A Very Peculiar Self Doubt
When we have doubt, WE…HAVE…DOUBT. We are not this doubt, because we are aware of this doubt that appears in the mind. Because we have identified with this doubt – which is merely a confused idea in the mind – we will doubt ourselves forever, as it has become a habitual pattern. Such programming has already taken place.
What is doubt? It is lack of certainty. As sentient beings, we are not enlightened because of an uncertainty about our true nature of pure awareness. As a result of this, we have acquired a second nature, a programme. This programme is called karma: it’s the script that drives us, and because this second nature is incomplete, we ‘have doubts’ about it.
In truth, we are perfectly clean beings in a sticky world. My teacher Tsoknyi Rinpoche illustrates it like this: when we wear a covering of clothes (our defilements), if things are thrown at us, they stick. If we are naked (without defilements) nothing sticks, as the things thrown at us just fall off.
If I look at myself, I am a worrier and experience self doubt all the time. This is because of many happenings in my early life, and possibly in previous lives. I seem to have been born that way. The doubt arises from not knowing how to relate on a conventional level, fitting in with social assumptions. But all of this is merely an idea that the mind holds about itself. My true nature (pure awareness) is aware of all this, and it is untouched by the doubt. It is disinterested. It doesn’t become hooked.
Real confidence is acknowledging this doubt in the mind. False confidence is a protective covering laid over the raw experience, because of fear. Doubt is just a programme in the system in which we move around. In ‘sci-fi’ terms, we are pure consciousness trapped inside a bio-computer with constricted software – and it just doesn’t feel right. Unfortunately, the world in which we live keeps updating our junk programming! Most believe the programming is real, and so react to it. They get too interested: to use ‘sci-fi’ terms again, they are caught in the illusory matrix.
My self doubt comes from perfection trying to fit into an imperfect world.
Even religion and teachings are not perfect, as they are not the actual experience.
It is the raw experience that is perfect:
it is “Confusion dawning as wisdom.”
Recognising self doubt is therefore important.