Silent light

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AnTriskell
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Silent light

Postby AnTriskell » Tue Nov 26, 2019 1:04 am

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
That what I have to this moment understood to be "myself"is a collection of thoughts, beliefs and conditioned responses with a story attached which creates a sense of a solid "Being" who, when I try to look behind has a wonderful way of turning sideways, hiding or creating more layers of all of those things to distract me from the truth.

What are you looking for at LU?
Help in integrating a level of awareness that there are glimpses of but the thinking mind keeps coming back to the same old stories and patterns.
Some straight talking to help focus attention on now consistently. There's awareness of a different way of experiencing life, as a flow, like the animals I meet here in the gardens and woods which feels so free and honest - to touch that more consistantly and reading accounts of this process this "pointing towards" seems to be a way to help with this.
What do you expect from a guided conversation? Some pretty challenging questions to help me work with everyday experience instead of theoretical mind contortions.
To be pushed out of my comfort zone and helped to see where the blockages are that are preventing this opening of
awareness. I'm aware that the real block is fear of what will happen if I step into this and the need to have someone who understands
the process to be there and guide it. Trying to do this without guidance risks yet more distraction and running away from, the time has come for me to stop running from this truth. To have someone who can call me out when I evade the questions, to encourage and support the process.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
I live and work as a lay member of a Benedictine community, but have realised that it has to be simpler, if it was as complicated as my spiritual teaching so far seems to be there's no chance for any of us. I've been searching all my life (65) years, there is something very basic and simple
I'm just not quite grasping, it's there and everytime I come near I shy away and distract myself. I know this deep down but still somehow it evades a real integration. Fear of releasing the flow of life I can feel waiting to be set free.

On a scale from 1 to 10, how willing are you to question any currently held beliefs about 'self?
8

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Vivien
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Re: Silent light

Postby Vivien » Sat Nov 30, 2019 1:49 am

Hi,

Welcome to Liberation Unleashed. My name is Vivien and I'd be happy to assist you in your inquiry.

This is YOUR inquiry. I will not be giving you new ideas and beliefs; only assisting you in examining and questioning the ones that you already have. We can have a conversation and see where it takes you.
The purpose of which would be for there to be a realisation, more than just intellectually, that there never was and never will be a separate self, as, such. All our efforts will focus on that.

I will tend to ask many questions. That's my job here. These, will be pointers towards no self. It will be for you to examine your experience to find out what's true or not.

I would like to ask you to write only from your experience as you see it, what feels true, with whole honesty.
And also post daily. If you cannot post, or need more time, please let me know.
Can we agree on these?


Tell me, what are you really looking for. How would your life change if you find that?
What are you hoping for?
What do you want to happen?
What is incomplete right now?


Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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AnTriskell
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Re: Silent light

Postby AnTriskell » Sat Nov 30, 2019 7:59 pm

Can we agree on these?
Hi Vivien, My name is Susan. Thank you for your response.
I agree to the terms of our postings.
My technology skills are not so good for this sort of thing - I just wrote a response and lost in when I asked to view the preview, so I begin again. This first post may be brief as a consequence.

Tell me, what are you really looking for. How would your life change if you find that?
Guidance, reading the books Liberation Unleashed and Gateless Gatecrashers the stories resonate, this cannot be as complicated as it seems, children already know this, it is deep down connection yet my "I" has resisted it I think out of fear of how being true to what is known might change my life. I don't know how my life would change as a result of this guidance hopefully with finding the courage to face the fear, look behind it as some of the folk who've already gone this way have and then step into the truth of my "I" being a construct of the mind and beliefs and the freedom of their being no "self" separate from life.
What are you hoping for?
Greater freedom to see, hear, touch, sense and experience life as it happens.
What do you want to happen?
At this moment there are no expectations though there is apprehension in the solar plexus about the struggle to answer these questions as honestly as possible. What do I want to happen - to experience an honest, from the depths of my being response to life without the constraints and barriers that belief in "myself" has created over 65 years of living.
What is incomplete right now?
I was sent back from a near-death experience 18 years ago with the purpose of "learning to love". there is a feeling deep down that I haven't been true to that experience that somehow there is lack of integrity as a result and a deep emptiness which is only partially filled by my most recent experiences of exploring the "no-self" since a retreat in May and the challenge that created to my pre-existing beliefs.
I think this is probably the most difficult piece I've ever written, hope it makes sense.

