To find Buddha, you have to see your nature. Whoever sees his nature is a Buddha. If you don’t see your nature, invoking buddhas, reciting sutras, making offerings, and keeping precepts are all useless. Invoking buddhas results in good karma, reciting sutras results in a good memory, keeping precepts results in good rebirth, and making offerings results in future blessings—but no Buddha.
Bodhidharma (c. 440 AD - 528 AD)
Source: The Zen Teaching of Bodhidharma: A Bilingual Edition
All your experiences, all your meditations, all your prayer, all that you do, is self-centred. It is strengthening the self, adding momentum, gathering momentum, so it is taking you in the opposite direction. Whatever you do to be free from the self also is a self-centred activity.