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Resting as Your Deepest Self

In this magical place of presence, you become still enough to reconnect with who you really are.

How to get the most out of these Wisdom Quotes:

  1. Put aside everything you think you already know.

  2. Open your mind and heart to receive something new.

  3. Take your time going through each point.

  4. Return to any points that particularly touch you.

  5. In the coming days, listen carefully to the wisdom within you.

* All quotes by Jeff Foster, from the video: Let Go & Deeply Surrender

1. Your First-Ever Meditation

Jeff Foster quote

"I’d like to invite you for the first time because, no matter how many times we’ve been in meditation, it’s actually always the first time. So, this is your first-ever meditation. This is my first ever meditation, I promise you.

Why? Because meditation means touching into our experience from not knowing.

As Jesus said, until you become like a little child, you can’t enter into the kingdom of heaven. It’s about coming to our experience with a child-like sense of wonder, fascination, newness, adventure, experimentation, and exploration. In that sense, it’s always a new beginning."


What comes to mind when you think of meditation? Do you have a set meditation practice that you do? Or do you feel you've been unsuccessful in your efforts and it's not for you? Or perhaps you're somewhere in between.

  1. Notice your approach to meditation. Jeff says, "it’s about coming to our experience with a child-like sense of wonder, fascination, newness, adventure, experimentation, and exploration." What a refreshing attitude!

  2. "Meditation means touching into our experience from not knowing." Imagine coming to meditation with a don't-know mind (as Byron Katie calls it). Imagine coming to this moment with no expectations.

  3. This week we will follow Jeff's leading, and enter into the newness of meditation. This meditation is your first ever. It's also Jeff's first ever. True meditation is fresh and new every time.

2. Return to the Landscape of Now

Jeff Foster quote

"I’d like to invite you to get really comfortable wherever you are. Gather your attention back into this present moment. Letting all the activity, all the drama, all the busyness of the day recede into the background, all the past moments of the day, receding into the background. Inviting your attention back here.

Maybe your attention has been off in the past, maybe it’s been off in the future. Gathering your attention, inviting it back to the body, back to the breath, back to this moment, back to this present scene in the movie of your life.

We’re slowing down together.

What’s here? What’s it like to be alive, now, here, where you are?

Not a question that we answer with memory, with the mind, with concepts. It’s an invitation to shine the light of your attention on this moment.

There’s no right or wrong in the landscape of now. It’s just a painting. How is this moment painting itself?"


Allow yourself to slow down to the pace of presence. Everything that doesn't belong to this moment can become part of the background now - all the mind chatter, the thoughts about this and that, everything.

  1. You don't need to engage your mind to find out what is here. Simply tune in to what this moment holds. What do you hear? What do you sense? You don't even have to put the answers into words. Just notice.

  2. "How is this moment painting itself?" There's no right or wrong, like or don't like in this answer, otherwise, you're involving the mind with its opinions. Just look at the picture of life in front of you.

  3. You're shining "the light of your attention on this moment." You're the torch, the flashlight, purely seeing and seeing purely - without any story, without any preference, and without any expectation. Simply sitting in still awareness.

3. Welcome All the Waves

Jeff Foster quote

"Let yourself fall. Let’s all fall together, into the earth.

Noticing if there’s any sense of trying to hold ourselves up against gravity. Let any sense of holding soften. Nothing to do, nowhere to get to. This place of deep rest.

How are you feeling right now? Is there a sense of aliveness, a sense of tiredness? Does the body feel light and expansive? Does the body feel contracted, or tight? Are there areas of the body that feel achy, or tense?

It’s perfectly okay. We’re not trying to transform right now. We’re not even trying to feel better.

We’re illuminating. Meditation is a loving, moment-by-moment, illumination of what’s here, even if it hurts, even if it aches, even if it feels tight and contracted.

Remember, it’s welcome. That wave is welcome in this ocean of meditation. Meditation is an ocean that welcomes all of its waves - even waves of tightness, boredom, and loneliness; as well as waves of joy, excitement, and bliss.

You are the light. You are the illumination. And you shine on every thought, sensation, and feeling. You shine on the joy, you shine on the sorrow. You’re as willing to shine on sadness as you are on joy. You’re as willing to shine on boredom as you are on bliss.

We’re slowing down together and blessing what’s here with our attention, which is the greatest blessing. Not trying to fix, not trying to transform, slowing down, and blessing what’s here."


As we slow down together, tune into the sense of holding, of resisting, of trying to do something. And let it all soften because, right now, in this moment, there's nowhere to go and nothing to do.

  1. "Meditation is an ocean that welcomes all of its waves - even waves of tightness, boredom, and loneliness." What a liberating statement! How freeing it is to just be who you are, without needing to fix or improve anything. Take a moment to realize this.

  2. Can you welcome all of you right now? Even all the parts that you don't like and would rather change? Just for this moment, would you welcome all your "waves?"

  3. Breathe into this radical acceptance. This isn't a matter of convincing yourself to put up with your perceived flaws. This is about relaxing into the awareness and acceptance that you already are, allowing your human identity and the story you've built up around it to soften, coming back to source of your experience, to who you are at the deepest level. Breathe into that.

4. Practise Radical Acceptance

Jeff Foster quote

"Just allowing whatever is here, and if you can’t allow what’s present with you, can you allow that? Allow ourselves to not be present right now. This is full, radical permission, radical love.

