Sunday, December 23, 2007

I Have VS. I AM

The other day it came to my attention, when a friend cried out, "I have Power!" that this is part of the fundamental problem, particularly when it comes to some of the new age and alternative thinking. It is the basic distinction of Having versus Being: like I 'have' prosperity' rather than I 'am' properity; or I 'have' enlightenment, rather than I 'am' enlightenment. (Also note the distinction 0f I am enlightenMENT versus I am EnlightenED.) The I "Have" creates a duality that is less subtle even than I Am. I AM is a doorway; I HAVE is a very definite 'me' and 'not me'.

Let's get into grammar for a moment. In Sanskrit (and a number of other languages) there is actually not a verb for 'to have'. You can 'be with' something, like 'I am with this car' or 'this car is being with me' or even 'it is my car,' but not I have this car. (I know, subtle distinction.) But it does say something about the language, which works in subtle ways. For instance, you would tend to say, I am consciousness, rather than I have consciousness. It is as if you recognize something as 'Being' intrinsically who and/or what you are, rather than something thata 'YOU' possess.

Another example, the Ashtavakra Samhita says "If you consider yourself Free you are free and if you consider yourself bound you're bound." And, "Where there is an I there is bondage and where there is no I there is freedom." Our tendency is to think in terms of our western language set up of, which has a tendency for maintaining an individuated "I". This is less common in many other languages. For instance, I have heard that in many native languages there are no nouns, per se, but rather all verbs. A house is not a house, but a 'housing'; a person is a 'personing'. In other words, everything is a movement, an arising of what is in that moment. You don't exist as a concrete thing, but rather a momentary apparency in the ocean of potentiality. Therefore, how can you have something?

Another distinction is that you either are or are not something, and often you can reccognize that you not only ARE this attribute, but have never not been it. To have something, has more of a tendency to allow for not having it. Today I have it, but tomorrow I may not have it, (or vice versa) as opposed to I am, have always been and will always BE consciousness, light, love, this-ness, divinity, whatever. Energetically, you can feel the difference. Try saying, "I have power," and then "I AM power." Or, "I have peace," and then "I AM peace". "I have love," and then, "I AM love." Just see how they feel. Does one FEEL more real? Is one experienced more as a recognition of what is true, rather than a sort of hopeful affirmation of what might be true?

Explore the possibility of "I AM" versus "I Have" and 'be' fun.