here now

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CMDancer
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here now

Postby CMDancer » Thu Oct 04, 2018 7:52 am

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
The self is a process rather than a thing. I.e. we are self'ing' through life. We develop a static "thing" sense of self through language, when we learn to use I, me, mine and you, yours, they, them... All nouns are linguist conveniences. "I" is big in terms of suffering in life... Seeing through this "illusion" through direct experience

What are you looking for at LU?
Guidance on the direct experience and more specifically what to do when / how to catch "I" emerging again to claim the experience of emptiness / gatecrashing... I feel like I have "seen into" emptiness on a number of occasions but once again find that I am trapped by "I".
Ilona guided me through the the Gate process on retreat in 2016, and I felt like my first seeing fully into the nature of self and everything came 11 years earlier in 2005 with Concord Institute and on retreat at Gaia House doing Buddhist Insight Meditation. Now I find myself stuck once again... AND because the self wants to claim all experience it is working hard to claim these experiences of the past and tell me I don't need this process now...

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
That you will see into the areas where "I" am manifesting / creating a sense of self around an experience. That you will help me see into the blind spots that I have. That you will show up to my answers with respect for my intention, with your "self" out of the way.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
Yoga - 26 years
Buddhist Meditation Practice - 18 years - mostly Western Insight / Theravandan - Meditation Interviews and Group Satsang on occasion (Gaia House UK 2000 - 2006 and Upaya Zen Centre Santa Fe New Mexico (2003 - 4)
some Advita Vedanata inquiry over the years... some Satsang experiences
Worked with Concord Institute in London on "Self" Expression (2005 - 6)
Psychology exploring at Contextual Behavioural Science - 11 years (2007 - present)

On a scale from 1 to 10, how willing are you to question any currently held beliefs about 'self?
11

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barnaby
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Re: here now

Postby barnaby » Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:00 pm

Hi CMDancer

Wonderful to get your message, and it's great to see you here :)

(Would you like me to use CMDancer or another name)?

Firstly, welcome to Liberation Unleashed.
Would you like me to be your guide here?
I'm very happy to. Or if you would like another guide, that is also totally fine :)

(1) A little formality.
Just confirm that you're fine with all the LU terms and disclaimers.

Disclaimer:-
http://liberationunleashed.com/disclaimer-2/

Terms & Conditions:-
https://www.liberationunleashed.com/register/terms/

“Liberation Unleashed is not …” in the FAQ’s of LU.
http://liberationunleashed.com/about/faq/#faq-1041


(2) Given the conversation will mostly be here in the LU forum, it will be good for us to use the quote function.
When replying to a question, please use the quote function to highlight the question being answered.
Just enter this (without the spaces) [ quote ] before the text and [ / quote ].
It's as simple as that. But extra instructions are located in the link below:
viewtopic.php?f=4&t=660
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fAToDNh9hQ&app=desktop

I enjoyed very much reading what you wrote, and I can very much relate to what you've written here...
Now I find myself stuck once again... AND because the self wants to claim all experience it is working hard to claim these experiences of the past...
We'll be able to fully explore this in our conversation, with the aim that you'll have the confidence to rest in the realization that there is no self at all, that there never was to begin with, and never would be.

I will ask various questions and set you some exercises, but nobody will be judging you. There's nothing to get wrong, or right.

This LU process is a guided inquiry, where together we can examine specific areas, especially those where you are feeling stuck.
No one is your teacher here. This is your inquiry.
There will be no new ideas and beliefs; only assisting you in examining and questioning the ones that you already have.

* In general, I will ask questions, you look deeply and honestly, and respond.
* Responses require simple, uncontrived honest looking. There are no wrong or right answers.
* Responses are best from direct experience (felt senses and observed thoughts). Long-winded analytical and philosophical answers, and stream of consciousness answers are best avoided and may even hinder progress.
* Put aside all other teachings, philosophies and such for the remainder of this investigation. Really put all your effort and attention into seeing this reality, as it is. If you have a daily and essential meditation practice, it is fine to continue that.


It's clear that you've seen the "I" illusion, gone through the gate, and yet... your experience at the moment is that the identity keeps on claiming ownership again.

If you are happy to get going right now please let me know that you accept my offer and let me know any expectations or hopes that you have, however insignificant these may seem, for the experience of resting in the awareness of no self?


