Somewhere out on the high seas, two waves meet each other.
"Hey there big wave! Where are you headed?"
"To the annual conference of the Big Waves."
"Allright, sounds interesting. Perhaps before you go, I could ask you one question?"
"Well I'm rather busy, but go ahead."
"Do you believe in the Ocean?"
"Oh no, not one of you nuts! Of course I don't believe in the ocean, I'm an atheist like any other sensible wave."
"If this priced ocean in the sky of your existed, why hasn't it
revealed itself? Why hasn't our science found a trace of the ocean? Can
you explain that?"
"Well, perhaps we are the Ocean."
I've heard a lot of crazy things in my days, but this tops the list..
and how do you suppose this fantasy of yours would work?"
perhaps the Ocean one day wanted to experience something else than just
itself and divided itself into individuated units. Sort of like soap
bubbles, but without the borders between the bubbles."
"Again, it's a
nice fantasy, but I can assure you, I don't feel one bit like the
ocean. I'm a Big Wave and I've had to work goddamn hard to get to where I
am. I'd be nowhere if I had just sat down all day dreaming about these
kinds of things."
"Haven't you ever had an experience where you even for a brief moment felt part of something much much grander?"
"No, but perhaps I will today, when I'll receive my Wave of the Year award. Hahah!
"Oh, congratulations for that, it's a big award."
"It sure is. ..now, I don't know why I'm even asking this, but *if* I was the ocean, why don't I feel one bit like the ocean?"
"An excellent question! How I see it, and as you can probably agree,
we're certainly not the whole Ocean. We're currently the Ocean
experiencing itself as individuated units of itself, each an Ocean
within the whole Ocean. Each individuated unit contains a world, as well
as a vehicle for moving around in that world, in our case a wave."
"So you are saying that each wave lives in their closed universe, like sort of like a prison cell?"
"No, not at all. Both yours and my individuated units are made up of
and informed by the same whole Ocean. Now the theory goes that because
we share the same bodies, this "tunes" our units to display similar
information for both of us, it enable us to experience the same world
and each others bodies in it. Same thing if we had two radios tuned to
the same frequency, the radios would be different, the songs playing
would be almost identical and the radiowaves informing both radios would
be shared. And perhaps, with a little stretch of the imagination, you
could imagine the radios and the music also being made up from the
fluctuation of the radiowaves."
"Hmm.. I'll have to think that one over."
"Sure, these can be somewhat complicated on the first go. And on why we
don't usually feel like individuated Oceans, but like a waves operating
in an external world.. here's where it gets interesting. How I see it
is that what makes us different from many other "units" out there, like
many animals, is that we are self-aware and we have a mind."
"Hmm, ok, I suppose that's right".
"Now, what if the mind was actually an acquired tool for us to shape
our unit and by doing so inform and shape the whole Ocean. In the radio
example it would be like also having our own radio transmitters. But
instead of using the mind for shaping the Ocean, we accidentally also
end up using it to create a limiting identity for ourselves. The first
thing we say as children with the mind is "I" and with this we refer to
our body, instead of the whole individuated Ocean. Because we are the
sole programmer of our unit, its not a big deal for us to create a very
authentic feeling of actually being the body and a mind identity riding
"On top of this feeling of "I-ness" in the body, we
pile up a number of other identities, all programmed with the same
mind: "I the child of these parents", "I the one who lives in this
town", "I the one who owns this car". These form naturally and don't
cause us much suffering. But then there are also the painful ones like:
"I the one with the ugly nose", "I the one that everyone hates" and "I
the one that does not deserve to live". Lastly there are the ones that
sometimes form on top of these painful ones for protection and which are
perhaps the most harmful: "I the one that will never be hurt again", "I
the one who has earned his right to take advantage of others." and "I
the one that is on top of everyone else."
"Well so what? So what if its like that?"
"The problem is that as a given the Ocean feels restricted by feeling
it's just a wave. On top of that we also carry around painful and
harmful identities where ever we go. Some of which end up hurting every
single unit, from an earthworm to a blue whale, that share this reality
"Ok, all well and good, perhaps I don't like all parts of
myself, and perhaps I've sometimes hurt others because they were in my
way, but I don't see any other option than just to better those parts in
"Well, here is the best part of all, perhaps that is not
the only option, perhaps you can take down any identity with the same
mind that it was built with! Let's say that you felt that you had an
awful singing voice, you could say to yourself with your mind: "I am not
the one with the awful singing voice." And to say this over and over
until you felt the feeling literally evaporate. And where did this idea
of you as a bad singer come from? Most probably from the outside, from
other waves. The trick here is also to to stop trusting these outside
voices and to independently program whatever you want your reality to
be. You can do this knowing that any other wave trying to put you down
is just acting out his internal drama and suffering."
"And what about the feeling of myself as a wave and not the ocean?"
"Here's where questions and statements like "Who am I?", "I am no one"
or "I am the infinite Ocean/Universe/Whole" come in. With them you'll go
directly to the root of the false identification. Meditation is also a
way, but using the mind can perhaps be seen as a short cut, like using a
blow torch to melt a block of ice, instead of leaving it out in the
sun. Also know that the Ocean only exist in this moment of now, where as
the mind identities exist in the past and the future."
"And how exactly will I know when I've done it, "cut the root"?
"Oh you will know. It's truly a once in a lifetime experience."
"And that's it, then I'll float around in eternal bliss?"
"Unfortunately not quite. The Universe seems to be fair in the way that
it has given us all tools to both plant our identity and to cut it
down. But let's say you've been nurturing your particular one for forty
years, after it comes down, there will still be a lot of roots to dig up
and debris to clear. But, here again, the mind can be used and with any
one branch cleared you'll feel lighter and more at peace."
well, it's been interesting, I'll give you that much. Perhaps I'll even
try this trick of yours once. Now I must run to make it to the
conference in time.
"Thanks for stopping by for a chat. Have a wonderful day. Bye!"
One day the small wave lay resting and saw the Big wave passing by. He
waved his hand, but the Big wave was in too much of a hurry to see him.
"I'll never be able to convince the Big wave to look for the Ocean. And
why would I need to? It's the Ocean afterall that wants to experience
itself as a Big wave. It wants it so much that it will be back again and
again in other forms to continue its journey. And I'll be there also,
once the Big wave tires of being a wave, to remind it that it too is the
Ocean.. as it would be there for me if the roles were reversed. We're
all just walking each other home afterall."