ja

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domostroy
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ja

Postby domostroy » Mon Sep 16, 2019 11:27 am

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
That there is no driver in the driver´s seat. No thinker, decider, doer. No free will. That I am not who I think I am. That there is no "I" in all this.

What are you looking for at LU?
Help with realizing that there is no real self. To finally drop it and be free, as I intellectually understand that I already am. I am 48 now, and I have had a feeling that something is not as it seems since I was a teenager. The movie "The Matrix" resonated with me strongly. Now I think I know what it is. I think it is the false sense of self. I have had a feeling that I go in circles, repeating and reliving same things, thoughts and behaviors like a robot for a long time now. I notice I do things after I have done them and I know I haven´t decided to do them. Thoughts come without me deciding to think them. Even neuroscience seems to acknowledge this. Yet, I still think I am in control. I would very much to become free of this, not intellectually, but truly. To see through the illusion of me being in control and managing everything, since I already "know" it is indeed an illusion. I would like to KNOW, not "know". To really see it and live on without the illusion.

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
I have read about two thirds of the Gateless Gatekeepers and I spend hours doing many of the practices suggested for others but the sense of self is still there. I resonated with only one person in the book so far. Well... Not really resonated, but his answers were similar to mine. No breakthrough for me though. Upon starting to work with the book I noticed a physical sensation in the front of my body, mainly chest and solar plexus. When I intensely concentrate on finding answers it gets intense, starting to "burn". I assume it´s some kind of protection. Fear? I don´t know. I tried to only work with this but I don´t find any answers. Fighting it doesn´t help, accepting neither. I don´t find anything behind it, all I can manage to find is through guesswork, brain giving answers based on experiences of others. I seem to be stuck now. I would be forever greatful for help with this and whatever follows next. To break free of the illusion of being a self once and for all.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
I have been following various teachings off and on. I am not disciplined. I started meditating some 20+ years ago, but I have mostly done nothing at all. Reading a lot sometimes books in the tradition that resonates with me at the moment. Zen to start with. Then others. Last years Advaita and Vipassana. Lately I have been listening to Jim Newman, Tony Parsons, Andreas Muller. Their message seems to be that there is nothing I can do, yet for whatever reason they give me hope, which ironically doesn´t seem to be their intention. It seems like I recieve an additional message from them, communicated on a different level. Also, even though meditation can have various benefits (like sharpening focus for when it´s needed, de-stressing etc), I feel more and more strongly that as a spiritual practice is unneccessarily complicated, like a de-tour, distraction, more food for the ego that supposedly doesn´t exist. That is why I am here. I haven´t had the full benefit of the direct pointing process, but I trust it.

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

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Vivien
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Re: ja

Postby Vivien » Mon Sep 16, 2019 11:36 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
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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domostroy
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Re: ja

Postby domostroy » Mon Sep 16, 2019 12:35 pm

Hello Vivien, thank you so much for doing this. I am very greatful for this opportunity and ready to do whatever it takes.
I would like to write more, but your time is precious so I will just get to it:

How will Life change?
I don´t think Life will change at all. Whether I will drop the sense of self or not, Life will just be happening.


How will you change?
I hope I will be at ease just living. Freely expressing this thing that I truly am. Without unnecessary doubting, second-guessing, fearing, needing approval, fearing things that never happen, worrying what others think of me etc. Also, I hope the result will eventually be that I will be a better father, husband, friend.
I must admit though, when I worked on the questions in the Gateless Gatecrashers, thoughts and visions came to mind, dialogues even. I saw myself a few times being a better person, gaining some kind of standing or status, gaining admiration of others, even guiding others in the future. Stupid, I know! Those thoughts came, so I assume I am unconsciously expecting more than “just” freedom and being at ease in life and the world. I am ashamed of it. It´s probably just a projection due to me attributing those treats to some of the teachers I have encountered.


What will be different?
I hope my perspective will be different. Some distance, or at least more possibility of a distance between thoughts and emotions and “me” on a daily basis. Me not making things personal. True insight into the nature of “my” being. This being. I hope to experience Life as it is and not what I think it is. To experience people as they are, not who I think they are.
No more the story of me. No more pride and no more shame. Just living.


What is missing?
I don´t feel like something is missing. I feel like something is not as it “should” be . Like there is too much, not too little. Intellectually and experientially I “know” that the “I” gets in the way of... Life?
I´ve seen glimpses and had small realizations of the workings of the "I". But the feeling of “I” is still there, as strong as ever. Or at least it seems that way.

