Looking deeper

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Alberto
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Looking deeper

Postby Alberto » Fri Nov 10, 2017 4:47 am

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
I understand that our basic nature is undeniable and always there however we are caught in the dream of self this continuous reaffirmation that "I" exist and claims authority over all experiences as its own in order to feel real. There is no self, such as when a child has no definition of himself but different, more expansive perhaps.

What are you looking for at LU?
I am looking to truly break through I guess, I notice how I still gravitate towards my identification with the body and my feelings and opinions about life bringing about anxiousness and suffering or the belief of someone suffering, I feel there is deeper questioning that must happen here so that I don't fool myself in believing that "I got it" through intellectual knowledge but rather through true experience.

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
I am in the hopes that the right questions will help me dispel the illusion once and for all and undoubtedly will aid me to experience the truth.
That I will receive pointers that will help me experience the truth experientially and undeniably, that the truth will be a heartfelt truth and not accumulated knowledge, that the conversation will take me to my own minds cul de sac's and reveal it's gimmicks and tricks, the disguises in which it diverts the truth with the idea that "I've understood". Also I look in the conversation a continuous reminder so not to let my guard down and relax with my intent.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
I've been on the search train for quite some years, different yoga and meditation practices, retreats, certifications, talks and so on. I have been inclined towards different guru figures human and non, have worshipped different gods and recited different mantras, done physical, yoga, visualisation, kriya, vipassana, explored different traditions you name it, I've practiced it or at least have some knowledge about it. But in the last 4 years more or less I pulled away from all these things and lived my life with an occasional curiosity in these themes but without much interest and with the belief that they weren't getting me anywhere that I was pretty much where I started after almost 20 years ago, also due to the influence of my partners "awakening that happened 6 years ago. What I was sure of was that I was suffering more than ever and this brought me back to buddhism and eventually zen (3 years ago) which was new for me but the simplicity and the absence of all the decor other practices I've experienced appealed to me and led me towards self inquiry wich I'd already had a dip of in the past through oriental and western non dual teachers and the true feeling that what I'm looking for is much simpler and closer to me than all these practices, but somehow still seems to escape my grip or complete realization of it.

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

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Canfora
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Re: Looking deeper

Postby Canfora » Sun Nov 12, 2017 2:52 pm

Hi Alberto. Welcome to the LU forum, it's nice to have you here. Thank you for your introduction. I can be your guide if that's okay with you.

If you want to go on with me, I would like to know a little more about what you wrote here:
also due to the influence of my partners "awakening that happened 6 years ago.
What is the difference between you and your parter that makes you think the parter is awake and you aren't?
I feel there is deeper questioning that must happen here so that I don't fool myself in believing that "I got it" through intellectual knowledge but rather through true experience.
How do you imagine that a true experience would be? Does this mean that this experience that is going on right now, isn't true? Does it lack trueness? What do you think is missing?

Looking forward to your reply!
Canfora

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Alberto
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Re: Looking deeper

Postby Alberto » Mon Nov 13, 2017 8:46 pm

Hello Canfora,

Thank you for the welcome, it's great to be here and would be a pleasure to go on with you.

For your first question: I was expecting to have some sort of a dramatic experience kind of like the one she had, not exactly the same, but some sort of marking point between before and after. Also because over the years energetically the dialogue in my mind between us in a very subtle way has been something like "she is the one that's gotten it I still have to get it" and I interpreted that there was still something that had to be done in order to get it or that I'm not good enough or putting in the necessary effort.
But ultimately in essence I don't believe there is any difference.
For the second question: I guess I'm imagining that there has to be some sort of undoubtful shift, that in every moment I am in this present state without being pulled into the whirlwind of experiences and forgetting or losing the isness and being caught in thought and the negative (or positive) expressions of the ego. So I guess what I feel is missing is the certainty from where I'm operating from, the absolute sureness or certainty that this is undoubtedly so.

