It requires considerable practice to watch thoughts appear and disappear without becoming attached to them. Nevertheless, when we are finally able to remain free of thoughts, then waking up from our culturally indoctrinated perception of the world becomes possible. Only when there is a significant degree of internal detachment, silence, and clarity does it become possible to penetrate our ideas of time, space, and thing–ness and discover the reality that underlies human conception.
Unfortunately, the habit of attaching to thoughts is very powerful. A forty year-old person has probably spent thirty five years intensely practicing that habit, so it should not be surprising that several years of practicing a different mental habit may be necessary to change our method of perception. In fact, when we first begin practicing, we have great difficulty even remembering to practice. Repeatedly we wake up far away and must remember to get off the train and return to the station. We have to leave our fantasies, reflections, and ideas behind and re-focus our attention upon what is happening in the immediate moment. As time goes by, however, we remember more and more often to return to the station and the train rides become shorter and shorter. With sustained practice, we begin to spend more time in the train station than riding the trains and it becomes possible to perceive the world of God that is ordinarily hidden by conventional thinking habits.
Rather than becoming silent and discovering what is inside the train station, we usually become hypnotized by our ideas and beliefs. We stay so occupied and distracted by our thoughts, even our religious thoughts, that we have no psychological silence or power of insight to penetrate our illusions. With sufficient practice, however, it is possible to wake up and discover the astonishing truth.
There is only one thing in the train station, but what is it? What is it that sees the thoughts that appear and disappear on the screen of the mind? Christ said that we must leave ourselves behind and discover our True Self, but what is our True Self?
In fact, we are not who we imagine ourselves to be. To discover who we really are, we must let go of the thoughts in our mind. We must wake up and discover who is standing in the train station. That which causes our blood to circulate, our lungs to breathe, and our brain to think does not have a name like Betty, Bill, Jane, or Carol. With sufficient effort, we can discover the one thing that has no name.