Accepting What Is

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StellaA
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Accepting What Is

Postby StellaA » Tue Aug 13, 2019 10:33 pm

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
I have learned in my travels that the sages say we are One. One Self. How is it then possible that there could be all these little selves running around?

What are you looking for at LU?
I’m looking for help to experience what I wrote in the answer above. I have the intellectual understanding but not the experience of it. And perhaps, even the One Self is not the truth either. I want to know and experience the truth. (Almost said for “my self” but then the point is there is none. I want to be able to accept what is in the moment without judgement.

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
An honest and no-nonsense pointing and course correction for when I fall into an old patterns. Prompt and continuous conversation in both directions. An opportunity to ask questions about the parts that seem confusing or unclear. To point out when I’m being dishonest with myself on this path.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
A long string of teachings...Catholic, Sufi, Quaker, Rudolf Steiner, Guerjieff, non-dual lately with Ramana Maharishi, all kinds of teachers, YouTube’s, books.... A daily meditation practice for almost 2 years now. A member of Awakening-Together.org following Regina Dawn Aker’s broad teachings as well.

On a scale from 1 to 10, how willing are you to question any currently held beliefs about 'self?
10
“We are knee-deep in a river searching for water.” - Kabir Helminiski

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Vivien
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Re: Accepting What Is

Postby Vivien » Tue Aug 20, 2019 5:35 am

Hi,

My name is Vivien, and I am happy to assist in exploring 'no-self' and other related topics.

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.

This is YOUR inquiry. I will not be giving you new ideas and beliefs; only assisting you in examining and questioning the ones that you already have.

Before we begin, here are links to information I would like you to read please.
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

A few ground rules:
1. Post at least once a day, if you cannot post, or need more time, please let me know.
2. Be 100% honest in your answers and inquiry.
3. This exploration is based on Actual (or Direct) Experience (AE or DE) - smell, taste, sound, sensation, color and thoughts - only. 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 and such 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 and essential meditation practice, it is fine to continue that.
5. Understand that I will be guiding you, rather than teaching you, and the more you put into this process the more you will get out of it.

A few technical support:

- You can reply to this thread by pushing the 'Post Reply" button at the left bottom of this page.
- You can learn to use the quote function, instructions are located in the link below this line:
viewtopic.php?f=4&t=660

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, it will save time in the long run.


If you are happy to agree to the above and have me your guide, we can start the process.
To begin with, so that we both become aware of what your expectations are about this exploration (for example, what life will look and feel like and what you want/hope will change or not change). Could you please answer the following questions:

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.

Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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StellaA
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Re: Accepting What Is

Postby StellaA » Tue Aug 20, 2019 2:39 pm

Thank you for this time, Vivien. I really appreciate and value it.

I do have one question though. I’ve been a co-leader in a Course In Miracles group for over 4 years now. We read the text every Wednesday for an hour or so. It is not new material, I’ve read it many times. Do I need to stop that during this process?
Thanks for the clarification.

How will Life change?
I really do not know. I started to read Ilona’s book Liberation Unleashed and read 2 of Jed McKenna’s books so I have a vague intellectual idea that it could be a bumpy ride and disconcerting to let go of beliefs that have formed the walls and foundation of my life so far. Of course that’s my inner life, inner landscape. The outer life, may remain the same as it was, it may not. Again, I really do not know. And whatever thinks it has a inkling is getting nervous.
How will you change?
I fear Vivien, you’re going to get bored with me. I really do not know. I have hopes. They are what brought me here. I’m hoping that much of what has made fear, anger, jealousy, judgment, this feeling of dis-ease will fall away. As my thread is named it would be really wonderful to be able to accept what is, as it is, without feeling the need for something else.
What will be different?
Ha! Trick question. Almost wanted to say “me” but then the whole point is to understand there is no “me.” The view of the inner landscape will change. I know you will tell me if my digressions are out of place but as I was waiting for you, I thought back in my life to a time that I was truly happy. Only one memory rose. As a very young girl, maybe 3 years old, maybe 4 she was down at the neighborhood pond. It was spring time and the ice around riverlets of water was melting, she was poking at the ice with a stick, squatted down, with the sun on her. No one else around. Just there. Perfect. I could go on in some kind of description but you get the picture. She was just there. No one else. Nothing else. Not something different, but a return to something that was, is....
What is missing?
Absolutely nothing. I have had the experience of looking for something in my life, my keys, my glasses and not been able to find them. Argh! Where are they? And then come back into the room, turn around and shift my position just a bit, and there they were. They weren’t missing. I just couldn’t see them for a moment. I think this is going to be like that.

Look forward to this journey with you.
“We are knee-deep in a river searching for water.” - Kabir Helminiski

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Vivien
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Re: Accepting What Is

Postby Vivien » Wed Aug 21, 2019 1:21 am

Hi Stella,
Thank you for this time, Vivien. I really appreciate and value it.
You are welcome :)

What would you like me to call you? Is Stella alright? Or would you prefer some other name?


Thank you for getting through these questions about expectations. It’s important, because every expectation is in a way of seeing what is here, right now. Every expectation is a ‘hindrance’ in realizing what IS. Expectations results in comparison. Comparison between what is happening, and the imagined expectation. Thus what has been seen can be thrown out or ignored, since it doesn’t match the expected outcome.

