Lester Levenson: Identify with what you really are

Man is the dwarf of himself. Once he was permeated and dissolved by spirit. He filled nature with his overflowing currents. Out from him sprang the sun and moon—from man, the sun; from woman, the moon. The laws of his mind, the periods of his actions, externalized themselves into day and night, into the year and the seasons. But, having made for himself this huge shell, his waters retired; he no longer fills the veins and capillaries; he is shrunk to a drop. He sees that the structure still fits him, but fits him colossally. Say, rather, once it fitted him, now it corresponds to him from afar and on high. He adores timidly his own work. Now is man the follower of the sun, and woman the follower of the moon. Yet sometimes he starts in his slumber and wonders at himself and his house, and muses strangely at the resemblance betwixt him and it. He perceives that if his law is still paramount, if still he have elemental power, if his word is sterling yet in nature, it is not conscious power. – Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nature (Chapter VIII)

[Beginning of recording] . . . in a way that will help you identify better with that which you really are, and with a lot of helpful hints on how to identify with the real you: the you that never, ever changes; the you that is whole, complete, perfect; the you that you’re trying to get to in everything you’re doing; the you that you’re looking for where it isn’t—externally.

One reason why I say it’s easy is because you’re trying to find you. How difficult is that? Also, at every moment you’re experiencing the real you, plus at every moment you’re looking away from it. But you can’t help but experience the real you: when you say “I,” that’s it. “I am.” It’s the beingness that you are that is you.

How many of you expect to have these carcasses a thousand years from now? A hundred years from now? Even fifty years from now? But we should look toward the part that we really are, bring it out, identify with it, make it part of our conscious living. “I am I.” Get the sense of only “I, I, I, I.” “I am.” “I am what I am.” Are you? You say yes. Okay, that’s it. Just be that only, and you’re in the ultimate state that you are striving for all the time with misery. Misery is moving away from that state. The only happiness there is, is being in your beingness. What you’ve heard me say is that you’re just quieting the mind by satisfying the desire, and when the mind is quiet, you’re just being, and that’s the happiness you feel. That’s the only happiness there is. How many have already discovered that? That there’s only one single happiness, that it’s when you’re being your beingness? Okay, that’s a big assist because it should alleviate, do away with all that effort, looking for it out there in a million different directions. Now, that doesn’t stop you from doing what you’re doing out there. It doesn’t matter what you do. What matters is your attitude toward it, your understanding of it. But it sure makes life easier when you identify with your beingness.

Try to get yourself placed on the scale of where you are. It’s good to see yourself objectively, which you’re probably discovering with the TV. There’s a double benefit you get from the skits. One is that when you start, all your garbage, your emotions come up for releasing. And then when you watch it, it’s entirely different, isn’t it, when you watch it? Because the first part is very subjective: it’s me with all my garbage. And it’s not what it looks like objectively. We don’t see ourselves the way we really are, so when we come back and look at it, most of us want to hide, don’t we? “That’s not me—I didn’t do that.” But when you see yourself objectively, it helps you move into the points of garbage you are very much avoiding. So when you identify where you are, and you see it objectively, you can say, “Boy, I’m on the first step” or “I’m on the tenth step. I’ve got to move.”

So, identifying is part of seeing yourself objectively. And there are three parts that you think you are. [chart]





You are. That’s your beingness; that’s the real part of you, which sets up your mind and then develops all of these programs over the ages. And the programs motivate the thinking. The programs are your feelings. I don’t know whether any part of the world of psychology and psychiatry today accepts feelings as programs. They’re so blinded as to what they are, I think they accept them as being natural and right. Just adjust them a little bit so that things get a little better. But feelings are simply programs, subconscious automated programs, of how we react to the external world. And every one of them has been put in as a pro-survival program, in order to keep the body surviving.

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Is this any way to live?

How many of you have seen that, that all these feelings are survival programs? And that’s great [that you see that]. You get to see how silly it is when you’re trying to survive a situation that you are eternal in. And that’s what you’re doing. You’ve got no choice: you’re eternal. And all this struggle trying to survive. But wherein is the error? What are you trying to [keep alive]? The carcass. As I used to say, it you’re driving around in a car, it’s your case; it’s got you closed in there. So has this “car-case.”

So, in your beingness, you create your mind and start programming everything, and you think you are the body, and you think the world is external to you—after you have created it. You [forget] that you created this whole thing, [that] it’s all created here in your mind. Change the picture mentally and it instantly changes out there—called the miracle. I believe most of you have experienced instantaneous changes out there. How many have experienced . . . what am I talking for? You know it! (laughter)

But there’s nothing out there but the sum-total thinkingness, most of which is subconscious, and therein lies the problem. Subconscious means simply that we do not want to look at it. The mind is a tremendous mystery to the world because they don’t understand what it is. They can’t see the simplicity of it. It’s the sum-total of all of your feelings and thoughts, that’s all. How simple it is. It’s a collection of your feelings and thoughts. And everything you experience is via the mind. [If you become] unconscious, the mind’s out of the way; there’s no experiencing.

