Guidance for deep looking

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Vivien
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Vivien » Sun Jun 21, 2020 7:31 am

Hi Mike,

Currently I have lots of clients, so I cannot promise that I will be able to reply every single day.
But even if I cannot reply, you have to spend significant amount of time each day looking. Can you do that?

But before starting, I would like to ask some questions.

In a scale to 1-10 how committed do you feel to do this inquiry?

How committed are you to questions your beliefs, regardless of what that would be?

How open are you to completely let go everything you know about awakening (including the headless way) and investigating with the curiosity with a little child, who has no prior knowledge about this?


Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

Website: https://www.viviennovak.com/

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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Mike1001
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Mike1001 » Sun Jun 21, 2020 8:18 am

Hi Vivien thanks a lot for replying!


Currently I have lots of clients, so I cannot promise that I will be able to reply every single day.
But even if I cannot reply, you have to spend significant amount of time each day looking. Can you do that?

Yes I am willing to do this.

But before starting, I would like to ask some questions.

In a scale to 1-10 how committed do you feel to do this inquiry?

I will say 7 or 8.

I keep coming back to this question of self. It feel right to do this. Yes sometimes there is fear but my mind still returns to this question.


How committed are you to questions your beliefs, regardless of what that would be?

once I decide to make the effort I can do this. Yes I can question any beliefs - with guidance :)

How open are you to completely let go everything you know about awakening (including the headless way) and investigating with the curiosity with a little child, who has no prior knowledge about this?

I am open to looking. I am willing to drop beliefs while I look.

Best wishes,
Mike

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Vivien
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Vivien » Sun Jun 21, 2020 9:10 am

Hi Mike,
V: In a scale to 1-10 how committed do you feel to do this inquiry?
M: I will say 7 or 8.
And what is the reservation for the remaining 2-3 points?

If you feel that you are really ready to do it, then I would like to ask you to go back to the beginning of this thread, and read ALL of my posts to you. But don’t ready your posts, that could just result in more confusion.

So read all my posts from the beginning… and go a step further…. After reading them, do again ALL the exercises and questions. Look with every single question.

This will take a while, a few days, or even a few weeks, depending how deeply you look.
When you finished come back, and let me know what you’ve discovered.

Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

Website: https://www.viviennovak.com/

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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Mike1001
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Mike1001 » Wed Jun 24, 2020 7:55 am

Hi Vivien

Thanks again for agreeing to help me.
And what is the reservation for the remaining 2-3 points?
I would say there is not much reservation now. I've been looking a lot over the last few days and going through our previous conversations.

I'm still looking but would say this so far

I cant find me - the I.
There are things that I have confused with "me" - like my voice talking in my head. But when I look closely I know this is not me because I can observe it talking and because it comes and goes. And I can observe it coming and going. So it can't be me.

There are also a bunch of sensations mostly in my head that come and go that I have thought are me. When I look at the sensations - tension behind me eyes or in my forehead it seems ridiculous that they could be me. Again I can observe them. The sensations change.

There are also emotions that become expressions on my face that I have thought were me. But again when I look I can see that they cannot be me. If I can observe something it cant be me.


I've also been looking for "the controller" or any control in what I do.

I can say this do far

When I look I see that thoughts including impulses to act appear. The talking voice in my head starts to talk and stops talking without any controller. When I don't look I forget this - then I remember again.When I "decide" to make a cup of coffee for example the impulse/thought just appears and maybe another thought appears which says yes I need a cup of coffee or no I've had enough already today (for example). When I look I cant find a me controlling anything.

While looking I have experienced some physical muscular tension in my head and body like I'm straining. A few times I've experienced fear and a disconnected feeling.

Resistance - The fear I think though shows some resistance or that I haven't fully accepted that I don't control things.

But then I look and find sensations in my head, thoughts and emotions , the feeling of my mouth turning up on one side, the voice in my head talking and nothing else. No one to accept or not accept anything. Just a thought about not accepting.

Thanks again,
Mike

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Vivien
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Vivien » Wed Jun 24, 2020 8:17 am

Hi Mike,
Resistance - The fear I think though shows some resistance or that I haven't fully accepted that I don't control things.
Do you think that as the result of this inquiry you could discover that you don't have control over anything?
It’s based on the assumption that I am here, and if I do this inquiry then I can see that I don't have control.

But who/what is it that has no control? Is there an actual self here who could discover that he has no control?

What if it's not about you not having control, but rather there is no control since there is no you/self who could have control in the first place?
What if there's ALREADY no I/self/controller, and that's why there is no control?


Actually, not the ability of control is missing from the picture, but YOU, Mike.


But what if all that is happening is just this THOUGHT STORY ABOUT a fictional character with its fictional control?

