Who am I, or am not?
Perhaps in the Heavens, he knows
Or he knows not
Find out for yourself
But who is the self that seeks to find
That labors to know, hopes to discover
Descartes said: I think therefore I am
Does he not presuppose the existence of I
An entity that thinks and acts
And if this entity did not think
Would I cease to exist?
Is there really a thinker?
Separate and apart from thoughts
Or is the thinker and thoughts one, not separate and apart
Is it not this separation that creates I
Observe the mind, thoughts fleeting past, in an unending flux
Apparently to no avail, to no end, unfettered, uncontrolled,
Observe them from moment to moment
Simply observe, without choice, without a desire to control or modify
And an insight may emerge.
There is no thinker, no entity that thinks
Only thoughts, a ceaseless stream, a flux
That emanates from a bundle of memories
Of experiences, of beliefs, personal and collective
Of hurts, jealousies, unfulfilled desires, of quests interrupted
Of fleeting moments of happiness, joy, sorrow
Of knowledge acquired, or passed on from eons past
Embedded in the brain, defining the contours and content of I
So what am I, who am I, now at the present?
A bundle of past memories, responding to the challenges of the present
Or is there a self, separate and apart from I
That I know not, nor aware of, nor can ever realize
Who knows, Perhaps She in the Havens knows
Or perhaps She too knows not.
I am a retired scientist currently doing research in Cosmology. More importantly, I am interested in the workings of the mind and understanding its nature through self-observation. I have written several poems inspired by these observations.