Beyond the ceiling

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Eauvive
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Beyond the ceiling

Postby Eauvive » Sat Nov 18, 2017 9:18 pm

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
I understand by this that the self is a constructed structured held together with memories, thoughts, perceptions, etc. We cling to it, nourish it, avoid what threatens it or what points at its inherent void. But every element that seem to compose it is in fact part of a flow of manifestations arising from an infinite array of conditions.

What are you looking for at LU?
I hope to become able to see beyond the deeply rooted set of concepts, narrations and mental habits that prevent lucidity. I am tired of the limited circle of experiences and thoughts my mind (and heart) keep roaming into. I have come to reflect on the nature of self not only during meditation or buddhist study, but also all through the day. My reflection is led in earnest but limited ways. It is not mainly intellectual in nature, as it has a strong mystical trend. But is seems to have become also a feature... of the self. It's like a closed circuit. Although there is a lot of spiritual material out there, I find very few possibilities to address seriously this quest with others. On the other hand, there is an avalanche of occasions to avoid it and turn to entertaining and superficial activities. With LU I am hoping to intensify the quest, keep it open, deepen it and spot the ways in which I strengthen delusion.

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
I expect to be led off my very beaten path! I'd like to receive pointers that show me the backdrop of my thoughts and contribute to loosen my grip on what is familiar and reassuring. I often feel there is a big truth very close by, something obvious right there in the corner of my eye, but as soon as I turn to look at it, predictable stuff takes over. I seem to have reached a ceiling in my inquiry and used up much of the deepening tools I have at hand; or else, I would have to create new ways to work with them. I expect the guide will help me see the blind spots and break through those limitations.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
I have started meditating 25 years ago in Québec (Canada), in the zen tradition. (My first language is French, but I like to communicate in English.) I was 23 years old and a philosophy student; I was longing for more mental space. I moved to Italy shortly after, where I worked as a painter and printmaker, and continued to practice in the same tradition on and off. I experienced a lot of serendipity in Italy, and even some supernatural occurrences. There was a magic to life which made me feel I was constantly guided by greater forces. I had a couple of spontaneous out-of-body experiences which were very transformative and eye opening. I stayed there for ten years, after which I married an Englishman, had a baby girl and moved to the UK; I have worked since as a fiction writer and a hypnotherapist.

The Triratna Buddhist Centre happens to be very close to my house, and I have continued my spiritual practice in that context for the last ten years. I go on retreats twice or three times a year, sometimes on short solitaries. Meditation has become increasingly intense for me. As much as possible, I bring my imagination and intuition into it and I like to open a 'no-thought' space. I have had powerful mettabhavana practices involving friends who had recently died.
One day (7 years ago), as I was being shown a picture of Padmasambhava, I physically blacked out and had a life-changing vision of complete knowledge. Reality was turned upside down and suddenly everything made perfect sense. What I was seeing seemed very obvious and I wondered how I had never seen it before. But I felt such intense pain in my heart that I was screaming for it to stop. It stopped and, although my meditation deepened again sharply afterwards, the 'obvious' knowledge I had accessed went in hiding below the level of consciousness.

I do not have to be convinced that reality is completely different to the way we perceive it with our ordinary mind. All the same, I am roaming about with that small mind, maybe expanding it and loosening it, but always dwelling into it. I strive to practice insight meditation every day. Sometimes I am carried away with the sense of an immense presence made of pure light, and I try to flow with it. Sometimes, all sensations from my body disappear and I dissolve into a great empty-but-rich dark space. But I always come back to the sense that these experiences happened to ME, that they are contributing to shaping and improving MY SELF. I travel with a deeply ingrained sense of destiny or vocation, and tend to see my spiritual journey as the unfolding of a pre-written plot.

