“‘He’s the nicest man on the planet,” McHale says of Fillion, who guests as a janitor in an episode. “He walks into a room, and you go ‘Dammit, I wish I was his best friend. I want him to like me!’” - Joel McHale on Nathan Fillion
diverslydivided asked: How do I reflect on who am I?
The typical way we think about the question “Who am I?” is to think about the person. We think about personality traits, quirks, likes, dislikes, dreams, fears, goals, and so on. So when we ask ourselves “Who am I?”, those are often the first things to come to mind.
None of them are real.
By real, I mean inherently existent. If circumstances were to be different, any one of those qualities we attribute to the person would be different.
This is what Buddha meant when he said there is no self, and what Buddhists mean when they say that the individual is emptiness. In other words, there is no inherent individual. Just something due to changeful circumstances that appears like an individual.
Despite this lack of inherent individuality, we still feel as though we exist. There is this feeling “I am”. You could even call it a feeling of “amness”. When we mistake that “amness” to be coming from the appearance of individuality, we get the “I am” and then when the mind takes over, we get the “I am this thing” or “I am that thing” and so on.
Reflecting on “Who am I?” means to using your attention to follow the feeling of “I am” back to its source “amness”. This is because you are already that Amness. You are not separate from your source, you have simply forgotten yourself as being That source.
Following the “I am” with calm attention is an essential part of self-inquiry, meditation, and mindfulness.
A few books on this matter that I would highly recommend:
Self-Knowledge by Nome
The Teachings of Ramana Maharshi
I Am That by Nisargadatta Maharaj
Every POC got this lesson.
Got this drilled into my brain as a kid. This reminds me of that Chris Rock quote:
"I will give you an example of how race affects my life. I live in a place called Alpine, New Jersey. Live in Alpine, New Jersey, right? My house costs millions of dollars…In my neighborhood, there are four black people. Hundreds of houses, four black people. Who are these black people? Well, there’s me, Mary J. Blige, Jay-Z and Eddie Murphy. Only black people in the whole neighborhood. So let’s break it down…Mary J. Blige, one of the greatest R&B singers to ever walk the Earth. Jay-Z, one of the greatest rappers to ever live. Eddie Murphy, one of the funniest actors to ever, ever do it. Do you know what the white man who lives next door to me does for a living? He’s a fucking dentist. He ain’t the best dentist in the world. He ain’t going to the dental hall of fame. He don’t get plaques for getting rid of plaque. He’s just a yank-your-tooth-out dentist. See, the black man gotta fly to get to something the white man can walk to."