What is mind?

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StoneFree
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What is mind?

Postby StoneFree » Sun Nov 10, 2019 11:22 am

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
There is no-self existing on it own. There is experiencer "knowing" experience a.k.a what is occuring in/as the senses. There is no perceiver filtering experience. There is no container of experience, no awareness It seems at times is nothing you can refer back to moment to moment to say that such and such sensory experience refers to another one.

What are you looking for at LU?
Clarity, less confusion. I am open to new avenues of inquiry. Even being challenged on what I think I know already. On the very notion that I am awakened, free and that I know anything. I want to see through doership. Why I am still holding and can't let go.

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
A guided conversation may help in uncovering some aspects of inquiry I might have overlooked. When inquiring everyday using the same methods you tend be a bit more biased. I noticed that many time I would start having a conclusion in mind such as: "there is no self", "there is no physical body". They become habits, attachements and you forget that only direct experience confirm such and such insight.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
I have been into meditative contemplation for the past 3-4 years. I started with doing Buddhist Mahasi vipassana meditation. It really helped in experiencing things more directly. After a self retreat for a months interesting perceptual changes started occurring. They kept on deepening throughout the year. For about a year I have been investigating daily on the nature of experience/mind. I do not meditate much anymore though I am practicing just-sitting meditation.

On a scale from 1 to 10, how willing are you to question any currently held beliefs about 'self?
11

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Vivien
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Re: What is mind?

Postby Vivien » Sun Nov 10, 2019 11:05 pm

Hi,

Welcome to Liberation Unleashed. My name is Vivien and I'd be happy to assist you in your inquiry.

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. We can have a conversation and see where it takes you.

The purpose of which would be for there to be a realisation, more than just intellectually, that there never was and never will be a separate self, as, such. All our efforts will focus on that.

I will tend to ask many questions. That's my job here. These, will be pointers towards no self. It will be for you to examine your experience to find out what's true or not.

I would like to ask you to write only from your experience as you see it, what feels true, with whole honesty.
And also post at least once a day. If you cannot post, or need more time, please let me know.
Can we agree on these?


Tell me, what are you really looking for. How would your life change if you find that?
What are you hoping for?
What do you want to happen?
What is incomplete right now?


Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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StoneFree
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Re: What is mind?

Postby StoneFree » Mon Nov 11, 2019 4:38 am

Can we agree on these?
Yes we can agree on these.

Tell me, what are you really looking for. How would your life change if you find that?

As paradoxically as it may sound, I am looking for self-anhilation. I am tired of constantly striving in life and suffering. Running away from my circumstances seems to lead me to more confusion. Life feels repetitive even though it has great moments of clarity. I want to live this life without effort and being fully authentic. But I also know I am biased in that regard because the authenticity I want has to be calm and without fear or hope or demands for anything.

If I find that I guess my life will not change much but at least I would be feeling less threatened, exhausted. Thought will also be less of a problem.

What are you hoping for?

I hope that hoping stops. I hope that distractions stop. I hope that I experience all the senses fully. I hope that experience is clear and restful. I hope for that change to be permanent and irreversible. Part of me hopes I will be there to witness it happening.

What do you want to happen?

I want to stop hesitating. Checking and rechecking my life again. I want what I am typing right now to typing without having to think about it or hesitate about it or plan to do it.

What is incomplete right now?

Seeing, tasting, feeling, smelling, hearing and thinking.

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Vivien
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Re: What is mind?

Postby Vivien » Mon Nov 11, 2019 5:20 am

Hi,

How can I call you? What name would you prefer?

I would like to ask you to learn to use the quotation function, so our conversation will be easier to read later for both of us.
So here is the link to a video again how to quote:
viewtopic.php?f=4&t=660

I will go through all the expectations you mentioned. Please read my comments carefully, and see if there is any resistance to any of it.
As paradoxically as it may sound, I am looking for self-anhilation.
And what if self-annihilation is not possible? How could an illusion be annihilated? Can a cartoon character be annihilated? Can Batman be annihilated?

The self won’t die or cease to exist. It’s simply impossible.
Since the self/me has never ever existed in the first place.
It has ALWAYS been just an illusion, an imagination.
Nothing more, nothing real.
So seeing through the self is NOT about annihilation.
The ‘sense of self’ won’t disappear. The illusion won’t stop appearing.
What could change is the RECOGNITION that there has never been a self there, it’s always just an imaginary character.
I am tired of constantly striving in life and suffering.
I understand what you mean. But just because the self is seen through, it doesn’t mean automatically that suffering will stop. It might lessen a bit, or not. It cannot be known in advance.

