Who am I? 40 Common Views About Ourselves with Brief Commentary

Every view of I am might seem real, unreal or both at different times.

We might express a few views listed below of I am or many of them.

If a view is problematic about one ‘self’ or ‘another,’ then explore another view(s).

40  Common Views in Response to Who am I?

 Read slowly, please.

  1. I am inside the body.
  2. I am one with the body.
  3. I am different from the body.
  4. I am the same as mind and body
  5. I am not the same as mind and body.
  6. I am more than the mind and body.
  7. I am the one who causes harmless and harmful actions.
  8. I am the experiencer of the results of my actions or actions of others upon me.
  9. I am constantly changing.
  10. I am always the same.
  11. I was the same in the past as in the present.
  12. I was different in the past than who I am now.
  13. I am the outcome of the past.
  14. I am not the outcome of the past.
  15. I am not dependent upon the past.
  16. I am dependent upon the past.
  17. The past self and the present self are not the same and are not different.
  18. I see what I am.
  19. I see what I am not.
  20. The non-self sees what I am.
  21. The non-self sees what I am not.
  22. I see no self.
  23. I see my true self
  24. No self sees no self.
  25. Views about myself show what is true.
  26. Views about myself show what is false.
  27. Views about myself show some are true and some are false.
  28. I can make choices at any time.
  29. I cannot make choices at any time.
  30. I can make some choices sometimes and not at other times.
  31. I can develop, stay the same or regress.
  32. I can be different in the future to what I am in the present or
  33. I cannot be different in the future from the present.
  34. I cannot be different in the future from the past.
  35. One part of me stays the same and one part of me is changing.
  36. All of me remains the same.
  37. All of me keeps changing.
  38. I am is the I am of everybody.
  39. I am is not the I am of everybody.
  40. Self-interest, self-help and self-compassion depend upon the view- I am.

A Commentary on Views

  • To hold onto one of the above views is to ignore many of the rest.
  • To hold to two of the above views ignores many of the rest. And so on.
  • No views about myself or yourself are worth holding onto.
  • A view only expresses a view.
  • That means another view(s), utterly different, can replace it at any time.
  • Knowing a view as a view protects the truth.
  • To hold to no view confirms a view.
  • Repetition of the same view about one ‘self’ or ‘another’ gives it substance.
  • Repetition of the same view blocks out potential for another view.
  • Emptiness means to see the insubstantiality of holding to a view.
  • Liberation means non clinging to views.
  • In liberation views arise free from being problematic
  • There is no suffering in knowing the emptiness of a view.
  • ‘I Am’ reveals a conceit.
  • Wisdom responds wisely to events, inner and outer.

The Practice of Who am I?

  1. Day 1. Select the first view of the 40 views. Slowly repeat it through the day. Reflect and Meditate on it for 24 hours.
  2. Day 2. Select the second view of the 40 views. Repeat it ….to Day 3…Repeat….
  3. Reflect on your first 10 days of experiencing different views of I am.
  4. Repeat every 10 days until you complete 40 days.
  5. Write out which views you express most often.
  6. Write out which views would open your mind.
  7. Write out the benefits of non- clinging to view(s) of I am…
  8. Read out loud what reflections..

May all beings be free from clinging

May all beings live with wisdom

May all beings know liberation









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