I go through all the expectations one-by-one. While you read them, please pay attention to what arises ‘in the body’. Is there any resistance to any of it?
I have a vague intellectual idea that it could be a bumpy ride and disconcerting to let go of beliefs that have formed the walls and foundation of my life so far.
It could be disconcerting, but not necessarily. It’s different for everyone. It mainly depends on what kind of beliefs and expectations one holds.
And whatever thinks it has a inkling is getting nervous.
What is this nervousness is about?
Is there a fear of seeing through the self? If yes, could you please tell a bit about it?
I fear Vivien, you’re going to get bored with me.
You don’t have to be concerned about whether I get bored or not or how I feel :) I’m here to help you, no matter how long it takes.
I have hopes. They are what brought me here. I’m hoping that much of what has made fear, anger, jealousy, judgment, this feeling of dis-ease will fall away.
Just because the self is seen through, it doesn’t mean necessarily that fear, anger, jealousy, judgement will go away. They won’t, since these are conditioned reactions which needs to deal with after the self is seen through. Seeing through the self is just the first step, it’s just the beginning and not an end.

Seeing through the separate individual is not about not having any ‘bad’ or uncomfortable feelings any more. Rather it’s about encompassing all emotions, accepting WHATEVER is arising in this moment (even the so called negative emotions).
Also, personality problems, traumas, emotional pains don’t dissolve just because of seeing no self. So all the conditioned reactions that stem from them still can arise. However, if someone decides to work on these, it’s usually much easier after seeing no-self.
As my thread is named it would be really wonderful to be able to accept what is, as it is, without feeling the need for something else.
Resisting what is, is also a conditioned habit. Perception changes and with that some reactions may change. The core belief of being a separate self is seen through which also includes others beliefs that support this idea. However, like a rug that is beginning to unravel, there are still many knots (beliefs, patterns) that need undoing. Falling away of conditionings can last at the end of the organism. Continuing to LOOK after the realisation is very much the key. LU only guides to the realisation of ‘no separate self’.
thought back in my life to a time that I was truly happy. Only one memory rose. As a very young girl, maybe 3 years old, maybe 4 she was down at the neighborhood pond. It was spring time and the ice around riverlets of water was melting, she was poking at the ice with a stick, squatted down, with the sun on her. No one else around. Just there. Perfect. I could go on in some kind of description but you get the picture. She was just there. No one else. Nothing else. Not something different, but a return to something that was, is....
Seeing through the self is not about being in a state of happiness or peace (or any state at all) or to return to any previous states. States come and go, they never permanent.

Many seekers believe that seeing through the separate individual is a completely different state that they are currently having, with some special qualities (happiness, bliss, constant peace or whatever). However, this is not the case. Seeing through the illusion that there is a separate entity (self) is not a state. When it is SEEN it, the knowledge becomes factual. Many seekers have the impression that seeing there is no self is a state to ‘abide in’. It's not.

So it’s important to not try to compare whatever is seen with that childhood memory. That state is gone.
Seeing through the self is not a state. If you compare it with any memories or expectations, you might miss what is in front of you, what is here right now.
I have learned in my travels that the sages say we are One. One Self. How is it then possible that there could be all these little selves running around?
And perhaps, even the One Self is not the truth either.
This is a popular spiritual belief that there is one true Self (with capital S) and we just have to get rid of the small self (or egoic self) and abide in the true Self.

This this comment ASSUMES that there are 2 selves, one is the separate self, and the other is the real, true Self. So when the separate self has seen through, only the true Self remains, what I really am.

But this cannot be further from the truth. There are NO 2 selves there. There is no real Self what could remain after seeing through the separate self. The notion of the true/real Self is just a desire on behalf of the separate self. There is no amount of selves. Not 2 (self + Self), not 1 (Self), but zero (no self at all).

When the self has seen through, there will be NOTHING left to identify with and say: “this is what I really am”.
I do have one question though. I’ve been a co-leader in a Course In Miracles group for over 4 years now. We read the text every Wednesday for an hour or so. It is not new material, I’ve read it many times. Do I need to stop that during this process?
There are two reasons why I ask people for stopping reading or listening to any teachers. One is that you can spend your time on looking instead. The more time and energy you put it, the greater the outcome could be. I also ask people to put aside all learned knowledge about how awakening or seeing through the self should be, because those are just learned intellectual knowledge, and you have to see it for yourself, and not relying on others’ experiences.

I am familiar with the ACIM and it is full of descriptions how ‘awakening’ should be like or feel like; it’s a huge storehouse for all sorts of expectations. All fantasies, expectations should be put aside. If not, the seeing can be compared with those expectations with the result “it is not IT!”.

ACIM gives lots of knowledge (beliefs) about ‘awakening’. And our goal is to REMOVE BELIEFS about it, and not to add more. So we are ‘removing’ beliefs by seeing through them, but if you continue to engage with that group, you might undo what we are doing here.

So if you could stop it for the time of our investigation, that would be great. But I cannot tell you how you live your life, so this decision is up to you.

Before starting, please read my above comments a few more times and tell me what comes up by reading the comments about the expectations.
Is there any resistance to any of it?


Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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StellaA
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Re: Accepting What Is

Postby StellaA » Wed Aug 21, 2019 3:11 pm

What would you like me to call you? Is Stella alright? Or would you prefer some other name?
Stella is fine. Thanks.
Thank you for getting through these questions about expectations. It’s important, because every expectation is in a way of seeing what is here, right now. Every expectation is a ‘hindrance’ in realizing what IS. Expectations results in comparison. Comparison between what is happening, and the imagined expectation. Thus what has been seen can be thrown out or ignored, since it doesn’t match the expected outcome. 

I go through all the expectations one-by-one. While you read them, please pay attention to what arises ‘in the body’. Is there any resistance to any of it?
I have a vague intellectual idea that it could be a bumpy ride and disconcerting to let go of beliefs that have formed the walls and foundation of my life so far.
It could be disconcerting, but not necessarily. It’s different for everyone. It mainly depends on what kind of beliefs and expectations one holds.
And whatever thinks it has a inkling is getting nervous.
What is this nervousness is about?
Is there a fear of seeing through the self? If yes, could you please tell a bit about it?
If you go down to the hopes expectation, you'll see some of where the nervousness is coming from. This personality has been very much relied and valued understanding and figuring things out. And what you are talking about is eluding her. Much of her self-worth has been attributed to that she's smart, bright, quick...so if we are not talking about valuing that, who will she be? my stomach is unsettled and there's a feeling of sadness.

Some of the sadness has to do with letting go already of things she values. I told you about ACIM but I am also involved in 3 other projects as well. All spiritual based. All that connected with people I love. Even before your response below about ACIM, I sent emails to them all telling them I was taking a month's "silent retreat" to follow this leading. They've all been wonderful and positive and supportive but it's a lot to empty my life this way. Even before I've started and with no idea what will be the end result. The thought is I will return but if I see through the self, who will be there to return? I have no idea of what may happen or not. And yet, it was almost effortless to decide to send the emails, this is what I feel is right to do.
I fear Vivien, you’re going to get bored with me.
You don’t have to be concerned about whether I get bored or not or how I feel :) I’m here to help you, no matter how long it takes.
I'm so thankful to have a guide!
I have hopes. They are what brought me here. I’m hoping that much of what has made fear, anger, jealousy, judgment, this feeling of dis-ease will fall away.

Just because the self is seen through, it doesn’t mean necessarily that fear, anger, jealousy, judgement will go away. They won’t, since these are conditioned reactions which needs to deal with after the self is seen through. Seeing through the self is just the first step, it’s just the beginning and not an end. 
So there's something else at work besides what I have previously called "me." something that continues to run even when the self is seen through...but it's not another Self. Can see that the mind is trying to slot everything in so stella can understand what she's getting into. I can see already that all my old beliefs of how things "should" be if I'm to be right may not apply here. Stella is desperately trying to put the "rules" together so she can get it "right."
Seeing through the separate individual is not about not having any ‘bad’ or uncomfortable feelings any more. Rather it’s about encompassing all emotions, accepting WHATEVER is arising in this moment (even the so called negative emotions).

Also, personality problems, traumas, emotional pains don’t dissolve just because of seeing no self. So all the conditioned reactions that stem from them still can arise. However, if someone decides to work on these, it’s usually much easier after seeing no-self.
So my understanding that this self that will be seen through is the home and cause of all these "problems" is faulty? Perhaps this mind trying to understand is not helpful? Not sure. Can certainly feel the "wanting" to slot in all the pieces of the puzzle. Chest is a bit constricted. tight. mind looping wide and broad to catch an inspiration.....
As my thread is named it would be really wonderful to be able to accept what is, as it is, without feeling the need for something else.
Resisting what is, is also a conditioned habit. Perception changes and with that some reactions may change. The core belief of being a separate self is seen through which also includes others beliefs that support this idea. However, like a rug that is beginning to unravel, there are still many knots (beliefs, patterns) that need undoing. Falling away of conditionings can last at the end of the organism. Continuing to LOOK after the realisation is very much the key. LU only guides to the realisation of ‘no separate self’.
By the time I got here, it felt like I lost my footing. My understanding of what we would be doing seemed to slip away from me. Contraction. Thoughts of not doing it right rose.
So relax. take it step by step and what comes, comes. Be open. Relax.
thought back in my life to a time that I was truly happy. Only one memory rose. As a very young girl, maybe 3 years old, maybe 4 she was down at the neighborhood pond. It was spring time and the ice around riverlets of water was melting, she was poking at the ice with a stick, squatted down, with the sun on her. No one else around. Just there. Perfect. I could go on in some kind of description but you get the picture. She was just there. No one else. Nothing else. Not something different, but a return to something that was, is....

Seeing through the self is not about being in a state of happiness or peace (or any state at all) or to return to any previous states. States come and go, they never permanent. 

Many seekers believe that seeing through the separate individual is a completely different state that they are currently having, with some special qualities (happiness, bliss, constant peace or whatever). However, this is not the case. Seeing through the illusion that there is a separate entity (self) is not a state. When it is SEEN it, the knowledge becomes factual. Many seekers have the impression that seeing there is no self is a state to ‘abide in’. It's not.