Looking forward to continue
Thanks

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Canfora
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Re: Looking deeper

Postby Canfora » Tue Nov 14, 2017 11:46 am

Hi Alberto,

There is a nice "how to quote function" explanation here: https://www.liberationunleashed.com/nat ... ?f=4&t=660.
For your first question: I was expecting to have some sort of a dramatic experience kind of like the one she had, not exactly the same, but some sort of marking point between before and after. Also because over the years energetically the dialogue in my mind between us in a very subtle way has been something like "she is the one that's gotten it I still have to get it" and I interpreted that there was still something that had to be done in order to get it or that I'm not good enough or putting in the necessary effort.
But ultimately in essence I don't believe there is any difference.
Thank you for sharing. I was a little afraid you were expecting to have a similar experience to the one your partner had. Those expectations could keep us stuck forever and ever! This exploration isn't about having a experience, although it focus mainly in experience, it's about realizing that a separate self isn't real, which is a similar to realizing that Santa Claus isn't real. So please try to drop everything you are expecting to happen - expectations are always about a imagined future and a imagined self.
I guess I'm imagining that there has to be some sort of undoubtful shift
Yes, that would be accurate. Although I would say it's a undoubtful seeing, similar to seeing an optical illusion, like this one. This shape's yellow and blue border create the illusion of the object being pale yellow rather than white. Notice how seeing the illusion and realizing it's an illusion doesn't make it stop or become something else.
Image
I'm not saying that changes will not happen as a result of this realization. They will. It's just that it's impossible to know when they will happen and what will change, so speculating isn't useful at all.
that in every moment I am in this present state without being pulled into the whirlwind of experiences
Oh, this is curious! Do you think this present state is anything other than the whirlwind of experiences? Are you trying to reach and keep a specific state? What for? Do you think it is possible to stay in a static state?
forgetting or losing the isness and being caught in thought and the negative (or positive) expressions of the ego
Are you trying to be the isness and suppress thoughts and what you are calling the ego? Does that mean thoughts and ego aren't part of the isness? That they are somehow separate?

Looking forward to your reply,
Canfora

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Alberto
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Re: Looking deeper

Postby Alberto » Tue Nov 14, 2017 5:31 pm

I wasn't particularly expecting an experience specially not like hers but my own unique Aha! I got it!, more like a certainty, a definite knowing, never the less I feel I am holding some expectations for sure, the expectation of transformation, of being something other than what I am now I guess in some way, but I get it, any expectation is about a future improved self. But how to see clearly Santa Claus isn't real though?
So its not really seeing past the illusion but having a deep understanding that it's just an illusion despite that is what is being perceived, correct?
It's not that I'm trying to reach a different state I'm just under the impression that one can abide in inner peace despite the situations and circumstances instead of being caught up and pulled away to act in unconscious ways, or fall in to reactive patterns because of the identification with the story. I have this idea that if the separate self isn't real that there is no body to get caught up in the story therefore the anguish experienced does not have a lasting grip.
It's not that I'm trying to supress thought but I have this idea that if you've seen past the illusion of separate self, thoughts are like distant sounds that don't have a gravitational pull on you to believe them. It's not so much that I'm trying to be it but wish I was it, experientially. I don't quite understand how you can be it without the experience or the knowledge of it. When I speak of ego, I'm referring to the accumulated stories about one self that insist on being believed. So I see what your pointing at that these ideas that I have about what ego is and the awakened state are separate from myself and there is a split that keeps me in a veil. I don't know why but this questioning is making me feel like I understand less now than I I did before, feel somewhat unease and lost but at the same time happy that finally someone is helping me see through this.

Thank you

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Alberto
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Re: Looking deeper

Postby Alberto » Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:30 pm

I didn't get the quote thing correct, but it basically follows the order of your answers as you posted them. Sorry about that I'll look at the tutorial again.

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Canfora
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Re: Looking deeper

