friday night!

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nass
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friday night!

Postby nass » Wed Oct 02, 2019 6:00 pm

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
That there is no continuous "I" going through life; that all that seemingly happens to me does maybe happen, only not to "me". "I" can at best refer to a body coupled by it's nervous system to a complex of urges, needs, memories and other stories at one point in time and maintaining the illusion of interrelation and control.

What are you looking for at LU?
For clarity. For fun. Relaxation. Death. Joy. I don't know; taking a question like this in a serious way leads to oscillating between amusement and confusion; I believe part of this is due to the terminology - talking about an experience in an "I" form, while keeping in mind the illusory nature of any ownership. So this is what I'm also looking for: guiding through the maze of "I know I'm not, but saying that implies that I believe I am, so what's next?" I'm also looking for some things that below I accept not to get, such as finding peace and happiness, gaining something over other people, becoming special, making everyone like me and overall winning in life.

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
Being tied to regular and more intense reminders; getting questions that could attack and loosen some deep beliefs and assumptions. (My expectations are shorter than 200 characters, therefore brackets)

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
Some meditation, 10-d vipassana, psychedelic experiences, reading and listening to lectures in the advaita direction. I stay away from esoteric stuff. By a happy coincidence "I" experienced a brief time where I clearly saw how we get unnecessarily attached to stories and how we take things personally, it was great and quite funny; later I slipped back into being "me" and turned that experience into another story, and maybe it has become a hindrance, since I'd like this seeing of things to return.

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

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Anastacia42
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Re: friday night!

Postby Anastacia42 » Sun Oct 06, 2019 3:56 pm

Good morning!

My name is Stacy and I can be your guide, if you would like.

If so . . .

If you haven't already read the disclaimer, please read it now and just confirm to me that you have read it. Here is the link.

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

Also please read “Liberation Unleashed is not …” in the FAQ’s of LU. Here is the link.

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

Some housekeeping guidelines:

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

2. There is no one judging answers given, so please be 100% honest in your answers and inquiry.

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

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

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!

To begin with, so that we both become aware of what your expectations are about this exploration. In your own words (not from actual experience, but just honest answers), could you please answer the 4 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. Instructions on using the Quote Function are at the top of The Gate forum:
https://www.liberationunleashed.com/na ... ?f=4&t=660

What would you like for me to call you? And what time zone are you in, please?

Welcome!
~ Stacy

"Not to know there is an alternative to being lost
in thought is to be a kind of prisoner."

~ Sam Harris

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nass
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Re: friday night!

Postby nass » Sun Oct 06, 2019 6:18 pm

Hi Stacy,

I appreciate you for offering to be my guide. It came sooner than I expected.
... just confirm to me that you have read it
I confirm.
How will life change?
I don’t know. From the point of view of life nothing will change, it will just go on and on. That’s an intellectual understanding, of course, otherwise I wouldn’t be here; so what about MY life of ME who insists that I exist? I imagine life will be more relaxed, more peaceful, joyful, and sensational – at least meaning being more focused on sensations than on thoughts. I’m having a hard time finding what I really think, though, as if I was trying to occupy two perspectives at the same time. Nothing will really change.
How will you change?

Again, I want to answer both that I won’t change at all, and that I’ll change substantially. Well, there’s noone to change, of course, but that’s only my smart-ass me trying to be right, while still being solidly present in the background. I could say that both the thoughts and behavior will probably change somehow, since I take them as part of me. I guess you get the idea and I don’t need to continue this for longer :)
What will be different?
The content of thoughts will be different.
Well, it will always be different anyway, but I expect the "I" thought to be gradually less and less present.
What is missing?
Nothing’s ever missing, AND there’s clarity and certainty missing… a lot.
What would you like for me to call you? And what time zone are you in, please?
After confusing myself with the four previous questions, it’s hard to tell what I would like. Who? ... You can call me nass, thanks. I’m UTC+2, you?

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Anastacia42
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Re: friday night!

Postby Anastacia42 » Sun Oct 06, 2019 6:37 pm

Hi nass,

UTC -6 or Colorado Mountain Time. We're on Daylight Savings for another month.
I’m having a hard time finding what I really think, though, as if I was trying to occupy two perspectives at the same time. Nothing will really change.
That's pretty much how it is. The underlying knowing of no-self coupled with the seeming life that just goes on. If you have had experiences of SEEING, you already experience this, and it seem you have

[quote]What are you looking for at LU?
For clarity. For fun. Relaxation. Death. Joy. I don't know; taking a question like this in a serious way leads to oscillating between amusement and confusion; [/quote]

Yes. We'll go for clarity, relaxation, joy. Death is inevitable. And it can be a lot of fun.