Although I can intellectually agree that there is no such thing, I can feel the solidity of the structure that holds the story together. After especially strong meditations, I experience a specific kind of anxiety which I have come to interpret as self loosening, glue not holding or structure shaking. I have had little success in sharing this with spiritual friends, despite being a regular member of the nearby Sangha. This is why I am reaching out now. It has taken me more than a year to decide to contact LU... I will answer 8 to the next question, because the answer is 10 most of the time, and 6 when I get anxious.

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

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Canfora
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Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Canfora » Mon Nov 20, 2017 12:40 pm

Hi Eauvive and welcome to the LU forum, it's nice to have you here. I can be your guide if that's okay with you. Thank you for your introduction. I wonder what are your fears around this. What do you think makes the anxiety feel stronger when it seems the self is loosening? Maybe you are afraid of a big change? To stop being functional, to disappear, to loose something, to shift into a different reality? What do you think may happen if you clearly see you aren't a separate self?

Looking forward to your reply,
C

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Eauvive
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Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Eauvive » Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:07 pm

I am delighted to have you as my guide, thank you for your questions, Canfora.
The anxiety is of the floating kind, with no specific object attached to it, but always with the same flavour. It feels like I am going to fall in deep dark waters and be on my own there. Quite primal. What makes it feel stronger is the sort of meditation in which I sense a very powerful invisible force field. It is never threatening as such, but afterwards I feel that ordinary reality is not ‘really real’. That I am missing something, or misunderstanding life, or that there is something I do wrong. The sense of being mistaken is deeply rooted, pretty much at an existential level. This is really worth exploring, I guess.
As for the conscious fears linked to the self loosening, yes to big change, loosing something and becoming dysfunctional. All of those fears are related to my close family. I find being a mother requires a lot of attention to all sorts of details, and being mentally present to every moment does not always come naturally to me. (My daughter is almost 12 now.) I am concerned that the process of letting go of the “solid” self will imply times at which I might struggle to be available to our daily life. My husband is very understanding and open minded, but he is not on this kind of quest at all; so another fear is that of creating a distance between us.
Wow. I hadn’t even spotted how much at the forefront those fears are. They are exactly what kept me so long from submitting to this forum.
What do I think might happen if I clearly see that I’m not a separate self?… ‘I’ might be liberated from superfluous concerns and filters. Lighter. More present, more perceptive, with a broader fearless awareness. Or else, disoriented, confused, lost for a while? Having to redefine everything? All of those things apply to a self, don’t they? It’s very difficult to imagine beyond.
It’s been a rich moment, answering your questions. Thanks again. Looking forward to more!

EauVive

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Canfora
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Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Canfora » Tue Nov 21, 2017 3:49 pm

Hi EauVive,
I am delighted to have you as my guide, thank you for your questions, Canfora.
Thank you for the thank you. It's my pleasure!
The anxiety is of the floating kind, with no specific object attached to it, but always with the same flavour. It feels like I am going to fall in deep dark waters and be on my own there. Quite primal. What makes it feel stronger is the sort of meditation in which I sense a very powerful invisible force field. It is never threatening as such, but afterwards I feel that ordinary reality is not ‘really real’. That I am missing something, or misunderstanding life, or that there is something I do wrong. The sense of being mistaken is deeply rooted, pretty much at an existential level. This is really worth exploring, I guess.
From where I'm standing it seems that this meditation isn't pleasant and it may even cause anxiety and reinforce the idea that there is something wrong with you. Wouldn't you be better without doing it? What is your goal when you do this meditation?
As for the conscious fears linked to the self loosening, yes to big change, loosing something and becoming dysfunctional.
Those are normal fears but it's highly unlikely that something like that will happen. Notice that is it's true that a separate self is an illusion, everything is already happening without a self, so this exploration is mainly about realizing that something that you think is true, isn't. Like when a kid realizes that Santa Claus isn't a real person. It's very possible that other illusions may also be seen through but, if they do, those are after the gate events.
All of those fears are related to my close family. I find being a mother requires a lot of attention to all sorts of details, and being mentally present to every moment does not always come naturally to me. (My daughter is almost 12 now.) I am concerned that the process of letting go of the “solid” self will imply times at which I might struggle to be available to our daily life. My husband is very understanding and open minded, but he is not on this kind of quest at all; so another fear is that of creating a distance between us.
I don't know how much time you will need to see this, it depends on what is causing the illusion but I don't think you need to worry. You don't have to spend a lot of your time doing this exploration. A few focused moments of looking here and there daily is all there is needed for you to learn how to look in any situation, hopefully.

