Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

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Pat
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Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Pat » Sun Feb 19, 2012 1:21 am

Hi Matt

I've read through 2 of the dialogues that you've guided people through and feel as through we could communicate quite effectively. Let me know if you have some time available and we can get started.

Looking forward to speaking with you soon.

Pat.

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Matt
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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Matt » Sun Feb 19, 2012 2:07 am

Sure, let's get started. I can't write too often, but if you're dead serious about this stuff, it will be fine.
Feel free to introduce yourself.
What are your expectations for this dialogue?
What is 'I'?
All the best,
M

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Pat
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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Pat » Tue Feb 21, 2012 11:09 am

Great, thanks Matt.

Feeling as though the usual "introduce myself" details are superfluous here. Finding my mind reconsidering who you may be that I'm about to engage in this process of self-undoing with.......but, heart says go!

I'm pretty through with expectations. Of any sort really. Surrendering more and more each day to the moment as it appears. Work with responsibilities as they arise. Utilize opportunities when they present. An ever deepening mindfulness of the ever present emotional component of this human experience and identifying conflicts and contradictions between the actual felt experience and a mental expectation on reality being some other way.

Yes, that conflict is arising from what is for the most part unconscious roots of the identity, this mentally constructed "I". Seems every which way I turn my attention there is an ever changeful content in the mind. I sit still, focus on the breath, let attention rest there. Allow the endless chatter and content to come and go as it will, bring the attention back to the breath. Acknowledge the presence of mind that is witnessing the breath, awareness itself. Then realize that the content of my mind is an intention of seeking. All a process of this experience known and labelled me.

Thank you. No rush on the reply, happy to allow this process to unfold naturally of its own accord.

Pat.

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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Matt » Tue Feb 21, 2012 2:25 pm

Thanks. Yes, no rush, but steady might be helpful—if you would, leave me a message each day.

Yes, personal details are in a sense superfluous, for both of us, in this conversation. Just note this detail: you're not talking to a guru, an extraordinary person, or even enlightened person.

You're apparently already focussing on direct experience, "looking", so this shouldn't be difficult at all.

You say "I" is a mental construct. What is the mind?

Stay with looking, let the responses come from looking only. I'm not asking you to repeat what you've learned or presumed to be true.

How does the mind construct an 'I'?
Where does this construct appear?
Does this mind have an owner?

Best,
M

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Pat
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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Pat » Wed Feb 22, 2012 9:40 am

OK, here we go.

You say "I" is a mental construct. What is the mind?

I've considered this on numerous occasions previously. The best definition I can conjure is that the mind is effectively an energetic interface. Seemingly two way. Perceived phenomenon on one side, sense perceptions, thoughts, feelings etc. and a non-phenomenal point of consciousness on the other. And I say two way in that just as much experience is perceived as is projected, simultaneously even.

How does the mind construct an 'I'?

Through identification with experience of the body, in the phenomenal world. These generate memories over time as we interact with others and gain the experience of being a free thinking, independent individual.

Where does this construct appear?

The appearance is behavior, both verbal and physical, all stemming from my own personal thoughts, feelings and intentions.

Does this mind have an owner?

Pure mind itself, no. All that I perceive or conceive is a temporary construct of identity that arises in an infinite field of awareness, emptiness.

Thanks again Matt. Talk soon.

Pat.

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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Matt » Wed Feb 22, 2012 3:10 pm

Thanks, Pat,

Sounds as if you have a strong meditative background, and a strong philosophy of consciousness as well. All that practice, knowledge and analysis is fine — we're just going to go even more 'direct' for the time being. We can come back to some of these points later. For now, put it all aside.

Without analysis or commentary of any kind, without knowledge or expectation, look directly get a glimpse of what you call 'you'. Not at "non-phenomenal consciousness"or "emptiness", just the percept or perceptions that suggest 'i'-ness, identity, 'you'—plain and simple.

If you would, keep returning the beam of attention there as frequently as possible for a day. When you start understanding what it is, put understanding aside again and look, get an experiential glimpse of what it is you call 'you'.

Only after a day of intensive looking at the i-sense, please answer out of that direct experience: what is it?

Looking forward,
M

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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Matt » Fri Feb 24, 2012 2:33 pm

Hows it going? By the way I didn't mean literally "only after a [entire] day of intensive looking", which may not be possible. But if it's possible for you to look intensely, many times throughout a day, it will be helpful in our collaboration, here. I'll be out of touch on Saturday.
Many thanks,
M

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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Pat » Sat Feb 25, 2012 10:19 am

Hi Matt

I'm finding a core aspect of this sense of self is a mechanism of pain avoidance and pleasure seeking. Seems to be all the dam thing.......I mean......"I" am interested in!!!