So, below is a description of how to approach each exercise given:

Colored Socks

There is a big difference between knowing that there is nothing to give up and seeing that there is nothing to give up.

Here is an example to illustrate the difference:

If I ask you what color socks you are wearing right now you have two ways to come up with an answer:

• You can think about it, you can think back to this morning and try to remember putting your socks on, and you can probably tell me what color you think they are.

• Alternatively, you can take a quick look at your socks and tell me what color they actually are!


Hopefully you would agree that you can only be 100% certain by looking.

For the purpose of seeing "no self" it is very important that you are clear about this difference. Knowing is about knowledge which is all in the mind and we are not interested in that.

We are only interested in looking at and seeing what is actually going on in your present moment-to-moment experience. We are only interested in your Direct Experience in the moment.

Please let me know if you are clear about this or if you would like any further clarification.


Much love,
~ Stacy

"Not to know there is an alternative to being lost
in thought is to be a kind of prisoner."

~ Sam Harris

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nass
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Re: friday night!

Postby nass » Sun Oct 06, 2019 7:40 pm

you already experience this, and it seem you have ... We'll go for clarity, relaxation, joy.
Good. I tend to overanalyze things and sometimes I seem to need to find out the same thing over and over again - so I want to really focus on some very dumb AE.

I'm absolutely clear about the difference between imagining (knowing) and perceiving (seeing).

To synchronize our vocabulary, is "knowing" in LU used interchangeably with "imagining", "believing" and "thinking"; and "seeing" is being used for both visual sensation and... uhm... the "aha", clear knowing? I'm ok with any choice of words, but would prefer to clarify it in advance - as you know, in some teachings they would say that the only real thing is the Knowing and so on.

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Anastacia42
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Re: friday night!

Postby Anastacia42 » Sun Oct 06, 2019 8:00 pm

Hi nass,

Yes, your synchronization is correct.
as you know, in some teachings they would say that the only real thing is the Knowing and so on.
A couple of points about this. There's no "teaching" here. That's about knowing/thinking or what we call "content of thought," rather than Seeing, which, yes, is AE.

Actual (or Direct) Experience is

Seeing
Hearing
Feeling (sensation, not emotion)
Tasting
Touching
Thought Arising (but not the content of thought.)


These are all things that do not disappear when you look. You don't have to learn them and you don't have to make something up. They just happen.

The exercises I'll be giving you will bring this to you experientially.

Direct Experience - Labelling Daily Activities

Here's an exercise that I would like you to try as many times throughout the day as you can. Label daily activities simply colour/image, sound, smell, taste, sensation, thought.

So for example, when having breakfast, become aware of:

Seeing a cup, simply= image/colour
Smelling coffee, simply = smell
Feeling the warmth of the coffee cup, simply = sensation
Tasting the coffee, simply = taste
Hearing the spoon stirring the coffee, simply = sound
Thought about drinking the coffee, simply = thought

Just break down daily activities into these categories (which are all Actual/Direct Experience) and report back In a few lists exactly like the one above.

Loving,
~ Stacy

"Not to know there is an alternative to being lost
in thought is to be a kind of prisoner."

~ Sam Harris

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nass
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Re: friday night!

Postby nass » Mon Oct 07, 2019 4:09 pm

Hi Stacy,

here's some examples:

when taking a shower
seeing tiles, simply = colour
smelling soap, simply = smell
feeling the temperature and pressure of water, simply = sensation
tasting the water, simply = taste
hearing the running water, simply = sound
thinking about this task, simply = thought

when in bed
seeing the darkness, simply = colour
smelling nothing, simply = smell
feeling the touch of the bed on the body, simply = sensation
tasting the inside of the mouth, simply = taste
hearing some noise from the street, simply = sound
thinking about my sensations, simply = thought

walking outside
seeing houses and trees, simply = colour
smelling nothing, simply = smel
feeling cold hands, simply = sensation
tasting the inside of the mouth, simply = taste
hearing kids and cars, simply = sound
thinking about being late, simply = thought

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Anastacia42
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Re: friday night!