Have a great day!

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domostroy
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Re: ja

Postby domostroy » Tue Sep 17, 2019 1:41 am

Just an update. As I was doing some inner searching for the “I” that can´t find anywhere (but I still feel that it´s there somehow) I had what I assume was a panic attack. I´ve read and heard about the symptoms of a panic attack and that must have been it. It was scary but I did my best to just welcome it and it passed. I was hoping it would be the end of “I” but nothing seem to have changed changed.
In general, when I started the work three days ago, I feel lots of physical sensations while doing the work. It is not normal for me. I have always thought of myself as quite disconnected from feelings and physical sensations as other sometimes described them. They have been alien to me for as long as I can remember, except for that universal feeling in the stomach when something is about to happen. Like before a job interview, or a difficult confrontation. I have lived my life being “in the head” a lot.

Now, when I work on myself I feel pressure at the top of my nose radiating up to the middle of the forehead, pressure in my cheeks, armor-like pressure in the chest (sometimes escalating to a burning sensation) and tonight weird feeling on the surface of the front of my legs and arms. Like... cold and warmth at the same time? I don´t know how to describe it. And that feeling it the stomach/solar plexus I mentioned above, always present when I search for answers.
I´m sorry I´m rumbling on about this, but it´s taking away my focus all the time.

I can´t really label any of the sensations as fear or anything else. As an unease, perhaps. Except for the panic attack just now, that was fear for sure. Trying to see the meaning of it all, what´s behind it etc - I don´t find any answers.

Is it normal? Is it significant in any way? All in all, it´s quite shocking to me. New, for sure.

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Vivien
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Re: ja

Postby Vivien » Tue Sep 17, 2019 2:36 am

Hi,

What would you like me to call you? Is X alright? What name would you prefer?
I can´t really label any of the sensations as fear or anything else. As an unease, perhaps. Except for the panic attack just now, that was fear for sure. Trying to see the meaning of it all, what´s behind it etc - I don´t find any answers.
Is it normal? Is it significant in any way? All in all, it´s quite shocking to me. New, for sure.
This reaction shows that there is a story about negative consequences about seeing through the self. And the fear/panic-like reaction is due to these negative expectations/beliefs.

And you have quite a lot of expectations, and it seems not just positive ones. But both the positive and the negative ones are just expectations, beliefs, nothing more. And no matter what you expect, all expectations are in the way seeing what is really happening.

What I’d like you to do is to investigate this fear. Examine it closely. Feel it. Don’t try to fix it or solve it, just sit with it.

Ask the fear as if it were a some kind of entity:

What do you want to protect me from?

What is the ‘negative’ story, what would happen if the illusion of the self is seen through?


Observe what visual thoughts and stories come up ‘justifying’ its right to fear.


If you ignore the stories (thoughts) and visual thoughts what is BEHIND the fear?

Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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domostroy
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Re: ja

Postby domostroy » Tue Sep 17, 2019 7:56 am

Thank you. Please call me Jaro.
Yes, I suppose it hasn´t consciously happened in a long time but I remember thinking/feeling that one seems to lose a lot upon liberation, not just the “I”.
I´m alone with three of my kids this week but I´m also free from work and they are in school daytime. I intend to dedicate all free moments to find answers and see the truth.

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domostroy
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Re: ja

Postby domostroy » Tue Sep 17, 2019 10:17 am


What do you want to protect me from?
I remembered old, naive ideas about liberation.
That it is a completeley differend, non-human state.
That one gains some mystical insights and "powers" but the price for this is losing "oneself" and humanity in some way. I realize how ridiculous it sounds, but that´s what came.


What is the ‘negative’ story, what would happen if the illusion of the self is seen through?
Old ideas came again, slightly more rational now, although I don´t consciously believe anything like that anymore.
That I would somehow become emotionally unavailable to my family. That I would be loving all equally, which would mean my kids would not get any special, parental love from me. That I would somehow stop caring, have aspirations, make plans etc. Once again, stupid, but that´s what came.

Observe what visual thoughts and stories come up ‘justifying’ its right to fear.
I never have been good at visualizing. I saw a flash of hands of a homeless person ( a woman, I think) reaching for something, or putting something in a paper bag. I saw a flash of a back of a toddler boy clothed in just a diaper, sitting on the floor and playing. Images seem random and don´t seem to mean anything. Nothing else visual.

