When I was a kid I used to love the movie The Invisible Man. I must have seen it 5 or 6 times, probably even more. I mean the one filmed in black and white, most probably the one from 1933 with Claude Rains.
Not too long ago, I stumbled upon the most amazing discovery. I don’t think I have ever heard or read anyone speaking about this fact. In meditation, I discovered that my body cannot see me, neither my foot nor my hand, not my torso nor even my head. I can see them. I can perceive my body with my eyes closed but it cannot see me.
I can also see my mind working. I can see thoughts. When I say see, I mean perceive. I can see thoughts, but as far as I can tell they, can’t see me. If they can they must be using some other media because I am tied up looking at them. I can even see my feelings. Emotions show up and I can see them, but I remain unseen by them.
Of course this makes me want to look a little further and when I do, I see that it is the same when I perceive what I had considered to be anyone else. When I look at their body, or see their ideas, or even sometimes catch a glimpse of some emotion passing over them, I realize that these things cannot see me. I remain in the background.
It isn’t much of a leap to realize that when I look at my wife Amido, I am seeing all of those things but they are not seeing me either. And it is clear that they also do not see her. So I too cannot see Amido and she cannot see me. It’s pretty hard to objectify someone if you can’t even see them.
Wow, I am the invisible man and it seems that you, most likely, are too. But don’t take my word for it. Have a look for yourself.
This post is from a collection of essays, stories, insights and poems that have occurred to me along the Way titled From Lemurs to Lamas: Confessions of a Bodhisattva.