Postby Anastacia42 » Mon Oct 07, 2019 8:55 pm

Hi nass,

Thank you. Good. That sets up for this exercise:

Actual/Direct Experience - Apple

Have a look at an apple. If you have a ‘real’ apple, you can use it for this exercise.

http://www.maryshomestead.com/sitebuild ... /fruit.gif

When looking at an apple, there's colour; a thought saying ‘apple’; and maybe a thought saying, "I'm looking at an apple."

What is known for sure? Colour is known and thoughts are known.

What about the content of thoughts, what they describe?

Actual experience does not refer to thoughts ABOUT something…because that is only just more thought. Actual experience is sound, thought, colour, smell, taste, sensation.

Is there really an ‘apple’ here, or only colour and a thought ABOUT ‘apple’?

Can ‘apple’ be found in actual experience?

While these thoughts are known, what they talk ABOUT can't be found in actual experience.

This is what is meant by ‘looking in actual experience ‘. What you know for sure, and, is always here.

Taste labeled ‘apple’ is known
Colour labelled ‘apple’ is known
Sensation labelled ‘apple’ is known (when apple is touched)
Smell labelled ‘apple’ is known
Thought about/of an ‘apple’ is known

However, is an apple actually known?

Remember, any one exercise can suddenly show you no self. It is fine to repeat exercises, as well. LOOKING is the important part - not just answering the questions.

See what is found. Relax & have fun with it.

Loving,
~ Stacy

"Not to know there is an alternative to being lost
in thought is to be a kind of prisoner."

~ Sam Harris

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nass
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Re: friday night!

Postby nass » Mon Oct 07, 2019 9:15 pm

However, is an apple actually known?

No. What is known are the perceptions and thoughts putting them together with past experiences (other thoughts).
I notice that while this understanding (object not actually known) is clear when being focused at, otherwise I treat the world around as known. I'd play with it a bit more and get back to you tomorrow, if you're ok with that.

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Anastacia42
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Re: friday night!

Postby Anastacia42 » Tue Oct 08, 2019 1:24 am

Great idea!

Play with it with "self, " also.

Loving,
~ Stacy

"Not to know there is an alternative to being lost
in thought is to be a kind of prisoner."

~ Sam Harris

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nass
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Re: friday night!

Postby nass » Tue Oct 08, 2019 12:22 pm

Ok, it seems that it got a little more reconciled - that while I think about the objects as real, I can admit at the same time that all there is to my knowledge about them is just sensory experience and thought. What I do know is a model/representation of the object in my mind, which is again just thoughts, or I could even say hallucinations. The model seems to fit the reality very well, which is why it's never questioned. (I'm just thinking out loud)

When you asked about the self, I was like "I'm not ready yet, I want more exercises!". Anyway... the self obviously cannot be experienced by any of the senses, which leaves it to the realm of thoughts - and to the infamous "but I know for sure I exist". I'd prefer your guidance from here, I imagine it would be more effective than me trying to intellectualy figure out what's my relation to awareness etc.

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Re: friday night!

Postby Anastacia42 » Tue Oct 08, 2019 2:48 pm

Good morning,

Do you notice that both paragraphs of that response are nothing more then the content of thought about the content of thought?

Remember Colored Socks?

LOOK

Let's get very clear on the difference between thought arsing and the content of thought. Thoughts do arise. That happens. But their content is a story, completely made up.

Fruit Exercise

Have a piece of fruit handy, or something that you like to eat.

For the first couple of minutes imagine you are eating the fruit…..feel the sensations of chewing, the taste, the texture, the fragrance, hear the crunching sound that the chewing makes. Really enjoy the imaginary piece of fruit as much as you can.


Then for the next couple of minutes actually bite the fruit and see the difference. Experience the fruit with curiosity and dive into the sensations of chewing, swallowing, the sounds and the taste. Really enjoy the experience of actually eating the piece of fruit.


Then for another minute or so describe the taste and smell in as much detail as possible. Write about it here. What was the experience like?


After you have done this, tell me what you noticed when you compared these three experiences:

1. Imaginary fruit

2. Real fruit

3. Description


Loving,
~ Stacy

"Not to know there is an alternative to being lost
in thought is to be a kind of prisoner."

~ Sam Harris

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nass
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Re: friday night!