Does Batman have control?
Does Batman has any control whatsoever?
Does Batman writing the story about Batman?
Or Batman exist only in the story, as a fictional character?

Has there ever been a real Batman outside of the story of Batman, controlling its story?


Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

Website: https://www.viviennovak.com/

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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Mike1001
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Mike1001 » Fri Jun 26, 2020 7:21 am

Hi Vivien

thanks a lot for your reply.
but who/what is it that has no control? Is there an actual self here who could discover that he has no control?
When I look for a self I cant find one. There are sensations, thoughts and emotions. The thought of I shifts around - when I loom I cant'f find an I. But right now as I look there is some resistance and a belief that the I exists - even though I can't find it.

What if it's not about you not having control, but rather there is no control since there is no you/self who could have control in the first place?
What if there's ALREADY no I/self/controller, and that's why there is no control?
I felt shock when I read this put so clearly. If there already is no controller? Well right now the I feeling / thought is there. But when I look I cant see me. Just shifting thoughts and sensations.
Actually, not the ability of control is missing from the picture, but YOU, Mike.


But what if all that is happening is just this THOUGHT STORY ABOUT a fictional character with its fictional control?


When I first read this some feelings of shock came up - unsettled feelings and fear to see it said so clearly. Also some feeling of excitement.

If this is just a thought story about a fictional character with its fictional control then I don't know. I have a thought that it would all be a joke (the life we live and worry about).

Does Batman have control?
Does Batman has any control whatsoever?
Does Batman writing the story about Batman?
Or Batman exist only in the story, as a fictional character?
No he doesn't have control. No he doesn't write the story. Yes of course he only exists as a fictional character.

Again I felt some feelings of shock and unsteadiness and fear reading this - but also excitement like this is it.

Thanks Vivien
Mike

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Vivien
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Vivien » Fri Jun 26, 2020 8:07 am

Hi Mike,
I felt shock when I read this put so clearly. If there already is no controller? Well right now the I feeling / thought is there.
Actually this shock is great! :) It’s great since you are understanding it intellectually what this inquiry is about.

Yes, there is ALREADY no self, no controller.
There is no central commander somewhere inside the body.
And it has never been.
It has been just an illusion all along.
For a new born baby, there is no self. There is no me and not-me. There is just the pure experience as a whole. No division of me and not-me.
This subject-object split (me – not me) gradually develops as the toddler starts to learn language.
And at some point it becomes so natural, so used to, that we don’t see it for what it is.

This inquiry is about seeing through all the conceptual layers that are holding together this illusion.

I invite to look into what reactions you have about this.
Say this aloud to yourself at least three times:

There is no separate self at all in reality. No agent that is in charge, no manager, no watcher, no witness, no owner of life. All there is is life flowing freely as one movement, all there is just what’s happening.

Watch, wait, notice - what comes up? Is there fear? Is there a doubt? Resistance? Frustration? Something that wants to scream and make a turn away, something that says this is not working? Or maybe there is a feeling of wow, joy, relief? Or is there boredom? Or wanting it to be different? Or a secret desire for it not to be true?

Notice all that is going on inside and let me know what you find.
Again I felt some feelings of shock and unsteadiness and fear reading this - but also excitement like this is it.
It’s good that there is not just fear, but excitement too.

How strong this fear is? Is it strong enough to prevent going further?

What is this fear about?


Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

Website: https://www.viviennovak.com/

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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Mike1001
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Mike1001 » Sat Jun 27, 2020 6:46 am

Hi Vivien

thanks again for your help :)
There is no separate self at all in reality. No agent that is in charge, no manager, no watcher, no witness, no owner of life. All there is is life flowing freely as one movement, all there is just what’s happening.
watch, wait, notice - what comes up? Is there fear? Is there a

doubt?
yes
Resistance?
yes
Frustration?
yes
Something that wants to scream and make a turn away,
yes
something that says this is not working?
not so much
Or is there boredom?
no

When I first read this I felt a kind of shifting unsteady feeling and yes most of those emotions. Frustration , physical tension and fear and some feeling that this is it all mixed up together. There is also some doubt a thought asking can I really do this and what will happen if I do. Also some feeling of wanting to see this.

Looking next day again after sleeping there is less strong emotion. There's a desire to see this also still fear and doubt.

As I read it again now I feel some relief as well. And I feel the urge to laugh (More with each sentence).
Again I felt some feelings of shock and unsteadiness and fear reading this - but also excitement like this is it.
It’s good that there is not just fear, but excitement too.

How strong this fear is? Is it strong enough to prevent going further?
no right now I don't think fear is strong enough to prevent going further.
What is this fear about?
for some reason right now I don't feel so much fear - it comes and goes. Part of it is a fear of disappearing another is a fear of losing control (that's still there). There's still soem belief that I need to be more financially stable for example and that that requires a me to think and make effort.

