Who Am I?

Consciousness or the Body?

Who — or what — are we?

We are human beings. Human beings have a body. Human beings have consciousness which brings life to the body.

Beyond this, who are we?

Many of us have come to think that we are a “self.” The self is often understood to be both the author and the main character in the story of our life. The self is what experiences being alive.

But the self is only a concept in our mind. It has no reality outside of our mind. What is real is the body, and the consciousness which gives life to the body.

Which leads to an intriguing question: which do we identify with, consciousness or the body?

If you look at our culture today, it is pretty clear the body is first and foremost who we think we are. Think of all the many ways we focus on the body: we focus on our looks, our health, our body image, what we wear, our race, what we eat. Modern life is very much pre-occupied with the body.

What about consciousness? How much do we identify with this?

Think about it this way: what were we taught about consciousness growing up? For most of us the answer is nothing, nothing at all. We were taught all kinds of things about the body and nothing about consciousness. As a result, most of us identify with our body.

What do we lose by not having a better understanding of consciousness?

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