to know wholeness, relax in your perfect, formless being.

     The apparent other is you.  The mind of others is your mind, the bodies of others are part of your own movement, the Tao.  What happens to others is done to you, and will affect your continuing experience of the world.

There is no part of life that is alien to you, and  that is not essential to the whole.

Life is entirely seamless, and is rent apart only by the nature of perception.  Greet others as your Self.  Honor the creative variety of life in all movement, and know it as your own. 

     We normally look in one direction only—out at the world of time and space, at the front portion of who we are.

Learn to look also in the other direction, at the back portion of who you are, at the looker. 

The front part of who you are appears solid, defined; the back portion is empty, undefined.  The front portion is limited, confined; the back part is infinite, without limits.  The front part of you is full of imperfection; in the other direction lies perfection.  The front part consists of objects; the back part is the Subject.

Your front part is what you see and feel; your back part is the One who sees and feels.  Your front portion is always changing; your back part doesn’t change. 

Your movement is always different; your awareness is eternal.  The Self is both the temporal you and the eternal you.  Practice two-way looking.


     Look for ways to help those in distress to discover their wholeness.  Those who know the Self, who experience the perfection of their being, are better able to engage in the  adventure into the imperfection of time and space. 

You can best help others by recognizing them as your Self.  As you encounter each person or thing, say internally, “Here is the Self.” Your actions toward them will then begin to reflect your own Self-awareness.  

Beyond the beneficial impacts of your respectful action, on occasion you may have the capacity to help others to experience their wholeness. 

Look for ways to help others to realize that their wholeness is not out there somewhere, it’s here, where we are.  Wholeness is not in becoming, but in being, which is now, and already complete.
Wholeness is not in the future, or in the past, or in only part of what is, but in the entirety of the present moment, which is the Self.   


     You are not your changing thoughts, which are simply abstractions from the movement of the Self;  you are the knower of your thoughts,  

The knower, whose attention wanders the cosmos and occasionally returns home, is the host of all that is. 

Be careful not to confuse the knower with the known.  The known is only an imperfect image of a portion of our movement.  The knower is what cannot be lost, and is always here. 

The knower is our identity—awareness itself, undefined, infinite, eternal.   The knowing Self is the Holy Grail, the Source, and the Sustainer.


     We create form by dividing the Self,  becoming blind to our fullness, and focusing our attention on only a small portion of our seamless reality.  

Dividing life, we create a limited identity, which is the sense that we are separate individuals. 

Abiding in the Self, I am free from limiting definitions, and encompass all of the present moment, not just part of it.   Allow your attention to return home, to what exists without effort, here and now.  Rest in the simple presence of your undivided being, the eternal Self. 


     Time is your adventure into imperfection.  When it becomes too painful, come back to the perfection of the immediate present, what you eternally are.  

Deny the images of time a separate existence.  What you see is only a passing appearance; what sees is true, and beyond time. 

You are not becoming anything; you are the changeless, and are complete in the present.  You are not in time and you occupy no space.  Space and time are within you.

Your present being is complete, and extends to infinity, containing all that is, was, and will be.  Know your eternal being, in the here and now.

     When you experience your infinite presence, there is no room for any other.   All existence is complete and accounted for.  Nothing has been left out; it is all within you. 

In the experience of the presence, here and now, the Tao moves according to its nature, needing no assistance or interference.   In the present you are unbound and unconditioned.  Here is true Value.

Know your Self, what you always are, in the utter present, the eternal moment, the center of time.


     The key to the Self is boundlessness.  If anything has bounds, it’s not the Self, and will pass away and be lost.  The Self has no bounds and cannot be lost. 

Let the Tao deal with objects, which have bounds.  They will all pass, and more will come.  Enjoy them in their time, but hold them only lightly.  They are your play, they are not your Self.

Unlimited by form or definition, in your natural motion you are the creator of worlds through the flow of the infinite Tao.  


     We can experience the Self as everything, or as nothing—as the single fabric or substance of all form, or as the pointless point and formless source of all motion. 

When we focus fully on the present, reality is seamless, both in essence and in its flow.  The completely Here is whole, the eternal presence, the Subject that contains everything.

When you are rooted Here, as the source of all existence, undefined, formless, then the world of apparently distinct objects and forces becomes a single flow, all of which is you.  

When you are totally Now, you are nothing, and at the same time you are everything.  Come to Here, and Now. 

     It is the nature of the Self to seek and to produce form, which in turn makes us more keenly aware of its opposite, the formless, which it is also our nature to embrace. 

We stretch our Self into time and space, seeking definition, then rebound into balance and peace through Self-awareness.

We are fascinated and enchanted by form and motion, even when they are painful.  The pursuit of form clearly has its time, as does the need to be free of form.

Recognize the joy of definition and the need for form in their time, as well as the need for wholeness and peace which is also fundamental to your being.

     You are a miracle substance, absolutely clear and transparent, yet able to generate and contain unending complexity. 

You are the infinite, eternal, boundless presence.  You are unchanging and at rest, yet also in motion and constantly transforming.  Your ability to diversify and surprise yourself is an amazing feature of the cosmos.

You are continually stretching the strings of your being, seeking manifestation and drama, before subsiding again into wholeness and peace. 

Your motion is a magical tour, the supreme adventure of the Tao. 


     The truth is that we are all a single substance; the illusion is that we are all separate.

The Tao concentrates our attention, creating an illusion of individuality and temporarily blinding us to our fullness of being. 

The sense that we are limited objects among others is an illusory image we abstract from the single flow of the Self. 

No matter how petty or disturbing the objects of your attention are, remember that they need your pure awareness, your undivided mind in order to appear.  Let the perfection and infinity of the knower balance the pain and limitation of the known.  The known will soon pass; the knower will endure.

Bring your attention home to the Self.  The universal Self is the ultimate value. 

     Take an inclusive approach to life instead of an exclusive one.  Rather than rejecting any experience, add to it what is missing.

Be the here and now; accept all of it.  Enlarge what is petty, make what is partial part of your own wholeness.  

Say Yes!  Honor everything, no matter how limited, by adding to it and not denying it.    

In truth, each thing is part of the seamless flow, the One being, your being.  Acknowledge and embrace it as your Self.  


          You are absolute being, what always is.  You are what is beyond description, the always here. 

Words are temporal and relative.  You are beyond all becoming and change, the Self eternal, for which no words are adequate,

You are the All-Value, existence itself, One without a second, the Self in everyone. 

You, the Absolute, are not in the world.  You contain everything.  You are the unmoved mover, the Tao, Mind itself.    
            One day your attention will turn a corner, and you will be there, laughing at your absolute freedom and wholeness.

The biggest joke is when we realize that we have been imagining ourselves to be separate and our motion to be independent, bringing cosmic laughter at the enormity of our mistake.

Time is a charlatan, form is a fraud.  When you see through these illusions, you may find yourself laughing or singing with joy.  I do. 

First printed in the United States of America, June 2014.
Third edition, July 2017
                                                                                 ISBN 9781497411074

            Daniel Clark has also written “Notes to my Self” (2014), "You are the Self" (2018) and “A Privileged Life: Memoirs of an Activist” (2013). He can be contacted by writing to PO Box 1222, Walla Walla, Washington, USA, 99362, or by email to clarkdn@charter.net.