So, try to identify where you are. Most of the time, are you identifying with your body and the world? The answer is yes—I wouldn’t let you answer that one. (laughter) But you can make it otherwise. You continue in what you are doing, but shift your identity from being the body, to being. Identify with your beingness, and you just sit back and you watch the world go by. You get into the state of witnessing. You don’t even feel yourself moving, because you cannot—you’re omnipresent. When you identify with your beingness, you discover that you’re everywhere present in the entire universe. And should you choose, you can take a look anywhere in the universe without moving, because you’re there. You don’t even have to do astral travel. You’re omnipresent. Astral travel is in the mind; astral body and mind are almost one and the same thing.

So, identify where you are. Make a decision to cut the journey short, go free. Why be in agony when you can be free? So, the real you is the beingness. The ego-you is two and three: your mind and your body. And the three states that you identify with are beingness, doingness and havingness.


1. Beingness is your beingness only

2. Doingness is your position in the world

3. Havingness is your possessions

And with this you can relate to the chart of emotions. The apathy (discouragement), grief and fear (are) down in havingness only. When you’re down there, you think that your welfare depends on how much you can have, and you spend all your time trying to make and have. When you move up into lust, anger, pride, courageousness, you move into doingness. Instead of thinking that your welfare lies in having, you feel you’ve got to be a doer. Of course, that’s an advanced state. Only five percent of us are doers; ninety-five percent of us are wanting to have. And we’re down so low that we put ourselves in the state of being a slave. We must have a job. Someone must tell us what to do and give us the food that we eat and the money to get our lodgings. The only reason why people work in jobs is that we have a slave consciousness; we’re down in havingness. Apathy (discouragement), grief and fear: that’s where most people are riding the majority of the time. Move up into courageousness, pride, anger and lust—then you get to be a doer, which is a much freer state than being a slave.

Now, when you get into the state of “I can do,” you’ve got enough wish and will to move to the top, because you discover that when you’re just quiet and being, that’s the nicest thing there is. And with the doingness energy, you’ll work harder to drop the remaining limitations, the AGFLAP, so that you can remain and just be all the time. Now, that sense of beingness is not related to the world; rather, it’s related to how you look at the world. You watch the world go by. You watch yourself. You watch your own body moving around like you now watch other bodies. You’ll see your body objective to you as you see other bodies objective to you.

So, try to move up to constantly identifying with your beingness. Hold “I am” or “I, I, I, I” only. “I am my beingness.” “I am.” “I am my am-ness.” And then when you get to be a doer, when you get to be the doer, then try to see that you’re not the doer, that all that is objective to you. Try to take the attitude, “I am not the doer.” Now what happens there is, you let go of the ego-sense of doing and shift into allowing the higher power, or whatever you call it, to do it. In religion they say, “Let go and let God.” When you let go of your ego-sense, you automatically move into your beingness. And that takes care of everything with no effort. And your life becomes totally effortless.

And start from taking all your happiness from you. Recognize that every joy you have is that nice quiet place of just being, where your desires are out of the way. Even though you’re taking pleasure from the world, try to recognize that that pleasure is you being you: your mind is quiet.

1. Identify with everyone as being you

2. Identify with every atom as being you

3. Real knowing means being

Now, on the way, we should identify with everyone as being us. See everyone as you. And that’s what happens when you see that you are beingness, and that your beingness is all beingness, so then it includes everyone. So you see other people as you. Then try to identify with everything out there, every atom, as you, because it’s your making. And when you identify with it, you’ll get to see that you created everything you’re experiencing. It’s all in your mind, all that you’re experiencing. It’s all in your creative mechanism. The mind is only creative—it creates whatever thoughts we hold in mind.

And in the end, knowing means being. You can’t get to know yourself. That’s two things, I knowing myself. I am myself. So the ultimate knowing drops away into being. All knowledge drops away into being. You let go of all the accumulation that you spent lifetimes accumulating in the way of knowledge, because it’s all lesser knowledge than omniscience. It’s all limited knowledge, limited by the mind. And you let it go, and you discover your omniscience, your all-knowingness, after which you don’t have to work hard thinking. There’s no more thinking: you’re knowing. And in knowingness there’s no thinkingness.

1. See nothing out there but your sum-total thinkingness

2. There is in actuality nothing out there but your beingness

3. No objectivity, only subjectivity

So, see nothing out there but your sum-total thinkingness. By the way, I think it would be good if you would write this down, to be used in the future as a reminder, as a refresher. Write it down; you can use this in the future. This is stuff I believe you don’t read in books. Or do you read it in books? They’ll give it to you in one sentence, but not broken down this way. So, it’s good to have it where you can keep looking at it so you become It, with a capital I.

