Who or what am I ?

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Marc108
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Who or what am I ?

Postby Marc108 » Wed Apr 24, 2019 9:34 am

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
In the west real, means that what can be perceived ; in Indian philosophy real means that which is not subject to change. A self can be perceived, so for a western mindset it is real. Self is subject to change, so, for an Indian it's not real. A self depends on causes and conditions and so does not exist inherently, it's only an appearance.

What are you looking for at LU?
To undo wrong beliefs about a self. To deepen my understanding and realization of "no-self", to unravel mistaken beliefs about a self that would be "out there" or "in there", or in my mind. A support in the process of disidentifying from an illusory self.

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
I expect that this will improve my realization of the absence of a permanent self, of the thrue nature of my mind and the world in general so that I may be more wise, lucid and live in harmony with the truth.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
I followed Buddhist teachings for over 35 years, I received teachings on emptiness and Mahamudra; I do at least 2 hours meditation a day, since more than 10 years. But there are still a lot of discoveries to make about the emptiness of self !

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

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forgetmenot
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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby forgetmenot » Wed May 01, 2019 11:26 pm

Hi Marc,

My name is Kay, and I am happy to assist you in exploring the idea of the separate self. At LU we are described as guides - not teachers as our role is to directly point to what IS, through the use of exercises and questions. Your role is to LOOK carefully to what is being pointed at. It is this simple LOOKING (not thinking) that brings the realisation that there is no separate self and never has been. This is an experiential based guiding and is not a discussion or a debate.

Here are links to information I would like you to read before we begin.

Disclaimer:-

http://liberationunleashed.com/disclaimer-2/

Terms & Conditions:-

https://www.liberationunleashed.com/register/terms/


“Liberation Unleashed is not …” in the FAQ’s of LU.

http://liberationunleashed.com/about/faq/#faq-1041


Please learn to use the quote function. When replying to a question, please use the quote function to highlight the question being answered. Instructions are located in the link below:

viewtopic.php?f=4&t=660

Please confirm that you have read the disclaimer and the other links and we can then begin the exploration.

Kay
Nothing real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists.
https://freedomalreadyis.com/

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Marc108
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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby Marc108 » Thu May 02, 2019 10:44 pm

I am awareness bottled in a time-space conditioned body-mind.
I am an ever changing knowing faculty.

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forgetmenot
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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby forgetmenot » Thu May 02, 2019 10:49 pm

If you want to be guided, please answer the questions asked...the first being, please confirm you have read the disclaimer and other links.

Thanks
Nothing real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists.
https://freedomalreadyis.com/

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Marc108
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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby Marc108 » Fri May 03, 2019 12:45 pm

Hello, yes, I have read the disclaimer and general conditions and agree with them.

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Marc108
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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby Marc108 » Fri May 03, 2019 12:46 pm

I also read the other links.

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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby forgetmenot » Fri May 03, 2019 10:29 pm

Hi Marc,

Thank you for reading the links, including the disclaimer and learning how to use the quote function.

Some housekeeping guidelines:-
1. Post at least once a day, or every second day. If you need more time, or are unable to post for several days, just write a quick post on your thread to let me know please.

2. Please answer what's true for you once you have looked to see what is being pointed at, rather than any sort of 'ideal' answer. Ideal answers may sound good but will be of no benefit to you in having you realise that there is no separate self. There is no one judging answers given, so please be100% honest in your answers and inquiry.

3. This exploration is based on actual experience (AE) - smell, taste, sound, sensation, colour and observed thoughts. Long-winded analytical and philosophical answers are best avoided and may even hinder progress. This is not a self-improvement process. There is no ‘self’ to improve.

4. Put aside all other teachings, philosophies, rituals, practices, books/reading and so on for the remainder of this investigation. Really put all your effort and attention in to seeing this reality, as it is. If you have a daily meditation practice, it is fine to continue that but is not necessary for this exploration. Be here with an open and curious mind.

Technology is not perfect and sometimes there is a glitch which can wipe out your responses. It is advisable that you copy and paste questions asked into Word, answer them there and then copy and paste them to your thread. Always save a copy of what you have done in Word - it will save you time in the long run!

To begin with, so that we both become aware of what your expectations are about this exploration ie what life will look like; what life will feel like and what you want/hope will change or not change etc. Could you please answer the 4 following questions in your own words:-

How will life change?
How will you change?
What will be different?
What is missing?


Throughout this exploration I would like you to answer all questions that I have written in blue text. Please answer questions individually, remembering to use the quote function to highlight the question being answered.

Kay
Nothing real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists.
https://freedomalreadyis.com/

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Marc108
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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby Marc108 » Sat May 04, 2019 8:34 pm

Code: Select all

How will life change?
I don't know how life will change but without ego life would be more fluid. Less ego allows more openness to life. Life in itself is an ongoing process of continuous and unpredictable change. I realised that my senses and mind are fountains of ever changing information that I can't control, that my senses and mind allow the internal and external world to be an expression of my deepest being and that apart from this there is nothing, no personal self and no experience outside of my awareness.