Of course these desires are simply attributes of a process, all of which consists of some form of content, some sort of perceivable or conceivable phenomena. (Sorry to repeat, but they really the most effective terms I'm aware of.)

What the actual "I" is that gets up to all this perceiving and conceiving........

I am at a loss. Any expressible notion is a child like play on words at best or a long winded pseudo-philosophical monologue at worst. There's just breath and light and life and love and energy and colour and shape and form through time and space in rhythm and climax and fall...........and all of that and none of it...........

A desire to create, express........convey that which I am not.....expand with the universe itself.........a co-creator of reality. Marking time for the sake of sanity. Reaching out to share in the hope of being heard and understood. Shirking the fear of eternal solitude. When two or more can come together and resonate as one, life has worth and purpose, meaning. A common direction of greater wholeness, greater diversity and compassion, acceptance, love.

What I am is not going to be written in these words, will not be played in song, sculpted in clay or stroked with brush. But with a stroke of divine grace maybe any of these things will offer another the chance to invert their "I" in on itself and come to realize and know that which we all are. That inexpressible, underlying commonality which expresses itself in absolute uniqueness in every person and experience. That fundamental Love that creates and binds the entire universe.

All these vain attempts to reach out and offer what I don't really possess myself. Giving away that which cannot be held. Pointing to that which does not exist. Oh dear God, take me now and make me an instrument of thy divine will..........hmmmm, nice try. What does one appearance say to the other? Your turn to polish the mirror.

Thank you.

Pat.

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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Matt » Sun Feb 26, 2012 4:02 am

Dear Pat,
I find many entry points in your message, but here is one:
I'm finding a core aspect of this sense of self is a mechanism of pain avoidance and pleasure seeking.
Yes, that's the "sense of self". The central issue on this forum is, is there a real self behind that sense of self?

Here's one way I would recommend, if you would be willing to try:

Close your eyes and imagine that you're holding a spoon in your right hand....
Feel its weight, its texture, its temperature. Imagine in vivid detail what it looks and feels like....
Take a minute imagining this, until the spoon feels real.

Now, open your eyes and look at your right hand. Is there a spoon there?
Perhaps it seemed so vivid, so real!
Now, in exactly the same way, look for a real 'I', a real 'looker'. Was there ever such a thing?

It's a lot more subtle, since the imagination of self has been habitually re-enforced for many years. But even so, was this imaginary spoon/self ever real at any time? Or is it just like an idea, a "sense" (as in "a sense of self", which is a story or thought pattern)? How does it feel to glimpse this absence?

Looking forward to your answers!

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Pat
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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Pat » Mon Feb 27, 2012 12:26 pm

Dam this forum! I just had quite a lengthy post that I slowly pieced together over an hour or more. When I clicked to submit it took me to the login screen I presume because it timed out and I lost the entire post!!! Damned infernal technology!

The last line I wrote was - yes, very big, deep, real bliss.

Long gone now!

But certainly no more than a simple inquiry away again. This was the gist of the previous post. That any notion or experience that arises in the mind is appearing to an aspect of mind known as "me". When I inquire into the nature this "I", who or what is witnessing these tangible experiences, a sense of spaciousness arises.

Then, even that experience of spaciousness and the feeling of contentment is still something phenomenal appearing to mind which in turn can also be inquired into. The longer I sit in this process of inquiry, the deeper the sense of energy within is pulling me in and down. On and on the process continues, the moment any notion appears to mind the silent inquiry dissolves it all.

There's a paradox to all this in that the more I inquire into this identity and realize it's absence, it's lack of inherent existence, the deeper and stronger, more grounded is my experience of reality.

Thanks Matt.

Pat.

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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Matt » Mon Feb 27, 2012 3:34 pm

Dear Pat,
Great message, thanks! Let's continue along these lines.
any notion or experience that arises in the mind is appearing to an aspect of mind known as "me".
Let's explore that. So, "Me"/I is an aspect of mind. Yet it is said "I inquire..." !

• Could an 'aspect of mind' (a phenomenal appearance within another phenomenal appearance?) perform inquiry on itself?
• In other words, 'I' is a thought. Can a thought itself think?
• Is a thought even conscious, so that it can inquire on itself?
• So, is there a real person behind the inquiry?
• Look behind the looking: can a looker be found anywhere?
• There may be an experience of spaciousness at times. Is there an experiencer having that experience?

