Every self is a collector. A collector of information, ideas, thoughts, feelings, stories, beliefs, knowledge, sensations. An apparent life-time of collecting, saving, storing, managing, filing, organizing, maintaining, protecting. It is compulsive, obsessive, and has only fear to guard it. The fear is present because one believes what is being protected and saved is who they are.
All of what is collected are objects. The ideas and thoughts and stories are the objects of the mind identity. The feelings and sensations are objects of the body identity. The great collection of collections has been mistaken for who one is. I AM does not imply that I AM all of what is saved, stored, filed. All of what is collected is believed to be fixed, as the notion one is what is collected determines location, which is self. None of these objects are actually fixed, and all of them come and go, as does the self. The identity of self is the identification with all the apparent objects that come and go. All attention rests on the collection, as such, the self does not feel separate from it. The self believes without question, I AM the collection.
The collection is exhausting to maintain and carry, which is why one looks forward to, and needs sleep. In sleep the collection does not matter. The collections and stories vanish. Who is it that is there in sleep if all of ones' prized and protected collections are not available? There is no name, no beliefs, no hopes, no history. There are no feelings or sensations. The great rest, joy, and peace of sleep, is determined by the weight and scale of the collection.
The notion one is their collection gives rise to the fear that if these objects were to vanish, along with the whole collection, so too would the collector. Desire collects and fear protects. And so the collector keeps on collecting determined by both longing and a sense of lack, and the more that is collected, the greater the fear it will vanish. The collector is never at peace, never satisfied, because the collection can never be complete. The belief is there is always more or another object to seek and possess that will make it complete and bring the waking peace and rest it finds with sleep.
There is only one solution and one way for the collector to come to rest and peace, and that is to know it is not the collection. The collector can seek the collector, not the collection. Shift attention from the collecting, the collection, and the objects of collection, to the attention itself. Without the reflection of objects, attention comes to rest as itself. The objects do not need to be avoided or resisted. These objects, and this collection, are determined by attention. It is the energy of interest alone which maintains them. Here is the rest and peace one seeks.
Does the collector vanish with the collection? Yes, it is so. In being aware of Awareness, one is aware AS Awareness, and the beliefs, stories, identification, and the identity of the collector recedes and dissolves. There is no collector. Awareness is that in which all objects and appearances arise. One is that which does not come and go. One does not vanish in sleep, one is that which can not vanish. One is the infinite, eternal, unlimited, spacious ground of Being. The knowing of experience. Presence.