On "not Existing"

- Gerondissa, please, how are we to practice this "I do not exist", which you keep telling us?

"Let me say that in the last twenty years of my life I have understood this very well. When a person comes to tell you what troubles him and, at that time, your mind is distracted by something that concerns your own self, then you are trying in vain, for you will not be able to help that person. But if you forget that you exist and you become that person - even if he happens to be thief, a liar, a murderer - you can enter into his soul and think:

"Oh, my God! The poor man! How can he overcome that? What is he to do"? Then, in the state he is, without judging him, without condemning him, without hating him, you start by telling him: "Didn't the Lord say that he became a man to ease the misery of man, to free him from wickedness and all such things"? In this way you have become one with that person. And even though that person has come to you full of despair, now he leaves cheered up, for he knows that Christ is with him and that he will be able to face his problems. So when you become the other, one person leaves, the next one comes, then a third, a fourth, a firfth...

At the end of the day you ask yourself: "Who am I? Of all these people, who am I?" No one! I am no one"! How funny! Then I say: "Let me behold Christ, even if I do not exist! What do I care about my existence"... I said that once, twice, three times... People ask me: "Are you cold"? Who is cold? How can I feel cold, since I do not exist! "Are you hungry"? Who is hungry? How can I feel hungry since I do not exist! "Does pollution affect your health"? How, since I do not exist! Well, they thought I was a little off my mental balance..."

Mother Gavrilia
"The Ascetic of Love"

The Metaphysics in C.P. Cavafy... *