Take one method and play with it for at least 3 days. If it gives you a certain feeling of affinity, if it gives you a certain feeling of well-being, if it gives you a certain feeling that this is for you, then be serious about it.
Osho, The Book of Secrets, Ch 1
With these words, Osho encourages us to explore the 112 meditation techniques from The Book of Secrets. The blog post below is part of a series of chats with people, who travelled the path with one of the meditations for a longer period of time. The eighth story is about existentially feeling yourself, feeling “I am”.
It started for me as a feeling – a feeling I experienced when I sat in front of Osho for the first time. Something strong and unexpected happened. I was aware of myself in a way I had never known before. It was not emotional. It was a solid, grounded feeling of “I am, I am here”. It was nonverbal, existential. A strong sense of just being here without commentary or effort of the mind, without complexities, without anything to do or to be done. It was immediate.
The experience was so strong and tangible that I could bring it back just by remembering it. It became like a companion, something that sustained me when I needed it. I didn’t think of it as a meditation, it was a remembrance that brought me back into the same state. The way I used it was somewhat similar to Gurdjieff’s technique of self-remembering, but different because I didn’t use every-day activities like walking, eating, or singing to remember myself. It was more direct – a direct feeling of being here, of existing. Twenty years later, I found this technique described in The Book of Secrets as one of the methods given by Shiva to his beloved Devi: I am existing. This is mine. This is this. O beloved, even in such know illimitably.
Now I’m afraid that this might sound as if you can do this method only if you were able to sit in front of Osho. But this is not the case, this is just how it became available to me. Shiva gave this technique to Devi 5000 years ago; it is accessible to anyone who feels an affinity with it. Osho describes how to go deeply into this feeling of “I am existing” – feeling it deep down in your body, in your bones, totally, not just in the head. For me it is a kind of general, large feeling, not an emotion, not a sentiment. A feeling of my own presence, my own being. Shiva’s words are beautiful: I am existing. This is mine. This is this. Not thinking about it – feeling it. I access this feeling in situations when I am lost or bored, for example, travelling on a train or being involved in social events surrounded by people when I’m disengaged. Remembering “I am” is like sitting back inside myself. I am present and relaxed and not thinking about the past or the future. It is a moment of just being. I feel it and I forget it. It is part of my normal life in the middle of the marketplace, on a bus, or at home. It feels good in that moment and this is enough. And then it is gone.
There is a Zen story that helps me to remember it. It is about the Zen Master Bokuju. His disciples heard him ask himself: “Bokuju, are you there?” And then he would answer: “Yes, Sir!” I do that too sometimes. Whenever I catch myself getting lost, I call my name and ask, “Are you there?” And then I recall the feeling of “I am”. Osho left us so many gifts. And there is more to explore. The sutra ends with the words: O beloved, even in such know illimitably. Osho encourages us to drop boundaries and let this feeling be without limits just like a wave disappearing in the ocean: Existence has no beginning and no end. You also don’t have any beginning; you also don’t have any end.
You can find Osho’s commentary on this meditation in chapter 59 of The Book of Secrets.