“The ego may exist as a series of passing thoughts, beliefs, actions, and reactions, but in and of itself it has no identity. Ultimately all of the images we have about ourselves and the world turn out to be nothing but a resistance to things as they are. What we call ego is simply the mechanism our mind uses to resist life as it is. In that way, ego isn`t a thing as much as it is a verb. It is the resistance to what is. It is the pushing away or pulling toward. This momentum, this grasping and rejecting, is what forms a sense of a self that is distinct, or separate, from the world around us.”
The End of Your World
I absolutely love the quote above, especially this particular line: “Ultimately all of the images we have about ourselves and the world turn out to be nothing but a resistance to things as they are.”
I still remember exactly what I felt when I photographed the image Epiphanous Rays, as if it happened yesterday. I was coming out of a valley and as I drove up the hill I saw the sun slowly setting. Knowing I had only a few minutes to capture what was before me, I quickly began setting up my Wisner 8×10 field camera. My initial response was panic (yes a lot of egoic grasping/rejecting was taking place). Then, I saw the beauty rapidly unfolding before me and came to a stop. Something very deep inside just gave up. Perhaps it was the light, the majestic redwoods, the evening scent, the highlighted undergrowth, the sun`s warmth, or an awakening. All I remember is the world collapsed. After taking it in, the rest was pure mechanics. A shift in perception, and suddenly everything — including the observer — were equal in time. Even though I was still fortunate enough to have had the time to photograph this image on film, I knew I wouldn’t know till much later if I had actually captured what I saw. Nonetheless, I thanked the powers to be for allowing me to witness it.
Trust me when I say you will have the right number of opportunities for they are infinite. The bigger picture is what Adyashanti is talking about. If/ when you do, the world will look so different. It`s ok to just observe and relish the moment and forget what you are doing (I have plenty of times) and it`s also fine to try and capture it. There are no rules. Resistance to things as they are….. remember that phrase, for it can become a great teacher in and of itself.