Suffering is more than just believing in the illusion of the self. It’s a conditioned pattern of thinking. And seeing through the self is not the end, actually it’s just the first step, just the beginning.

Also suffering can stem form physiological problems, traumas, emotional pains which 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.
If I find that I guess my life will not change much but at least I would be feeling less threatened, exhausted.
This cannot be known in advance. It’s different from everyone.

Seeing through the separate individual is not about not having any ‘bad’ or uncomfortable feelings any more. Rather it’s about seeing that emotions don’t belong to anything. They are free floating without being tied to or anchored to anything.

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.
I hope that I experience all the senses fully.
And what if there is no inherent ‘me’ to experience all the senses or anything at all? What if experience doesn’t happen to anything or anyone at all?
Part of me hopes I will be there to witness it happening.
And what if not? What if the ‘me’ who hopes to witness is the illusionary self itself?
V: What is incomplete right now?
S: Seeing, tasting, feeling, smelling, hearing and thinking.
Are you saying that what is incomplete in this moment is seeing, tasting, feeling, smelling, hearing and thinking? Isn’t this an intellectual answer?

Please ponder on these questions to see your expectations from a different perspective. Because what I can say for sure, it won’t be how you imagine it to be. Since it cannot be known in advance. It’s never how one imagines it to be.
So it would be the best, if you could drop all your expectations, and just to be a clean slate.

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.
I noticed that many time I would start having a conclusion in mind such as: "there is no self", "there is no physical body". They become habits, attachements and you forget that only direct experience confirm such and such insight.
This is something very important. It’s not possible to see through the illusion without ACTUALLY LOOKING and SEARCHING for the self/me.
You have to be very vigilant not to fall into the trap of ‘I don’t need to look, I already know that there is no self”. This would be a complete dead end. You ALWAYS have to look with every single questions I will give you. Can we agree on this?

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?

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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StoneFree
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Re: What is mind?

Postby StoneFree » Mon Nov 11, 2019 5:32 pm

And what if self-annihilation is not possible? How could an illusion be annihilated? Can a cartoon character be annihilated? Can Batman be annihilated?

The self won’t die or cease to exist. It’s simply impossible.
Since the self/me has never ever existed in the first place.
It has ALWAYS been just an illusion, an imagination.
Nothing more, nothing real.
So seeing through the self is NOT about annihilation.
The ‘sense of self’ won’t disappear. The illusion won’t stop appearing.
What could change is the RECOGNITION that there has never been a self there, it’s always just an imaginary character.
It does make sense conceptually. Which means that its only the belief or view there was a 'me' that is gone not the "experience" that we have associated to be mediated by a self.

And what if not? What if the ‘me’ who hopes to witness is the illusionary self itself?
I have been calling this the culprit in my case.
Are you saying that what is incomplete in this moment is seeing, tasting, feeling, smelling, hearing and thinking? Isn’t this an intellectual answer?
It can only be intellectual at this moment. It is a value judgement. But such a value judgement seem so "powerful"

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?
We can agree on these. I have noticed that books and videos have been a huge source of distraction.

Is there any resistance to any of it?
There has been a bit of resistance when reading that I will need to stop reading and listening to any teacher. Also that I may not have been LOOKING as actively as I may have thought.

Do you feel ready to start the investigation?
I am ready.

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Vivien
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Re: What is mind?

Postby Vivien » Mon Nov 11, 2019 11:54 pm

Hi,
There has been a bit of resistance when reading that I will need to stop reading and listening to any teacher. Also that I may not have been LOOKING as actively as I may have thought.
Reading or listening to teachers could give you just more intellectual knowledge, more concepts. Which would be totally useless for seeing through the self. Since this is not something to understand intellectually, so more knowledge won’t help. Only seeing what is here, right now, in your own immediate experience can help. It is about noticing how things have always been, and not a intellectual/conceptual knowing. That’s why looking at your immediate experience is essential.

All right, let’s start it. We are going to start to investigate thoughts. Seeing thoughts clearly is essential part of the inquiry.

It is very important that you never think or ponder on the questions. Rather you actually have to look what you can see in your immediate experience without any thought interpretation.

Please always be thorough with looking. Look repeatedly several times before replying.

Please sit, doing nothing for a few minutes. Watch thoughts coming and going.

Can you trace a thought back to where it came?
In the same way, can you follow a thought to its destination?
Can you tell where thoughts come from and go to, without using any imagination or speculation?

How can I call you? What name would you prefer?


Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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StoneFree
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Re: What is mind?

Postby StoneFree » Tue Nov 12, 2019 3:06 pm

Please sit, doing nothing for a few minutes. Watch thoughts coming and going.