If you ignore the stories (thoughts) and visual thoughts what is BEHIND the fear?
Nothing! It wasn´t the first time I tried to see what is behind the fear, but this time I realized it´s nothing there. That´s why I could not find anything there earlier either. There´s absolutely nothing to protect. Just fear itself.
Upon this realization I almost laughed. At that instance I expected those physical sensations of - yes, I guess fear - to disappear, but they didn´t. They changed somehow, though. I think they are weaker, hard to say at the moment.

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domostroy
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Re: ja

Postby domostroy » Tue Sep 17, 2019 11:55 am

No, not weaker at all. I digged deeper. Stronger sensation around mainly stomach. Fear for sure.
It seems to be protecting "me" from the unknown, from loss of control.
Who is really in control? I intellectually know I´m not in control of anything really.
It feels though that I am. But when I look, there is no "I".
So how can it be that "I" am still in some kind of control? These are not questions for you, just thinking and typing. But I do have a question. Can this fear be a silent companion on the journey or do I have to realease it in one way or another? It doesn´t really bother me anymore. I even want it to be there, as an obvious sign that there actually is a "journey" going on... I will do my best to follow your guidance, of course, whatever it might be.

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domostroy
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Re: ja

Postby domostroy » Tue Sep 17, 2019 9:58 pm

Kids went to bed, I went at it again. I felt like the physical sensations were not there, or too weak to work with. To call the out I tried to check for the "I". I looked around and noticed sights, sounds, thoughts, physical sensations. It was very clear that everything happens by itself. No "me" to do it all. Just noticing. I looked for the usual feeling of "I" and it wasn´t there either, really. I managed to stregthen the sensations associated with fear, but only a little bit. Tried to focus on them but it was pretty useless. I feel... Aloof would be a good word, I think. Like "yes of course there is no "I" or "me". So what?" I don´t feel much about anything at the moment.
I think I´m just tired. The past days were very intense, with most of the focus on the process. I didn´t sleep much either. I think "I" shut down a bit to balance things out. I will go to sleep and get to it tomorrow.
Hopefully I will wake up a few hours before the morning routines. Maybe a bit of meditation before sleep, I hope it´s ok? Nothing complicated, just pure awareness.

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domostroy
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Re: ja

Postby domostroy » Tue Sep 17, 2019 10:02 pm

Oh, and I´m really sorry I create so much reading for you. I´ve seen you are managing many topics. I don´t really know what is important to tell and what isn´t.

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Vivien
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Re: ja

Postby Vivien » Wed Sep 18, 2019 1:01 am

Hi Jaro,
That it is a completeley differend, non-human state.
That one gains some mystical insights and "powers" but the price for this is losing "oneself" and humanity in some way. I realize how ridiculous it sounds, but that´s what came.
This is definitely not how it is :)
There is already no self, so how seeing through the illusion of the self would become a non-human state? If recognizing this fact would mean a non-human state, then this non-human state should be already happening, since there is already no actual self.
That I would somehow become emotionally unavailable to my family. That I would be loving all equally, which would mean my kids would not get any special, parental love from me. That I would somehow stop caring, have aspirations, make plans etc. Once again, stupid, but that´s what came.
What would love change? There has never been a self, so just be recognizing this, why would anything change at all?

Now I go back to reply to your expectations:
Without unnecessary doubting, second-guessing, fearing, needing approval, fearing things that never happen, worrying what others think of me etc. Also, I hope the result will eventually be that I will be a better father, husband, friend.
These are very unrealistic expectations. These expectations all about self-improvement. To become a better person.

Every expectation is a ‘hindrance’ in realizing what IS. Expectations result 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.

Some distance, or at least more possibility of a distance between thoughts and emotions and “me” on a daily basis.
No, we are not creating distance from emotions. Quite the opposite. We are going to investigate if thoughts and emotions are belonging to anyone at all.
No more the story of me. No more pride and no more shame. Just living.
This is the most unrealistic of all. If you expect that self-referencing thoughts (story of me) will stop, then you will be very disappointed. It won’t stop. Including thoughts about shame and pride.

And it’s not a surprise that fear is triggered if you have so many expectations. You imagine this as being a something utterly different state or experience that you are currently having. Hence comes the fear from the tremendous change. But it won’t be how you imagine. These are all fantasies which needs to be dropped. Since they are all in the way.