Code: Select all

How will you change?
I should drop any resistance to what happens. I want to be continuously aware of the fact that I am nothing but a deep, universal peace and that everything is just the manifestation of my mind. Sometimes I forget it, it happens that I get caught in the movements of events.

Code: Select all

What will be different?
I'd be more fearless and without expectations, just joyfully letting phenomena be what they are.

Code: Select all

What is missing?
Love and a continuous awareness of being nothing but an expression of the universe.

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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby forgetmenot » Sat May 04, 2019 11:52 pm

Hi Marc,

You need to use the ‘quote’ button and not the ‘code’ button.

The questions were a means to seeing what expectations you have about what this exploration will give you, and how life will look ‘after’. Expectations compare what is happening now to an imagined future happening, and if the current happening does not match the imagined, this is then labelled as ‘liberated’ or ‘not liberated and can blindside the fact that it is seen that there is an absence of a separate self. When desired expectations are not met, fear, anger, resistance, resentment, frustration can arise, so be aware of this also and let me know if and when this happens. There is nothing to be done with expectations other than to be aware of them and any others that appear as we move through this exploration.

When you read my responses, be aware of what arises for you.
How will life change?
I don't know how life will change but without ego life would be more fluid. Less ego allows more openness to life. Life in itself is an ongoing process of continuous and unpredictable change. I realised that my senses and mind are fountains of ever changing information that I can't control, that my senses and mind allow the internal and external world to be an expression of my deepest being and that apart from this there is nothing, no personal self and no experience outside of my awareness.
There has never been a separate self….ever, so there is no one who is expressing their deepest being as an internal or external world. For there to be an ego mean that there is a ‘you’ and an ego and a ‘universe’ which = 3. There is no separation in any shape or form.
How will you change?
I should drop any resistance to what happens. I want to be continuously aware of the fact that I am nothing but a deep, universal peace and that everything is just the manifestation of my mind. Sometimes I forget it, it happens that I get caught in the movements of events.
There is no one or no thing that has a ‘mind’ that is manifesting anything. That is new age spiritual stories. There has never been a separate self, so how can anything be different. Paradoxically, thought, perception changes on what you think you are and what you think life is. The idea that ‘you’ become a walking pillar of silence and peace exuding love and light is just that…an idea, a story, an expectation as a means to get away from what you think life is and how life is happening to you, and how you think yourself to be.
What will be different?
I'd be more fearless and without expectations, just joyfully letting phenomena be what they are.
That is already happening. There are only thoughts appearing saying that there is something that is resisting life and is fearful. Emotions still appear, they have always appeared, but they are not happening TO you. Sickness, death, sadness, heartbreak, losing jobs etc also still happen. Life continues.
What is missing?
Love and a continuous awareness of being nothing but an expression of the universe.
There is nothing missing and never has been…it is an impossibility for anything to be missing, especially the awareness of what actually IS.

Kay
Nothing real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists.
https://freedomalreadyis.com/

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Marc108
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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby Marc108 » Sun May 05, 2019 11:34 pm

Hi Kay, thanks for your very interesting reply.
How will life change?
...
There has never been a separate self….ever
While reading this last sentence I felt like my rationality was being knocked out and at the same time some joy, excitement or happiness came up, something like "ah, so I don't have to care about a self, what a relief ! Life is incredibly more beautiful than I imagined ! "
Today some of my expectations were not met (one of my car tires broke). I felt a strong frustration, but I decided that it didn't happen to a separate "me", it just happened; so I have just let that frustration be what it was without investing any energy to increase or decrease it. I just looked at it, then had to focus on finding a solution to the tire problem and the frustration vanished by itself very quickly. No self had a problem...
There is no separation in any shape or form.
This is huge. Mindblowing. Impossible to comment.
How will I change ?
I dont't have to look for changing myself since there's no self. In fact, until now, I lived as if I was going to have to pass an end-of-year (or end-of-life ?) exam at which I had to be the best or at least very good. I understand now that this was an illusion, a burden that constantly obscured my vision of life and my attitudes.
What will be different?
I understand that thoughts, feelings, emotions don't happen to anyone, they're just momentarily present. They are ever changing forms of my awareness and, as such, this will not change.
What is missing?
I see now that everything that appears is completely full of itself and that appearances never miss anything.