My husband and the kids weren't / aren't interested in this kind of quest too and their lack of interest or the time I've spend doing this never was a problem. I think that since the pull to seek started to diminish, my apparent distance to the family started to shrink too and that's a huge bonus. The seeking demanded lots of energy and attention that are being used another way now.
Wow. I hadn’t even spotted how much at the forefront those fears are. They are exactly what kept me so long from submitting to this forum.
Yes, fears and expectations are the main reason people don't see what we are pointing at. Wonderful that you posted even with them in the way.
‘I’ might be liberated from superfluous concerns and filters. Lighter. More present, more perceptive, with a broader fearless awareness. Or else, disoriented, confused, lost for a while? Having to redefine everything? All of those things apply to a self, don’t they? It’s very difficult to imagine beyond.
Yes, it's all about the self, isn't is? :)
Notice how expectations are always about an imaginary future self and try to let them go when you notice you are having one or bring them here so that we can look at them. The same with the fear/anxiety, if it gets in the way let me know, so that we can deal with that.

Let's keep going.

You've mentioned that
afterwards I feel that ordinary reality is not ‘really real’
In LU we have a definition of what is real: What is real doesn't disappear when you aren't thinking about it.

You can think about Santa Claus, Harry Potter, the Equator, a Unicorn, a pink elephant as much as you want but if you start thinking about something else they're gone from the content of thinking and you will not be able to sense them, to find them in what we call reality. A cup, a hand, a apple, a tree, a shoe are things you can think about too but they will still be there if you stop thinking about them.

Would you agree that some things are apparently real and some things are only imaginary?

Our goal is to look to what isn't content of thinking to check if a real you is real or imaginary.

Imagine that I'm there with you and that I ask you to show me this thing the word "I" implies is real. What would you show me?

Don't worry with giving the perfect, right answer. Just have a look. See what surrounds you, use your senses the same way you would do if you were trying to find your house keys and check if there is a real self there now.

Can you see a thing that is you? Can you smell a thing that is you? Can you touch a thing that is you? Can you taste a thing that is you? Can you hear a thing that is you?

Have a look. IIs there a real you here now that can be found?

Take care,
C

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Eauvive
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Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Eauvive » Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:10 pm

Thank you Canfora, the way you answered to my fears is very appeasing. I realise that I was entertaining a dramatic image of the whole process, and you bring it back to its simplicity.
About the meditation, it is actually really pleasant most of the time. I do it daily because it improves my energy and focus, and helps me keep my heart open. But maybe I entertain a standard of high intensity there again and could let go of that. I'll try and see how it impacts on the anxiety.
In LU we have a definition of what is real: What is real doesn't disappear when you aren't thinking about it.
That's amazingly simple. The example of the shoe, the hand, the apple: it made me feel very joyous to read that. Truly deep joy, like I'm invited to drop huge superfluous and heavy scaffoldings.
Would you agree that some things are apparently real and some things are only imaginary?
Sure.
Can you see a thing that is you? Can you smell a thing that is you? Can you touch a thing that is you? Can you taste a thing that is you? Can you hear a thing that is you?
I want to answer: my body.
I know that's not the bottom line, though.
With the body come sensory perceptions and subjectivity. Subjectivity makes me feel separate from others.
Apart from a physical body, I can't show you a me that isn't just a thought. But is sensory perception the sole standard for what is real? What about emotions? Memories? The continuity of my life from moment to moment? It is very difficult to accept that they don't exist.