So it’s important to not try to compare whatever is seen with that childhood memory. That state is gone.
Seeing through the self is not a state. If you compare it with any memories or expectations, you might miss what is in front of you, what is here right now.
Disappointment from stella. this is one of her favorite stories. Like it was the truth. Past and future.... not sure I understand what is meant by "state"... something temporary where what you are guiding me to is permanent. Does not change? That doesn't seem right either as what is here right now, changes all the time. Again, confusion.
I have learned in my travels that the sages say we are One. One Self. How is it then possible that there could be all these little selves running around?
And perhaps, even the One Self is not the truth either.
This is a popular spiritual belief that there is one true Self (with capital S) and we just have to get rid of the small self (or egoic self) and abide in the true Self. 

This this comment ASSUMES that there are 2 selves, one is the separate self, and the other is the real, true Self. So when the separate self has seen through, only the true Self remains, what I really am.

But this cannot be further from the truth. There are NO 2 selves there. There is no real Self what could remain after seeing through the separate self. The notion of the true/real Self is just a desire on behalf of the separate self. There is no amount of selves. Not 2 (self + Self), not 1 (Self), but zero (no self at all).
When the self has seen through, there will be NOTHING left to identify with and say: “this is what I really am”. 
Wow, ok. That's a foundational belief of stella's that is being undone. But seeing is believing right? Or maybe not! lol! Again, I don't know and perhaps the best "state" for me right now...
I do have one question though. I’ve been a co-leader in a Course In Miracles group for over 4 years now. We read the text every Wednesday for an hour or so. It is not new material, I’ve read it many times. Do I need to stop that during this process?

There are two reasons why I ask people for stopping reading or listening to any teachers. One is that you can spend your time on looking instead. The more time and energy you put it, the greater the outcome could be. I also ask people to put aside all learned knowledge about how awakening or seeing through the self should be, because those are just learned intellectual knowledge, and you have to see it for yourself, and not relying on others’ experiences.

I am familiar with the ACIM and it is full of descriptions how ‘awakening’ should be like or feel like; it’s a huge storehouse for all sorts of expectations. All fantasies, expectations should be put aside. If not, the seeing can be compared with those expectations with the result “it is not IT!”.

ACIM gives lots of knowledge (beliefs) about ‘awakening’. And our goal is to REMOVE BELIEFS about it, and not to add more. So we are ‘removing’ beliefs by seeing through them, but if you continue to engage with that group, you might undo what we are doing here.

So if you could stop it for the time of our investigation, that would be great. But I cannot tell you how you live your life, so this decision is up to you. 
I have suspended all my group participation of a spiritual nature including the ACIM until our journey is over.
Before starting, please read my above comments a few more times and tell me what comes up by reading the comments about the expectations.
Is there any resistance to any of it?
I've written most of the resistances I felt below each comment. None so oppressive that I'm not willing to move forward. Onwards!
Stella
“We are knee-deep in a river searching for water.” - Kabir Helminiski

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Vivien
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Location: Australia

Re: Accepting What Is

Postby Vivien » Thu Aug 22, 2019 1:29 am

Hi Stella,
Much of her self-worth has been attributed to that she's smart, bright, quick...so if we are not talking about valuing that, who will she be?
This questions assumes that there is a Stella/I/me/self that could be smart, bright and quick.
What we are going to investigate here is not whether Stella is smart or not, but rather there is Stella/self at all.

It’s not just about identifying as smart, but rather to see if there is a self that could identify at all.
Do you see the difference?
Some of the sadness has to do with letting go already of things she values. I told you about ACIM but I am also involved in 3 other projects as well. All spiritual based. All that connected with people I love.
It’s just a temporary measure for the time of our investigation.
The thought is I will return but if I see through the self, who will be there to return? I have no idea of what may happen or not.
There is ALREADY no self there. The future cannot be known. The only thing there is, is this moment.
Stella is desperately trying to put the "rules" together so she can get it "right."
Then we will do everything to side-track this tendency :)

With looking, there are no rules, and getting it right. Looking is completely the opposite of intellectual reasoning and understanding.

It’s looking at the pure, raw experience BEFORE or UNDER the intellectual overlay.
So my understanding that this self that will be seen through is the home and cause of all these "problems" is faulty? Perhaps this mind trying to understand is not helpful?
It’s definitely not helpful.

Can you allow yourself JUST BE and not try to figuring out anything, just for a minute, or maybe two?
How does that feel?

Disappointment from stella. this is one of her favorite stories. Like it was the truth. Past and future.... not sure I understand what is meant by "state"... something temporary where what you are guiding me to is permanent. Does not change? That doesn't seem right either as what is here right now, changes all the time. Again, confusion.
All emotions and moods are states.
Happiness is a state. It never lasts. It comes and goes.
Anger is a state, it comes and goes.
Sadness is a state, never lasts endlessly.
Feeling of expansion is a state.
Feeling of contraction is a state.

Seeing self is not a state, since it’s not dependent on emotions and the accompanying bodily sensations.

So currently, there is ALREADY no self, just the BELIEF in the self.
With this investigation, it will be seen that indeed there is no self anywhere.
So the BELIEF in the self will fall away.
And it will be replaced by the RECOGNITION of no-self.
In other words, the recognition of experience being empty of self.
The recognition that the self is just imagined, assumed, inferred. It’s just a fantasy. Nothing more.

But emotions (states) will still come and go, just as now.
But it will be seen that these states/emotions don’t happen to anybody/anything.
I've written most of the resistances I felt below each comment. None so oppressive that I'm not willing to move forward.
Great! Let’s start it.

What is the I/self for you?

What is the EXPERIENCE of being you/Stella?


Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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StellaA
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Re: Accepting What Is

Postby StellaA » Thu Aug 22, 2019 3:24 pm

Much of her self-worth has been attributed to that she's smart, bright, quick...so if we are not talking about valuing that, who will she be?
This questions assumes that there is a Stella/I/me/self that could be smart, bright and quick.
What we are going to investigate here is not whether Stella is smart or not, but rather there is Stella/self at all.

It’s not just about identifying as smart, but rather to see if there is a self that could identify at all.
Do you see the difference?
At the end of the day yesterday, taking a bath, there was an awareness that there was no need for Stella almost all of the time. Feeling the temperature of the water, the weightlessness of the arm floating, filling the tub, emptying it, brushing teeth, changing clothes, on and on. No identity or location of her was necessary. When I went into the room where my husband was, that seemed to alert that sense of Stella. Memories of how she was to act with him, rituals of saying goodnight.

I think I understand that Stella is a fictional character made up of beliefs and thoughts over this long lifetime. But there does seem to be ‘something’ here that is seeing that and is seeing, experiencing all of it. And does not need the character to be present for it to happen.
Some of the sadness has to do with letting go already of things she values. I told you about ACIM but I am also involved in 3 other projects as well. All spiritual based. All that connected with people I love.
It’s just a temporary measure for the time of our investigation.

The thought is I will return but if I see through the self, who will be there to return? I have no idea of what may happen or not.
There is ALREADY no self there. The future cannot be known. The only thing there is, is this moment.
So this references back to my last statement, this feeling, awareness that seems to be present and underlies the character Stella. I have ideas about that awareness but we’re working with what I can see, taste, touch or feel, right? It’s not my thoughts, but a sense. Is that this moment appearing? Or just more of my beliefs showing up?
Stella is desperately trying to put the "rules" together so she can get it "right."
Then we will do everything to side-track this tendency :)

With looking, there are no rules, and getting it right. Looking is completely the opposite of intellectual reasoning and understanding.

It’s looking at the pure, raw experience BEFORE or UNDER the intellectual overlay.
I read the words, understand each one’s meaning but the whole of what you’re saying is beyond me at the moment. I can feel how everything you are saying Stella is still trying to understand and feeling frustrated because she wants the steps...just tell me do 1, 2, 3 and I’ll be there...I know there’s no where to go. I guess I do have an expectation that things will change. And Stella is looking for the change. She’s a pest. But all that is just noise. There’s only this room, these fingers typing, the music playing, the table wobbling a bit as the typing happens. And it goes on without any thinking or...well the typing is responding to thoughts, inspirations opening to the awareness that is here.
So my understanding that this self that will be seen through is the home and cause of all these "problems" is faulty? Perhaps this mind trying to understand is not helpful?
It’s definitely not helpful.

Can you allow yourself JUST BE and not try to figuring out anything, just for a minute, or maybe two?
How does that feel?
Yes, that’s the awareness I spoke of. It’s like I’m a turtle and pull in all my limbs, tail and head. It’s quiet. The noise stops, not completely but less need/desire for words and questions. These past few days have been pretty amazing as I have stopped all my reading/youtube/group of spiritual topics and that’s like 80% of the day! I spend my mornings alone and yesterday I just sat and looked out the window at the landscape. Just looking. But not through Stella’s eyes. Right now my chest feels full, another state passing.
Disappointment from stella. this is one of her favorite stories. Like it was the truth. Past and future.... not sure I understand what is meant by "state"... something temporary where what you are guiding me to is permanent. Does not change? That doesn't seem right either as what is here right now, changes all the time. Again, confusion.
All emotions and moods are states.
Happiness is a state. It never lasts. It comes and goes.
Anger is a state, it comes and goes.
Sadness is a state, never lasts endlessly.
Feeling of expansion is a state.
Feeling of contraction is a state.

Seeing self is not a state, since it’s not dependent on emotions and the accompanying bodily sensations.

So currently, there is ALREADY no self, just the BELIEF in the self.
With this investigation, it will be seen that indeed there is no self anywhere.
So the BELIEF in the self will fall away.
And it will be replaced by the RECOGNITION of no-self.
In other words, the recognition of experience being empty of self.
The recognition that the self is just imagined, assumed, inferred. It’s just a fantasy. Nothing more.

But emotions (states) will still come and go, just as now.
But it will be seen that these states/emotions don’t happen to anybody/anything.
Hence not changes the way people always talk about, permenant bliss and happiness. But no one is there to suffer and complain, just aware.
I've written most of the resistances I felt below each comment. None so oppressive that I'm not willing to move forward.
Great! Let’s start it.
What is the I/self for you?
You probably can already guess my answer (besides Stella of course) ... awareness. But perhaps you are wanting a description of Stella? Who this Stella seems to be, believed to be? Female, 68 years old, spiritual seeker for many years, aching body most of the time, loves music, mother of two, married, wife, grandmother, friend, group former and participant, voracious reader, opinionated, can be argumentative, leader, defies authority, different, can be a loner, short,
What is the EXPERIENCE of being you/Stella?
Hmmm...always moving, looking, where she is is never quite right. Those are all concepts though aren’t they...not experiences. Painful, regret, safe, not safe, confusion. I’m finding it hard to answer because Stella’s awake and feeling she’s doing it wrong again. There’s resistance to writing anything at all for fear of being wrong...hey, there you go...that’s my experience of Stella/me....fear. She’s on her own and it’s up to her to protect herself, no one else will. The beginning of a looooong list of beliefs she has about life and her existence. And as Stella spends almost all of her time in her head, it’s a dream about a dream...not even sure Stella ever experienced her so-called life at all. Getting lost here so I”m going to stop. Any suggestions?
“We are knee-deep in a river searching for water.” - Kabir Helminiski

