Where Do You Exist?

You can gain a glimpse of enlightenment with a simple exercise. Close your eyes and imagine a beautiful sunset over the ocean. See the colors as vividly as possible; catch the shining glint of the sun off the water. Now open your eyes. Did you see the sunset?

That picture was not in your brain. If we looked inside your brain, we would find electrochemical reactions coursing through synaptic networks. There are no images inside the brain that match what our eyes see. There isnít the slightest glimmer of light inside the visual cortex. But when you close your eyes and imagine a sunset, you donít experience electrochemical reactions.

Where, then, is the picture of the sunset you saw? It exists not in your brain but in consciousness. The same holds true if you try to imagine anything with your five senses Ė the smell of a rose, the sound of a newborn baby crying, the soft texture of velvet, or a full-blown kiss on the lips. There are no sights or sounds or tastes or smells in your brain, only a dark silence flickering with faint electrical impulses and chemical exchanges. Every sensation exists in consciousness alone.

Now extend this awareness to your body. You experience your body as a series of sensations Ė the weight of your limbs, the in and out of your breathing, the thumping rhythm of your heart when you run. But, once again, none of these sensations can be found in your brain. Therefore, your body also exists in your consciousness. There is nowhere else to experience it.

Now ask the ultimate question: Where do you exist? If the world cannot be found inside your brain, the same is even more true for you. Yet you know you have a self. To find it, you must think outside the brain, in fact outside time and space. You are pure consciousness, which has no location in time and space.

Adapted from The Ultimate Happiness Prescription, by Deepak Chopra (Harmony Books, 2009).


Elisa F.
Elisa F3 years ago

Thanks :)

charmaine c.
Charmaine C7 years ago

Thank you for sharing your experience with us. I'm grateful for every opportunity to expand my knowledge and understanding of how other people feel and function. Such an understanding can at the least improve our tollerance for our differences and foster more love and respect for each other and our world, and and at it's best instill profound changes in how we live here on this watery globe.

Sean K.
Sean K7 years ago

Maybe just by asking this particular question , you have given yourself the opportunity to create your own answer.
Consciousness does come in parts of awareness, my thought to you would be to get informed on the nature of the various levels of consciousness.
There is various websites and/or books on the subject.
Trust your intuition on your journey, it will help if you listen.
Sincere hopes for your truth...

John Murphy
John Murphy7 years ago

Thank you Deepak for bringing this thought provoking information to us laymen. If it was not for Deepak I, for one, would not have found access to these concepts and would not have had the seed of further spiritual development planted into my mind. So, Mr David t.(comment Jun 19, 2010 10:59 AM), although he is writing books and earning a living in this material world we are ALL part of for the best of 3 score and 10 years, like everyone else has to, I have NEVER heard Deepak state that he is the Messiah or a Guru of any kind. He is a man bringing spiritual concepts to the ordinary person via the internet. He does not starve us of his ideas by making us pay for this article each day. In that way, he seems to genuinely want to help others. I, for one, am very grateful!!!!!

Part 2 of my comment is to ask if this:
I know that the Body and Brain are just muscles sinews blood gristle and bone, with a bit of electro-magnetic static electrical pulses etc. NOTHING spiritual at all. So, my questions are these:
Is conscioussness our link to the other world?
If the physical Brain is not conscious (because it is merely a mass of jelly and blood), is the MIND the conscious part of the physical Brain?
Is the Mind and the Soul linked in some way?
Are dreams at night (pictures we see, just like the sunset in this article), our concsiousness connecting with the "other realm"???

Any thoughts on th

Philippa P.
Philippa P7 years ago


David t.
Past Member 7 years ago

Mr Deepak Chropa,I know you are a fraud and you are using the same material over and over written by other more intelligent people.I true spirital leader is a most humble person,he does not boast of his fame and achievements..I don't see this in you,as well as many other so-call spiritual leaders.I think you are in it for the Money and fame,you should spend less on plastic surgery and more to help humanity and the the less fortunate.In my traditional teachings we have 12-levels before you can even be considered a spiritual leader..It would put your teachings to shame.Signed; traditional Apprentice American Indian Medicine Man..

Leisha Wharfield
Leisha Wharfield7 years ago

Since we have no longitude or latitude in space or time for our singular awareness or consciousness, can we stop arguing about who belongs here based on their legal status, please? All of us belong.

heather g.
heather g7 years ago

Thank you for that excerpt from Deepak's book. I enjoyed his explanation of the brain, the mind and consciousness - explained in layman's terms.

Lynn C.
Lynn C7 years ago

Reading this gave me the first glimpse of what it would be like to live in consciousness. Thank you for the gift.

Robert Shelby
Robert Shelby7 years ago

To say that the beautiful sunset over seascape does not exist in your brain is about as meaningful as to say the performance of one of Chopîn's études does not exist in the piano you hear it played upon. No piano, no performance. No neural processing, no sunset. Quit splitting things up in airy oversimplifications.