I will reread your message tomorrow as I am a bit tired now. I'm sure there is more in it than what I could take in tonight.

Take care too,

Eau Vive

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Canfora
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Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Canfora » Wed Nov 22, 2017 10:55 am

Hi Eau Vive, good morning!
But is sensory perception the sole standard for what is real? What about emotions? Memories? The continuity of my life from moment to moment? It is very difficult to accept that they don't exist.
Hmm.... this isn't about what reality is or not or about why *reality* or *existence* or *life* or *this* is how it is.
The pull to understand is normal but it's not what we are trying to do.
We are checking if the thoughts about "me", the "I", point to a real, findable "me", "I". That's all. Don't get distracted trying to find explanations, trying to understand what this is and why it's the way it is.
The goal is to see what is here now as it is. By seeing I mean looking at, with the eyes. To use the senses. To notice what surrounds you. To see what is here instead of thinking about it. So, don't think, look instead.
Apart from a physical body, I can't show you a me that isn't just a thought.
Let's question the assumption that the body is a you or has a you inside it.

Try this line of inquiry:

Look at a hand.

Do you see a hand or a you, a person?

Look at other parts of the body.

Are you seeing a feet, a leg, a elbow, or a you, a person?

Now imagine that you can do a scan of the inside of the body. Would the scan show a bunch of flesh, bones, muscle, etc or a you?

Would it be possible to find a little self inside the body, pulling the levers and making decisions? Like this?:
Image

I think this is enough for the time being. Looking forward to know what you will find!

Take care,
C

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Eauvive
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Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Eauvive » Wed Nov 22, 2017 4:57 pm

Hi Canfora,

thanks once again!

I feel simplified today. As if carrying less mental layers around. I don't even miss them in the least.

After writing to you yesterday, I noticed the contrast between the spontaneous joy I felt at your definition of 'real' and the dry contorted rationalisation I got into later. I prefer the spontaneous!
Don't get distracted trying to find explanations, trying to understand what this is and why it's the way it is.
OK! It will require a leap of faith. (see below: I'm not there yet.)
By seeing I mean looking at, with the eyes. Look at a hand.
Do you see a hand or a you, a person?
No, I don't see a person, true. I see a hand. That hand does stuff (like typing this message).
I will never find the little man with the levers inside the body, no.

Often in meditation I follow the track of 'who's the observer?' and then eventually recede to a neutral sense of 'just looking'. There's no one there, just the looking taking place.

But then I always hit the same question: Why is that looking taking place here, from within this body-mind system? Why is it not just 'out there' looking from a wider standpoint??

I am aware that I'm getting distracted into thinking again! But this last question is a place I regularly get stuck into. Please let me know how you would address it (or not). It seems like an obstacle I need help to take out of the way.

I'm very grateful for this dialogue. Looking forward to more.

Wishing you a good evening,

Eau Vive

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Canfora
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Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Canfora » Thu Nov 23, 2017 10:34 am

Hi Eau Vive, good morning!
OK! It will require a leap of faith.
Ahah! I understand what you are saying but faith implies believing in something that can't be proved to be real or until it's proven to be real. We are dealing with facts instead, so faith isn't needed. There is no need to have faith to realize that Santa isn't real! With the separate self it's the same. It's not about faith, it's about seeing.
No, I don't see a person, true. I see a hand. That hand does stuff (like typing this message).
I will never find the little man with the levers inside the body, no.
Did you need faith to realize the obvious? You've looked and didn't saw a person and you also realized there can't be a little me inside the body. Well done.
Often in meditation I follow the track of 'who's the observer?' and then eventually recede to a neutral sense of 'just looking'. There's no one there, just the looking taking place.