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Vivien
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Re: Accepting What Is

Postby Vivien » Fri Aug 23, 2019 5:26 am

Hi Stella,
At the end of the day yesterday, taking a bath, there was an awareness that there was no need for Stella almost all of the time. Feeling the temperature of the water, the weightlessness of the arm floating, filling the tub, emptying it, brushing teeth, changing clothes, on and on. No identity or location of her was necessary. When I went into the room where my husband was, that seemed to alert that sense of Stella. Memories of how she was to act with him, rituals of saying goodnight.
You did some nice observations.
I have ideas about that awareness but we’re working with what I can see, taste, touch or feel, right?
Yes. We are looking for something that can be actually experienced, and not just INFERRED by thoughts.
These past few days have been pretty amazing as I have stopped all my reading/youtube/group of spiritual topics and that’s like 80% of the day! I spend my mornings alone and yesterday I just sat and looked out the window at the landscape. Just looking.
Very good. You can use this time to really investigate and look at each questions I’m going to give you.

Look as often as you can remember. The more time you put in, the greater the benefit could be.
I can feel how everything you are saying Stella is still trying to understand and feeling frustrated because she wants the steps...just tell me do 1, 2, 3 and I’ll be there...I know there’s no where to go.
This investigation will be very simple. You won’t need your intellectual mind to figure out anything.

You have to look at each questions with the eyes of a little child, who has no intellectual knowledge about how things work.

We are only ever looking for facts of reality, but not knowledge of facts of reality. So, you'll need to put the teachings aside because they so far haven't worked. They won't work until this can be experienced with certainty and that's the path we're headed down.

Please write as often as you are able, but more importantly write only what's true for you, and only if it's 100% true for you.

I will at times ask things repeatedly, or in very simple language. If that happens, trust the process as it's meant to stop the intellectualizing an allow exploration of the experiential.

This is very simple. I cannot emphasize the simplicity enough, actually. Have you heard phrases like, "It's right here" or "It's so simple"? It's a good idea to take that very literally.

Intellectual understanding is what moves the needle the wrong way on the dial. We're going to move it back to the simplest position possible.
Who this Stella seems to be, believed to be? Female, 68 years old, spiritual seeker for many years, aching body most of the time, loves music, mother of two, married, wife, grandmother, friend, group former and participant, voracious reader, opinionated, can be argumentative, leader, defies authority, different, can be a loner, short,
So you listed the characteristics of yourself.

But are these characteristics you?


It’s easy to say as that ‘no of course I am not these characteristics’, but don’t just jump to that automatic conclusion.

Rather really investigate if you can find the ‘me’ in those labels. Can you?
There’s resistance to writing anything at all for fear of being wrong...hey, there you go...that’s my experience of Stella/me....fear. She’s on her own and it’s up to her to protect herself, no one else will.
Excellent! Right at the beginning you discovered something.

How is fear experienced? As thoughts? Bodily sensations? Or else?


Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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StellaA
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Re: Accepting What Is

Postby StellaA » Fri Aug 23, 2019 3:04 pm

I have ideas about that awareness but we’re working with what I can see, taste, touch or feel, right? Yes. We are looking for something that can be actually experienced, and not just INFERRED by thoughts.
Ok, your words are beginning to sink in. It’s not thought puzzles we’re talking about here. It’s the experience of see, taste, touch and feel that you mean when you say ‘experience.”

I can feel how everything you are saying Stella is still trying to understand and feeling frustrated because she wants the steps...just tell me do 1, 2, 3 and I’ll be there...I know there’s no where to go.
This investigation will be very simple. You won’t need your intellectual mind to figure out anything.
You have to look at each questions with the eyes of a little child, who has no intellectual knowledge about how things work.
We are only ever looking for facts of reality, but not knowledge of facts of reality. So, you'll need to put the teachings aside because they so far haven't worked. They won't work until this can be experienced with certainty and that's the path we're headed down.

Please write as often as you are able, but more importantly write only what's true for you, and only if it's 100% true for you.

I will at times ask things repeatedly, or in very simple language. If that happens, trust the process as it's meant to stop the intellectualizing an allow exploration of the experiential.

This is very simple. I cannot emphasize the simplicity enough, actually. Have you heard phrases like, "It's right here" or "It's so simple"? It's a good idea to take that very literally.

Intellectual understanding is what moves the needle the wrong way on the dial. We're going to move it back to the simplest position possible.
So here’s a good place to share one of the major beliefs that’s being challenged in this investigation. You know ACIM pushes quite hard that “this world” is not real. It’s an illusion. So the attention to be put on things of the illusion seems to be inferring that they ARE real...that same electric shock state rises that an error is being made. I know we will not be engaging in any kind of theoretical discussion but in the vein of being 100% honest that needed to be shared. I’m disregarding that belief and am willing to follow where you lead.
Who this Stella seems to be, believed to be? Female, 68 years old, spiritual seeker for many years, aching body most of the time, loves music, mother of two, married, wife, grandmother, friend, group former and participant, voracious reader, opinionated, can be argumentative, leader, defies authority, different, can be a loner, short,

So you listed the characteristics of yourself.

