Halfway there?

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awakeningbk
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Re: Halfway there?

Postby awakeningbk » Sat Sep 12, 2020 2:26 am

Argh! thoughts and thoughts and thoughts - and expectations and all these silly things that you’re right, are completely getting in my way. Ok. I will try my hardest to let go of as many expectations as I can find. When a thought arises, it’s ok - but not reality nor something to take seriously. I have to admit I’m frustrated by making the same mistakes a couple times in a row!

When you say “I couldn’t feel they were me” – then what does the word ‘me’ refer to in this sentence? The body?
You couldn’t feel that other bodies weren’t you (as this body you call me)?
Argh! Yes I was expecting merging again! Same stupid mistake. Thank you for being so patient with me, I’ll try to be more diligent.
What kind of feeling do you expect?
Where should this feeling appear, in which part of the body?
And how would you recognize that a feeling is that “others are me (as this body)”?
Do you see the trap here?
You have made it clear that this is not going to happen, that I need to throw out my preconceived notions, like this one that I keep stupidly repeating!

To answer your question anyway (for the sake of it), I think maybe I have been hoping for a feeling of empathy or something - it’s awfully murky now that I’m trying to discern it and shine a light on it. I think I remember reading Adyashanti a long time ago, and hearing him talk about how one “recognizes others as you” - so I think maybe I wasn’t expecting a “feeling” because you’ve been so diligent about putting that old belief to rest for me, so it seems the expectation morphed into looking for maybe a recognition, or something? Honestly, I have no idea what this stupid expectation has been, looking at it closely! I will try my hardest to proceed and let it go - and to be on guard for it!
Do you see that you still expect that your body somehow should merge with other bodies, or somehow you would be able to feel others’ feelings and hear others’ thoughts?
Yes! Ugh.
Is there someone in the body called ‘awakeningbk’ who is feeling this body’s feelings and sensations? Where is this someone who feels sensations and supposedly should be able to feel others’ sensations and emotions too? Where is the FEELER? – find it
......I can’t! I can’t find it! I can find feelings, but I can’t find a damn agent taking in the feelings. There are definitely feelings, but no one making them! Cloud, rain, but no Rainer.
Do you expect some big BUMMM!? :) Can you let go off trying to grasp onto something and measuring it whether it is or not?
Oof every time I feel like I’m close, there are other old dumb expectations popping up! I hope this is all
Who or what is identifying with the image of the body or with opinions?
Where is the identifier?
It’s all just thought! All thought. Truly, no identifier.
What could the identity of the image of the body or opinion stick to?
And what is the glue made of?
Is it really just a pattern? No sticking, no nothing, just a pattern playing out?

Vivien - I took today to just be in the park again and observe. Kept coming back to your words earlier in our exchange “the body is the experience, not the experiencer”. It lended some clarity that is percolating. Again - trying to look and ignore damn thought.
In all of the above, it’s irrefutable that there isn’t an independent entity with volition occupying the body. But man - it’s a tenuous conclusion still. Trying to pause, throw out those pre-conceived notions - still finishing writing things around this. I’m sorry this seems to be taking a while. I will keep trying.

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Vivien
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Re: Halfway there?

Postby Vivien » Sat Sep 12, 2020 3:59 am

Dear awakeningbk,
To answer your question anyway (for the sake of it), I think maybe I have been hoping for a feeling of empathy or something - it’s awfully murky now that I’m trying to discern it and shine a light on it. I think I remember reading Adyashanti a long time ago, and hearing him talk about how one “recognizes others as you” - so I think maybe I wasn’t expecting a “feeling” because you’ve been so diligent about putting that old belief to rest for me, so it seems the expectation morphed into looking for maybe a recognition, or something?
OK, so you heard something from Adyashanti, but you interpreted his words based on your own beliefs. Since you had been believing that you were the body, you interpreted his words through the belief that I am the body, and I (the body) am going to be able to merge with others, since you (the body) will recognize other bodies being the same body as you. Or something like that.

This is very common. Our beliefs distorts how we interpret others’ words.

We are not really hearing what others saying, we are only hearing our OWN INTERPRETATION ABOUT what others say.
But we believe that we know exactly what we hear, so we set out for a quest to find what Adya said.
But what we are actually searching for is what we BELIEVE what he said.
But he didn’t say that others’ body will be recognized as yours body.
He meant something else.
But we cannot see it, since we can only ‘see’ inside our own beliefs.
......I can’t! I can’t find it! I can find feelings, but I can’t find a damn agent taking in the feelings. There are definitely feelings, but no one making them! