The "Witness Position" is A Sacred Cow: "Me"

The "Witness" doesn't know "witnessing",
even in the most ordinary sense.
The "Witness" only "knows" what is witnessed --
and then, only after a short-term memory has formed.
Seeking The "Witness" position, described as an essential aspect of spiritual practice, can be a pitfall to practice -- an entrenched, uninspected, and unrecognized version of the egoic stance -- i.e., a "sacred cow".

This entry illuminates that pitfall, so you don't fall into it. 
I'm going to start out by laying some groundwork.  I'm going to discuss the "behind the scenes of our identity" -- whatever our individual identity may be. The point of "behind the scenes" is, just because we can't see it doesn't mean that it's absent; it's just faded from our attention, second nature.

Witnessing as an ostensibly spiritual practice that we may do is an act of intention, is not The Witness Position or Witnessing; it's the egoic identity in "drag".

It's an oddity, and a remarkable one, at that, that I keep discovering more and more of the ways I automatically do things -- my habits and characteristics of life.

If you've had the experience of catching yourself at something, you know what I mean. If not, do The Gold Key Release and you'll have that experience in the days that follow; we call that experience, "Burn Off".  Other terms used are, "tapas", "heat", "boil-off".

If you haven't had that experience, yet, let's say that I move from being clueless about the "wherefores" ("whys") of my life-developments, to catching myself repeatedly in a certain mood, train of thought, or speech patterns, to feeling certain things ("There's a pattern!"), to seeing how that pattern explains certain recurring events of my existence, i.e., things about which I feel stuck, moods, chronic quandaries.

With that discovery, I am able to start to dissolve those underlying, controlling patterns and to feel them dissolve (more about that when I discuss The Gold Key Release and other TetraSeed transformation procedures).

Here's the oddity: I keep on discovering and dealing with "new ones", which means I was oblivious to them, before, and now, they've surfaced.

That I was oblivious of them is obvious; I was experiencing the consequences, before, without knowing the unconscious cause of those consequences -- not making connections between certain things I chronically said, thought, or felt about my life experience and their cause . . . . .

. . . . . a disconnect, whereby I chronically shot myself in the foot without knowing how or why I was doing so, while I felt and believed that I was innocent and doing something entirely differently, with different expected outcomes.

Well, I was, also, doing something else.  Two value patterns ( memory patterns ) were interacting, colliding with each other in me, producing a standing ( "conflict" ) wave with unanticipated results.

As I said, I would discover patterns of thought, behavior, or feeling. Having discovered them, I would juxtapose them and compare them to each other.  Whatever holding patterns would disclose themselves, I could then recognize their "collision" as shaping forces of my actions and life -- but, previously, behind the scenes, unrecognized.

Fancy, hundred-dollar word, "juxtapose"; it means, "to put them next to each other, to compare them, to see their inter-relationship".  The fancy, single word is easier.  Juxtapose.

So, for example: 

Two patterns recently came to my attention:

One controlling pattern that I discovered was

Single-Minded, Unbending Intent 

It's not necessary to know why I developed this pattern.  I could say why, but it would divert us, too much from this discussion of Witnessing.  Let's just say that there were relationships in my life that called for its development.

Another controlling pattern that I discovered was the righteous valuing of

Radical, Uncaused Joy  

"Radical" doesn't mean, "extreme"; it means, at-the-root of things, uncaused by anything else. "Radical" is like, "radish" -- a root vegetable.

I discovered that I was grossly out of balance, on the "Single-Minded, Unbending Intent" side.

I juxtaposed and compared, "single-minded, unbending intent" with "radical, uncaused joy" and discovered that "single-minded, unbending intent" had overpowered "joy" with a kind of dominant force. As a result, I had developed a personality almost as light and scintillating as that of Henry Kissinger.

Moreover, these two ways of acting were an "either-or" proposition:

 "Feeling joy?  You're not taking proper account of the situation."
Either, uncaused radical joy -- or -- single-minded, unbending intent

I had a tendency to irritability that was almost Irish and a morose disposition that was very Russian.

That's what I mean by, "finding myself out".

However, another possibility exists:

Single-Minded, Unbending Intent in Radical, Uncaused Joy

I was operating from the non-integrated condition, experiencing its consequences (alternation between the two states). I wasn't connecting the consequences of these certain second-nature ways of operating (i.e., the alternation between radical joy and single-minded, unbending intent, vs. the synergy of radical joy and single-minded, unbending intent).  