Love
Barnaby

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CMDancer
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Re: here now

Postby CMDancer » Fri Oct 05, 2018 9:43 am

Would you like me to use CMDancer or another name
you can call me neli
Would you like me to be your guide here?
yes please, you will be great for me, thanks Barnaby :-)
Just confirm that you're fine with all the LU terms and disclaimers.

yes I'm fine with these term and disclaimers
If you are happy to get going right now please let me know that you accept my offer and let me know any expectations or hopes that you have, however insignificant these may seem, for the experience of resting in the awareness of no self?
I'm happy to get going right now. I accept your offer.
expectations = there is an experience of seeing through the illusion of the self
hopes = that "i" will be able to replicate this experience at will... or 'access' it, even thought I know it's not a state... I know it's that terrible...
plus anything I wrote earlier, just can't think of what that was, but know that those thought patterns arise regularly...
thanks again Barnaby.
:-)
neli

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barnaby
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Re: here now

Postby barnaby » Fri Oct 05, 2018 7:07 pm

Thanks NeLi. It's great to be in this conversation with you :)

Given you've had this experience of seeing through the identity illusion of the "I" several times, let's explore some of what you've shared. (I'll mark the questions I'd like you to answer in bold blue.)

I know you have a lot of experience exploring this field, but let's begin this enquiry from afresh, with a beginners new mind.

You wrote some very interesting things about what you are looking for from seeing the identity, and expectations...
hopes = that "i" will be able to replicate this experience at will... or 'access' it, even thought I know it's not a state... I know it's that terrible...
Here you wrote about the hope that, "I will be able to replicate this experience at will".
What I hear in this, is your sense of loss that an "access" to a certain view of life without the claiming ownership of the "I" seems to disappears after some time.

And that "you" get "trapped" by the do...
I feel like I have "seen into" emptiness on a number of occasions but once again find that I am trapped by "I".
Who is being trapped?
And what is doing this "trapping"?
Describe more about this experience.

how to catch "I" emerging again to claim the experience of emptiness / gatecrashing.
Who will do this "catching" of this "I"?
How will this catching of this "I" look and feel?
How will "you" know you've caught it?


What is this experience of emptiness / gatecrashing that could be claimed?
Describe more about this experience.


B :-)

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CMDancer
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Re: here now

Postby CMDancer » Sat Oct 06, 2018 10:05 am

Who is being trapped
it feels like I am being trapped, but what I notice when I inquire into this question is that the sense of being trapped falls away. there is something that softens and opens in the experience of the body when I open to the inquiry. then the "answer" of "no-one" emerges, but this comes from a memory, rather than direct experience. I inquire into the memory... who has the memory?.. tears well up... i type..eyes soften. big sigh
And what is doing this "trapping"?
I am... tension in the temples.. the thought, "I need to know'... memory of thoughts... "halp halp, its the hooded claw." (wacky racers cartoon, penelope pitstop) pulling sensation in the inner eyes. and back of neck softens. small sigh, more tears... thoughts "I don't want to trap or be trapped."
Describe more about this experience
It seems that I forget to notice the world from the perspective of not self. it feels like it used to feel before I had any realisations. I'm caught up thinking and trying to figure out life the universe and everything, but I'm not noticing this movement of the mind. the thinking goes on, with the underlying assumption of needing to and somehow being able to make things different, just caught in it, sometimes endlessly, even when I sit in meditation. then I start to "do" things inside of my meditation practice... i.e. pranayama or body scan or visualisation or metta or some other generative practice to attempt to change the mind state deliberately... sometimes this shifts to joy or concentration that is shorter or longer lived, but seems to add to the load of building pressure generally.
Who will do this "catching" of this "I"?
awareness seems to do this. but when i look now for the experience, opening to catching, now, i remember moments of noticing I wanting to claim the experience of seeing, insighting, building this sense of self through memory...as I write, i sense building this into the future.
How will this catching of this "I" look and feel?
memory of catchings come up... it makes me smile. the image of the wizard of oz being discovered behind the curtain, the puppeteer having the spotlight shone on him. pleasant indulgence. i ask the question again. ease comes to my body. release of tension in neck and back of head. a little smile comes to my face...
How will "you" know you've caught it?
"I" won't be here... in the manner of self consciousness... just seeing, hearing, tasting touching smelling thinking...
What is this experience of emptiness / gatecrashing that could be claimed?
well if there is nothing to claim and no-one to claim it... ??? I don't know... ?? mind confusion.. I settle in to inquire, and it feels like a rolling on of a car journey being filmed from within the car, nothing you can put your finger on, as the scenery is changing all the time...
Describe more about this experience.
I'm smelling the dinner that's cooking, wondering if I should stop here and check on it.. just sitting at the computers. listening to thunder and rain. correcting my typos . foot feels pressure from the bar on the desk. feet a bit cold, wondering if i should put on my ugg boots. clock is ticking, shoulder is aching.