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Vivien
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Re: Silent light

Postby Vivien » Sun Dec 01, 2019 7:35 am

Hi Susan,

I would like to ask you to learn to use the quotation function, so our conversation will be easier to read later for both of us.
So here is the link to a video again how to quote:
viewtopic.php?f=4&t=660
My technology skills are not so good for this sort of thing - I just wrote a response and lost in when I asked to view the preview, so I begin again. This first post may be brief as a consequence.
When you log into the site, there is a box you can tick, something like “remember me” and this could help.

Thank you for getting through these questions about expectations. It’s important, because every expectation is in a way of seeing what is here, right now.

Every expectation is a ‘hindrance’ in realizing what IS. Expectations result in comparison. Comparison between what is happening, and the imagined expectation. Thus what has been seen can be thrown out or ignored, since it doesn’t match the expected outcome.
to experience an honest, from the depths of my being response to life without the constraints and barriers that belief in "myself" has created over 65 years of living.
And what would be that like?
I think this is probably the most difficult piece I've ever written, hope it makes sense.
And what made it difficult?

Many seekers believe that they can get into a state of peace and happiness as a result of seeing through the self. However, happiness or peace is a state, and no states are permanent, they are all subject to change. Seeing through the separate individual is not about not having any ‘bad’ or uncomfortable feelings any more. Rather it’s about seeing that emotions don’t belong to anything. They are free floating without being tied to or anchored to anything.

Many seekers believe that seeing through the separate individual is a completely different state that they are currently having, with some special qualities (happiness, bliss, constant peace or whatever). However, this is not the case. Seeing through the illusion that there is a separate entity (self) is not a state. When it is SEEN it, the knowledge becomes factual. Many seekers have the impression that seeing there is no self is a state to ‘abide in’. It's not.

For the time our investigation, I would like to ask you to stop reading/listening any teachers, and rather spend your time looking. Also, I would like to ask you to put aside all learned knowledge. You have to see this experientially and not relying on others’ experiences. Can we agree on these?

it is deep down connection yet my "I" has resisted it I think out of fear of how being true to what is known might change my life.
We have to look into this fear before starting, since it can hold you back from looking. But actually, fear is nothing more than a protective mechanism, and it does its job well. There is a belief, a story somewhere about pain or negative consequences to seeing the illusion of the self. And the fear tries to protect you from these supposed negative consequences. So let’s find out what this story is about and see if they are real threats or not.

What I’d like you to do is to investigate this fear. Examine it closely. Feel it. Don’t try to fix it or solve it, just sit with it.
Ask the fear as if it were a some kind of entity:

What do you want to protect me from?

What is the ‘negative’ story, what would happen if the illusion of the self is seen through?

Observe what visual thoughts and stories come up ‘justifying’ its right to fear.

If you ignore the stories (thoughts) and visual thoughts what is BEHIND the fear?


Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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AnTriskell
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Re: Silent light

Postby AnTriskell » Tue Dec 03, 2019 9:25 am

Dear Vivien,
It would appear I didn't send my last response correctly.
Fortunately, I copied it to my desktop, now below.
I will follow up this afternoon. Apologies. I came back to the thread as per my last paragraph only to find nothing posted.

Hi Vivien,
Thank you for the link to the video on working with the quotes. It's certainly easier to read.
to experience an honest, from the depths of my being response to life without the constraints and barriers that belief in "myself" has created over 65 years of living.
And what would be that like?
I don't know what this would be like going forward, only what I've experienced in the past. A powerful sense of connection with the life around me, both human, animal and plant, a sense of being part of the natural world as I work in it. It's not all happiness and light and I don't expect that there has been pain when I've witnessed dear friends (trees) cut down for no good reason and a real sense of the seasons, the movement and cycles of life. I sense freedom and a deep stillness beneath it all that supports and sustains everything. It may be quite different. I don't anticipate an end to the pain or the shared sense of suffering - that goes on as life goes on.
I think this is probably the most difficult piece I've ever written, hope it makes sense.
And what made it difficult?
This was purely a lack of familiarity with the technology and that having written responses to the questions I then lost it all and couldn't re-write what had gone. No, that's not quite honest. As I'm writing there is a gut-clenching going on and its reminiscent of taking an exam - what if I get it wrong, there is no wrong in this, it is what it is this is the experience here and now of working with no-self.

