Learning to witness thoughts, feelings, images, sensations, and even consciousness itself is a core purpose for many experienced meditators. The challenge is, “How to do this?” Most approaches use some form of rarefied thoughts (affirmations and mantras), feelings (adoration, thankfulness), images (mandalas, tankas), sensations (breathing), consciousness (moving from past/future into now, lucid dreaming) to leverage detachment from our addiction to these things. IDL takes a different approach. It has you become self-aspects that already witness these realms of experience, providing you with repeated direct exposures to same.
Here is an example of an interview that builds identification with an aspect of your experience that is always constantly witnessing and meditating: the sky.
What are three fundamental life issues that you are dealing with now in your life?
1 Cultivating the Witness in meditation
2 Generalizing meditative consciousness to my everyday mind
3 Following the recommendations of interviewed self-aspects
Imagine that you are sitting in meditation witnessing your thoughts, your feelings, your images, your bodily and energic sensations, your beingness. How do you feel?
Free; at peace.
If those feelings had a color (or colors), what would it be?
clear space or clear light
Imagine that color filling the space in front of you so that it has depth, height, width, and aliveness.
Now watch that color swirl, congeal, and condense into a shape. Don’t make it take a shape, just watch it and say the first thing that you see or that comes to your mind: An animal? Object? Plant? What?
The sky. The sky looks blue, but only in the distance and only during the day. Actually, the sky has no color.
Now remember how as a child you liked to pretend you were a teacher or a doctor? It’s easy and fun for you to imagine that you are the shape that took form from your color and answer some questions I ask, saying the first thing that comes to your mind. If you wait too long to answer, that’s not the character answering – that’s YOU trying to figure out the right thing to say!
(Character,) would you please tell me about yourself and what you are doing?
I encompass all things. I have no future or past, or “now.” There is no time or space for me.
What do you like most about yourself? What are your strengths?
I like that I am beyond all likes and dislikes, all preferences, because I encompass all things, including all preferences. This is a strength, because it means I am beyond the drama that preferences create. It is not that I prefer not having preferences, because that too is a preference. It is that I don’t do preferences.
What do you dislike most about yourself? Do you have weaknesses? What are they?
I am so subtle it is very easy for me to be ignored and taken for granted when I am in fact the context which makes life possible. This is not a weakness for me and it’s nothing I dislike, it’s simply a fact that most beings are asleep to me.
Sky, you are in this person’s life experience, correct? They created you, right?
In a manner of speaking. From my point of view, I created him, I dreamt him…
Sky, what aspect of this person do you represent or most closely personify?
That “part” (although I am not a thing or a “part”) that does not die, that is formless, spaceless, and is completely awake and aware.
(Character,) if you could be anywhere you wanted to be and take any form you desired, would you change? If so, how?
I already take any and every form. When animals and plants breathe me I am intimately associated with every cell of their being. Rocks contain me. There is nowhere that I am not. There is nothing that I am not.
(Continue, answering as the transformed object, if it chose to change.)
(Character), how would you score yourself 0-10, in each of the following six qualities: confidence, compassion, wisdom, acceptance, inner peace, and witnessing? Why?
Confidence: 10 I can’t die. I know no fear. There is nothing that I am in conflict with. I always completely accomplish being me.
Compassion: 10 I give myself completely and selflessly to every form that wants to breath me in or make me a part of it. I accept completely and selflessly that which any plant, animal, factory, or volcano wants to give off into me.
Wisdom: 10 I am ageless and I experience everything from every perspective. There is nothing I do not know that has ever been done, thought, or felt.
Acceptance: 10 I accept myself and others completely. Wind, tornadoes, dark, light, meteors, death, drama, nuclear explosions – I accept it all.
Inner Peace: 10 What’s there not to be peaceful about? I embrace all things.
Witnessing: 10 I witness everything, even space, and every form.
How would Joseph’s life be different if he naturally scored high in all six of these qualities all the time?
He would be in a constant state of meditation, regardless of what he was doing, thinking, or feeling. His mind would be clear and centered and that would be the foreground or figure. The contents of his mind, which are normally the foreground or figure, would still occur, but they would be in the background, or ground. He would witness both his inner world and his outer world with equanimity and wakefulness, whether awake, dreaming, or deeply asleep.
If you could live Joseph’s life for him, how would you live it differently?
I would be fully present as myself at all times.
If you could live this person’s waking life for him today, would you handle his three life issues differently? If so, how?
Regarding cultivating the witness in meditation, I would have him become me when he meditates. Not see me but become me. Become me as a ten in each of the six core qualities.
Regarding generalizing meditative consciousness to everyday mind, I would do the same. Anchor to a constant awareness of the sky as breath and prana.
Regarding following the recommendations of interviewed self-aspects, I would remember that awareness is everything. That means reading them over regularly, keeping reminders of those recommendations close at hand.
What three life issues would you focus on if you were in charge of his life?
1. Becoming me.
2. Allowing me to run his life and make his decisions.
3. Regularly asking me my opinion.
In what life situations would it be most beneficial for Joseph to imagine that he is you and act as you would?
When meditating, when in drama, when confused or unsure.
Why do you think that you are in this person’s life?
To help him wake up.
How is this person most likely to ignore what you are saying to them?
Addiction to the drama of his thoughts, feelings, images, sensations, and states of being.
What would you recommend that they do about that?
Follow my recommendations, above.
Joseph, what have you heard yourself say?
Who I really am isn’t an identity or a being or a self. It’s not a “part” of me. It transcends and includes all forms. It doesn’t “have” the six core qualities, it transcends and includes them. There is no birth or death, time or space or drama from this perspective. It is in a constant state of meditation. Becoming it will automatically put me in more or less of a meditative state, depending upon how completely I am willing to identify with it. This perspective is not internal to me. It witnesses me. It does not judge me or pass judgment on what I do or do not do.
If this experience were a wake-up call from your soul, what do you think it would be saying to you?
Awaken to a perspective that transcends and includes all other perspectives. It does not mean it is better or best, only that it becomes available as an option once it is learned, where before it was not an option.
This interview is only an example. It cannot replace and is not meant to replace your own direct contact with your own unique and personal experience. For this process to heal, balance, and transform your own life, enhance your own ability to meditate, and build within you an ongoing meditative consciousness, you must first interview your own sky (you will find the protocol here), then practice becoming it, particularly when you meditate and as you fall asleep at night.
Please leave us your comments regarding this interview. By all means, share your own experiences with the method. We all grow faster when we share what works and does not work for us.