Who Is This “I” Fellow? Sensing the “I”

Some experiences instantly give rise to a sense of this “I” fellow that Jeffrey Hopkins urges the reader to find in ‘Meditation on Emptiness’.

Thinking about the deterioration of my body and death. A sense of identifying the “I” with the body arises. The body reifies the sense of “I”, and without the body the sense of “I” deteriorates.

Somebody says something that is racist. I don’t understand racism and I find it particularly upsetting. It gives rise to a strong sense of “I don’t like that” and “you are wrong” that reinforces the identity of “us” and “them” that are separate.

Feeling embarrassed about something. Russell Brand joked that it is when he’s lying in bed, waiting to go to sleep that he remembers embarrassing moments. “Five years ago you said in front of all of this people, and this is verbatim …”. I also remind myself of cringeworth moments when I am waiting for sleep.

Again, I do not think this is the “I” that Jeffrey Hopkins was referring to. The trigger points are again ways in which I identifiy myself. But there might be something in the sense of “I” that the trigger points gives rise to.