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barnaby
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Re: here now

Postby barnaby » Wed Oct 10, 2018 6:04 am

It's great that you've answered this so clearly NeLi. I've been thinking through more on what you've said.

It's wonderful that as you have been contemplating, that feeling of being trapped has fallen away.

I'm going to pull out the comments you've made that are jumping out...
then the "answer" of "no-one" emerges, but this comes from a memory, rather than direct experience. I inquire into the memory... who has the memory?
Who is it that is having this memory of feeling/being trapped?
Is this a feeling of being trapped happening today, is this a memory, or a living experience?
What do you see when you look more into this, what is your living experience right now?

"I need to know'...
Who is needing to "know" all of this?
And "what" will you know?

I'm caught up thinking and trying to figure out life the universe and everything
thinking goes on, with the underlying assumption of needing to and somehow being able to make things different
Who is caught up in this, and why the pressure of this "need"?
Is there are "you" trying to accomplish something?
Can "you" accomplish anything?

It seems that I forget to notice the world from the perspective of not self.
Is this something that you can forget?
What is your living experience when you just look right now?
What is your experience when you "forget"?
Is there really something missing?

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CMDancer
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Re: here now

Postby CMDancer » Fri Oct 12, 2018 6:36 am

Who is it that is having this memory of feeling/being trapped?
me. tension in shoulders, release, sneeze... look again. desperate churning. looking... like in panic... seeing panic... heat in body... release in ears... confusion... eyes tired.
Is this a feeling of being trapped happening today, is this a memory, or a living experience?
not a living experience right now... memory of trapped seems distant... laughable, softly compassionate towards trapped feeling memory... then, is that it?
What do you see when you look more into this, what is your living experience right now?
living experience right now... listen to rain. wind in trees. clock ticking. fingers typing. correcting words. head tension softens. yawn...
Who is needing to "know" all of this?
the part of me that doesn't trust life. knowing stuff is safety.
And "what" will you know?
the answers to life the universe and everything, how to respond in each and every moment.
Who is caught up in this, and why the pressure of this "need"?
"I" am caught. The aspect of this entity that "I" call "me" that needs to "survive"
Is there are "you" trying to accomplish something?
survival... to exist.
Can "you" accomplish anything?
it seems like that
Is this something that you can forget? (the perspective of not self)
apparently yes... but I can be reminded easily, by e.g. having this conversation or listening to or watching others speak about this like the movie you sent a link to.
What is your living experience when you just look right now?
fullness in the belly, hearing computer ding. pulling hair. moving neck, thinking about doing some yoga practice. thinking about whether dance would be better. comparing memories in images and felt sense in body to make decision on action. feeling tired eyes. deciding to rest. pain in shoulder blade /spine area. sigh, definitely rest.
What is your experience when you "forget"?
how can I construct myself, let me count the ways... who am I? depends on the day and who you are...
Is there really something missing?
only ease and grace... which "I" seem to have a preference for...

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barnaby
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Re: here now

Postby barnaby » Wed Oct 17, 2018 12:13 am

Hi NeLi, following our call on the weekend, where you had a break through in your view of the Identity... please let me know what you're seeing now.

What comes up when I say—there is no separate entity self in real life at all?


Remember, what has been seen cannot be unseen. This not about belief. Once you've realized that Santa Claus is not really bringing you presents at Christmas, you no longer see that as a reality in life.
There is no dropping of beliefs, the belief drops itself, so to speak. When the realisation of ‘no self’ happens, typically the belief can slowly starts to weaken, but often this does not drop away in one instant… in some cases it may, in others it is more of a process.

What are you seeing now in relation to the identity that is claiming ownership of everything that the mind and body is doing? Do you believe that voice that is saying "I did that!" ?


