Anam Thubten on Benefits of Falling Apart

Book coverWhen we pray, what we are doing is invoking the spirit of devotion. Devotion is about no longer resisting anything. We are no longer trying to hold the composure of this illusory entity, ego or self. Self is always collapsing and dissolving in each and every moment. It dissolves if we leave it as it is because it’s not real from the very beginning. It’s already unreal. It’s already collapsing. When we try to construct and maintain the illusion of self, then we suffer quite a lot. We experience insecurity and madness because we are trying to uphold something that is already falling apart. Self is already falling apart. Suffering is already falling apart. And who is it that works so hard twenty-four hours a day trying to keep samsara together while complaining about it at the same time? Who is that person?

There is a bit of a dichotomy here. It’s confusing too because we come to the spiritual-path with a lot of enthusiasm and determination. We are complaining about samsara, our misery, and we are looking desperately for liberation. At the same time, we must remember that samsara is already falling apart. We may wonder how that can be. I have been stuck in it for many lifetimes. This vicious cycle is not falling apart on its own. The question is actually, “Who is the self? Who is the one who is trying to maintain that samsara?” Samsara is really very high maintenance. It costs lots of headaches and heartaches to maintain. Who is this self trying to construct samsara? Who is that person?

—Excerpted from No Self, No Problem by Anam Thubten

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