Self is not ‘I’ or I AM. Until 'I' or 'I AM' is considered as self, the separation is bound to be there. Until separation is there duality bound to be there. Until duality is there the ignorance bound to be there. Until ignorance is there the illusion bound to be there. Until illusion is there unreality prevails as reality. Until unreality prevails as reality the experience of birth, life, death and the world prevails as reality. Until the experience of birth, life, death as reality, self is in the grip of duality, separation, ignorance, illusion. If one is seriously seeking truth than it is high time to drop holding 'I' or 'I' AM' as self, because the self is beyond 'I' or 'I AM'.
That is why Buddha said: - Believe nothing just because a so-called wise person said it. Believe nothing just because a belief is generally held. Believe nothing just because it is said in ancient books. Believe nothing just because it is said to be of divine origin. Believe nothing just because someone else believes it. Believe only what you yourself test and judge to be true.
The words have meaning in duality. Duality exists until mind exists. Mind exists where there is division of form, time and space. If there is no division of form, time and space, than there is no mind. Words are used as a tool to name individual objects and feelings within the duality. The words become meaningless when one becomes aware of the formless substance of the mind, which is consciousness. Consciousness is our inner most self. From the standpoint of our inner most self, the mind is mere mirage. If mind is mere mirage then the form, time and space are mere mirage. If form, time and space are mere mirage than the thoughts and words which rises within the scope of form, time and space are also part and parcel of that mirage. Thus body, ego, words, thoughts, and whatever the contents of the universe are within the mirage created out of single stuff that is consciousness. Thus it is necessary to know 'What is mind?' and 'What is the substance of the mind?' and 'What is the source of the mind?', in order to realize the words are meaningless in the realm of truth.
But deeper self-search reveals the fact that 'I' is not the self because it appears and disappears. the formless substance and witness of the 'I' ,which is formless consciousness is the true self. If the self is form [I] than the evolution theory holds water. If the self is formless [soul] than all the theories based on the form is of no value. Until one thinks 'I' or I AM' as self all these theories cannot transport anyone beyond form, time and space. the theory of evolution is based on individuality ,whereas the self, pervades in everything and everywhere in the universe. Individuality is reality within the falsehood. Thus all the theory based on individuality is bound to be falsehood. Thus our judgment and reason and conclusion has to be based on formless self not on the form[I] as self to realize Illusion is where one is bound to:
Form, time and space
Birth, life and death
Pain and Pleasure,
Burden and bondage
Waking, dream and deep sleep
Illusion is created out of consciousness. Because of ignorance the illusion is experienced as reality. Illusory reality deludes because I is based on egocentricity. In egocentricity one does knows not the ultimate truth and permanently remains in ignorance.
Thus it is high time to drop all accumulated dross and move forward with deeper verification and accept only un-contradictable truth, because un-contradictable truth is non-dual truth.
In self-awareness Change and changeless are one in essence than only there is self-awareness. The knower and known and the knowledge are also consciousness. When the self which is consciousness becomes aware of its own formless true nature in the midst of diversity or duality it is called self –awareness.
Man and the world is product of ignorance. Thus it is not the man who is in ignorance but it is the formless consciousness [true self] , which is in ignorance of its true nature. When self becomes aware of its true nature than its ignorance vanishes and it alone prevails in its own awareness. Thus body, senses, intellect, ego, universe are mere mirage created out of consciousness.