I've sat today with the questions - but also been carrying them round with me as fear decided to hitch a ride most of the day. So fear experienced in solar plexus, chest tightness, pain in left arm at site of old injury, upper chest breath, Image of mail-clad iron fist holding heart made of lots of bits of armour held together with small pins, a bit rusty, not really doing a very good job, more like a barrier than creating a safe place. But as I sat the fist became less like a fist and more like a cup shape supporting rather than clenched.
What do you protect me from?
Fears response, protecting from big ostracised, rejected, left on my own, hurt again when standing up for others.
Pushed out, punished, hurt, made to look a fool. All thoughts, all generated by the mind desperately commuting answers to the question. What is there to protect? it all seems a bit silly. The great stillness behind doesn't need to be protected it just is. This body which I've called self for so long doesn't need protecting it will take care of itself using its own in-built mechanisms and even thinking about it is just thoughts, the brain trying to avoid admitting it doesn't know the answer.
Fear as a sensation, changing, moving on, dissipating not protecting just reacting to thoughts.
What do you want to protect me from?
That I will continue to hurt each time I show up in the world, whenever I speak out when prompted from within, follow the inner wisdom or directed to do something different. I don’t see that there being no self makes any difference to this. If its an illusion, then none of the hurt has happened because there’s no one for it to happen to. But hurt is experienced by life as life. There being no self does not stop hurt or pain even though there is no self to experience it. These things still happen, who are they happening to? Without the negative story, it is possible to move forward without anticipation of any particular outcome, a form of courage. There is nothing to fear. It doesn't stop the experience of whatever comes or the emotions that go with that.
Observe what visual thoughts and stories come up ‘justifying’ its right to fear.
If you ignore the stories (thoughts) and visual thoughts what is BEHIND the fear?
Why does self need protecting? What is being protected, even these thoughts are part of the story.

The sense of fear lifted as I sat – behind is openness – clear space – no self – no sense of self – nothing to be afraid of.
There’s no need for the fear attached to all those stories. There is no self to protect, just thoughts queuing to be heard to show that the brain is working, gathering information and coming to conclusions which need challenging because they are just that, thoughts without any concrete being and the conclusions may be based on assumptions, neurological links that are faulty, old tapes, conditioning, all sorts of things.
This body likes the distraction of writing and the sensory input of a pen on paper.(before committing to technology I use pen and paper to answer the questions,
Sit with fear, ask the questions again, keep asking, dig deeper. Sense the reply. Fear exists to protect life itself, not self individually but life in all its forms and variations, there is no self to protect. there is a sense of knowing this to be true.
It's almost like a dog digging for a bone which isn't there, lots of dirt flying around, lots of energy and effort involved, lots of tail wagging and nothing to find!!!!
For the time our investigation, I would like to ask you to stop reading/listening any teachers, and rather spend your time looking. Also, I would like to ask you to put aside all learned knowledge. You have to see this experientially and not relying on others’ experiences. Can we agree on these?
I agree to this and I would ask in turn that you challenge me if you can clearly see I am doing what you've asked me not to do.

I'm going to take more time with the questions you asked and post if I may not tomorrow evening which would be Monday here but rather Tuesday morning. I have to pace myself physically and doing this in the evenings is proving hard work as it involves hand I co-ordination with the machine which tends to go to pot when I'm tired. I will have made notes on paper to be able to be as honest as possible.
Thank you for your questions.

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Vivien
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Re: Silent light

Postby Vivien » Tue Dec 03, 2019 11:40 pm

Hi Susan,
As I'm writing there is a gut-clenching going on and its reminiscent of taking an exam - what if I get it wrong, there is no wrong in this, it is what it is this is the experience here and now of working with no-self.
No, you cannot get it wrong. You don’t have to concerned with that. I’m here to help to go back to the trail if you wander off, so that’s my job, not yours :)
Fears response, protecting from big ostracised, rejected, left on my own, hurt again when standing up for others.
Pushed out, punished, hurt, made to look a fool.
Are these fears are related to this inquiry, to seeing through the self illusion?
That I will continue to hurt each time I show up in the world, whenever I speak out when prompted from within, follow the inner wisdom or directed to do something different. I don’t see that there being no self makes any difference to this. If its an illusion, then none of the hurt has happened because there’s no one for it to happen to. But hurt is experienced by life as life. There being no self does not stop hurt or pain even though there is no self to experience it.
Is this clearly seen experientially that there is no self to experience, or rather this is just an intellectual understanding?
The sense of fear lifted as I sat – behind is openness – clear space – no self – no sense of self – nothing to be afraid of.
There’s no need for the fear attached to all those stories. There is no self to protect, just thoughts queuing to be heard
Is this a deep experiential knowing or rather it’s a logical conclusion?
All thoughts, all generated by the mind desperately commuting answers to the question.
How do you know that thoughts are generated by a‘mind’?

