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A Journey Of Remembering

Updated: May 2, 2023

“Who are you?”, they ask,

Without thinking, I reply:

I am my name, age, gender, job title and nationality,

I am an offspring, sibling, partner and parent,

I am my achievements, possessions and bank balance.

“Who are you?”, they ask,

Without hesitation, I feel:

I am my mind, body and emotions,

I am my likes, dislikes, tastes, style and preferences,

I am my social status, popularity and respectability.

*

But every time I repeat these labels,

I feel an emptiness within the words.

I feel there is much more to me than these limiting terms,

And it feels odd to define myself with things outside of me.

All of these things seem so superficial and surface-level,

And I sense there are much deeper levels to who I am.

*

“Who are you?”, they keep asking,

And I keep repeating the same empty words.

They are all I know so what else can I say?

But all of these labels are constantly changing,

Yet I know there is a part of me that has stayed the same my whole life,

What is this permanent me?

Is it my personality?

But my personality only comes out when there are others around me,

So who am I when I am alone?

*

Near-death experiences show that I cannot be my body,

Then perhaps I am this voice in my head,

But am I just a voice?

If this voice is me then am I talking to myself right now?

Does this mean I’m crazy?

Has this voice in my head been there my whole life?

If this voice is me then why can I not stop it at will?

Don’t I still exist in the few moments there is no voice in my head?

Wait… if this voice is not me then who is it?

And who is this voice talking to?

Is this voice a real voice or is it just my imagination?

How have I not noticed the voice in my head until now?

Who is this ‘I’ that is becoming aware of the voice in my head?

*

Who am I? Who am I? Who am I?

Why have I never asked myself this before?

Religions tell me I am a soul, an atman, a child of God,

But these are just words, I remain unfulfilled.

Some say that I am consciousness,

But what is consciousness? I remain dissatisfied.

Why do these words seem meaningless to me?

*

People tell me I can be what I want to be,

I am abundant, I am fearless, I am smart,

I am funny, I am beautiful, I am successful,

I can be any medley of affirmations,

But these are just more disguises.

Who is it that wears these disguises?

‘I’ remain a mystery.

*

Can anyone tell me who I am?

No one seems to know the answer to who they are,

They all just repeat what they have been told,

So how can someone else tell me who I am?

Who could possibly give me the right answer?

*

Who am I?

I feel drawn to meditation,

So I sit and wait in anticipation.

How long do I wait until I get an answer?

How many meditations are required?

And where would the answer come from? Some higher being?

Would this not just be more meaningless words?

I must experience who I am for myself. But who is this ‘self’?

*

Who am I?

I keep meditating on this,

I am not getting an answer yet I somehow feel I am getting closer.

If I have always been who I truly am then what am I searching for?

Another label? A name? A psychedelic experience?

What am I expecting?

And who is it that is searching?

The one searching cannot be the same as the one being searched for.

*

Who am I?

This is taking too long! I feel so lost! What am I supposed to do?

How do I know that I will eventually find an answer?

It seems hopeless yet I am not able to stop searching.

The world tells me to get on with my life,

But how can I carry on when I don’t know who I am?

How can any of you carry on?

Why does no one seem to care about finding out?

This is so hard yet I am not able to stop asking the question.

*

Who am I?

I know I exist, but I don’t know who I am.

Anything I put at the end of ‘I am’ does not seem to do me justice.

Is the answer just ‘I am’?

Should I just admit I exist but refuse to define myself?

If so, why do I still have this burning longing to know?

I must still not have the right answer.

*

Who am I?

I am getting better at meditating,

And I find that when I shut out my thoughts, my body, and the world,

I still exist.

I must therefore be energy and awareness combined.

Yes, I feel I am getting somewhere now.

My mind and body are energies.

If energy can’t be created or destroyed, only transformed,

Then my energy must have existed forever and only changed forms.

But I am looking for the true ‘me’, the ‘me’ that never changes,

So the answer must lie within awareness.

*

I sit as awareness in meditation and I feel such peace and bliss,

But awareness seems to me like boundless stillness, silence, and nothingness.

How can I be nothing?

The more I meditate, the more I want to describe awareness as love,

But this love is different to the love I have known before.

It is infinite, unconditional, unlimited, unintrusive and ever-present.

It sustains me and all of creation,

It is the canvas through which reality unfolds,

It animates all life,

Yet it remains so very hidden and subtle.

It is both everything and nothing,

It is all space but it is not empty.

*

But this awareness, this infinite love, is not specific to me or limited to just me,

So then who is this ‘me’? Who is this individual ‘I’?

…Oh…

I am not.

Hahahahahaha.

A poem by Andrew Narouz




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