Nondual Zen Article:

Don’t Be So Nosy

nondual title

Don’t Be So Nosy
by Kathleen Sutherland

There’s no need to diminish, destroy or abandon the ego. You simply need to back away from it and see how much more there is to you. It's as if you've spent your whole life right up against a mirror, focusing on your nose. There’s not much to do with a nose, but you keep it clean, maybe apply a little makeup and powder. You enjoy some smells that waft your way, others not so much. You feel it breathe. That feels wonderful, but it’s rather repetitive. Life, the nose knows, is rather limited.

One day it occurs to you to step back from the mirror, and you are stunned to discover that there is a face framing that nose – a whole face. How interesting! You back up a little more. Wow, an entire body. You are so big and complex – quite amazing. You chide yourself for having wasted all those years gazing only at your nose, mistakenly assuming it was all there was to you. How much more expansive and relaxed you feel now, as you notice the sense of being is not just in the nose, but permeates the entire body. The sense of being also discovers and explores the mind. Look at all these strange and interesting thoughts floating about!

This is a silly parable, but isn’t it equally foolish to identify solely with our bodies and minds? Back up a little. Notice that the room your sitting in is also within consciousness. It is within you. All that you experience, either directly through the senses, or in your mind’s eye, is also within you. It is all part of you.

Step outside. The light, its brilliance, is you. All the perceived objects, people, animals are you. Drift out into space: the earth is you. Drift out farther: the stars and planets are you. It is all you. To feel this fully, meditate for a moment on the sense of being. Does it have any borders, boundaries? It’s endless; it’s everywhere. It is indeed all you. So much room to stretch, so much to love!

You haven’t abandoned your nose. It’s still there, leading you around this wonderful universe. It’s useful, attractive, nice to have. It’s a part of you – but only a very small part. Remind yourself to never again deprive yourself of all that is You by contracting your vastness into one tiny little point.

Notice that as you breathe, your whole body expands. Even the room around you expands. Breathe deeply and let yourself expand fully into what you are. You have no borders, no limits. Breathe and be, and love and enjoy all this - this that is absolutely, intimately You. It’s all right here, as close as your nose!