Recognition of oneness?

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Skygazer74
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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby Skygazer74 » Mon Jul 15, 2019 8:43 pm

Interesting :)
Everything that I am is made up of these senses
So what is that, what is 'everything that I am?'
My whole world is made up of these sense perceptions, with my mind labeling everything
So I have to be picky even if sometimes it is just language - what about the whole world made up of these perceptions is 'mine,' and what about the mind labelling is 'my?'

These are wonderful realisations, but again not really the scope of this enquiry. I don't want to get into abstractions or other territory, I just want you to know I am not dismissing it at all and think it is all valuable, and/just needing to draw you back to the self enquiry :)

Is there anything about the self that doesn't feel illusory?

You can ask things like - 'I believe in a self because..' and try to complete the sentences. It may be that the hesitations are just a fear or doubt, but I suspect that something needs translation from being understood with the intellect to being lived experience.

Anyway please do come back to the exploration of the hesitations and contractions, and I look forward to your findings.

By the way I am going off to a buddhist festival tomorrow so might not be able to answer all of your posts. I will try to when I can get signal. I will leave you with some explorations before I go though :)

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EvenFlow
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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby EvenFlow » Tue Jul 16, 2019 3:43 am

Everything that I am is made up of these senses
So what is that, what is 'everything that I am?'
I am the experiencing of these senses as they arise in the now. Everything that I took to be "me" is a mental concept made up of a world put together by thoughts. When the concepts are believed, the separate self arises.
My whole world is made up of these sense perceptions, with my mind labeling everything
So I have to be picky even if sometimes it is just language - what about the whole world made up of these perceptions is 'mine,' and what about the mind labelling is 'my?'
There's no personal identity. Experiences happen. A thought will come in trying to make a happening personal, but it can be recognized as just a thought.
Is there anything about the self that doesn't feel illusory?
I've been looking today, and I'm having a hard time finding any feelings about a separate self. I believe the 15 minute exercise you had me do yesterday where I was exploring a perceived body put the light on some unseen assumptions - primarily that my perceived body boundaries were the divider between "inside" and "outside". When looking only at direct experience (and not the thoughts/images that arise), I can find no separation between what thoughts call a body and the world.
Anyway please do come back to the exploration of the hesitations and contractions, and I look forward to your findings.
I don't feel like there's any hesitations or contractions right now. Although I am open to the idea that there is still an identification with a separate self lurking somewhere, it doesn't feel like it right now. I tried using your 'I believe in a self because...', and nothing comes up.
By the way I am going off to a buddhist festival tomorrow so might not be able to answer all of your posts. I will try to when I can get signal. I will leave you with some explorations before I go though :)
Have fun at the festival! I enjoy doing these explorations and am happy to look at any areas that you want me to look at.

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Skygazer74
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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby Skygazer74 » Tue Jul 16, 2019 2:42 pm

Hi Evenflow,

Shall I keep calling you Evenflow or would you prefer me to use your name?

This sounds great, I’m happy that the boundary exercises led to an insight for you. How are these settling in your experience? How does it feel?

What was the illusion of separate self? Can you describe what it was and how this has changed? What are you noticing during the day that is different? Does life feel different?


I’d like you to look at a few things while I’m away.

Senses: when you look at an object, can you find any division between subject and object in DE? Can you find anyone looking, can you find your eyes or anything seeing? Where is the seeing?
Same with sounds, is there any division in experience between source and hearer? where is sound heard?

Sometimes when you respond it sounds like there is someone experiencing senses, an entity behind the sensing, or collating data?
Have a look to see if there is a sense of a watcher, a controller or a decision-maker?


And this one is beautiful on a nice day :)

Go out into nature and while walking just have a look for if anyone is directing the walking, controlling movements, deciding what to look at...

Spend some time watching the movement of the whole. See how clouds move, trees swing, leaves wiggle, grass moves, insects, birds - all move all the time.

Then move focus to sensations and see how they too are in constant motion, thoughts come and go, sounds, colours, sensations come and go.

Notice that everything is part of one movement.

