eternal prayer

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illusions13
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eternal prayer

Postby illusions13 » Sat Aug 27, 2016 9:02 am

What brings you to Liberation Unleashed?:
It was recommended by a friend who tried it out and really liked it.
We have been discussing and sharing information on subjects like these.
He felt it would be a good thing for me to do.
And i like trying out new ideas and practices.

What are you looking for? What do you expect from this?:
I am looking to understanding myself better.
To understand what is the illusion of the self.
To experience this knowing from the heart and soul.
I expect to learn something that will be helpful on my path.

What is your background in terms of seeking and inquiry?:
I do transcendental meditation but not regularly.
I am a reiki practitioner.
I do a lot of reading like Osho, J Krishnamurti, Tolle etc.
Recently been looking into Ramanna Maharishi's approach to 'who am i'.

How ready are you to question your beliefs about who you are and see the truth no matter what?: 10

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BleedIntoOne
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby BleedIntoOne » Sat Aug 27, 2016 1:20 pm

Hello EP. My name is Chris and welcome to the LU forum.

I’m happy to guide you through this exploration if you’d like.

All that I ask is that you do your best to write in our thread every day or so, and that during our time together, you set aside all other spiritually related materials (books, videos etc.) so that you can completely focus on your own direct experience. Cool?

It’s good that you have some experience reading from teachers like Sri Ramana and Krishnamurti etc. as they are wonderful guides who point in the same direction as our exploration will be taking, which is that of seeing through the illusion of an individual, separate self.

So let’s begin here:

There is no self. Period.

Is it true?

How do you know?

Take your time and write what feels true.

Looking forward to the exploration.
"The Edge... there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over." — Hunter S. Thompson

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illusions13
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby illusions13 » Mon Aug 29, 2016 8:10 am

Hello Chris,

So happy to hear from you!
I would definitely like to have you as my guide.

I will put aside all the books videos etc as suggested by you.
Should I continue my meditation though?

There is no self.
It feels true.
Because the concept of I feels very limiting.
The moment I remove the 'I' from the picture, everything feels free and non confusing.
Although there is an element of fear at not having a self at a brain level, something at non brain level feels right.

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BleedIntoOne
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby BleedIntoOne » Mon Aug 29, 2016 3:12 pm

Very happy to hear you’d like to move forward. I did forget to ask, is there a name other than “illusions13” you’d like to be called as we move along? (I mistakenly read your screen name as you post title “Eternal Prayer” in my initial response.) No problem at all if you’d like to keep it to the screen name though. Just figured I’d ask before moving any further.

As for meditation, please feel free to continue with that.
The moment I remove the 'I' from the picture, everything feels free and non confusing.
Let’s look deeper at the belief in a separate, individual “I”.

Here is a great example. When you were younger, did you believe in Santa Claus? If so, do remember the experience of learning that it was a fantasy? What happened to Santa then? Did he disappear, vanish, or it was he never there? It’s the same thing with realizing no self—what was believed to be true is seen as fantasy, a mind created story.

So similar to the belief in Santa, what you think you are does not exist. There is no separate self inside the body/mind that is doing the driving, making decisions, or managing the universe. The I that is assumed to be there is not. There is life happening in which nothing is excluded or separated and that is simply it.

The “I” is a mind created concept.

It is true that whatever is happening in experience is here, but is there an I entity that experience is happening to? Is life happening to you, or as you? As the experience right here, right now, simply as it is.

Take your time with this and write everything that comes up!

p.s. As for the fear aspect you mentioned, that is very natural/normal and something we’ll keep an eye on as we move along. Glad to be connected.
"The Edge... there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over." — Hunter S. Thompson

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illusions13
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby illusions13 » Wed Aug 31, 2016 6:29 am

I am somehow comfortable being called EP, can go with that! :)

I get the santa claus analogy and I like it. At an intellectual level probably, as a concept.

But some questions do come to mind:
Why are we questioning the existence of 'I' at all?
Why can it/does not exist?
If it doesnt even exist, why is its presence so strong?

