The experiencing self could be described as that point where consciousness and time actually meet. It’s that point where we are able to positively influence our realities. The experiencing self is that part of us that remains connected to the present moment. It is not deceived by the mirages of the past (the ‘memoried self’), nor seduced by the future (the ‘anticipating self’). It realizes that the past has gone and cannot be changed and even though it’s an invaluable resource, nevertheless it is not meant to define the present moment. The future, on the other hand, may either hold the prize of heaven or the imprisonment of hell, but even that is determined by the experiencing self – by how it responds in the moment, by its decisions and choices. So it is in fact the experiencing self that holds the key to your health, happiness, wellbeing and peace of mind. The more you practise being present the more you will forge a healthy alliance with this aspect of yourself and life’s majesty.
As already explained, our different states of consciousness are intimately intertwined with time (see The Memoried Self). Our awareness can either be trapped in the past, driven by the events of yesterday, or bound to a future yet to be created. Unfortunately for many, the future is also being defined by yesterday. The experiencing self understands that that which has not been resolved continues to steal our awareness, our time and our energy and so it seeks out positive solutions in order to resolve the past so it can properly align itself with the memoried self (see Resolution Creates Time, Space and Energy). The experiencing self also understands the power and the force of yesterday. It realizes that we are all a by-product of the past and if we are not at peace with it it will continue to serve up the same patterns, urges, needs, drives and habits that we’ve always known…. whether they are good, bad or indifferent.
It’s important to note that the past does not have a consciousness of its own; it’s simply a string of events and experiences that are flowing in the stream of consciousness. When something is resolved the nature of the patterns and drives changes. If issues remain unresolved they can only offer us the ‘evidence’ of yesterday’s experience. All of us are subject to the patterns of the past and unless we relate to them favourably they can only resonate with the same frequency as they always have. In other words there can be no change without change… in terms of consciousness, something cannot be made different if we do not alter the way we relate to it. We can all remember those times where we promised to change and do things differently so as to be free from those things we most dislike about ourselves and yet before we know it we have broken our promise. Such is the force of habit, circumstance and events that we have breached the walls of our own integrity, betraying not only ourselves, but also our beliefs in the process. Our proposition to you is that if the experiencing self is not at the helm, marshalling the potency and the power of the past, then you are more often than not being driven by habits, circumstances and events that are no longer relevant or true, if indeed they were ever accurate. So what can you do to change this?
First you need to understand these three states of awareness (the memoried self, the experiencing self and the anticipating self) and how they relate to one another, the past the present and the future. Secondly, you need to understand the role of choice in this. You can either be a victim or you can claim the power inherent in your life (see Victory or Victimhood and Personal Responsibility). The experiencing self is the part of you that understands you are a miracle waiting to happen. The first miracle is that you are here but the greater miracle is what you decide to do with the gift of your life. If you choose to grasp the infinite possibility of each moment you can then be carried along by the current of destiny to your potential. There you will find your meaning and purpose.
Thirdly, you need to forge an alliance with the experiencing self so that you can make best use of the past with all its wonderful insights. But to really install this change you have to become obsessive about this practice. It is really important that you understand that you become what you practise. In fact everything about you today is what you have done (practised). Whether you are conscious of it or not you are practising all the time as your actions lay down the patterns for future behaviour. You can either practise to be the same, better or worse. This will be determined by the decisions and choices you make. So why not practise being at one with your experiencing self and then channel the advantages of that awareness in directions that are favourable to you and to others. This is a treasure you can claim today and every day. All you need to do is to become obsessed about practice and you’ll soon discover the dividends are truly enormous… peace, joy, stability, clarity and contentment, to name a few.
Here’s an example of how you can develop this practice….
The experiencing self is a place of pure insight, intuition and awareness…. It’s that place where my discrimination is best able to see how to use and positively exploit the experiences that come into my consciousness…. As I sit here now I am able to use my past experiences wisely…. I am able to forgive myself and others where necessary so that I’m not merely reacting to events…. as I now understand that forgiveness clears the decks and gives me clarity and so I can respond appropriately to life’s flux…. I’m not disturbed by circumstances or events, as I’m able to maintain enough objectivity to see how it would be best to respond…. I realize that habits can be positive or negative…. so I hold onto those that are a positive force in my life and I let go of those that deceive me…. I refuse to get caught in the cycle of blame because it steals my ability to positively influence events and to rise to life’s challenges…. Being a responder rather than a reactor takes far less energy and generates better outcomes…. It leaves me feeling more peaceful and clear…. The experiencing self recognizes what it can healthily control…. And what it needs to let go of if it is to maintain balance and poise…. I choose to let go of what is no longer constructive or healthy…. I choose to find the benefit in my experiences…. even when there is pain and difficulty…. Contentment and serenity are not simply freedom from the storm, they are also the ability to find peace within it.… I realize by practising being in this awareness daily that I can claim peace and joy…. even at those times when there appears to be none…..
By practising relating to the experiencing self in this way it will become a lovely habit. You’ll come to realize that even though you cannot control the three elements of time, past present and future, or control all that is happening within the cosmos, you can nevertheless remain anchored to the present and can control how you respond to life’s unfolding and events. So why not choose that today?