Postby nass » Tue Oct 08, 2019 11:09 pm

Do you notice that both paragraphs of that response are nothing more then the content of thought about the content of thought?
Yes
Remember Colored Socks?
Yes
I'm not sure whether you really wanted me to answer these questions or if they were more rhetorical.

describe the taste and smell in as much detail as possible. Write about it here. What was the experience like?
The taste was a bit sweet and sour and the smell was apple-like. Other than that what was experienced was cold, wet, juicy, there were sensations of movement (or tension) and pressure. It was like eating a cold apple.

After you have done this, tell me what you noticed when you compared these three experiences:
1. Imaginary fruit
2. Real fruit
3. Description
What I noticed when comparing them was seeing of the screen (simply colours), hearing the buzzing of the lamp (simply sound), tasting the aftertaste after the apple (simply taste), smelling nothing, feeling the pressure of my body parts against the bed and keyboard and thoughts arising. If you want me to share the content of the thoughts, it was that the real fruit seemed much more "real", vivid, genuine, immediate. When trying to describe the experience, I couldn't find enough words and thought that each of them was too limiting.

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Anastacia42
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Re: friday night!

Postby Anastacia42 » Wed Oct 09, 2019 11:12 pm

Hi nass,
Do you notice that both paragraphs of that response are nothing more then the content of thought about the content of thought?
Yes
Remember Colored Socks?
Yes
I'm not sure whether you really wanted me to answer these questions or if they were more rhetorical.
Mostly I ask no rhetorical questions. Please answer with Actual Experience from LOOKING.

After you have done this, tell me what you noticed when you compared these three experiences:
1. Imaginary fruit
2. Real fruit
3. Description

What I noticed when comparing them was seeing of the screen (simply colours), hearing the buzzing of the lamp (simply sound), tasting the aftertaste after the apple (simply taste), smelling nothing, feeling the pressure of my body parts against the bed and keyboard and thoughts arising. If you want me to share the content of the thoughts, it was that the real fruit seemed much more "real", vivid, genuine, immediate. When trying to describe the experience, I couldn't find enough words and thought that each of them was too limiting.
I'm having a little trouble following your reply. Normally, there would be a description for each numbered question (1. Imaginary fruit, 2. Real fruit, 3. Description), but I think maybe you got the point of the exercise.

Your reply first cites AE. Good. Then "real fruit seemed more "real." Yes. Then description was inadequate.

So, the only one that was real and impactful was the Real Fruit, is that what you said? If so, yes.

The same is true of any Actual or Direct Experience. Those are "'real', vivid, genuine, immediate."

Can you find any "self" or "I" or "me" that is equally real', vivid, genuine, immediate?" Or not?

LOOK very carefully. We've noted there is no self "behind the eyes." Where is it? Or is there such a thing?

What is found?


(You can have all the exercises you want, but we start looking for "self," throughout. I can even send you documents and refer you to books - if you still want them - after you SEE.)

Loving,
~ Stacy

"Not to know there is an alternative to being lost
in thought is to be a kind of prisoner."

~ Sam Harris

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nass
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Re: friday night!

Postby nass » Wed Oct 09, 2019 11:44 pm

Stacy, I'm getting confused with your answers.

For the apple, you asked me to write about my experience, and after doing that to compare the three experiences. I did the first task, then I did the second. The comparison all took place in my thoughts.

Then I don't follow when you say "We've noted there is no self "behind the eyes.", I don't remember us talking about that, although I can agree with it. Also you mention sending documents and refering me to books if I still want them, but I have no idea what you're talking about. Maybe you take me for someone else?

I'll answer the rest of the questions anyway.
Can you find any "self" or "I" or "me" that is equally real', vivid, genuine, immediate?" Or not?
No
LOOK very carefully. We've noted there is no self "behind the eyes." Where is it? Or is there such a thing?
It seems to be only in a recurring thought.
What is found?
Where? What was looked for? Didn't we skip something?

Well, as I said, it's not clear where in the process we're at. I liked the first exercise about labelling experience, that part is clearly seen, the difference between AE and imagination/thoughts/memories is also understood, but the rest of my understanding is still more intellectual. I would appreciate you guiding me to seeing clearly e.g. if
1. "I" has any control over the body
2. there's any distinction between seer (doer, toucher) - seeing - seen
3. there's anything left of self

Thank you & good night


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