This Is Always It

Why do I love these four words so much and use them as my Instagram and Twitter handles?

For me, I find This to be one of the most direct, non-conceptually loaded ways to refer to whatever is showing up experientially. 

Whatever is being perceived, whatever is being felt or seen, touched or tasted, and the one we imagine is doing all the feeling, seeing, tasting and touching...

All of it, is simply This

Whatever the particular form This may be assuming, however we may be categorizing, conceptualizing or describing it, it remains simply This, the sheer presence of whatever is here…

As for Isthat word refers to the most fundamental quality of This, namely that it exists. The most basic, undeniable fact of experience is that it’s here. Whatever it is, whatever names we might be giving it, This is

The word, always points to the fact that despite its ceaselessly changing, ever-transforming nature, This remains constant. Something is always here, always present, always being experienced, even if it never looks the same from moment-to-moment…

Finally, the word It refers to the fact that there can never be anything but This. The truth is that it’s simply not possible for there to be anything other than what’s presently appearing… Until there is…

This is it! And it is always it! Nothing but This could ever be for if something else were to appear, then that would simply be another way This can manifest.


Now if we investigate what This is, we discover several astonishing things about it that run counter to our conventional notions about ourselves and reality.

First, This has absolutely zero stability. Regardless of how it's showing up or how we might be describing it, This vanishes no sooner than it appears. Perceptions arise… and then subside in the very instant of their arising.

And so in a very real sense, This never really assumes any particular form because whatever shape it seems to take on instantaneously transforms itself into something else, in the exact moment of its seeming to appear as something.

Another quality of This is that it can never exist in any time other than right now, in the very instant of its arising. This not only has no past or future but literally no present owing to its constantly transforming nature. In short, reality - i.e., This - exists outside of time, even as it paradoxically shows up as what we call, the passage of time.

This is also without discernible border or boundary. Our interpretations of This suggest all sorts of lines and divisions between this, that and the other thing. And yet no such boundaries can be found in direct experience. 

Look and see for yourself. That is my invitation. Notice the way This Is. Look at the field of experience and see if you can find any lines anywhere. Look and what will be readily apparent is that This is a seamless, radically open and inclusive continuum, with nothing actually separated from anything else.

This is also inconceivable for despite what our descriptions would have us believe, try as we might, This that is present cannot be squeezed into any of our interpretive frameworks. There is simply too much information there, both quantitatively and qualitatively. The reality is that This is simply too complex and multidimensional to be collapsed into any word or concept.

This Is Always It… 

I invite you to enter into the profound power and implications of these four simple words...

John Astin