Postby Canfora » Wed Nov 15, 2017 11:39 am

I didn't get the quote thing correct, but it basically follows the order of your answers as you posted them. Sorry about that I'll look at the tutorial again.
That's okay, you don't need to use the quote function. What I do is place the cursor where I want the quote to appear and then select the words I want to quote and press quote.
I wasn't particularly expecting an experience specially not like hers but my own unique Aha! I got it!, more like a certainty, a definite knowing, never the less I feel I am holding some expectations for sure, the expectation of transformation, of being something other than what I am now I guess in some way, but I get it, any expectation is about a future improved self.
Good.
But how to see clearly Santa Claus isn't real though?
By looking at what is here now.
So its not really seeing past the illusion but having a deep understanding that it's just an illusion despite that is what is being perceived, correct?
Speaking from my own experience, it's all about seeing. You don't need to understand what you see to see something. Imagine that you have misplaced your house keys. You don't have to understand anything about key finding or about what keys are to find the keys. You simply look for them until you find them or realize they aren't in the house and you go look inside the car.
It's not that I'm trying to reach a different state I'm just under the impression that one can abide in inner peace despite the situations and circumstances instead of being caught up and pulled away to act in unconscious ways, or fall in to reactive patterns because of the identification with the story.
I understand what you are saying but this exploration isn't about abiding in inner space or unconsciousness. It's about seeing if there is a real self that is experiencing all this. If this self can't be found, then the fluctuation you mention isn't personal and, although you may follow practices that may strengthen what you think it's better for you, you will have the capacity to realize that it's not your doing, which will increase the potential to have a lighter approach around this pull to improve yourself and what is being experienced.
I have this idea that if the separate self isn't real that there is no body to get caught up in the story therefore the anguish experienced does not have a lasting grip.
Ah. The opposite may also happen for a while. Without the believe in a self everything may seem to be more raw. Intensity may increase. Or not. Impossible to know before it happens.
I have this idea that if you've seen past the illusion of separate self, thoughts are like distant sounds that don't have a gravitational pull on you to believe them.
That's a huge expectation. I believe that's more the result of a lifetime practice than the result of seeing the illusion.
It's not so much that I'm trying to be it but wish I was it, experientially. I don't quite understand how you can be it without the experience or the knowledge of it.
Hmm... okay. You are talking from the perspective of the illusion, from the believe that you are not it. But let's keep going, anything I say is just blabla, you have to see for yourself what I'm pointing to.

So let's talk a little about what we are doing here.

The idea is to question the assumption, the belief, that you are a separate, permanent, solid, real self.

The way we do that here at LU is by asking you to look to what is here now and check if such a self can be found.

By looking I mean looking - instead of thinking about these matters and relying in the content of thinking.

Looking is seeing with the eyes what is here. It's using the senses to explore what is here.

Let me know if you have doubts about what you're being asked to do.

Let's say we are in the same place and I ask you to point to yourself, to something that you believe "this is me".

To where would you point?

Do you think that you're pointing to a self? If yes, why? How do you know that what you are pointing at is a self?

Take care,
C

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Alberto
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Feeling a bit frustrated

Postby Alberto » Wed Nov 15, 2017 7:12 pm

Hello Canfora,

Thanks for your reply
I understand what you are saying but this exploration isn't about abiding in inner space or unconsciousness. It's about seeing if there is a real self that is experiencing all this. If this self can't be found, then the fluctuation you mention isn't personal and, although you may follow practices that may strengthen what you think it's better for you, you will have the capacity to realize that it's not your doing, which will increase the potential to have a lighter approach around this pull to improve yourself and what is being experienced.
I had to read this a couple of times until it sank in I obviously am full of ideas that are obstructing my clear seeing I was convinced that the inner space was coming from that ground of un-form but now I see that it's been a dual play that has been tugging and pulling and all the while I was there beyond the waxing and waning of the two thinking that I was present at moments and in-present at others when in reality this was happening upon the same canvas or it was 2 sides to the same coin per say.


I think I understand what's being asked
If you don't mind I'll break it down as you presented it to me.

The idea is to question the assumption, the belief, that you are a separate, permanent, solid, real self.
I can already feel as I try to answer these questions how the acquired intellectual knowledge operating system about this wants to answer, but I will try to answer from my own experience in all sincerity.

As I stop to observe and answer this I feel like a solid individual, I feel, I see, I sense, I'm solid the only thing I can kind of feel unreal is thought since it doesn't have the physical solidity and changes so rapidly, it seems unstable and the only thing that I can say is certain is it's motion. I don't know what is asked when if I'm separate, separate from what? I definitely don't feel permanent but I do feel real because I am here as a perceiver. As I write these I see these are all the "wrong" answers I'm just trying to be honest to what I feel, my intellect would answer other wise.

So I am still a bit doubtful on how to proceed but if to continue with

Let's say we are in the same place and I ask you to point to yourself, to something that you believe "this is me".

To where would you point?
Do you think that you're pointing to a self? If yes, why? How do you know that what you are pointing at is a self?
Ok, so what is "self" I feel self is this operating system, this machine with all it's cognitive qualities that goes on pursuing pleasure and turning away from pain. Do I feel "I am" this Self, well to a certain degree I feel I am the added parts of all the experiences that are perceived the pain, the happiness, the pleasure, the insights, the sorrows, the uplifts and disappointments, the one who loves and wants to be loved, the healthy one, the sick one etc. I truly feel and identify with these things although I know this is not true, because of what I've read or been told, but in all sincerity I feel the pain that comes with the identification to these ideas, but how to see through this and not be identified? And then again how do I know its true, because I feel it energetically and because I have feeling and sensations, and I get it I am not the body thoughts, sensations they are clouds in the sky passing by etc. But I don't truly feel it to be this way because of the density I feel life to be.