Then close your eyes and see if there is a line between you and out there, between you and life itself. If yes, where is the boundary?
Is there an inside and an outside of Life?
Is there something which is not included in the movement of the whole?
Is there a witness that is watching life happening from a distance?
Is witnessing part of the one movement too?
Is there anything which is not just happening?

Go out, come back and tell me what you found :)


I will keep checking my phone when I can - although cannot seem to use the quote function from my mobile I will do my best to continue guiding whilst there.

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EvenFlow
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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby EvenFlow » Wed Jul 17, 2019 4:04 am

Hi Skygazer74 - you can call me Andy.

I wanted to check in and let you know that I had a busy day with my children and was not able to get out into nature. I will work on this tomorrow and respond to your questions then.

Hope the festival is going well!

Thank you,

Andy

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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby EvenFlow » Thu Jul 18, 2019 4:21 am

Hi Skygazer74 - do you prefer to be called something else?
This sounds great, I’m happy that the boundary exercises led to an insight for you. How are these settling in your experience? How does it feel?
It's been an interesting couple of days. I've been walking around in a daze at work. I feel like I have an "energy" in what I would label my chest. I've been looking the mirror and the image that is seen doesn't seem like "me".
What was the illusion of separate self? Can you describe what it was and how this has changed?
The separate self is a mind made entity that exists only in thoughts and beliefs. When the thoughts are believed/given energy, a feeling of separation takes over (which is just another thought). Seeking, resulting in suffering, was carried out to try and get whole again. A hidden belief that I had was that "I" was located in a body. When doing the looking exercises, I was able to see that, based on direct experience, there is no boundary to the sensations felt in what I would label my body. There is actually no boundaries that can be found in any of my actual experiences. The mind (thoughts), however, construct artificial boundaries. Once the thoughts about separation were seen through, it was realized that there never was any seperation.
What are you noticing during the day that is different? Does life feel different?
I'm noticing that an "I" or a "me" doesn't get attached to everything, making everything personal and about "me". When those thoughts do arise, they can be seen through. Sometimes it takes a little while, but eventually a thought along the lines of "who is the 'I' being referred to" comes up. Since there is no thinker of the thoughts, the thoughts are seen as any other experiences that are arising in the now - not good or bad - they just are.
Senses: when you look at an object, can you find any division between subject and object in DE?
No - there is only seeing.
Can you find anyone looking, can you find your eyes or anything seeing?
I cannot find the seer of the sights. When looking only at direct experience, seeing happens. Thoughts sometimes arise saying "of course you have eyes" or "of course there are objects over there", but in direct experience it's just colors and patterns. It's the mind that creates the objects and says that there are eyes/a brain/a body.
Where is the seeing?


There is no boundary on the seeing.
Same with sounds, is there any division in experience between source and hearer? where is sound heard?
No, there is just hearing, with no discernible boundary.
Sometimes when you respond it sounds like there is someone experiencing senses, an entity behind the sensing, or collating data?
Have a look to see if there is a sense of a watcher, a controller or a decision-maker?
I don't want to rule anything out, and I want to be thorough in my explorations, but it doesn't feel like there's a watcher, controller, or decision maker. It feels like experiences happen. I am open to exploring this further if you think that there's something not being seen.
Then close your eyes and see if there is a line between you and out there, between you and life itself. If yes, where is the boundary?
Is there an inside and an outside of Life?
No boundaries can be found
Is there something which is not included in the movement of the whole?
No - it's just one big happening.
Is there a witness that is watching life happening from a distance?
No
Is witnessing part of the one movement too?
Experiencing and thinking happens. There is an awareness of the experiences, but it is not independent of the movement.
Is there anything which is not just happening?


No. Thoughts might state otherwise, but they are also just happening, the content of which no one controls.


There's a lot of stuff here - please enjoy your festival and feel free to wait until you get home to respond so you don't have to type on your phone.

- Andy

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Skygazer74
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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby Skygazer74 » Mon Jul 22, 2019 4:53 pm

Hi Andy,

I am back and tired but was very good :)

This sounds really positive, how have you been over the weekend? Any shifts or openings, or doubts?

Did you get a chance to go out into nature?