There just seemed to be a limit to the reach of my ability to imagine anything different.  I seemed stuck with certain trends of experience that I could describe (having seen them, before), but was unable to reach much beyond them without being pulled back.  There were no accessible "Strange Attractors" (novel experiences) out in that direction of mind-space to go and visit as an alternative; instead, whenever I tried to imagine anything different, I encountered an incomprehensible void and flickerings of possibility that fleetingly caught my attention without settling into a defined form.

So, here were two "control-patterns" or "organizing principles".  They presented an opportunity:  to contrast them with each other might provide a new intuitive understanding.  Contrasting these two might reveal hitherto-hidden holding patterns.

So, I applied the Middle-Way Memory Matrix Ritual to those two attributes:

Single-Minded, Unbending Intent
Radical, Uncaused Joy

and ran the process until I could hardly remember what I was working on; the purpose of the procedure is to balance, to synthesize, and to dissolve the selected pairs of items chosen to put through the procedure.

I allow that this kind dissolution might occur toward the end of the process; it's a sign of success. However I also have to be more deliberate to continue. Jury's still out on the longer-term effects.

The upshot of all this: 

I have seemingly be up to all kinds of things to which I have been oblivious. These things inevitably color ( or bias ) my capacity for "witnessing".


There exists a process by which those things to which I have been oblivious, once surfaced, may be dissolved, leaving clearer (but not absolutely clear) witnessing.

There exists NO "spiritual" WITNESS "position".
Anything with a position is, "me".

  • In the worldspace of memory, memory patterns precede and shape action.
  • In the worldspace of action, action generates sensations or experiences. Action precedes sensation.
  • In the world of sensation, sensation becomes memory.

That's how our actions, sensations, and memory fit together -- circularly -- and how our actions always precede our awareness of them.

That's true, now.

We do not know our own actions until after they have started happening.  We are inevitably witnessing ourself -- but with a confused notion that we are in control of what we're witnessing --
and our idea of control amounts to chasing after the effects of causes beyond our reach.

like a dog chasing after a flock of birds

Our patterns of control exist before our outward doing of things,
as low-level states of readiness for action,
and so they exist before our witnessing of our doing.

The movements of the will (intentionality with attention) 
operate sight-unseen, arising from mysterious depths
of latent tendency in the living being,
alive, lurking.

When we adjust our willingness and willpower, 
we do so from a place that feels like, "directing intent",
that cannot be put into words or described.

only felt.

There is the peculiar notion that colors our experience,
the notion that, "I am in control of this," "I am actively participating in this."

Me - me - me - me - me - me - me . . . . . 

It's that "dummy" (or "avatar") assertion that cloaks a direct awareness of things as they happen -- in mystery -- even as we witness and perform them.  It's the explanatory myth of "who dunnit."  The control center.  The Sacred Cow.  Me. The myth.

But a moment's consideration of the fact that new awareness of things
emerges in us strongly suggests that everything about us already exists and emerges into attention, that we catch ourselves at it after it is already in motion, not at its start.  What does that mean for the notion of control?

There is no such thing as unbiased ( pure ) witnessing,
of a "Spiritual Witness".

said another way:

The "Witness" Learns Absolutely Nothing from Experience
and remains forever unknown.

And what does that do to the experience of control?

It shifts control into paradox mode,
in which actions start from mysterious origin
with reasons sounding the horn. 


True (Unbiased) Witnessing Would Have to Be
the Meeting 

of Absolute Ignorance with Experience --
and there ain't no such animal.

Having laid the groundwork, now I can discuss the Witness Position. 

People start off cultivating the intention to pay attention in order to create "witnessing".  That's not pure witnessing; it's effort.

The Witness Position is NO POSITION.  It's not something someone does.  It's our inherent nature.  It can't be cultivated.  What can be cultivated is attention, which is directed and focussed awareness.  

The acts, directing and focussing, can be cultivated.  People call that act of cultivation, "Mindfulness", another misnomer, since "mind" is an activity that colors attention, and is not awareness, the universal, Kosmic Presence.

Anything added to that is an activity, not witnessing.  It's "me," in action.

The Witness Position gets revealed when the effort of paying attention gets recognized as another effort and is released.  Then, the field of awareness stands out to (or really, as) intuition, without location, form, center, or content.  The contrast between that intuition and world-experience (inevitable, as we are alive), is the so-called Witness Position.

For more on the topic, click below.

If you believe you're in the Witness Position,
you are -- but not in the way you think:
You have nothing to do with it.

The Gold Key Release

copyright 2017-2018 Lawrence Gold

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