Q: I understand this intellectually but I'm not there yet.
A: The mind only has the intellect - that's it's tool. That tool uses concepts and time to create this relative reality, this dream... it breaks everything down into concepts, otherwise everything would be a mystery, everything would just be the ACTUALITY of THIS and wouldn't be describable.
Without this, there would be no capability to "know" what this thing is, this "body-mind", this ME. There would be no capability to have a belief that this "thing" is a ME, is "what I am".
So the mind can only see things according to its mechanism, according to the qualifications by which it knows - "things".
But what you are is not a thing, can NEVER be a thing, because "things" are only conceptual boxes, comfortable little packages which are understandable in reference only to other little packages. What am I? I am a person. What is a person? A person is a body and a mind, a human. What is a human? A human is a body and a mind. It's a big circle with no exit ramp.
The mind can only ever understand intellectually - using concepts. So concepts are used, not to make the mind understand, but to go beyond the mind to THAT which is prior to the mind, prior to any understanding or non-understanding.
What IS prior to mind? What IS prior to any understanding? What IS prior to the appearance of the body? What is constant and unchanging while the mind and body, in fact the entire world, passes through? What is reflecting the world that appears, untouched?
What is reading these words right now?
If you say "I AM" - do you see this sense of existence and awareness that is undeniable, fully present, 100% unavoidable, inescapable, and indescribable by the intellect? Do you know, prior to the mind's attempt to understand, the mirror which reflects all without holding, without the capacity for knowledge?
Can the mirror see itself?
You say - "I'm not there yet." Does this reflecting awareness ever go anywhere? Or does the scenery just change within the reflection? Doesn't the "show" just pass through this reflecting awareness? Does the mirror need to "get there" or does it only reflect the apparent coming and going, becoming and not-becoming, existing and non-existing, understanding or non-understanding, life and death?
What you are is the mirror reflecting the world - and the world and the reflection of the world are not-two - arising mutually, like 2 sides of a coin. And even the coin is only a concept.
Can the intellect ever understand that?