But then I always hit the same question: Why is that looking taking place here, from within this body-mind system? Why is it not just 'out there' looking from a wider standpoint??
Consider the possibility that this is an assumption: "looking taking place here, from within this body-mind system". Consider the possibility that "this body-mind system" isn't a thing that is looking. If it was, then how could it be seen?
I am aware that I'm getting distracted into thinking again! But this last question is a place I regularly get stuck into. Please let me know how you would address it (or not). It seems like an obstacle I need help to take out of the way.
Let's say you get the answer you want. Where do you think the answer to this question will take you - what will it give you, what will change, what will you know without a doubt? Why are you asking this question? What are you trying to get?

Take care,
C

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Eauvive
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Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Eauvive » Thu Nov 23, 2017 5:05 pm

Hi Canfora, great to read you again today.
Consider the possibility that "this body-mind system" isn't a thing that is looking. If it was, then how could it be seen?
I'm ok with the fact that the body-mind system itself isn't looking, but there is clearly some looking going on. I'm wondering why that looking is sort of 'trapped' in a little body-mind system.
Let's say you get the answer you want. Where do you think the answer to this question will take you - what will it give you, what will change, what will you know without a doubt? Why are you asking this question? What are you trying to get?
Ah-ah fantastic, a question for my question!

I'd like the answer to be that Big Consciousness is experiencing myriads of points of view, and that this 'self' I seem to live in is one of them (as any other 'self' around). From this I would get hope that by transcending the self I might access a greater layer of consciousness and know for sure that I am not separated from others nor from the world. I would feel much lighter without the unsolved riddle I am carrying around. I always feel that there is something I need to do for clarity to win over existential confusion.

What I'm after is certainty... I find our stay on Earth very perplexing. Since childhood, I've had the sense of some form of immensity trying to manifest through very small things. All my work as an artist is about that.

In the days since we've started this thread, the pull to think it out has weakened somehow. You suggested that I suspend the thinking, I'm trying to. I find it easier than expected and quite calming as well. You talk about seeing and about evidence. I have a habit of finding evidence in emotions and inner narrations. It is like my mind is changing diet or something, finding food not from the usual places. I notice that I actually see many more things with my eyes and that I find a lot of them very beautiful.

At the same time I am a bit disoriented. I toy with your questions during the day, I'm not completely clear about my answers. The little man with the lever, for example. I know he is not there, but is it just because I read about it? Often it does feel like he is in there, making decisions and choices. What is there, if not him?

There has to be some sort of entity writing to you right now. If not a self, then what?

Hmm.

Take care too,

Eau Vive

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Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Canfora » Fri Nov 24, 2017 3:24 pm

Hi Eau Vive!
It is like my mind is changing diet or something, finding food not from the usual places. I notice that I actually see many more things with my eyes and that I find a lot of them very beautiful.
Wonderful.
You suggested that I suspend the thinking, I'm trying to.
OMG! No, no, no. You would be trying to reach the impossible. Can you stop the thinking even for 5 minutes?
Thinking is okay. You don't need to stop thinking to see what is going on. Notice how you can clearly see and sense what surrounds you right now.
I'd like the answer to be that Big Consciousness is experiencing myriads of points of view, and that this 'self' I seem to live in is one of them (as any other 'self' around). From this I would get hope that by transcending the self I might access a greater layer of consciousness and know for sure that I am not separated from others nor from the world. I would feel much lighter without the unsolved riddle I am carrying around. I always feel that there is something I need to do for clarity to win over existential confusion.
Would you say this is a subtle way to try to control life? A hope that "if I know the answers everything's going to be ok"?

What is this self that you are hoping to transcend? How do you know it's real?

What will transcend this self? Can a self transcend a self? What for?

What would reach a greater layer of consciousness? You? A self? A transcended self? A higher Self? Something else?