Best wishes,

Nic

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EvenFlow
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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby EvenFlow » Tue Jul 23, 2019 4:54 pm

Hi Nic - glad to hear the festival went well!
This sounds really positive, how have you been over the weekend? Any shifts or openings, or doubts?
Not much has changed, although the "energetic" sensations have died down, and I'm not walking around in a daze any longer. No new shifts/openings. "I" thoughts still come up (especially the thought of "I've got this 'spirituality' thing down pat", but they are recognized relatively quickly. I started doing yoga again. I've lost interest in some more things (primarily playing video games, which used to be a daily activity).
Did you get a chance to go out into nature?
Although not explicitly stated above, the questions I answered from your previous post about going out into nature were from my experience of going out into nature. There's a nature reserve on a historical property by my house where I will sometimes go for walks. The sun was shining, wind was blowing, and life was lifeing. Looking at trees and grass and water without the filters and perceptions that the mind had placed on everything opens up a whole world of beauty that was always there but never seen.

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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby Skygazer74 » Wed Jul 24, 2019 10:07 am

Looking at trees and grass and water without the filters and perceptions that the mind had placed on everything opens up a whole world of beauty that was always there but never seen.

Yes, I found this too, that the world is so much more beautiful beyond all the filters!

the questions I answered from your previous post about going out into nature were from my experience of going out into nature

I understand you are busy, but it would be good to do the looking in experience rather than from memory. Memory ensures that what is happening is in thought if you see what I mean? It would be great if you could look into these questions:


The story of "me’ can seem to have continuity. Is it really continuous? Or are there simply isolated thoughts that never can truly touch each other, some of them claiming that there's one continuous story?

Can you find memory and the stories about 'me' in direct experience?
So what are memories and stories?

"I" thoughts still come up

Is this a thought which seems or tries to solidify the 'I' or do you mean the language of the thought contains the word 'I?'


Do the thoughts about 'I' seek to form a sense of self, either in continuity, or in a sense of an 'I who has got this spirituality thing down pat?' :)

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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby EvenFlow » Thu Jul 25, 2019 5:59 pm

Hi Nic -
the questions I answered from your previous post about going out into nature were from my experience of going out into nature

I understand you are busy, but it would be good to do the looking in experience rather than from memory. Memory ensures that what is happening is in thought if you see what I mean? It would be great if you could look into these questions:
I don't think I accurately conveyed what I was trying to say in this post. My answers at the bottom of my response on July 17th were in regards to the questions that you posed in the previous post about going out into nature - something that I did that day. The blurb from my post on 7/23 was from memory. With that being said, although I answered your questions on the day that I did go out into nature, I didn't bring my laptop with me and answer the questions in real time - I posted after I got home. Was the intention for me to post while I was out in nature?
The story of "me’ can seem to have continuity. Is it really continuous? Or are there simply isolated thoughts that never can truly touch each other, some of them claiming that there's one continuous story?
They are isolated thoughts, sometimes having the same, or seemingly continuous, content as previous thoughts, but are seen as not "connected". These thoughts happen infrequently.
Can you find memory and the stories about 'me' in direct experience?
So what are memories and stories?
I cannot find memories or stories. There are just thoughts, appearing only in the now, of which the content is sometimes about "me" or the "story of me".
"I" thoughts still come up

Is this a thought which seems or tries to solidify the 'I' or do you mean the language of the thought contains the word 'I?'

Do the thoughts about 'I' seek to form a sense of self, either in continuity, or in a sense of an 'I who has got this spirituality thing down pat?' :)
Sometimes it's the language, and sometimes it seems like they try to form a sense of self. When investigated, they are seen as just thoughts. I feel very confused today. It's like a sense of separate self seems to be there, but when investigated, the only things that are found are sensations and thoughts. Even the confusion, when investigated, is just sensations and thoughts. Thoughts arise that "something's missing" or "not realized". Those are thoughts are also recognized as thoughts. Not sure if this is making sense - it's just what's happening right now.