But are these characteristics you?

It’s easy to say as that ‘no of course I am not these characteristics’, but don’t just jump to that automatic conclusion.

Rather really investigate if you can find the ‘me’ in those labels. Can you?
Female. Presupposes that one knows what a female is. A body with certain body parts? That acts in a certain way....of course depending on what culture you’re from because what’ expected from someone that is labeled....no... wait... as a little child who doesn’t know anything...simple... simple... six letters on a screen me? No. Not me. The same for all the rest. They are words and I am not words.
There’s resistance to writing anything at all for fear of being wrong...hey, there you go...that’s my experience of Stella/me....fear. She’s on her own and it’s up to her to protect herself, no one else will.

Excellent! Right at the beginning you discovered something.

How is fear experienced? As thoughts? Bodily sensations? Or else?
My experience of fear can come as images. In a recent group meeting a conversation took on the impression of an attack and I saw in the mind’s eye 3 steel walls dropping in between me and the three people involved. These are experienced as sight but are thoughts of course. No steel walls descended from the heavens. And here again, ACIM says everything is experienced through the mind, that all things are thoughts. Not arguing, just revealing...back to fear

Body sensations were mentioned above. Chest tightens, breathing can get very shallow, heart rate up, immediate feeling of immobility then get up and go... afterwards the chest region aches as the tension releases. Almost always follows with thoughts of how to avoid that person/situation in the future. And those thoughts always return with all the bodily sensations of the original fear. Perhaps not as intensely but pretty darn close. It also can and often does, prompt distraction habits, eating, tv, etc...Body closes, arms across the chest, if really worried the hands will wring themselves ( a give away to my husband that there’s extreme worry), isolation occurs. I watched thoughts perpetuate and escalate the fear.

Yep, that’s my experience of fear....and it’s been in my experience for a long time.
“We are knee-deep in a river searching for water.” - Kabir Helminiski

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Re: Accepting What Is

Postby StellaA » Fri Aug 23, 2019 3:39 pm

ADDENDUM:
Who this Stella seems to be, believed to be? Female, 68 years old, spiritual seeker for many years, aching body most of the time, loves music, mother of two, married, wife, grandmother, friend, group former and participant, voracious reader, opinionated, can be argumentative, leader, defies authority, different, can be a loner, short,

So you listed the characteristics of yourself.

But are these characteristics you?

It’s easy to say as that ‘no of course I am not these characteristics’, but don’t just jump to that automatic conclusion.

Rather really investigate if you can find the ‘me’ in those labels. Can you?
Female. Presupposes that one knows what a female is. A body with certain body parts? That acts in a certain way....of course depending on what culture you’re from because what’ expected from someone that is labeled....no... wait... as a little child who doesn’t know anything...simple... simple... six letters on a screen me? No. Not me. The same for all the rest. They are words and I am not words.

Same goes for Stella..just letters, a word. Not me. So what is me? Important because all of the fear mentioned above are all because of “me.” Me is being threatened, me is being attacked, me is being put in danger, me is not right, me, me,me. Donald Trump does something in Washington DC and me is upset. What is me?

The body shows up. Life. I experience the body. Feel sensations, feel heart beat, breathing, tasting the salt on the nuts I just ate, cold of the keyboard under my hands, Attention is what makes me aware of these things. Getting lost here. I don’t always feel my heartbeat, it may be there but I do not feel it. Only when I place attention on it, is it available to me. There’s thoughts that say “me,me,me” but as I wrote that I said my heartbeat might be there but I do not feel it. But it does continue to beat doesn’t it? The body continues to breathe. The foundation of this room continues to stand. The world continues to spin without “me, me, me.” There’s a body, a heartbeat, a breath and it has nothing to do with “me.”

That’s why we had to stay away from thoughts....thoughts are what begin to weave the story of me....and to look at the world as a child is to look without all that.
“We are knee-deep in a river searching for water.” - Kabir Helminiski

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Re: Accepting What Is

Postby StellaA » Fri Aug 23, 2019 3:41 pm

And what is “me” but two letters on a screen. Lol!
“We are knee-deep in a river searching for water.” - Kabir Helminiski

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Re: Accepting What Is

Postby StellaA » Fri Aug 23, 2019 8:43 pm

Addendum:
Just back from kayaking.
Dragonflies, water bugs skating over the eddies of water. Lichen growing on dead branches and intricate spiderwebs in downed trees. Rippled water rocking the kayak. Sound of the oars dipping into the water, drops as the rise out of the water. A few fall on my hands, cool and wet. Knarled tree trunks over hanging banks covered in moss, breeze across the face. A voice. Silence. Shoulder fatiguing. Chocolate almond candy sweet. Coats tongue and teeth, drink of water washes the taste away. Low back tired. Blue sewing needle flits among the bushes. Eyes squint in the sunlight. Acoustic music flits like the dragonflies. Deep breath. Breathing. Fingers punching out letters on the phone. Looking at the expanse of water, wind, clouds, trees. Kayak being blown by the wind into an eddy as the finger punches letters. . A bank of tall grass sitting in water bent by the breeze.