I am asking the above questions but do not necessarily ascribe to that view.
I think I am inclined to the non existence of the I but have some doubts etc that stop me from enveloping and experiencing that belief.
And I wonder if its some conditioning that has happened due to all the reading etc that i have done so far for me to be inclined that way.

I might be going off track here but am reminded of the concept of not understanding joy without knowing sadness, light without dark.
I disagree with that. I feel one can feel that emotion in isolation, it is not always necessarily that it happens in reaction to an opposite emotion.
Similarly one could just experience something for what it is, without needing the support of an 'I' to validate it. As you said below.

I think I am finding this a bit hard.
Am not sure what i should be writing in response to your statements.
Hence am just saying whatever comes to mind.

Please steer me to the right course if I am way off!

Over to you. :)

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BleedIntoOne
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby BleedIntoOne » Wed Aug 31, 2016 1:08 pm

Hello EP (yeah, I like that too),
Just wanted to quickly address this comment you made before getting into the rest of my response:
Am not sure what i should be writing in response to your statements.
Hence am just saying whatever comes to mind.
Writing whatever comes to mind/is in your direct experience as we make this journey together is all that I ask, so you’re doing awesome! We’ll be exploring some exercises as we continue on in this exploration (one of which I’ll provide below) so hopefully that will give you some clear and concrete guidance. Other than that, all that needs to be done is respond to any questions I ask, again, from your own direct experience, with no right or wrong answer. The one tip I will give is try not to be too intellectual as you explore. Do your best to lay all theories and concepts you’ve read about in the past aside for now (you can always go back to them later if you’d like) and again, just focus on your direct experience.

Here’s a quick example of the difference between thinking and looking that may help:

If I ask you what color are your socks, you can respond to this from two different perspectives—thinking and looking. So you can answer this question by either 1) thinking about what socks you put on this morning and answering from a place of remembrance, or 2) you can simply look at your socks, see them directly and then reply.

Can you see the difference?

Regarding the 3 questions you posed about the existence/exploration of “I,” these are all things that will most likely become clear as we continue on in the journey. For now, I will say that the presence is so strong because it’s been conditioned in us since birth, this story of “I”. We’re born and as babies just in the flow of life. All is well. And then as we develop we’re given a name and taught concepts such as “me,” “mine,” “you,” “yours,” and so on. Of course these concepts are very handy in navigating everyday life, but what becomes overlooked once we take them to be the reality of our experience is the simple and direct experience of simply being a perfect part of life’s unfolding, which absolutely nothing is apart from. We’ll continue to go deeper into this as we move along, but yes, it’s as you said yourself, “one could just experience something for what it is, without needing the support of an 'I' to validate it.” That’s exactly it.

Here’s a link to a wonderful article with an exercise that I’d like you to do. The exercise itself only takes about 20 minutes. There’s some questions afterwards I’d like you to explore and answer, as well as a few additional questions down below. This is not a test; so again, there are no right or wrong answers. Just share whatever comes up for you in your direct experience (laying previous thoughts and concepts aside as best you can) and we’ll continue on from there.

http://markedeternal.blogspot.ca/2012/05/labels.html

Is there a who?
What does the label who point to?
What do you hope/expect that being awake is?
And what is in the way of this awake-ness right now?

Please take your time with this and write all that comes up.

Appreciating this conversation and your commitment to the process.
"The Edge... there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over." — Hunter S. Thompson

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illusions13
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby illusions13 » Mon Sep 05, 2016 4:47 am

Hi Chris,

Been unable to get into this one properly yet.
Hope that is ok.
I will be more regular and prompt going forward. :)

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illusions13
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby illusions13 » Mon Sep 05, 2016 9:03 am

Done! 
Nice blog.
Did the exercise.
I felt the 10 mins were too long. 

I didn’t feel any physical stuff to be honest...or maybe nothing very evident.
But mentally I did.
When i was writing the ‘I’ stuff it felt boring and the brain wasn’t satisfied with whatever i was writing, it wanted more, more happening stuff, more excitement.
But when the I is dropped it feels very simple n straightforward and mentally relaxed.
It just is. And that feels nice.
The non I writing felt truer. The ‘I’ writing was a description or analysis.

