Space and the Judge

“The judge will attack your experience of space from different directions:”So you are feeling emptiness in your head You numskull, that means you are stupid! … If you start losing your sense of boundaries, you are asking for trouble…. Quit spacing out and get to work! What do you mean, you don’t feel guilty about what happened? Don’t bother trying to sense yourself; there’s nothing there-and that’s your problem!” Until you begin to recognize spaciousness for what it is-the authentic presence of your beingness without any content-your judge will easily distract you from experiences of open emptiness. All it has to do is call up the image of something missing and you will fill up the space with searching and worrying!

Spaciousness has its own particular power in relation to the judge. It is what is in between and around words, objects, and ideas. The more you are aware of space as an experiential quality, the more you are focused on the open field in which everything arises. This is the opposite of content, of the narrow, focused engagement with the judge.The judge’s message is seductive compared to other content, but compared to empty space, it is no more powerful than a TV commercial and considerably less pleasant than a nice piece of music.When you are feeling spacious, the judge is not right in your face, even if it is present, so it can’t exert its usual degree of pressure. In fact, spacious means space to choose, space to ignore, or space to go around. Feeling spacious brings elements ofour experience back into proper proportion, and the judge’s significance rapidly diminishes.

Space and the Soul

To experience your own spaciousness is to recognize the true nature of your soul, a felt sense that has nothing to do with personal history, ideas, behavior, or accomplishments. It is always there but easily ignored. It is tangible and powerful yet difficult to focus on and even harder to describe. In fact, the mind has no way to grasp the sense ofinner space.There is nothing to hold on to, point to, or think about.

If you are like most people, it is a challenge to hang out with any kind of empty space, whether in your schedule, with another person, or inside yourself.You like the sense of ease and freedom the spaciousness brings, but being in direct contact with the empty space causes uneasiness. This is why you usually feel the spaciousness only when you are glad that something is missing or gone.Then you experience space as just a relief. The rest of the time, it is felt as the lack of something you need-even when you have to search for what is missing.

With time and awareness, it becomes possible to accept and appreciate the experience of spaciousness in your head, your body, or your sense of who you are. This opens the way for the sense of barren or frightening emptiness to become the experience of open space. When you stop looking for something to fill the space, you can begin to see the space where you always are. You can feel and embrace your own spacious nature.” – Byron Brown, Soul without shame, a guide to liberating yourself from the judge within.