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The following experiment is taken from The Toolkit For Testing The Incredible Hypothesis, a two person workbook designed by Douglas Harding in 1972. The `Incredible Hypothesis' refers to a quotation from Tennyson: "Closer is He than breathing and nearer than hands and feet." The two people doing the workbook together are identified as Green and Red.

Green: sit back comfortably, relax, be quite still, shut your eyes, and listen to Red; answer his questions aloud only if you feel like it.

"On present evidence, what are you like now?

"How many legs, arms, heads, bodies - if any - can you detect?

"How big are you?

"Can you not nevertheless say `I AM'?

"Is your sense of BEING any less strong now than when you see or think of yourself as something or other? Is it, perhaps, much stronger now?

"Is it dependent on any of your senses?

"Has this I-AM-ness any features which could link it with your human aspect or anything else at all; or that could separate it from I-AM-ness however or wherever enjoyed?

"Being thus at your own Centre, aren't you also at the Centre of all beings, of all BEING, and much nearer to them than their own hands and feet?

"And much nearer to me than these hands and feet of mine?"

[After a pause, Red now reads the same questions to Green.]

Continue with another experiment


(from The Toolkit For Testing The Incredible Hypothesis)

As long as I am this or that, I am not all things. Eckhart

Disciple: "How can I know the power of God?"
Ramana Maharshi: "You say I AM. That is it. What else can say I AM? One's own being is His power. The trouble arises when one says 'I am this or that'. Be yourself, that is all.

The word SUM, I AM, can be spoken by no creature, but by God only. Eckhart

The absolute is none of the things of which It is the Source; Its nature is that nothing can be affirmed of It - not existence, not essence, not life. It transcends all these. But possess yourself of It by the very elimination of being, and you hold a marvel. Plotinus

This one alone is lacking in every mode and quality. Eckhart

Every creature denies it is the other… But God is the denier of denials. Eckhart

Things are all the same in God: they are God Himself. Eckhart

In God alone can man meet man. George Macdonald

The one principle of hell is - 'I am my own!' George Macdonald

The only being that is is the Tao-man who, depending on nothing, is at this moment listening to my talk on the Dharma. Lin-chi

From meditating on Him there arises, on the dissolution of the body, the Third State, that of universal lordship: but only he who is alone is satisfied. Svetasvatara Upanishad

Turn thy face towards thine own Face: thou hast no kinsman but thyself. Rumi

I am alone. I am the supreme Brahman. I am the Lord of the Universe. Such is the settled conviction of the Mukta. All other experience leads to bondage. Devikalottara

The strange fact is that when a door opens and a light shines from an unknown source into the dark chamber of consciousness, all time - and space - limitations melt away, and we make a Simhanada (lion-roar): 'Before Abraham was, I am,' or 'I alone am the Honoured One above and below the heavens.' D.T. Suzuki

Fear comes when there is a second. Brihadaranyaka Upanishad

Continue with another experiment

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