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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby Skygazer74 » Sat Jul 27, 2019 1:12 pm

Was the intention for me to post while I was out in nature?
Hi Andy, no sorry, I think I misunderstood and thought you were remembering time in nature rather than doing the exercise :)
In that case, it sounds like it went very well and we are getting there :)
I feel very confused today. It's like a sense of separate self seems to be there, but when investigated, the only things that are found are sensations and thoughts
This can be confusing, especially to the construct that is being seen through! If it is any help, there is nothing that is being lost as it was never there. All that is happening is an illusion is falling away. Life becomes so much clearer :) However if at any time this feels too much do feel free to pause, take time in nature as it is such a healer and teacher, I don't want you to suffer or pressurise yourself (so to speak!)
Thoughts arise that "something's missing" or "not realized". Those are thoughts are also recognized as thoughts. Not sure if this is making sense - it's just what's happening right now.
Ok so there are thoughts, and it is good that they are known as simply thought, but they are perhaps caused by sense that something is still obstructing that clarity. Are you able to investigate this and really look at them?
"something's missing" or "not realized"
What is that? Keep asking, perhaps when you are quite still and open, and let the answers come.

It seems from your replies so far that it is really clear that there is no seer of sight, hearer of sound, thinker of thoughts. It seems clear that the self only exists as thought? Does that feel really clear, as a gut sense?

Just remember that this investigation is simply looking into experience and seeing that what we thought was happening, this assumption of an I who is perceiving, thinking, controlling, and always in relation to 'other' is not actually to be found. In your awareness right now, the only way a split or separation can be found between 'I' and 'not I' is as a mental construct. Have a look and see for yourself :)

Best wishes,

Nic

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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby EvenFlow » Mon Jul 29, 2019 3:59 am

Hi Nic -

Just wanted to let you know that I've had a very busy couple of days, but I will respond to your post tomorrow. Hope all is well with you. Thanks again for your insights throughout this exploration.

- Andy

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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby EvenFlow » Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:14 pm

I feel very confused today. It's like a sense of separate self seems to be there, but when investigated, the only things that are found are sensations and thoughts
This can be confusing, especially to the construct that is being seen through! If it is any help, there is nothing that is being lost as it was never there. All that is happening is an illusion is falling away. Life becomes so much clearer :) However if at any time this feels too much do feel free to pause, take time in nature as it is such a healer and teacher, I don't want you to suffer or pressurise yourself (so to speak!)
I am willing to do whatever it takes to finish this investigation. With that being said, the confusion has died down.
Thoughts arise that "something's missing" or "not realized". Those are thoughts are also recognized as thoughts. Not sure if this is making sense - it's just what's happening right now.
Ok so there are thoughts, and it is good that they are known as simply thought, but they are perhaps caused by sense that something is still obstructing that clarity. Are you able to investigate this and really look at them?
When looked at deeply, it's a combination of sensations and thoughts that suggest that something is not seen. When the sensations are probed, they "relax". When the thoughts are looked at, they are seen through as thought, and not reality.
"something's missing" or "not realized"
What is that? Keep asking, perhaps when you are quite still and open, and let the answers come.


I believe the challenge is with the concept of "oneness" or "wholeness". I realize that there's not a separate self. My mind is quiet a good portion of the "now", and I don't live in the past or the future through the identification with thoughts. I'm accepting of what arises, and realize that there's no where for me to go, and nothing for me to do, aside from what's right here, right now. I see that there are no boundaries through any of my experiences. With all this being said, I still don't feel like there is an understanding of "oneness".
It seems from your replies so far that it is really clear that there is no seer of sight, hearer of sound, thinker of thoughts. It seems clear that the self only exists as thought? Does that feel really clear, as a gut sense?

Just remember that this investigation is simply looking into experience and seeing that what we thought was happening, this assumption of an I who is perceiving, thinking, controlling, and always in relation to 'other' is not actually to be found. In your awareness right now, the only way a split or separation can be found between 'I' and 'not I' is as a mental construct. Have a look and see for yourself :)
I know that there's no one sensing, thinking, perceiving. I think your second to last sentence here is helpful. There is no separation in the ever changing, only right now, experiencing of what is.

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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby Skygazer74 » Tue Jul 30, 2019 1:05 pm

Hi Andy,

Sounds like your experience is gaining clarity? I have a few questions though!
I'm accepting of what arises, and realize that there's no where for me to go, and nothing for me to do, aside from what's right here, right now. I see that there are no boundaries through any of my experiences.

