One of the most powerful phrases in human language is “I am here.” It is powerful because it is utterly simple and profoundly true. Anything that is said or thought afterward is just an addition to this basic, unfaltering truth. In fact I and am and here are all pointing to the same essential truth, pointing to that which needs no foundation for its support, because it is the foundational truth.
Even “I am not here,” comes from the truth of being here. Denial of presence can only be stated here, where you are. The power to deny yourself comes from the truth of yourself.
In recognizing that basic truth, I am here, you have the opportunity to be welcomed here, to welcome yourself here, and to welcome what else has appeared here, in whatever state you find present in yourself.
I am inviting you to tell the truth, as completely as possible, about what is here. You probably have particular feelings that are here. Can you welcome them? When feelings change, you are still here. Feelings will change, which may be a good thing or a bad thing, but you remain. Here remains. Here doesn’t change. Things that appear here change.
Tomorrow comes here, yesterday was here. The sun comes here, clouds come here. Limitless beingness, here, discovers itself as I. The ground of the ground, the beingness of your being.
In this very moment you can tell this basic truth, I am here, and meet whatever is evoked by that truth telling. You can rest your mind in this truth. Your thinking mind can be embraced by this truth.
As an investigation, just in this moment, can you find a beginning or an end to here?
Has here ever been absent from your life?
Can you find a time in your life when you ever were not?
You can also turn your attention to the pronoun that everyone uses, I. If you do not limit I to a particular story about I, or a particular definition, or a particular gender, or a particular body, can you recognize it here as consciousness? Deeper and closer than any thought, and yet informing every thought.
In recognizing the particular thoughts that attempt to define I, and attempt to define being, and attempt to define here, in any moment we can simply return to the fundamental truth that needs no definition for its truthfulness.
I am here.
Then we can ask ourselves, “Is it enough?” If full attention is turned to I am here, is anything lacking?
There is no correct answer. It is a discovery.
This blog is adapted from a talk given by Gangaji at Hollyhock, Cortes Island, BC in September 2011. Gangaji’s new book Hidden Treasure: Uncovering the Truth in Your Life Story, was published in September by Tacher/Penguin. In this life-changing book, Gangaji uses the telling of her own life story to help readers uncover the truth in their own. Publisher’s Weekly said, “This gently flowing but often disarming volume invites readers to examine the narratives that shape them, and is a call to pass beyond personal stories to find a deeper, more universal self.” Visit www.gangaji.org for more information about Gangaji and her upcoming events, including the monthly Webcast / Conference Series, With Gangaji, which is currently undergoing an in-depth study of Hidden Treasure.
Gangaji shares a simple message – “This is an invitation to shift your allegiance from the activities of your mind to the eternal presence of your being.” Born in Texas in 1942, Gangaji grew up in Mississippi. After graduating from the University of Mississippi in 1964, she married and had a daughter. In 1972, she moved to San Francisco where she began exploring deeper levels of her being. She took Bodhisattva vows, practiced Zen and Vipassana meditation, helped run a Tibetan Buddhist Meditation Center, and had a career as an acupuncturist in the San Francisco Bay area. Despite her successes, Gangaji continued to experience a deep and persistent longing for fulfillment. She pursued many paths to change her life including relationship, motherhood, political activism, career, and spiritual practice, but even the greatest of her successes ultimately came up short. In the wake of her disillusionment, she made a final prayer for true help. In 1990, the answer to her prayer came unexpectedly, taking her to India and to the meeting that would change everything. There on the banks of the river Ganga, she met Sri H.W.L. Poonja, also known as Papaji, who opened the floodgates of self-recognition. In this meeting, Gangaji’s personal story of suffering ended and the promise of a true life began to flower and unfold. Today, Gangaji travels the world speaking to seekers from all walks of life. A teacher and author, she shares her direct experience of the essential message she received from Papaji and offers it to all who want to discover a true and lasting fulfillment. Through her life and words, she powerfully articulates how it is really possible to discover the truth of who you are and to be true to that discovery. Gangaji’s website www.gangaji.org
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