Take care,
S

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Eauvive
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Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Eauvive » Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:42 pm

Hi Canfora,
wow, so many questions!
I'd like to take them one by one over the weekend in a quiet time.
Back soon.
Thanks a lot,

Eau Vive

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Canfora
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Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Canfora » Sat Nov 25, 2017 7:33 pm

Hi Eau Vive,
I'd like to take them one by one over the weekend in a quiet time.
Okay. Thank you for letting me know you need some time to answer.
Have a good weekend.

Take care,
C

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Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Eauvive » Sat Nov 25, 2017 9:41 pm

Hi Canfora, good evening,

it was good to let things sink in.

Yesterday my husband was given a diagnosis for a life threatening illness. No need to go into any detail, but it brought up a very loving exploration of what our future means. Acquiescing to the uncertainty of the future has shifted stuff in the deep. It was astonishingly easy to re-orient quickly a lot of my habitual stand points and to drop scenarios I had so far held as certainties (I can see so clearly that there was absolutely nothing real to them... as soon as I can see that, a lot of what I held for certainties also vanishes into thin air). Lots of emotions were arising and falling, but a bright light shone on throughout.

It feels like I'm being dusted off, or the scaffoldings are gently falling, or some joyful erosion process is taking place. Today I had a meditation in which it was natural to just witness the flow without associating with it or narrating in the background. Now, outside of the meditation, as soon as I remember to 'just look' , everything around me seems fresh and rich.

Yesterday you asked if my scenario about transcending the self was
a subtle way to try to control life? A hope that "if I know the answers everything's going to be ok"?
A way to control life, yes, and maybe not so subtle!! It wouldn't necessarily mean that everything is going to be ok, but it would mean "I have gone as far as I could in knowing the truth about life". I have set myself very early on that quest for truth, even as a child. Now I sense that it's the quest itself, as a Big Destiny Narration, that has to be let go of to let 'what is' shine through.
What is this self that you are hoping to transcend? How do you know it's real?
It didn't feel very real today, that self. It had grey and dry contours (the same I picture concepts with) and a flimsy fragile texture, clearly embedded in thought processes. I had a moment of clearly seeing how it was built up by recollections from the past and plans for the future. Without those, there's only a witnessing and being present to now. Comfortably neutral. When managing to keep that going, I breathe better and I feel freer. (Still I...)
What will transcend this self? Can a self transcend a self? What for? What would reach a greater layer of consciousness? You? A self? A transcended self? A higher Self? Something else?
Funnily enough, when I read those questions yesterday, i felt I was going to have to think a lot about my answers. Today I feel that the questions have disintegrated. They all have a tinge of absurdity, don't they?

A peaceful night to you,

Eau Vive

[/quote]

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Canfora
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Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Canfora » Sun Nov 26, 2017 7:49 pm

Hi Eau Vive,
Yesterday my husband was given a diagnosis for a life threatening illness. No need to go into any detail, but it brought up a very loving exploration of what our future means. Acquiescing to the uncertainty of the future has shifted stuff in the deep.
My hearth goes out to you, your husband and your kid(s).
Acquiescing to the uncertainty of the future has shifted stuff in the deep. It was astonishingly easy to re-orient quickly a lot of my habitual stand points and to drop scenarios I had so far held as certainties (I can see so clearly that there was absolutely nothing real to them... as soon as I can see that, a lot of what I held for certainties also vanishes into thin air). Lots of emotions were arising and falling, but a bright light shone on throughout.