It sounds here, as if there is a sense of a me who accepts, who can go somewhere or nowhere, and is the owner of experiences? This may just be language but please have a look because it doesn't feel like we are quite done yet?


I still don't feel like there is an understanding of "oneness".
In a way, that comes across as a distraction - this investigation isn't about understanding oneness. 'Oneness' is a word, it is a concept, and we are looking into what you can and cannot find in experience. Can you find oneness?

Sometimes the mind or ego can throw up intellectual confusion to prevent the seeing, which can feel threatening. I remember when I looked into agency and decisions, and when the absence of these started to be seen I had all kinds of thoughts about karma and conditionality, all kinds of doubts about what exactly is happening then!? I was just brought back to the simple questions - can you find this in experience? The absence of selfhood may be revealing a void which the mind is anxious to fill with concepts or explanations?

I wonder if this is what is happening with 'oneness?' You do identify that it is a concept, so I am wondering how it relates to selfhood. Is there identification with the concept of oneness? What does it really mean?

Is the concept of oneness helpful and if so in what way?


I am not on the attack in terms of view or even oneness, I am just trying to unpick why it may be blocking you. Constructs and views can be helpful for a time, but ultimately are still constructs and views. Oneness seems like a relatively neutral description of reality, although seemingly paradoxically all things are unique and beautiful as well.
I am willing to do whatever it takes to finish this investigation. With that being said, the confusion has died down.
This is great - I know it can be tough and mind-boggling at times! If things feel too much it might help to balance wisdom with loving kindness and compassion :)

Best wishes,

NIc

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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby EvenFlow » Thu Aug 01, 2019 4:01 am

Hi Nic - hope all is well.
I'm accepting of what arises, and realize that there's no where for me to go, and nothing for me to do, aside from what's right here, right now. I see that there are no boundaries through any of my experiences.

It sounds here, as if there is a sense of a me who accepts, who can go somewhere or nowhere, and is the owner of experiences? This may just be language but please have a look because it doesn't feel like we are quite done yet?
It's difficult to talk about what's happening without some sort of self referential language. I don't believe that there is anyone having the experiences. With that being said, I will look closely at this.
I still don't feel like there is an understanding of "oneness".
In a way, that comes across as a distraction - this investigation isn't about understanding oneness. 'Oneness' is a word, it is a concept, and we are looking into what you can and cannot find in experience. Can you find oneness?

Sometimes the mind or ego can throw up intellectual confusion to prevent the seeing, which can feel threatening. I remember when I looked into agency and decisions, and when the absence of these started to be seen I had all kinds of thoughts about karma and conditionality, all kinds of doubts about what exactly is happening then!? I was just brought back to the simple questions - can you find this in experience? The absence of selfhood may be revealing a void which the mind is anxious to fill with concepts or explanations?

I wonder if this is what is happening with 'oneness?' You do identify that it is a concept, so I am wondering how it relates to selfhood. Is there identification with the concept of oneness? What does it really mean?

Is the concept of oneness helpful and if so in what way?


I am not on the attack in terms of view or even oneness, I am just trying to unpick why it may be blocking you. Constructs and views can be helpful for a time, but ultimately are still constructs and views. Oneness seems like a relatively neutral description of reality, although seemingly paradoxically all things are unique and beautiful as well.
Please allow me another day or two to sit with this. I see that "oneness" is a concept. It doesn't feel like there's as much "energy" around this now. I will look closely and report back.

It's been a long couple of days with my kids and work, but I don't have my children this weekend, and I can sit with your suggestions undisturbed.

Thank you for your insights and guidance,

Andy

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Re: Recognition of oneness?

Postby Skygazer74 » Thu Aug 01, 2019 11:03 am

Hi Andy,

Sure, there is no rush. I feel to give you this exercise to try as well when you have time for it. It may help work out where the self still exists for you :)


Thought points to the feet being ‘down there’, so presumably you are above your feet. Where are you?

Sit quietly, take in a few deep breaths and then close your eyes.

Locate where you feel yourself to be. Locate yourself vertically in the body, horizontally to the left or right, and depth, how far in. Feel how big you are, where you reside. Then point with a finger to ‘you’. Open your eyes, where is your finger pointing?


Hope you have time for some rest as well,

Nic


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