As one seeking spiritual enlightenment, you will try many ways to find or align your awareness to your true self. There is a way, a small experiment that you can do now to sense the awareness of what you are seeking.
Often writers and teachers will tell you that what you are, is already within you. They will call it spirit, soul, God, true self and many other things. The truth is, these things are not in you because it would create a duality-there would be you and it.
Your true self cannot be within in you no more than it can be outside of you. There is only the silent observer, the one who watches and listens, judges, nor reacts to anything. It is just there and it knows what you are thinking-what you are feeling. It is always there because it is all there is. There is no separation between you and what you are thinking. You are the awareness, that knowing-thinking out loud in the chasms of your mind and body. You are the silence, listening and feeling the rhythm of life in what you assume is your body.
To get a sense of this other thing that is part of your body try this:
Close your eyes for a couple of minutes. Begin to notice your mind thinking, but don’t concentrate on the thoughts. Now listen to the noises around you and don’t pay any attention to them. Do you smell anything, can you taste your own saliva. Are you comfortable and do you have any physical sensations-notice them!
Now, as you continue listening to your thoughts which are loud and crystal clear in your head-try to notice who is listening to your thoughts. Who is it in your head doing the listening? There is a presence there that is hearing everything. There is an awareness that knows what you are feeling or sensing. Who or what is this presence. You cannot ignore it, it is there. You are completely aware of everything going on in your body, but who are you-the one thinking or the one listening? This awareness is who you truly are. It is what you may call spirit, soul, or true self. It is what you have been looking for. It is why you meditate and pray. It is always there and you didn’t have to find it. It is the silent observer-the witness to your physical life. It is always in the background-it is not your ego or personality-it’s your true self-it is what you are looking for.
In the act of being spiritual, you lead yourself away from this awareness, this knowingness. It is the natural rhythm of life to move away from itself so that it may know itself. As you become acquainted with the silent observer or awareness which is you-you will find yourself watching and listening to what your mind and body are doing. You will notice what the body is doing, but you will not be a part of it.
From time to time you will talk out loud to it and you may even think you are losing your mind. It is the self that you have been looking for for years. All the things you have done have taken you away from it. Your body is a hollow chamber filled with this consciousness-it is creation itself-it is the holy one. You are the silent one seeking to speak. You are the emotionless one seeking to experience emotion. You are the nothingness seeking to experience something. There is nothing you have to do, be, say or go to, to experience your true self.
If you want to experience the silent observer, close your eyes and be aware, be conscious of the one who is listening to your thoughts.