It’s important to answer this from looking at experience directly without any speculation, theory, imagination or analogy. Just the pure experiencable facts.

Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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AnTriskell
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Re: Silent light

Postby AnTriskell » Wed Dec 04, 2019 10:11 am

Hi Vivien,
Thank you for this,
I’m here to help to go back to the trail if you wander off, so that’s my job, not yours
Are these fears are related to this inquiry, to seeing through the self illusion?
No they’re not. They are attached to the outcome of the enquiry the “what if” so are thoughts with an emotion attached. The fear dissipated very quickly. The direct experience is one of anticipation, an excitement, a gut feeling of “knowing” that this is the truth that the construct of self makes no sense at an intellectual level but nor does it make sense from the experience of life itself. The words aren’t even in the language to describe how this is. There is a great flow of “energy” that eddies and ripples, tarries a while then moves on. It is taking and developing different forms which seem solid, but which move, vibrate, absorb, give out, resonate with one another in a continuous stream of being. No theory, it just is.
Is this clearly seen experientially that there is no self to experience, or rather this is just an intellectual understanding?
There is a wonderful freedom in the experience of this, a shedding of weight, a lightness. This body moves and lives with a greater softness, a grace, a sense of kindness. These are all words dredged from a mind which is quieter than it’s ever been. This quiet mind has been happening for a long time, there was a time when it terrified me, it was as though I’d lost all the “knowledge” I’d ever had but then slowly there was a realisation that when information was helpful it sort of “popped” up, otherwise it stayed as though it were filed away somewhere but there is no sense of where that might be. In conversation there seemed to be things said which came up as fully formed thoughts which made sense to whoever was there but not necessarily otherwise.
Is this a deep experiential knowing or rather it’s a logical conclusion?
It’s a deep gut feeling which once the fear passed has sort of flowed through the body into the cells, there is a well of tears in there but of joy rather than sadness a sense of “finally”. It’s a relief. There is an acknowledgment, somewhere in this that the changes that happened with the near-death experience were so profound that what was will never be again, the “thinking mind” the mind that tries to make sense of all of this, to explain it away can’t do anymore, if it ever could. The body, ears, eyes, nose, mouth, cells even the fluid around the cells knows how it is, knows that there are no “boundaries” (not the right word but all that comes up).
There is a strain involved in trying to explain this – words don’t work. I feel the trees going into slumber for the winter withdrawing their energy even as they form buds for next year. I feel the connection with the people suffering and it hurts and will continue to hurt. When this body breaths it feels like the whole world is breathing, no its more that the world breaths and this breath that I call my own breathes as part of that. There is no self to feel these things and yet there is an awareness that is beyond my explaining or understanding and the only words to use are these because in this moment in this space they are what are there to be used.
I know this with every fibre of my being and I also know that life is expressing itself through and in this body which in this place uses words to communicate but which also communicates through feelings, energy and just “IS”. I am life and life is me. Nothing human and everything human is this, nothing alive and everything alive is this, discussion, debate, logic, mind, thoughts, everything are all so tangled together and intricately linked, there is not and cannot be separation.
How do you know that thoughts are generated by a ‘mind’?
I don’t, the label “mind” is just that a label. I can’t explain this, the structure of speech, the written word don’t work.
It’s important to answer this from looking at experience directly without any speculation, theory, imagination or analogy. Just the pure experienceable facts.
What is the experience of life? Flowing with the soil, melding with the leaves, vibrating with the sunlight, tingling with birds, engrossing with the washing up, drowning in noise, being all those things. Sleeping deeply. This if how this is for me and has been for a while, the more time passes the deeper the flowing, melding, oneness of it all is.
When I try to find self there is quite clearly nothing to find, there is a great swelling of “compassion” towards all life, a sorrow at the suffering. There are no more words.
The joy has been in connecting with others for whom the awareness of this is reality. The difficulty and frustration which arise in the body are with not being able to communicate the experience adequately. What are facts? What’s written above are how the experience is in each moment, here and now, there is not speculation what is there to speculate about? There is no theory only what’s there and if analogy is there it’s because the experienced facts are that these fingers and this body, mind whatever are not able to communicate this in any other way, there are no words, no pictures, no music nothing that come close.
Thank you for your time and patience.
Susan

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Vivien
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Re: Silent light

Postby Vivien » Wed Dec 04, 2019 10:45 am

Hi Susan,

Are you saying that you have already seen through the illusion of the separate self before you came to LU?