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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby forgetmenot » Mon May 06, 2019 12:25 am

Hello Marc,
Today some of my expectations were not met (one of my car tires broke). I felt a strong frustration, but I decided that it didn't happen to a separate "me", it just happened; so I have just let that frustration be what it was without investing any energy to increase or decrease it. I just looked at it, then had to focus on finding a solution to the tire problem and the frustration vanished by itself very quickly. No self had a problem...
Expectations of any kind, and attachment to outcomes, are what create the idea of suffering.

a) Expectations - formulating strategies on how to bring about/create what you think you need to be happy.

b) Attachment to outcomes – the feelings that arise in the moment when things don’t go right, which is pain (be it physical, financial, emotional), in the moment. It isn’t the experience of pain that creates 'suffering', it is the resistance, the non-acceptance of how it happened which didn't go according to desired expectations. Along with that comes blame (on someone/something else) or guilt.

As stated in my first post, my role is to directly point to what IS, through the use of exercises and questions. Your role is to LOOK carefully to what is being pointed at. It is this simple LOOKING (not thinking) that brings the realisation that there is no separate self and never has been.

So now we become aware of actual experience (AE) and what LOOKING is.
‘Looking’ is just plain looking at actual/direct experience (AE), which is simply colour (image), sound, smell, sensation, taste and the simple knowing of thought at face value that is appearing right now in the moment. You are looking at the raw experience of AE and noticing the labels and thoughts ABOUT the raw experience. The key to this exploration is the careful LOOKING. Why? Because it’s the act of actually LOOKING and not finding an “I” that brings about the realisation of there being no separate self and that there has never been a separate self.

So first we become aware of what AE is and how it is used to ‘look’.

I would like you to sit quietly and close your eyes and just listen to the sounds for a few minutes that can be heard both inside and outside of the room. Really hear them.

Tell me ONE sound that you heard when doing this? (Make sure it is a sound that you will be able to hear again for part 2 of this exercise).

Kay
Nothing real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists.
https://freedomalreadyis.com/

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Marc108
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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby Marc108 » Mon May 06, 2019 12:56 pm

Hi Kay,

Ok, we agree on what expectations and attachment to outcomes are and I see what you mean with looking.

Reading your post, I'm sitting next to a window overlooking the street and I hear the noise of cars passing.

Marc

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forgetmenot
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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby forgetmenot » Tue May 07, 2019 12:59 am

Hi Marc,
Reading your post, I'm sitting next to a window overlooking the street and I hear the noise of cars passing.
Great! Now redo Part I of the exercise, and then look carefully at what I am pointing to with the following questions. Please answer from looking at actual experience only (ie colour, sound, thought, smell, taste or sensation), and not from an intellectual answer.

Please repeat the exercise and tell me:-
Without thought, how is it known that the sound heard were cars? In other words, what is it that suggest the sound were cars?

What is the actual experience (AE) of hearing ‘cars passing’? ‘


Kay
Nothing real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists.
https://freedomalreadyis.com/

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Marc108
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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby Marc108 » Tue May 07, 2019 8:53 am

Hello Kay,

The actual experience of cars passing is just a knowledge, passively received through the ears.

On the one hand, hearing, just hearing (AE), requires no mental work, it just appears in my awareness or, more precisely, my awareness becomes the hearing.

On the other hand, labelling the sound requires mental work, it is clearly the result of work done by another part of the brain, different from the one that is just observing the sound. Without a thought activity, undertaken voluntarily, it cannot be known that the sound were cars. Through this mental construction work of thoughts my attention will seek references in my memory and stick labels on the stimuli given by the senses.

Thank you for giving me the opportunity to clarify this.

Marc

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Re: Who or what am I ?

Postby forgetmenot » Tue May 07, 2019 9:05 am

Hello Marc,

I would like you to get into the habit now…of copying and pasting my question into your post and using the quote function to highlight the questions being answered please.
The actual experience of cars passing is just a knowledge, passively received through the ears.
How does that answer relate to AE? Actual experience is simply sound, thought, sensation, colour, smell and taste.

So answering with one of those 6 ‘senses’, Without thought, how is it known that the sound heard were cars? In other words, what is it that suggest the sound were cars?
On the one hand, hearing, just hearing (AE), requires no mental work, it just appears in my awareness or, more precisely, my awareness becomes the hearing.
For there to be someone who is hearing sound means that there is an object/subject split. There is no separation.

So ‘cars passing’ is AE of sound.
On the other hand, labelling the sound requires mental work, it is clearly the result of work done by another part of the brain, different from the one that is just observing the sound. Without a thought activity, undertaken voluntarily, it cannot be known that the sound were cars. Through this mental construction work of thoughts my attention will seek references in my memory and stick labels on the stimuli given by the senses.
What is the AE of 'brain'. Is it thought, sensation, smell, taste, sound or colour?

All of what you wrote in that paragraph s AE of thought. Thoughts either point to AE or they point to thoughts about thought.

Kay
Nothing real can be threatened. Nothing unreal exists.
https://freedomalreadyis.com/


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