Look with everything you've got—and answer from the looking, the direct experiencing.

If it helps, write on a word-processing program and then paste it into the forum when you're ready to send.

Best wishes,
M

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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Pat » Tue Feb 28, 2012 10:42 am

Hey Matt

In other words, 'I' is a thought. Can a thought itself think?

I don't see "I" as a thought. The word, I, is a thought. The concept of self, is a thought. But the experience of being is not a thought.

So, is there a real person behind the inquiry?

If I define myself as an infinte realm of conscious awareness, having a temporary time and space bound human experience, then that is the "real person" experiencing inquiry. The said same experiencer of all that unfolds in this life, through this moment. Life is the experience of itself.

Look behind the looking: can a looker be found anywhere?

The looker is the looking itself.

There may be an experience of spaciousness at times. Is there an experiencer having that experience?

Yes, the moment we comprehend any identifiable experience a duality has been created as there is always awareness of the experience itself. Only in the absolute, still, silent emptiness does the duality dissolve. And that cannot be expressed, only gestured toward.

The Tao that can be expressed is not the true Tao.


Thank you.

Pat.

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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Matt » Tue Feb 28, 2012 6:22 pm

I don't see "I" as a thought. The word, I, is a thought. The concept of self, is a thought. But the experience of being is not a thought.
Yes, the experience of being is not a thought. The question is, does the experiencing of being require an 'I'? Is there a separate individual, Pat, who is doing that experiencing? Please let me know what you find when you really look at this issue directly. On this forum, we're only interested in direct pointing, answers from direct experience and 100% honesty. Intellectual or theoretical answers won't allow you to come away with the tremendous gift that this forum offers. You really have to look, like when we did the imaginary spoon experiment.
• Does the experiencing of being require an 'I'?
• Is there a separate individual, Pat, who is experiencing?
• Look closely at the actual facts: do you exist as an individual?
Thanks,
M

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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Pat » Wed Feb 29, 2012 10:02 pm

No Matt

My identity has no inherent existence. Only when some thing, some form of content, however subtle, is present in consciousness that a duality is formed. There is the content itself and the awareness of it. That awareness is what I call me. The same awareness that it is witnessing this whole process on this forum. As I turn my attention to this awareness itself, by surrendering any and all of the content a spaciousness and feeling of ease arises. This in turn can also be inquired into, who is aware of this ease filled spaciousness? And there is nothing, an absolute void.

So, are we home yet? Is this the tremendous gift that you speak of? I don't mean to be ungrateful but this does feel as though it's becoming somewhat circular. I'm wondering if you've heard of a term known as spiritual bypassing. There's a strong chance in my understanding that a great deal of this Advaita community is deeply engrossed in a whole bunch of self avoidance through a loose understanding of some ancient traditional techniques. Modern psychology is 100-150 years old in todays world and has a lot more effective and substantial wisdom to offer. Rather than running around telling people that they don't actually exist.

Anything else to offer?

Pat.

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Re: Request for 1-on-1 with Matt

Postby Matt » Wed Feb 29, 2012 11:14 pm

Dear Pat,

This forum has nothing really to do with non-duality, Advaita, or "I am That Awareness", which may have their valid place in life. Here, we're treating them as invalid, but just because they're totally beside the point of the precise insight pointed to here. Neither are we telling people they don't exist, we're asking people to look for themselves. And finally, by-passing is up to you—it would be pretty impossible to prevent you on an anonymous forum! We point you to a specific insight, and what you do with it is up to you.

No, you have not seen yet what this forum is offering. If the process appears circular, it's because we're gradually zooming in on something, and we're trying slightly different angles. You are in fact repeatedly giving me explanations, which is not what is asked. Perhaps re-read my previous posts, try "looking", as with the 'imaginary spoon', and give a detailed report of what is experienced first-hand. Then there will be no need for either of us to repeat ourselves.

You must bring 100% effort and honesty, I can't do this for you. It's not easy, but everyone here has had to do the same thing.

I'm open to continuing if you are, and you're free to find a different facilitator, or take off. I'm not looking for gratitude or compliance, but neither am I looking to spend my 15 available minutes per day on discussions and explanations that are based on second-hand evidence.

Feel free to review any of the previous questions, really look into the matter, with no assumption, thought, learning, opinion, philosophy, etc. Then give a detailed report of what is experienced first-hand.

Your friend,
Matt


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