I can't help but feel frustrated for not being able to truly see through this, and I know it's the non existent "I" but why does it feel so real?

Thanks

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Canfora
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Re: Looking deeper

Postby Canfora » Thu Nov 16, 2017 11:47 am

Hi Alberto,

You mastered the quote function! Yay!
I had to read this a couple of times until it sank in I obviously am full of ideas that are obstructing my clear seeing I was convinced that the inner space was coming from that ground of un-form but now I see that it's been a dual play that has been tugging and pulling and all the while I was there beyond the waxing and waning of the two thinking that I was present at moments and in-present at others when in reality this was happening upon the same canvas or it was 2 sides to the same coin per say.
I love the coin analogy and I've used it to point to the similarity between believing in a self and believing in a no self. I think it is simpler than that. All you are saying above can be seen as a perspective, a way to frame a personal view in a way that can be understood. It is a sort of mental map that has the function of explaining what you think is going on from your intellectual perspective. Imagine that you are the kind of person that doesn't think about these subjects. This map wouldn't be helpful to you at all but what this map seems to point at would still be here. Regardless of people thoughts about reality, it seems we are all having a similar experience.
I can already feel as I try to answer these questions how the acquired intellectual knowledge operating system about this wants to answer, but I will try to answer from my own experience in all sincerity.
Wonderful.
As I stop to observe and answer this I feel like a solid individual, I feel, I see, I sense, I'm solid the only thing I can kind of feel unreal is thought since it doesn't have the physical solidity and changes so rapidly, it seems unstable and the only thing that I can say is certain is it's motion. I don't know what is asked when if I'm separate, separate from what? I definitely don't feel permanent but I do feel real because I am here as a perceiver. As I write these I see these are all the "wrong" answers I'm just trying to be honest to what I feel, my intellect would answer other wise.
There are no wrong answers. You're doing fine.
Ok, so what is "self" I feel self is this operating system, this machine with all it's cognitive qualities that goes on pursuing pleasure and turning away from pain. Do I feel "I am" this Self, well to a certain degree I feel I am the added parts of all the experiences that are perceived the pain, the happiness, the pleasure, the insights, the sorrows, the uplifts and disappointments, the one who loves and wants to be loved, the healthy one, the sick one etc. I truly feel and identify with these things although I know this is not true, because of what I've read or been told, but in all sincerity I feel the pain that comes with the identification to these ideas, but how to see through this and not be identified? And then again how do I know its true, because I feel it energetically and because I have feeling and sensations, and I get it I am not the body thoughts, sensations they are clouds in the sky passing by etc. But I don't truly feel it to be this way because of the density I feel life to be.
What you have above is a huge mix of thinking with what may be a little of seeing. If you read what you wrote, you will see that it's mainly thoughts around this subject. Focusing in the content of thinking is a habitual way of finding answers to questions but isn't what we are looking for here.
I can't help but feel frustrated for not being able to truly see through this, and I know it's the non existent "I" but why does it feel so real?
Frustration is okay, welcome the frustration. It means you are stepping outside your comfort zone.

So it seems that the next step is to explain what I mean by looking at something. Please read all the text below before answering the questions:

Can you see what is going on right now? I suppose you do, you just have to look using the eyes. Can you please describe what you see? By "what you see" I mean what is being perceived by the senses, what is being seen, tasted, heard, touched, smelled.

Also, can you focus in the sensations and feelings and describe them as best as you can?

I will show you what I mean, this would be my reply to what is being asked above:

What I see: keyboard, hands moving, hearing someone talking on youtube, phone ringing, daylight, people talking, screen, words on screen.

What is being sense/felt: contraction on chest and stomach, face frowning, slight irritation.

Hoping you get the idea - what we are looking for is a description of what is going on here now. It does not have to be perfect or exhaustive. Just notice what is happening and describe it the best you can.

