One of the hardest parts about my practice is recognizing when I've divided the experience from just experiencing it... into an experienced moment. Instead of just be aware and in the moment, I bring other "stuff" into it. As Ken describes that action, I have appropriated the experience. Thus I changed what is, into what my conditioning has dulled me into believing is real. Ken calls this the dead world.
Experiencing and experienced (from Heart Sutra Workshop03-HSW03 00:13:44.5 - 00:19:59.5)
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Any other questions? From this morning, Speak now or forever hold your peace, because I'll launch into bunch another of stuff. Yes?
Just hold for the mic, for a moment.
Student: Yeah, I'm not sure I really completely understood your pencil example about the eraser and the missing the middle and if you could maybe give a different turn at that?
Ken: Okay. You have the experience of seeing this, right? Seeing this piece of paper is something you experience. What's the experience made of?
Student: Sight, physical sensations in my body, thoughts.
Ken: No the physical sensations those are other experiences, what's the experience of seeing this piece of paper made of? Do you want me to make it a little bit easier?
What is a thought made of?
Student: I don't know if it is made out of this but there's supposed to be an energetic charge that (inaudible)
Ken: Yeah, certain thoughts. Definitely, but what's the thought made of?
Ken: Well, that just leads me to ask what's a memory made of. It doesn't get us anywhere. It's very interesting you know...how often do you wrestle with thoughts in your meditation? You can't even tell me what they're made of? Strange isn't it? So, what experiences a thought?
Student: Intellectual images.
Ken: Intellectual images experiences the thought? No, I'd say that is the experience of the thought. That isn't what experiences the thought. What experience the thought? It's a little difficult to say, isn't it?
Student: The mind that thinks it's the experience, the mind...
Ken: The mind, yeah okay. I've heard rumors about that. What's the mind made of?
Student: It's thinking stuff.
Ken: I like that (laughter), I'd say the same thing: "It's thinking stuff". You know, we can say that the thought is made of stuff. So what's the relationship between what the thought is made of and what the mind is made of? Do you have two different kinds of stuff or is it the same stuff? You say?
Ken: Same, how many of you vote for same? Can't say what it is but there it is. Experience arises...in each moment of experience, there is experiencing and experienced. Because of our conditioning, we appropriate the experiencing to ourselves and thus relegating experienced to object.
Touch the back of your hand with your finger, there's a sensation there, right? Do you feel it in the back of your hand or in the finger?
Student: Can't say.
Ken: Just so. It's exactly like that. We make this division but actually there's just the experience. The awareness aspect we appropriate for ourselves thus we experience a dead world. In which there is no awareness, because we have appropriated the experience of awareness to ourselves.