It feels like I'm being dusted off, or the scaffoldings are gently falling, or some joyful erosion process is taking place. Today I had a meditation in which it was natural to just witness the flow without associating with it or narrating in the background. Now, outside of the meditation, as soon as I remember to 'just look' , everything around me seems fresh and rich.
You seem to be dealing well with what life is bringing at you at the moment. I hope you have enough copying skills to deal with what seems to be a time of change and adaptation to new perspectives. Glad to know that "looking" is helping.
A way to control life, yes, and maybe not so subtle!! It wouldn't necessarily mean that everything is going to be ok, but it would mean "I have gone as far as I could in knowing the truth about life". I have set myself very early on that quest for truth, even as a child. Now I sense that it's the quest itself, as a Big Destiny Narration, that has to be let go of to let 'what is' shine through.
Yes. The quest, the need to know, gets in the way of what is going on here now - although it is also a part of it. We may desire that what is going on now shifts into something better but it has a quality that our imaginary "better than this" doesn't have: it's as real as it gets.
It didn't feel very real today, that self. It had grey and dry contours (the same I picture concepts with) and a flimsy fragile texture, clearly embedded in thought processes. I had a moment of clearly seeing how it was built up by recollections from the past and plans for the future. Without those, there's only a witnessing and being present to now. Comfortably neutral. When managing to keep that going, I breathe better and I feel freer. (Still I...)
Nice.
Funnily enough, when I read those questions yesterday, i felt I was going to have to think a lot about my answers. Today I feel that the questions have disintegrated. They all have a tinge of absurdity, don't they?
That's what I was hoping for when I asked those questions. That you would notice the tinge of absurdity they have and the expectations you have around what happens when the illusion is seen trough.

I suppose that the husband's diagnosis and this falling into the unknown make you feel afraid sometimes? If that's the case, LU has a very good way to deal with the fear, that you may try if you want to. This way of looking at fear has the goal of seeing if there is a self that is behind the fear and needs to be protected but it may be helpful also when dealing with strong emotions and sensations.

Ilona explains this better tham I could (https://markedeternal.blogspot.pt/p/start-here.html), so I will copy past what she says here:

  • "Step 1
    Clearing the path

    Write this down.
    There is no separate self at all in reality. No agent that is in charge, no manager, no watcher, no owner of life; all there is is life flowing freely as one movement.

    Watch, wait, notice, write- what comes up? Is there fear? Is there doubt? Resistance? Frustration? Something that wants to scream and make a turn away, something that says this is not working? Or maybe there is feeling of wow, joy, relief?
    Notice all that is going on inside and just put it down in writing.

    ................
    Done? Bring all closer. If there is fear, focus on fear.
    Notice, that it's protection mechanism. The fear itself is like a door, it holds you from looking behind the door. But it's just fear. It’s ok for it to be here, it is only doing it’s job. Just let it be there, acknowledge its presence with respect and gratitude, check where it feels physically in the body. Notice sensation.

    What is fear itself?
    What is it protecting?
    What needs to be protected?
    What is that feels threatened?

    Ask it to reveal why it’s here, what it is trying to tell you, ask the fear to share it’s wisdom.
    If there is no self, then there is nothing that needs to be protected, right?
    Honor the feeling. Bow to it, thank it for doing it’s job. Notice, it is here to protect, it's a friend. Fer is really love in disguise. It is only showing you where to look, the dark areas.

    Now look behind it.
    Is there anything behind the fear?
    if so, what? And what is behind that?

    ( note that the silence is not the absence of answer, it is the answer)
"

If you try this, let me know how it goes.

What do you think is creating the illusion that you are a separate self at the time being?
Do you still believe you are the body or something inside it? Or that you are the thinker of thoughts? The witness of what is going on? The feeler of sensations and emotions? A person that controls life? Something else?

Wishing you the best, take care
C

User avatar
Eauvive
Posts: 42
Joined: Sat Nov 18, 2017 9:15 pm

Re: Beyond the ceiling

Postby Eauvive » Sun Nov 26, 2017 10:43 pm

Dear Canfora,

this is all ever so helpful, thank you. I will try the fear exploration you sent and reflect on your questions. It might take a little while because there is so much to absorb here, and I want to stay mindful so I need to go slowly.

It is likely that we still have a few years ahead of us as a family, but this diagnosis does bring home forcefully that we're not in command... and that life flows. It is very strange that I have come to LU just in time for the thread to help me observe my views in this situation. I know pain is a portal.

I will come back to you soon.

Thanks again for being my guide, and take care too,

Eau Vive


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