C

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Alberto
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Re: Looking deeper

Postby Alberto » Thu Nov 16, 2017 1:40 pm

Hi Canfora,
Yes I got the quote thing, quite useful :) So I'll start with that.
Regardless of people thoughts about reality, it seems we are all having a similar experience.
I see what your saying here there are all these explanations that the mind is trying to come up with through it's acquired knowledge to understand THIS but it is not necessarily pointing to the fact that there is no separate self, similarly to looking at the hand for when what is being pointed at is the moon.
Can you see what is going on right now? I suppose you do, you just have to look using the eyes. Can you please describe what you see? By "what you see" I mean what is being perceived by the senses, what is being seen, tasted, heard, touched, smelled.
What I see: I see the screen, the keyboard, words being typed, the warehouse I work in, I hear the honk of the pallet truck and it's motor, I see the warehouse, pallets, shelves, boxes lights, I hear the ringing in my ear, I feel comfortable, a bit of tingling in my legs, I feel the pressure of the keys on my fingertips, the very light pressure of my hat. I hear in the distance the beeping of a car backing up, the doors opening and closing, I take a sip of tea the sound of sipping tea tasting it's bitterness.

What is being sense/felt: I feel very relaxed, at ease, also kind of bored and underlying a slight anxiousness.

Thanks
Mario

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Canfora
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Re: Looking deeper

Postby Canfora » Thu Nov 16, 2017 3:39 pm

Hi Mario,
I see what your saying here there are all these explanations that the mind is trying to come up with through it's acquired knowledge to understand THIS but it is not necessarily pointing to the fact that there is no separate self, similarly to looking at the hand for when what is being pointed at is the moon.
Yes. It's a good thing that you are groking what I'm trying to say :)
What I see: I see the screen, the keyboard, words being typed, the warehouse I work in, I hear the honk of the pallet truck and it's motor, I see the warehouse, pallets, shelves, boxes lights, I hear the ringing in my ear, I feel comfortable, a bit of tingling in my legs, I feel the pressure of the keys on my fingertips, the very light pressure of my hat. I hear in the distance the beeping of a car backing up, the doors opening and closing, I take a sip of tea the sound of sipping tea tasting it's bitterness.

What is being sense/felt: I feel very relaxed, at ease, also kind of bored and underlying a slight anxiousness.
Well done. Did you notice the difference between thinking about something and exploring what is here now with the senses?

Try to apply what you did to the self.

Have a look around you. Take your time. Is it possible to see a self? To touch a self? To hear a self? To taste a self? To touch a self?

Can you find any evidence that the self that seems to exist in thinking / language is more than imaginary?

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Alberto
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Re: Looking deeper

Postby Alberto » Sat Nov 18, 2017 8:00 pm

Hi Canfora,
Did you notice the difference between thinking about something and exploring what is here now with the senses?
YesTry to apply what you did to the self.
Have a look around you. Take your time. Is it possible to see a self? To touch a self? To hear a self? To taste a self
If the self is not defined as the body, senses, mind just the sensation of being is there but it doesn't seem to be localized, the sense of self seems to arise wherever the attention is drawn, when I try to find this being it doesn't seem to exist, things feel hollow empty yet alive.
And from this aliveness thinking is happening and language is superimposed upon reality.

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Canfora
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Re: Looking deeper

Postby Canfora » Sun Nov 19, 2017 7:59 pm

Hi Mario,
If the self is not defined as the body
Do you think the body has a self inside it? Or that the body is a self?

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Alberto
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Re: Looking deeper

Postby Alberto » Mon Nov 20, 2017 2:16 am

Hi Canfora,
Do you think the body has a self inside it? Or that the body is a self?
I would say neither, I don't believe that the self is confined within the body, and I don't believe the body is the self because it is always continuously changing, yet the seeing is not. Actually I'm not so sure this self exists I can not seem to localize it there is just a pulsating, vibrating energy that is present.

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Canfora
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Re: Looking deeper

Postby Canfora » Mon Nov 20, 2017 10:56 am

Ahhh... you are talking about your beliefs.
Do something other than thinking about the answers.
Have a look.
Look to your hands. What do you see?
Are hands part of you? Are you something that is inside hands?
You can do this with anything that matches the label body - hair, skin, nails, feet, etc - and check if the body is you.
You can even do an imaginary body scan to see if the body is / has more than bone, muscle, flesh among it.
Let me know how it goes.
Actually I'm not so sure this self exists I can not seem to localize it there is just a pulsating, vibrating energy that is present.
What would you say is looking for a self?


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