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Vivien
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Vivien » Sat Jun 27, 2020 7:14 am

Hi Mike,
thanks again for your help :)
You are welcome :)
no right now I don't think fear is strong enough to prevent going further.
Good. If fear or resistance get stronger at any point which could prevent further looking, please let me know, so we can have a look on it together.
There's still soem belief that I need to be more financially stable for example and that that requires a me to think and make effort.
The need for being more financially stable could be a valid desire, but it doesn’t mean that solving this problem and thinking about would require a need for a me and to make effort.
There has NEVER EVER been a self.
And yet, thinking has always happened, making effort happened when it was needed.

There is ZERO need for a me in order to think.
Why?
Since there is ALREADY no me, no self, and yet there is an unstoppable, almost incessant stream of thoughts.
Let this really sink in.

So let’s look into this.

Please spend as much time as possible during the day noticing thoughts. And not just when sitting and doing nothing else, but in the midst of your everyday life.

If there were really a you who is thinking thoughts, then it MUST BE TOTALLY CLEAR how you do it exactly.

What do you do exactly in order to think?
How do you make (or birth) thoughts into existence?


Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

Website: https://www.viviennovak.com/

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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Mike1001
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Mike1001 » Sun Jun 28, 2020 7:56 am

Hi Vivien
What do you do exactly in order to think?
I don't know!

Most thoughts or trains of thoughts just appear. "I" am not aware of them at first then they are noticed. There's usually a feeling of I linked to the thoughts. A physical feeling of pushing or pulling.

There are other times when a thought appears that I want to think and plan or work something out. Then with that a belief that I must focus and make some effort to produce thoughts. When I look I can that I don't know where the I need to think about something thought came from. The other thoughts that follow (planning working something out) happen with a stronger sense of self (the physical sensations in the face etc).

So in summary I don't know how I think. Thoughts appear and the I thought is attached to them - this includes the thought that I need to think :)
How do you make (or birth) thoughts into existence?
I have no idea :)

The thoughts come up on their own.

I can see that when I look but there is still a belief that I need to think and a fear of losing control if I don't plan and think about problems.

Just to say I've been watching thoughts and looking for I through the day. I find that some thoughts and emotions are really powerful and "I" feel dragged into them and pulled along.

For example anger or frustration about my life situation or when people behave how I don't want.

When I sit quietly I feel like I am loosening my belief in me.

Thanks again Vivien
Mike

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Vivien
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Vivien » Sun Jun 28, 2020 8:20 am

Hi Mike,

You did a nice investigation. You really looked this time.
I find that some thoughts and emotions are really powerful and "I" feel dragged into them and pulled along.
Yes, this is completely normal. The sensations and emotions that arise and actually happening provides a reality-effect to the fictional character called Mike, or me.
So in summary I don't know how I think. Thoughts appear and the I thought is attached to them - this includes the thought that I need to think :)
But if you were the thinker of thoughts, then you MUST know how you do it exactly. It would be the easiest thing to know and explain how you do it exactly.
there is still a belief that I need to think
OK… so you need to think…

But can you NOT think?
Can you stop thinking?

Sit for about 5 minutes, and your only job is to NOT think a single thought for 5 minutes. Literally ZERO thoughts. Stop thinking altogether. Can you do that?

After you’ve done it and failed, is there really a need or an effort to keep thoughts happening? Can you really have to DO ANYTHING in order to thoughts to appear?

If you can’t stop them, then how could be thoughts of your doing/making?

Don’t thoughts just happen effortlessly, including thoughts about efforting and needing to think?

and a fear of losing control if I don't plan and think about problems.
The question is not about whether you should stop thinking and planning about problems, but rather to see if planning thoughts are you doing at all? Or thoughts about planning and solving problems happen on their own, effortlessly? Without you doing anything?

Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

Website: https://www.viviennovak.com/

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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Mike1001
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Mike1001 » Mon Jun 29, 2020 8:28 am

Hi Vivien
You did a nice investigation. You really looked this time.
thanks :)
But can you NOT think?
Can you stop thinking?

Sit for about 5 minutes, and your only job is to NOT think a single thought for 5 minutes. Literally ZERO thoughts. Stop thinking altogether. Can you do that?
No - I had thoughts throughout the five minutes. Sometimes it seemed as if I wasnt thinking then I realized there were thoughts about not thinking:)

So no I could not stop thinking. I had thoughts pretty much all the time.
After you’ve done it and failed, is there really a need or an effort to keep thoughts happening? Can you really have to DO ANYTHING in order to thoughts to appear?
I know from looking that thoughts appear by themselves and that that includes planning thoughts and effort thoughts. I have seen the thoughts come out of no-where.