If you feel restful, if you feel restless, or anything in between, we open to this moment as it is.

If you become distracted from this meditation, it’s absolutely fine. Distraction can happen in this ocean. We can acknowledge that we’ve become distracted. We can gather our attention back. No need to punish or reprimand ourselves. Distraction is also a valid expression of life.

We can begin again. Remember, we're always beginning again in meditation, which is to say there’s really no beginning and no end. Just this vast ocean of being that we always are.

The sky doesn’t rush to fix its weather. Just remember that you are the sky for this weather. You are the ocean for these waves."


In this magical place of presence, you become still enough to reconnect with who you really are. You are the vastness that holds all experience, just like the sky holds the weather and the ocean holds the waves.

  1. In this place of radical acceptance and radical love, there is nothing that isn't welcome. All the weather appears within the sky, and all the waves exist within the ocean. Open to this moment just as it is.

  2. "Distraction is also a valid expression of life," especially in today's world. It doesn't matter if you get distracted or not. What matters is whether you accept your distraction.

  3. Allow yourself to be distracted. Allow yourself to be restless. Even allow yourself to not be present. It's all welcome and lovingly accepted in the vastness of Being.

5. Explore Your Deepest Sense of Self

Jeff Foster quote

"Dropping back now, into presence, into the ocean, the sky, being what you are, being Presence itself, the vast “I am.” Before I am this or I am that, I am.

This I am, which is your deepest sense of knowing, your deepest sense of identity, beyond the mind, this ocean of you, this ever-present ocean of Being. It’s always here, never comes, never goes.

Thoughts come and go, but you don’t. Feelings come and go, but you don’t. Sensations come and go, sounds come and go, smells come and go, memories come and go, fantasies come and go, fears come and go, but you always remain.

What is this mystery, this sense of existence, this feeling of Being? You can’t put it into words. All words come after. It’s present right now, this very simple feeling of Being.

It was present when you were one, and it will be present when you’re 80, or 90 years old. It doesn’t age. It’s constant, throughout all the changes, in the midst of every moment.

Thoughts come and go, sensations come and go, feelings come and go, even the breath rises and falls; but you, Presence, Being itself, are this vast ocean - timeless, ageless, changeless - your deepest sense of self, your deepest sense of safety, your deepest source of sustenance."


"What is this mystery, this sense of existence, this feeling of Being?"

  1. How does it feel to explore your deepest sense of existence? Notice any discomfort, uncertainty, or fear. Why would you be apprehensive about discovering your true nature? Why would you consider it strange to know the truth of who you are?

  2. "I am" is the deepest sense of identity. Beyond the whole image, personality, and story, there is pure existence, pure aliveness, and pure presence. How can you even fathom "being Presence itself, the vast “I am"? Perhaps this is why we hesitate. When all we have learned is to conceptualize and analyze, something unfathomable and beyond words strips us of all familiarity.

  3. And yet, here we are, unable to resist the call of our deepest knowing. It is a mystery, this life that seems so fragile and transient, yet unchanging and eternal in its essence. And here it is, revealed as Presence itself, miraculously dissolving all barriers between you and this moment.

6. Rest As the Ocean of Presence

Jeff Foster quote

"So the invitation is just to rest as your deepest self. Rest as the ocean of Being, of presence, and to allow thoughts to come and go, sensations to come and go. Even to allow non-allowing, even to allow resistance, even to allow contraction, boredom, numbness, loneliness, this radical inclusion.

The ocean radically includes and loves and cherishes and welcomes all of its waves. No waves work against the ocean. No thought, no sensation, no feeling that arises in you is fundamentally working against you, even if it's uncomfortable.

As Rumi reminds us, even that most uncomfortable or unwanted or darkest of waves may hold spiritual riches, may hold healing, may hold intelligence, may just be a part of you longing to be included, to be known as part of the ocean.

So just let go of trying to meditate and rest as much as you can, as this moment plays itself out, moment by moment. Let yourself sink into the chair, the bed, the couch, the earth. Let the earth itself hold you. Let yourself fall.

Give yourself a few moments of rest, a break from this project of trying to be someone, trying to attain something, trying to win something, trying to prove something, trying to get someone else to understand you, trying to win love, trying to become enlightened. Just for a moment, let all of that fall away. Let yourself sink. Let’s all sink together into the earth.

And if, during this meditation, you’ve found in yourself a place of peace, a place that feels contented or whole, safe, still, silent, see if you can stay connected to that place within you."


Have you noticed how this word, "rest," keeps coming up, again and again in these wisdom quotes? Could it really be that simple? Is ceasing all effort the secret that has eluded us for so long?

  1. "The invitation is just to rest as your deepest self." It's not difficult to rest as the ocean of Being. It's not complicated to rest as the ocean of Presence. It's what happens naturally when you drop all the unrest you've been holding and carrying, when you drop all the thoughts that this is difficult.

  2. "Let go of trying to meditate and rest as much as you can." Rest as much as you can. What a beautiful invitation, and one that our tired soul longs to accept.

  3. "Give yourself a few moments of rest, a break from this project of trying..." trying to be and do so many things. Give yourself a break. In this moment, right now, relinquish all effort and let yourself fall into the most intimate connection you could ever have with this moment. Simply rest, knowing that there is nothing you need to do in order to enjoy the riches of presence, because you and this moment are inseparable.

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