Now re the qs you asked.
Is there a who? : It feels like there is.
What does the label who point to? : The experiences
What do you hope/expect that being awake is? : Being aware, being able to watch, being able to see the experiences for what they are and not what I want or think them to be.
And what is in the way of this awake-ness right now? : The thoughts, the I, the ego.

Having said all that....it kind of feels aimless without the I.
Maybe due to a conditioning of always expecting some kind of end result out of everything beyond the experience itself.
But it does feel a bit empty, the experience by itself.
And that makes me wonder.
I get the concept, I get that there is only experience.
But still feels like there is ‘someone/something’ who/that understands this concept.
What is that then?
And different people experience the same exp differently...why so?
There has to be something in everyone that makes them analyse the same experiences differently...what is that something if not ‘’I’’.
Why does a thought originate in the first place if there is no I to think it?
Why would thoughts exist? If not to serve the I?
Doesnt the analysis of thought enhance the experience in some way?
Is that always a bad thing?
Isnt that why feelings and emotions exist in the first place, to probably experience the experience completely...like regular TV vs HD?
And what is that something that does this enhancing if not the I?
If there is no 'I', nothing exists...where do these thoughts come from?

I am in a place where I get, I feel, that there might actually be no need for the I, and we might be better off without it.... but i still feel the need for it to exist.
Cant explain any further. 

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BleedIntoOne
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby BleedIntoOne » Mon Sep 05, 2016 1:23 pm

All good stuff EP. And no worries about the delayed response time. I understand life happens. I also want you to really take your time with this exploration, so if it needs to be every other day you respond, that’s fine too. Just as long as you’re working with the queries, exercises and so forth in the meantime.

I understand where you’re coming from with all of the questions. We naturally want to understand, to figure out, to make sense of, and that’s part of the beauty of the human experience, however, when it comes to this exploration, it can certainly become a hindrance.

The reason is because you cannot think your way into seeing. This has nothing to do with mind. It's about looking and noticing, seeing what is already here. It is effortless, which of course our mind doesn’t want to hear.

Do your remember stereogram art that became very popular several years ago? They were images hidden within other pictures and in order to see the hidden image you had to stare at the picture until it took shape. That is very similar to what we’re doing here. What you’re looking for is always already here; it just simply has to be seen. However, the conditioning of self runs very, very deep. And that conditioning, along with the minds desire to understand, obscures this simple and effortless seeing. (Another example is the looking vs. thinking “sock” example I gave you in the previous post.)

We are not trained to look so we employ thinking more that seeing.

That said, please know that I am not asking you to believe a single thing I write in our thread but rather, test it out ruthlessly and see for yourself.
But still feels like there is ‘someone/something’ who/that understands this concept.
Yes, there is an understanding that happens, but does it have to be a “someone” that understands, or can it simply be that understanding is happening? Where is the separate, individual self that is understanding?

If I ask you, “Where is the I right here, right now?” You can try to answer from what you think you know about it, or, you can look, simply, just like you would look for your keys.

Can you find the I looking in this way (directly rather than intellectually)? What color is it? Do you hear it? Taste it? Smell it? Is there an I you can touch? Right now, if you are sitting on a chair, is there I sitting or is there a sensation of sitting + words and labels that describe the sensation?

Which sensation is the I? Does it come and go or is it always here? Is I more like a feeling or a thought?

Can you pin point that I and tell me precisely what you find?

You’re doing great and it’s clear that you’re intellectually understanding the idea of there not being individual “I.” However, I'm posing these questions to try and help you see this directly.

Please remember, there are no right or wrong answers here, just your own direct experience. All that I ask is you do your best to look directly and experientially rather than intellectually trying to figure it out.
"The Edge... there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over." — Hunter S. Thompson

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illusions13
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby illusions13 » Wed Sep 07, 2016 7:38 am

‘’The reason is because you cannot think your way into seeing. This has nothing to do with mind. It's about looking and noticing, seeing what is already here. It is effortless, which of course our mind doesn’t want to hear.’’