I can see the self thought /feeling attach to these thoughts.

In day to day life sometimes I see/believe it and sometimes (most of the time) I don't.

There is some resistance fear there still.

Some fear of disappearing I think and still of losing control.

I'll go back to directly looking for the I today.

Thanks a lot again Vivien,
Mike

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Vivien
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Vivien » Mon Jun 29, 2020 9:08 am

Hi Mike,

Have you looked at the last 3 questions too?
There is some resistance fear there still.
Some fear of disappearing I think and still of losing control.
How strong are these? Do these in a way of looking?

Look at resistance.

Resistance appears as thoughts and contracted sensations in the body, right?
Do you make that happen? Do you make resisting thoughts into existence? Or these thoughts just appear effortlessly?
Do you make the contracted sensations to appear? Or they just appear effortlessly?


Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

Website: https://www.viviennovak.com/

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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Mike1001
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Mike1001 » Tue Jun 30, 2020 12:24 pm

Hi Vivien

did a lot of looking yesterday and thought like I felt some kind of shift but it seemed to go by the end of the day and today feeling frustrated and mostly locked in my emotions.

I can see when I look that there is no self that I can find, and that thoughts and emotions just appear. After doing that intensely I have he feeling that the thoughts aren't really "mine" and the thoughts quieten down.

But when some kind of challenge comes up I feel like I am sucked back into the world of emotions and the need to act. there is sometimes a feeling that I have to drop this looking to sort out problems in my life. Like money and relationship stuff.

It feels like there is a battle inside me between believing in a separate self who must look after my problems and in looking and seeing that there is not one. Its funny how the feelings change from thinking that this process is going well and believing that I am on the edge of "getting it" to strong feelings of frustration and fear.

if you can’t stop them, then how could be thoughts of your doing/making?
When I look I can see that but there is still a belief that some thoughts are special (as in mine) and that a belief that I need to act to look after my affairs, and that that require thinking and effort, and that by focusing on looking or by seeing or believing there is not an I , I will lose control and things will fall apart.

Even though when I look I cannot see an I -apart from sensations and the voice inside my head.

The bigger or more urgent the problem( as I see it), the more I feel there needs to be an I to sort it out.

Maybe the problem is trust. I feel like I am on the edge of precipice and am scared to jump :)

Don’t thoughts just happen effortlessly, including thoughts about efforting and needing to think?
Yes when I look I see they do. But I forget when there is a problem and that forgetting seems to wipe out the understanding I previously had. At times I've been looking adn have belly laughed at how ridiculous thinking the movement of muscles on my face could be me. At those times it seemed like I was on the edge of understanding this, or at least making good progress but today I do not have that feeling.

As I write this the main feeling is frustration and fatigue.

The question is not about whether you should stop thinking and planning about problems, but rather to see if planning thoughts are you doing at all? Or thoughts about planning and solving problems happen on their own, effortlessly? Without you doing anything?
I have seen this but keep losing it. Let me look gain today at what happens when I have a problem I'm trying to deal with.

There is some resistance fear there still.
Some fear of disappearing I think and still of losing control.
How strong are these? Do these in a way of looking?
Strong today - yes def getting in the way

Look at resistance.

Resistance appears as thoughts and contracted sensations in the body, right?
yes tension in the jaw muscles and temples, unsettled feeling in stomach and thoughts like this is not working or if I lose myself and my family I wont be able to look after my finaces - pay mortgage etc.
Do you make that happen?
no
Do you make resisting thoughts into existence? Or these thoughts just appear effortlessly?
it happens no effort from me - in fact I don't want it there (but underneath I think I believe the resistance is helpful and protecting me).

Thanks again Vivien
Talk soon, Mike


Do you make the contracted sensations to appear? Or they just appear effortlessly?

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Mike1001
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Re: Guidance for deep looking

Postby Mike1001 » Tue Jun 30, 2020 1:26 pm

Hi Vivien

Yes missed these Questions
Yes. So there are just sensations and only thoughts label them as ‘me’.

So the ‘sense of self’ is just a mislabelled sensation.
Is this totally clear experientially?
Well I can’t find the I. The sensations when I look yes I think it is clear they are not the I.
So, then where is your-SELF?
I don’t know. Right now as I write this I feel like there is an I here doing. It’s frustrated and irritated :)
Ok looking now the sensations and the urge to fix my life situation is strong- there is a thought that the sensations are very familiar.
As I’m writing my wife has just said something which resulted a strong wave of anger and resentment. These strong feelings make it hard to see for some reason.

Is there a self/I/me at all?
I don’t know. I can’t find it. Right now I have done strong emotions and it seems hard to see.

If yes, where is it exactly?
Can’t find it. But feel it’s there - there is some me trying to fix things and getting upset about stuff.


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