If yes, what is it that you hope to find here?


Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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AnTriskell
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Re: Silent light

Postby AnTriskell » Thu Dec 05, 2019 4:48 pm

Hi Vivien
Are you saying that you have already seen through the illusion of the separate self before you came to LU?
This threw me. Is that what I’m saying? I honestly don’t know. I had been increasingly discontented, and disbelieving of the existing belief system I’d been bought up in for a long time. What I was experiencing didn’t seem to fit and I had begun to doubt myself.
The retreat I attended in May this year pointed me in the direction of LU but I was too nervous to do anything at that point but I did read the two books, view the videos and begin to work with the suggestions I found there.
As you pointed out before its one thing to be aware of something intellectually quite another to “know” it experientially. Much of the writings I came across seemed to be coming from a different tradition and what was being described didn’t match what I was experiencing which was a lot of frustration, anger, disappointment, upset, tears, exhaustion and resentment that it could be so simple after working so hard to reach some sort of mythical goal which is held out as being the culmination of human life. I could not understand, within my tradition how something supposedly so life-changing and so fundamental to human life could be restricted to the “saintly” few or be so circumscribed by rules and regulations. Or how if it was so life-changing everyone around me is either so miserable it's depressing or so hyper-excited it's scary. (Its more complicated than that but put briefly.) And it makes no sense for it to be so difficult because t means only those with time and resources to follow the complicated systems would ever be able to step through the gateway. Even within my own tradition, the message is that children can do it!
Finally, I decided I had nothing to lose by asking for help from LU.
In the few days that I waited, I continued to look at the experience of “no Self” in my day to day life. The experiences I described in my last post are what is happening now and is the culmination of that looking. If this really is what no-self is then its amazing, makes me want to cry, but also to laugh at the simplicity of it. Really! all this time struggling, working hard and changing “me” to fit some creation of what me is and all the while it's simply an illusion.
Somewhere in all this movement of life happening there is something that has the label “humour” because it’s the funniest thing I think I have ever encountered.
This experience, here, now, of being both a tiny cell and the world, of just being with no idea exactly of what that means because the thoughts, beliefs and all that made up this so-called “me” are dissolving so quickly all I can do is marvel at it happening.
In reply to our question, if I had seen through the illusion I had not recognised it as such and there was a need for help to do that. There was also and still is a need to connect with at least one other person who can affirm, confirm or question if necessary if that is what has happened and support the integration of that change and who may understand what is being expressed in these words which really are hopelessly inadequate.
Here, now, I can feel the pulse of life and the flow of warmth, despite being bundled up to keep warm, from that place deep within that holds “my” heart, except its no longer mine, it just is.
If yes, what is it that you hope to find here?
So the answer was no, and I think what I hoped to find here was support and guidance to help me to experience “no self” and recognise the illusion.

If what I’m describing really is what it seems to be then I welcome your affirmation of that. If you think its something else then that is welcome too and the process continues.
Either way, grateful thanks and much love for the questioning and time so far.

Best wishes,
Susan

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Vivien
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Re: Silent light

Postby Vivien » Fri Dec 06, 2019 2:47 am

Hi Susan,

What I suggest to do is that we start the inquiry just as I would do with anybody else. So we can both see if realization has already happened (or not), or if there are any areas that are not totally clear, so we can look into those.

. We are going to start to investigate thoughts. Seeing thoughts clearly is essential part of the inquiry.

It is very important that you never think or ponder on the questions. Rather you actually have to look what you can see in your immediate experience without any thought interpretation.

Please always be thorough with looking. Look repeatedly several times before replying.

Please sit, doing nothing for a few minutes. Watch thoughts coming and going.

Can you trace a thought back to where it came?
In the same way, can you follow a thought to its destination?
Can you tell where thoughts come from and go to, without using any imagination or speculation?


Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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AnTriskell
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Re: Silent light

Postby AnTriskell » Fri Dec 06, 2019 11:59 am

Hi Vivien,
That sounds sensible. Will respond to questions in due course.


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