Trying to hold onto the fleeting presence of awareness can be likened to a bird choosing to land in the open palm of your hand. We desire to hold onto it because of our attraction towards continuing to enjoy the experience of its delicacy, beauty and gift of presence.
Thus when the bird of awareness alights in your palm the temptation is to close the fingers around the experience, however gently, in order to hold on to it, albeit to protect it or to continue to experience this unique moment of relationship with something that is usually elusive, or out of sight or reach.
However I feel, as with a bird, so with awareness, you need to keep your hand open as in the desire to cling onto the experience. The bird of awareness might be happy to rest awhile, that is fine and then it flies off, that is also fine.
I feel we are confused, maybe more so in the West, around becoming frenetic over the desire to cling onto awareness. This process, a mixture of a feeling that ‘I must not let go of being aware’ with an ever imminent desire to repeat the experience once the bird of awareness has ‘escaped’, ironically because of our wish to ‘hold onto’ the experience.
Letting go of the desire to hold onto a moment of awareness allows another moment to emerge, and with it a realisation that we have the power of choice in relationship to our desire to cling to mental experiences, whatever their content.
By learning not to cling onto moments of awareness, as in letting go of our desire to hold onto experiences of ‘light’, we can better learn how not to cling onto moments of non-awareness, as in letting go of our desire to hold onto experiences of ‘darkness’.