This is kind of a mindful practice. Are you interested in any of the inner noticing that happened or just these outward noticings?
“We are knee-deep in a river searching for water.” - Kabir Helminiski

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Re: Accepting What Is

Postby StellaA » Fri Aug 23, 2019 11:51 pm

Addendum:
Sitting here, rocking, reflecting on looking and the kayak trip and what was written about it. There were concepts shared there that weren’t seen. Words were used. Tree, lichen, dead branches all said like they were saying something but they weren’t the experience of it at all. Word, words, words. This is like an impossible task you’ve asked. To relay experience with words is to tell you nothing. Even if you were beside me in the kayak, to have the same experience is not likely. All that is possible to be known can only be known through the experience itself. Any relating of it supposes it is accurate but it is not the same as the experience at all. So using any one else’s experience as a guide is an error out of the gate. Right?
“We are knee-deep in a river searching for water.” - Kabir Helminiski

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Vivien
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Re: Accepting What Is

Postby Vivien » Fri Aug 23, 2019 11:57 pm

Hi Stella,
You know ACIM pushes quite hard that “this world” is not real. It’s an illusion. So the attention to be put on things of the illusion seems to be inferring that they ARE real...that same electric shock state rises that an error is being made. I know we will not be engaging in any kind of theoretical discussion but in the vein of being 100% honest that needed to be shared. I’m disregarding that belief and am willing to follow where you lead.
We are not going to investigate whether the world real or not. This can be looked at later after the self has been seen through. Our only purpose here is to really see if there is an actual self or not.

Of course, thoughts about ACIM and its teachings will come up. When this happens, just gently put them aside, or just simply ignore these thoughts.
This is kind of a mindful practice. Are you interested in any of the inner noticing that happened or just these outward noticings?
This mindfulness-like practise is nice. But we are going to focus on finding an actual self inside the body. So you can share how you search for the self.
Same goes for Stella..just letters, a word. Not me. So what is me? Important because all of the fear mentioned above are all because of “me.” Me is being threatened, me is being attacked, me is being put in danger, me is not right, me, me,me. Donald Trump does something in Washington DC and me is upset. What is me?
You did some nice observations.

Now, we are starting to search for the me.

By search, I mean LITERAL SEARCH. As if you were searching for your keys.

WHERE is this me that feels threatened?


Try to find its exact location. Search through the whole body from head to toe.

And remember, just like a child….

Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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Re: Accepting What Is

Postby StellaA » Sat Aug 24, 2019 1:12 am

Now, we are starting to search for the me.
By search, I mean LITERAL SEARCH. As if you were searching for your keys.
WHERE is this me that feels threatened?
Try to find its exact location. Search through the whole body from head to toe.
And remember, just like a child….
Thanks Vivien,
Ok, where’s me? First, maybe in this body. It’s not in a part of the body, like my foot or my hand or my back. If I lost any part of the body, it doesn’t affect me. I’m still here. I cut my hair but I’m still here. If I lost my arm, I’d still be here. So all this can’t be me. Then there are certain parts that if I lost them, not so sure, I’d still be here. If the heart stopped beating, my breath stopped, would I still be here? Well, when I hold my breath, I’m still here. My heart skips beats occasionally but I was still here as well. But if it stopped permenantly, I have no idea if my sense of me would be here. So I can’t rule out the body as a location of me. But if I cut myself open and looked in every bit of tissue or bone, would I find me hiding in there someplace? I do not think so. If I took my brain apart, would I find me? No, not there either. So even though, there’s a feeling of location in the body, me is not found in the body.

What else is there that that sense of me shows up in? In all the labels I listed earlier, roles where there is a sense of recognition. Mother, daughter, friend, and so many more but they are all limited, apply to one person and not to another. No longer a daughter as my parents have both died. Roles come and go, but I do not come and go. So I can’t be found in any of those roles or recognitions. And do any of those roles give the complete sense of me? No. Bits and pieces. Here and gone.

Memories seem to contain a sense of who I am, me. But those are always in the past. Not me now. So they aren’t me either. Thoughts about everything I see, taste, touch, hear, feel and the emotions that usually accompany them often intensify the sense of me in the body, but I’ve already identified I’m not in the body so that’s not where I am.

Thoughts again. Thinking. I think therefore I am is that famous saying. Am I in my thoughts? My mind, not the brain but a mind that is not physical but more ephemeral? If I were my thoughts, I’d be in control of those thoughts. Is that my experience? No. Thoughts arrive. Seem repetitive and circulatory and it often feels like me is at the mercy of them. Thoughts seem other than the sense of me. They often cling to or surround that sense of me, build that sense of me but they are not it.

What else is there? In this room, this chair, this street, this town, this country, this world, this universe? No, it doesn’t feel at all like there is a sense of me “out there.”

Sitting here, typing this, asking where I feel most “me” it’s inside and I have no words for inside. And when I go looking inside, there’s no thing there. As that was typed the body’s chest tightened. I have done Mooji’s The Invitation which feels like this part. No walls, no doors, no distance to it, no beginning to it, no ending to it, can’t put the body’s hands on it, can’t see it with eyes, no sound, no taste, empty, empty, empty. No me to be found. Only the semblance of something in the thought/body interaction but that’s not me.

I can’t think of anywhere else to look.
Stella
“We are knee-deep in a river searching for water.” - Kabir Helminiski


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