Can you trace a thought back to where it came?
In the same way, can you follow a thought to its destination?
Can you tell where thoughts come from and go to, without using any imagination or speculation?
Sure, I have been looking. Can I report to you tomorow just to take some time to look more clearly and attentively.

How can I call you? What name do you prefer?

You can call me Eren :)

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StoneFree
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Re: What is mind?

Postby StoneFree » Tue Nov 12, 2019 3:07 pm

How can I call you? What name would you prefer?
You can call me Eren :)

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Vivien
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Re: What is mind?

Postby Vivien » Tue Nov 12, 2019 11:47 pm

Hi Eren,

Yes, of course, please be thorough :)
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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StoneFree
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Re: What is mind?

Postby StoneFree » Wed Nov 13, 2019 3:40 am

Can you trace a thought back to where it came?
In the same way, can you follow a thought to its destination?
Can you tell where thoughts come from and go to, without using any imagination or speculation?
I do not want to jump to quick conclusions on thought. However when I look at a thought directly at times it feels like it happens inside my head or at least there is a reaction inside the head when mental talk appear and when it is also deliberately noticed. Looking at it more closely, it does not seem to come from any particular place or dissolve in a particular space. Though sometimes it seems that a thought and sensation come together out of nowhere and disappear nowhere. By nowhere I mean somewhere I cant really say much about.

At times I try to trace back a thought but it already gone. Then it seems there is just another thought. Sometimes a sensation (maybe emotional tone) that remains.

I will keep looking more thouroughly. The grip of speculation even when being direct moment to moment is strong.

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Vivien
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Re: What is mind?

Postby Vivien » Wed Nov 13, 2019 4:14 am

Hi Eren,
Looking at it more closely, it does not seem to come from any particular place or dissolve in a particular space. Though sometimes it seems that a thought and sensation come together out of nowhere and disappear nowhere. By nowhere I mean somewhere I cant really say much about.
Great looking.
I will keep looking more thouroughly. The grip of speculation even when being direct moment to moment is strong.
The tendency to speculate can sometimes be strong. That’s all right. It’s just a conditioned habit. When you notice it, just go back to looking.

Try an experiment.
Try to create a thought. Any thought, from scratch. What do you find?
Do you notice how thoughts seem to appear, hang around for a while and somehow pass, and then the next thought come?
What is making thoughts to appear?
Now try preventing a thought from appearing. Is it possible?


Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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StoneFree
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Re: What is mind?

Postby StoneFree » Thu Nov 14, 2019 11:46 pm

Hey Vivien!

Try to create a thought. Any thought, from scratch. What do you find?
Do you notice how thoughts seem to appear, hang around for a while and somehow pass, and then the next thought come?

I have been investigating for the past 2 days. Thought seem to just form like ice then melt away. The place where they melt away or fade is also hard to locate. I really don't know how I know they faded lol because they'e just gone, out!. Then another thought. By the time the first thought is gone another thought usually appears right after. But the place they come from so far is a mystery to me. Again at time there seems to be a relationship with a sensation (which gets very confusion because I try to relax sometimes to see clearer). I will be investigating more.

For the last two questions let me come back to you tomorrow. But at times it feels like it's one sensation that produces or supresses a thought. Or at least there seems to be always a reaction in the body (as sensation) related to trying to produce or trying to suppress a thought.

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Vivien
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Re: What is mind?

Postby Vivien » Fri Nov 15, 2019 2:46 am

Hi, I will reply when you finished with the remaining questions.
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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StoneFree
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Re: What is mind?

Postby StoneFree » Fri Nov 15, 2019 3:59 pm

What is making thoughts to appear?
Now try preventing a thought from appearing. Is it possible?
When looking very closely it just seems like thoughts appear on their own. Lets say I am generating the sound "Blah blah" deliberately. I appear that there is no difference between saying "Blah blah" deliberately or "blah blah" coming out on its own. It also seems like the thought of "intending" to do something appears and disappears in the same way.

There seems to be just "attempts" to prevent or create a thought. When looking closely to me it seems I cant prevent a thought from appearing (actually any other appearance). Just sequences of thoughts. Some may say "I am gonna prevent this thought", then another thought, then another thought. They don't SEEM to affect each other. But I will keep looking more closely.

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StoneFree
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Re: What is mind?

Postby StoneFree » Fri Nov 15, 2019 4:06 pm

I forgot to mention that by the time I try to be aware of one thought, it is like the that one thought has already appeared. In the same way as by the time I try to suppress one thought sometimes that one thought is either already gone (then another thought) or it just stays.


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