The Challenge of Detachment from Detachment
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There are some teachers who view witness consciousness as a practice not suitable for beginners of meditation or contemplation.
I think this myself. It would be better to choose one of the many other meditation techniques and better still to choose a practice that involves the practice of embodiment such as Yoga Nidra.
Let me share with you an experience that I had with cultivating the silent witness within.
I was in my early twenties. It was my first experience of being taught meditation. The teacher was a young man, not that much older than me. However, he seemed to me somewhat strange.
At the time I was not aware of the phenomena called “disembodiment.” This is where an individual in the words of the Irish writer James Joyce declares of one of the characters Mr Duffy.
Mr Duffy lived some distance from his body—James Joyce – The Dubliners.
Witness consciousness is often favoured by those who want to practice finding some emotional stability in their life.
They are drawn to the idea and the practice of detachment. However, many are already detached from their emotions. They engage with the practice of witness consciousness as a form of spiritual bypassing. They bypass their emotionally challenging life experiences.
The result can be that the person practicing cultivating silence witness consciousness becomes detached from detachment. This was the case with my first meditation teacher, who seemed to live some distance from his body.
We refer this practice of witness consciousness to as a cool technique—Andrew Harvey—The Hope – A Guide to Sacred Activism. I recommend it that if you practice this technique that you combine it with a warm meditation technique such as the Buddhist practice of the Metta Bhavana.
Whatever you do, I recommend that you combine this practice with some form of devotional practice. This keeps you balanced and in touch your with feelings. Detachment is not intended to develop absence of feelings but to promote the ability to be less and less reactive.
Cultivation of detachment is what the spiritual teacher Dr Deepak Chopra refers to as The Gap.