This entire process is a beginning and not an ending. There will still be beliefs and patterns that are rooted in the idea of being a separate self that will need clearing as not everything gets rewritten in one big hit.

Once the core belief of being a separate self is seen through, it is more like a rug that is beginning to unravel, there are still many knots that need undoing.

But once you have seen that the ‘conditioning’ is not something that you own, then it becomes easier to clear away these thoughts, and not believe them when they come up.

Continuing to LOOK after the realisation is very much the key.

When you had the experience on the weekend of the no identity, and yet the thoughts were arising claiming ownership, when you look right now, what is claiming ownership?
Describe more about this experience.

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CMDancer
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Re: here now

Postby CMDancer » Wed Oct 17, 2018 6:52 am

What comes up when I say—there is no separate entity self in real life at all?
relief and tears - softening of the body holding patterns...

What are you seeing now in relation to the identity that is claiming ownership of everything that the mind and body is doing? Do you believe that voice that is saying "I did that!" ?
When I look, there are thoughts - "typical of me to be a slow process rather than instant big bang awakening!"
some confusion and mental effort, trying to get it right / understand with my little brain... (the bear of little brain continues to try to figure it all out, thank you The Toa of Pooh... in which The Way is revealed by the Bear of Little Brain. Benjamin Hoff.)
when I look, I now feel tension relieving in my head. "phew"
Looking is happening... "I" wants to claim this looking. NOW "I" wants to claim this insight of seeing itself...
DO I believe it? this question doesn't quite compute... discombobulation... interruption, roof fixing man visiting... construct me for conversation... sort of. and drop in to this conversation again..


When you had the experience on the weekend of the no identity, and yet the thoughts were arising claiming ownership, when you look right now, what is claiming ownership?
Describe more about this experience.
I keep trying to remember who I am... I have this experience of constructing myself through memories and relationships and contexts. these are either pleasing or displeasing dependent on perceived perceptions of the other. there is some scrambling feeling with this construction sometimes. other times it is happening in the background. ownership is experienced as a tightening of my head and thinking about me in relationships. recognition. familiarity. the more contexts I have to show up in, the trickier this is. and that's sort of ok if I find myself consistently constructing. but then I had some frustration show up and this didn't want to be assimilated into the me I wanted to project...
now I notice tiredness and thinking about constructing myself for the next "event" of meeting others.

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barnaby
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Re: here now

Postby barnaby » Wed Oct 17, 2018 7:45 pm

Thank you for sharing all of this NeLi. I can see you're really looking and seeing through the illusion of the identity taking ownership of everything.

Let's keep exploring some of what you've raised. You've shared about the effort of trying to get this all "right".

Who is "trying to get it right"?
Is there anything to get right?
If there was something, the "it", to get right, what would it be?
Is there someone who can fail? Is there something to fail at?
NOW "I" wants to claim this insight of seeing itself...
Do you believe this voice that is claiming it's seeing itself?
I keep trying to remember who I am...
This sounds like the natural process of once you've seen through the illusion of identity, it tries to reform itself and return, but the because the magic trick of the self has been seen through, it cannot easily rebuild itself.
The self has lost it's secure ground of the certainty that it controls and owns everything.

In the "trying to remember who I am", was there ever a NeLi as a separate real identity?
I have this experience of constructing myself through memories and relationships and contexts.
The identity is busy with trying to rebuild it self, because it's magic trick quickly building itself up has been seen through. Now there is the witnessing of the experience of the identity constructing itself.
Keep looking into this. Examine this process of self-creation. What was once a very fast, imperceptible process of identity seeming real and solid, is now being witnessed as a simple process of creation through a quick succession of self-referencing thoughts, each pointing to each other, saying "see, I'm real!"
From what you've shared, it sounds like the process has slowed down for you to see in more detail what is really going on, and there is this witnessing of construction of identity.

What happens when you look in more detail at the process thoughts arising and claiming ownership of other thoughts and ideas and insights?

What happens when you simply witness the process of your-self being constructed through a quick succession of thoughts and memories? Describe in more detail what this is like.

Is there any reality to your-self in these memories?
Is there any reality to the other people in these memories?

There can often be a feeling within the identity of not wanting to experience this, and of wanting to find some shelter, like a refuge from this witnessing.

If there is any refuge, what is it?
Is there any refuge with the identity?
Who is looking for refuge?


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