The Great Joke

The Imperson witnesses everything 'we' do and everything 'we' think (all psychic and physical manifestation), and that is the great joke. For we ourselves are the Imperson, and the 'we' that acts and thinks is only a personalisation of the one Unself (Reality) seen as phenomenon, a notion that as phenomenon has neither permanence nor duration but is renewed every instant.

Duality (ignorance) is partial identification with the phenomenal 'we', which has no real existence, due to the I-concept therein, and non-duality (wisdom) is the dissolution of that partial identification, leaving us in our normal and unalterable identification with the Unself.

The term 'Imperson' is a dualistic term like any other, seeking to convey the essential impersonality of the Unself conceived, as is inevitable to us, as a 'person' that is not such.

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It is difficult to approach more nearly by the use of words, which are essentially and incorrigibly dualist, but the Sages have sometimes made it clear that our best, perhaps our only, method of dissolving the false identification is by coming to recognise and to know ourselves as the witnessing Imperson, as which we both perceive 'our' actions physical and mental (which are in no sense ours) and 'ourselves' performing those actions (which in no sense do we perform).

(© RKP, 1960)

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