This (pointing at number one above) is taking responsibility for everything that happens to you. What did I do to cause this awful thing? Develop that habit, and your initiating thoughts will start coming up and you’ll release them. So that negative happenings out there will stop. The less negative happenings, the more positive happenings, the quieter you life is, the easier it is to go on. If you’re constantly being plagued by death facing you, it’s difficult to release. But if your life is easy, you’re in a better place to release. You’re not so fearful of your programs anymore. You’ll be able to allow up the bottom program of the fear of dying, the fear of living, and you’ll release it. And when you continue this, see nothing but your sum-total thinkingness, then you discover there is in actuality nothing out there but my beingness. Which reminds me of Vivakananda. He said when you get to the end of the line, you discover that there never was anything but “I all alone.”

I, my beingness, is the totality of all beingness, and that’s the only real thing there is. Your beingness never ever changes. Your beingness is eternal. And because it never changes, it’s the only truth. If something changes, then it was not true the moment before. For a thing to be true it has to remain as it is. And the only thing you will ever experience that does not change is your beingness, which you are right now. Identify and move toward your beingness.

And then you reach the point where you begin to see no objectivity. Nothing is apart from me. There’s nothing out there but my sum-total thinkingness. “You are me.” “Every atom in the universe is me” is what you will see as you stay, as you identify with your beingness. Here we’re trying to scratch for little pieces of it, and the totality of it is ours—it’s our creation.

1. Totally quiet the mind

2. Be intuitive only

3. Do not identify with your body and mind


So we work and work, and release and release, until there are no thoughts. Now every one of you experiences moments when there are no thoughts. And it’s a tremendous state. But as long as there’s a piece of garbage left, it comes into play and pulls you away from that nice quiet place. And some of us think it’s the noise out there that’s real, not the beingness, and we move away from rather than try to stay in the state of beingness. And when you get there, you’ll be intuitive only. You’ll operate in the world without thinking. You’ll be offensive to no one. You’ll have answers for everyone. You can talk to people on their subject and help them. And as you’re doing it, you’re watching your body talking and answering their questions, and you’re listening to it just like they are. Sometimes you say, “Wow, that sounds good.”

So, do not identify with your body and mind. What’s left? Your beingness, your is-ness, your are-ness, your am-ness, your existence-ness. That’s the part of you that’s real, whole, complete, perfect, eternal. That’s the part of you you’re struggling to get to in everything you’re doing. You’ll never rest until you get there.

Summed up: Have no attachments and no aversions, and you’ll have everything. You’ll have the all. The universe will be yours. Why? It’s your universe—you created it. It was yours in the first place. And this is a little bait. Because you are wanting so many things, I’m telling you that you can have a piece of real estate, you can have the whole world, you can have all the other worlds, you can have the omniverse—if you release. Because it’s your creation. You could duplicate it and make two omniverses. But of course, when you get there, why do you want to carry that load on your back? You don’t. You let it be. And you just remain, identifying with your beingness, which is the greatest thing there is, barring none.


1. Imperturbability

2. Desirelessness

3. Effortlessness

4. Actionlessness

5. Witnessing

Here are words indicating the free state. This can help you in setting your goals. The word I like best is imperturbability: the place where nothing can ever disturb you again, the place no person can disturb you. You just look at the other one and you allow the other one to be and want what the other one wants. Even if they want to kill you, how can they disturb you? You’re eternal.

The greatest disturber of everything, the cause of all turbulence in the mind, perturbations, masturbations, everything, is desire. It just spins us into this tremendous swirl of what we’re into. Aim for desirelessness; aim to release all of your desires. Try to move towards less and less effort. Now, of course you’ve got to move up out of the havingness state into the doingness state before you try to make things effortless. But when you let go and identify with your beingness, things become effortless. And as most of you have heard me say, every impossible, no matter how impossible, becomes immediately possible when we become completely released on it. And you know you are completely released when you just don’t give a damn.

(Asked to repeat)

Every impossible, no matter how impossible, becomes immediately possible when we are completely released on it. And you know you are completely released when you just don’t give a damn.

The sense of actionlessness, of not being the doer—work toward that. And toward witnessing everything that’s happening. Sit back and be the witness of it. But when you reach the top, all these things are in place; that’s the way you will be. Those are the five words that I like best for the top state.


And so to close on a sense of humor, which most of you have seen, apathy, grief, fear, lust, anger, pride; [and on the other side] courageousness, acceptance and peace. We must get rid of the AGFLAP in order to CAP it. And coming from this side, CAP spells PAC. And this is the Pac-Man. The CAP is the Pac-Man that gobbles up the AGFLAP. But you need to get up here to gobble that up completely. It’s from the high points that you reach down into the suppressed fear of dying, allow it up so you can let it out.

Okay, that’s the end of my talk for today. Be your Self—you’ve got no choice. No matter how much you try otherwise, you’ll always end up eventually just being your Self only. So why not now? Why take time?


Recorded during a nine-day seminar in late October, early November of 1984. (“The Free State”)

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