Am thinking of feelings like bliss and love and joy. We kind of just see them. We don’t make any effort. We just feel it that they are there. Seems kind of like that.
Or do they not exist either?

I don’t get stereograms at all!! 
I agree, understanding can happen without a self. And I agree based on some sense of knowing that I get. I didn’t reason it out.

I tried looking for the ‘’I’’ like the sock. I cant find it.
If I close my eyes I just see the alphabet ‘I’.

I cant say what sensation it is. But it fees like it is most likely something that comes in association with feelings like happiness, sadness, anger etc...there is no sensation in isolation.
Its more like a thought rather than a feeling by itself.

I like this statement: ‘’We are not trained to look so we employ thinking more that seeing.’’
But then it brings me back to things like love n joy...we cant ‘see’ them either. Do they not exist too...are they like the non-existent I?

I may be off track here, do steer back if irrelevant.

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BleedIntoOne
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby BleedIntoOne » Sun Sep 11, 2016 12:40 pm

Oh my goodness EP, I am so sorry! I posted a reply to your comment on the 7th, and just logged in to send you a check in message as it's been a few days with no response and am seeing that it didn't actually post. So again, I am so incredibly sorry about that. I thought you were perhaps just busy, but I'm so glad I checked so more time didn't go by.

So here is the post I wrote to you that I thought went through on the 7th:
I like this statement: ‘’We are not trained to look so we employ thinking more that seeing.’’ But then it brings me back to things like love n joy...we cant ‘see’ them either. Do they not exist too...are they like the non-existent I?
Love, joy, happiness, sadness etc., these things all exist. What does not exist is a separate or individual I in which they are happening to. In life, things are happening. Trees grow. Bird fly. Children are born. Emotions are felt and so on. So things surely happen, however, everything else besides just the direct experience/happening is a story. It’s a story we create in relation to “I,” and that makes perfect sense because it’s what’s been ingrained in us since birth. We’re born and then given a name and our parents and families tell us who “we” are and around roughly three years old, the story of separation is complete, adding our own parts to it as we grow up.

But before all of this, as babies, we are not separate from the one movement of life’s unfolding.

Life is surely intimate, but it’s not personal.

So the “you” that you think you are is nothing more than a mind created fiction. It’s simply thinking, thoughts.

Does a “you” do the breathing or thinking?

Is there a “you” really in control of anything?

Examine thoughts and actions.

What is really here? What is real? Yes, there is an experience of aliveness, but does that need to be labeled “me”? The identification with all these thoughts feels normal and familiar, but it is ultimately not real and is the cause of suffering.

And it is so simple that it is completely overlooked.

So sit with those few questions and write whatever comes up.

Really appreciating this conversation and your curiosity/willingness to look!
"The Edge... there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over." — Hunter S. Thompson

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illusions13
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby illusions13 » Mon Sep 12, 2016 8:57 am

So glad to hear from you. I was worried you had written me off or something! :)

No worries, things like this happen.

Just acknowledging your mail as of now.
Will respond later with more.

Thanks!

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BleedIntoOne
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby BleedIntoOne » Mon Sep 12, 2016 12:37 pm

Thanks for your understanding! Definitely have not written you off. You're doing wonderful and I'm excited to continue onward when you're ready.

Be well.
"The Edge... there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over." — Hunter S. Thompson

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illusions13
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby illusions13 » Tue Sep 13, 2016 1:52 pm

Hi Chris,
Hope you are good.

It feels like the ‘I’ is needed just as an aid for survival in some way but we end up depending on it way beyond is required.

In some way...like if we might need crutches to walk at some point in life but to make that a lifelong habit and forget that we have legs that work automatically for it is probably what goes wrong.

‘’Life is surely intimate, but it’s not personal.’’

I am kinda getting it. Like if we look at a beautiful scenery, mountains, snow, sun etc. It makes us happy inside. It evokes joy in us, it is intimate yet not personal.

