This can be a tough one to unpack.
We believe that our perception of the world is constructed through the thought process. Thoughts come in. We think them. We believe things therefore to be true from the thinking. It feels like the thoughts are me. But that’s not the case. If thinking stops, there is still a “you” that continues to exist. Therefore, the thoughts are not who you are.
But it does not feel that way. It feels like anything that enters the mind as a thought is very real; that it comprises me. That the thought is MINE and I am my thoughts.
This is a fallacy.
The process of meditation will, slowly but surely, help you to decouple from your thoughts.
The thoughts may continue. Or they may not. It won’t matter. YOU will exist underneath, or beyond, or through it all. The thoughts appear within something bigger than the thought; the illusion of thinking is that it feels like the thoughts are what make me, me.
It’s that unfortunate Descartes thing: “I think, therefore I am.”
Western comprehension of existence has been shaped incorrectly with such ideas.
The thinking is independent from who you are.
Thinking passes through. It’s like the weather.
It does not actually change the real YOU beneath the storm.
There may be sunny days or cloudy ones. Doesn’t matter. There is a YOU that pre-exists it all.
As you gain clarity from your meditation practice, it’s very likely that you will discover you have fewer thoughts entering your attention.
This can make for a calmer day-to-day. There’s less stuff to pay attention to. It’s easier to be at peace.
Just because a thought enters your awareness does not mean you need to own it. It’s not even necessarily yours. You might pick up on an impression from the world around, like fake news being passed from node to node in a network. It’s just noise. One thought is no more real than another thought. Just because it’s passing through your mind at a given moment does not actually mean that it’s true or real or any more important than any other thought. It’s just a thought. And thoughts are not who you are.
We’re taught by conditioning, through the process of getting acclimated to the way this particular 3-D world on Earth works, to pay attention to the thoughts that come in, to own them, to listen to them. We attach to them and by thus attaching we imbue them with power. We make them real. They become very very significant, but only to the individual who is thinking them.
When you believe your thoughts, you can be easily led astray.
It’s not that you should have a goal to be free of thoughts. Thoughts may come in; they may not. Either is fine.
It’s important to recognize that they are not YOU, though.
You are more than the thoughts.
Who even knows where the thoughts come from?
They just arrive, and we grab them.
What if they arrive, and you let them be? You can watch them pass through.
There will always be another one!
Just like sunny days. There will always be another one, eventually!
And just like you wouldn’t even try to control the weather, you shouldn’t try to control your thoughts. Just let them be. You can watch them, like a disinterested outside observer. Don’t get involved. They’re not actually all that important.