For the time our investigation, I would like to ask you to stop reading/listening any teachers, and rather spend your time looking. Also, I would like to ask you to put aside all learned knowledge. You have to see this experientially and not relying on others’ experiences. Can we agree on these?


Before starting, please read my above comments carefully 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?

But I do have a question. Can this fear be a silent companion on the journey or do I have to realease it in one way or another? It doesn´t really bother me anymore.
The fear can be there, it’s not a problem. Let it be there. As you’ve already discovered, it’s just an unpleasant sensation. But, if the fear gets to the point that it’s preventing you from looking, then please let me know, so we can have another look on it.

Do you feel ready to start the investigation?

Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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domostroy
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Re: ja

Postby domostroy » Wed Sep 18, 2019 7:44 am

Thank you.
For the time our investigation, I would like to ask you to stop reading/listening any teachers, and rather spend your time looking. Also, I would like to ask you to put aside all learned knowledge. You have to see this experientially and not relying on others’ experiences. Can we agree on these?
Yes, that was the agreement from start. Although I must admit, when I felt stuck, I kept reading Gateless Gatecrushers to find inspiration for further investigation. I will stop that too.

Before starting, please read my above comments carefully 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?
Yes. Those first "expectations" are just old memories from many years ago, memories of my first ideas about liberation. Those we can ignore. But I still do think it will be some kind of improvement. The part about "no more pride or shame" and about "distance between thoughts and emotions and "me"" still stand, but maybe it´s a question of semantics? I realize thoughts of pride or shame will still arise, as will emotions and other thoughts. What I meant was that I won´t automatically grab them as "mine" and identify with them. As in, feel pride but not "be proud". But maybe that´s an unrealistic expectation as well? Yes, I would like to drop every single expectation and just let things happen. I don´t know if it´s possible though. How do I do that?

Do you feel ready to start the investigation?
Absolutely. Thank you.

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Vivien
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Re: ja

Postby Vivien » Wed Sep 18, 2019 8:42 am

Hi Jaro,
But I still do think it will be some kind of improvement. The part about "no more pride or shame" and about "distance between thoughts and emotions and "me"" still stand, but maybe it´s a question of semantics? I realize thoughts of pride or shame will still arise, as will emotions and other thoughts. What I meant was that I won´t automatically grab them as "mine" and identify with them. As in, feel pride but not "be proud". But maybe that´s an unrealistic expectation as well?
You are trying to figure out this intellectually. Which won’t work. It’s better to let this go.
Yes, I would like to drop every single expectation and just let things happen. I don´t know if it´s possible though. How do I do that?
You don’t have to do anything particular, only to be aware of them when they arise, and remind yourself that these are just expectations/beliefs, and it cannot be known how it actually will be.

Let’s start it.

How is the ‘self’ felt right here, in this moment?

Explore this, and please write what feels honestly true.

Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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domostroy
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Re: ja

Postby domostroy » Wed Sep 18, 2019 10:33 am


How is the ‘self’ felt right here, in this moment?
I can´t get a feeling of self. Just language patterns. It´s like I have been knocked partially unconcious yesterday. I tried to call forth the feeling of "I" by recalling my greatest desires, remembering times when I felt offended or hurt, but it didn´t work. The strangest thing: almost immediately I felt sensations on the back of my body. It´s like most of the sensations I felt in front moved there unnoticed until now. I laughed at some point, it´s like not fear but the embodiment of the illusory "I" hiding in the back. Maybe that´s why I can´t really get in touch with it. It´s like knowing that someone´s behind you but you can´t REALLY know it or see what´s going on. Right now it feels that I have to call forth something that doesn´t exist in order to realize that it doesn´t exist. So strange, all this. Confusing. I´ll keep trying.

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Vivien
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Re: ja

Postby Vivien » Wed Sep 18, 2019 11:49 am

Hi Jaro,
Right now it feels that I have to call forth something that doesn´t exist in order to realize that it doesn´t exist. So strange, all this.
This kind of thinking is not helpful. You have an intellectual understanding of no self, and yet you still believe and thus feel that there is a self/I.

In your everyday experience, it’s FEELS like that you are making decisions, you are in control, you are the one feeling the body and emotions; and you are somewhere inside the body, looking out the eyes and observing the world out there, right?

Do you feel to be inside the body or outside the body?

Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/


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