I understand what you have written re the I being thoughts, labelling not needed, etc.... not just intellectually...it just makes sense, am naturally inclined to feel it.
It does look quite simple. Switching back to it, to make it natural again is probably the hard thing.
The questioning starts instantly....sometimes the questions get answered by themselves....through thoughts again btw.
The rest I direct to you!! :)

The ‘you’ being in control...well, in some way it is deciding on certain actions beyond the breathing etc, controlling beyond that. Yes we feel love, joy etc but then unless the ‘I’ thinks thoughts to act on it, like expressing the compassion we feel for others, the love etc...what would happen to the experience by itself?

Is it not meant to be taken forward, acted upon?

Or is it that if we feel it purely for what the experience it is...eg...compassion...it will naturally make us act the way we are meant to, the ‘right’ way...without needing thoughts to guide us?

Or do we not need any action to happen as a result of the real emotions we feel?

I think I am probably stuck a couple of things.

One is ...how could things have gone so so wrong if they were not meant to be...the ingraining of the ‘I’ in our psyche.

And secondly...the ‘why’. Not sure directed at what specifically. Probably everything, probably the million dollar question...why does all this exist in the first place...all of it? :)

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BleedIntoOne
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Re: eternal prayer

Postby BleedIntoOne » Tue Sep 13, 2016 3:51 pm

Hello EP. Good stuff here so let’s dive right in ☺
It feels like the ‘I’ is needed just as an aid for survival in some way but we end up depending on it way beyond is required.
Yes, absolutely. “I” is very useful for conventional day to day use, but beyond that, experiences just happens, to no one, it simply is as it is. But as I mentioned in a previous post, the conditioning of believing in an individual, separate “I” is basically complete by the time we’re around 3 years old or so (from family, friends, institutions etc.) so it’s what we believe is the truth and then yes, we “depend” on it and identify with it.
Yes we feel love, joy etc but then unless the ‘I’ thinks thoughts to act on it, like expressing the compassion we feel for others, the love etc...what would happen to the experience by itself?
What would happen to the experience by itself is what is always already happening to the experience by itself, which is that it simply is as it is. Everything simply is as it is, but then we layer thoughts and beliefs over life and instead of having a direct experience of what’s happening, it’s experience through our filtered perceptions.

So liberation is not a thought, feeling, or state. It’s completely ordinary and is seen through direct experience. Look with fresh eyes at the truth of common everyday experience. It’s not hidden, it’s just a shift in perspective.
how could things have gone so so wrong if they were not meant to be...the ingraining of the ‘I’ in our psyche.
I understand what you’re getting at here, but who’s to say anything went wrong? Isn’t that just a thought, a belief?

Thoughts layer concepts over direct experiences. A thought (concept or label) is never the actual. Some thoughts point to the actual, and some point to other thoughts, but the content of every single thought is just a story.
...the ‘why’. Not sure directed at what specifically. Probably everything, probably the million dollar question...why does all this exist in the first place...all of it?
Again, certainly understand what you’re saying here but consider this: The restless, compulsive searching for that one bit of knowledge—that one experience, that one insight that will make everything okay—is the condition a lot of seekers are in, and it can go on for decades, because there is literally nothing, no bit of knowledge, no specific experience or insight, that will satisfy you.

There is no “you.” Dissatisfaction with what is is the essence of the illusory self.

Just some food for thought. And remember, the purpose of this exploration is not to think deeper, but to look deeper and more directly.

So let’s look more directly. Close your eyes and search for the boundary of “you.”

With your eyes closed, where do you end and where does the world begin? With your eyes closed, are you aware of a boundary between the skin and clothes, or is there only a kind of blurry sensation?

When you open your eyes, what happens? Is there a “you” looking out of the two holes in your head? Are you doing the seeing? Or are the sights just here, without any boundary?

What is being aware?

Is anything being aware?

Is anything doing the being aware?

Take your time with this and really look. Perhaps try it out a couple of times to really explore what’s going on, and then whenever you’re ready let me know what came up.

Enjoy EP ☺
"The Edge... there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over." — Hunter S. Thompson


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