I always come as an astonishment to myself
I am what I am. I find that the only way I can see myself at all is to see myself afresh at this moment, without memory or any carry-over from the past—not as if for the first time, but actually so, with all the surprise and delight of new discovery. I notice that if I’m truly Self-aware at this moment, I’m prepared to find anything here—a flame, a star, a dial, a whole dashboard of dials, blood, fat, anything at all, however improbable or ridiculous; and if, instead, I count on finding here no head, no body, Nothing, or God himself, then I only lose them. This 1st person is seen, and all seeing is seeing now. This one is seen and not remembered. Man is remembered and hardly seen at all. Unlike him, I’m not to be relied upon. I always come as an astonishment to myself, and can never begin to take myself for granted. I learn nothing about myself, never get used to myself (what is there to learn about and get used to?), and am always introducing myself to myself, bowing with profound respect and the keenest delight (not unmixed with amusement) at this strange meeting. And this is no formality: I truly am brand new, a Melchisedek without history, inheritance, continuity of any kind. Every moment sees me starting from scratch.
Man has much to fall back on. He’s a hoarder, with a growing deposit account in the human savings bank, yielding interest. But I am naked and poor, without a penny or a pocket to slip it in. I haven’t acquired the saving habit—not even to the extent of saving myself.
From The Face Game by Douglas Harding, page 213.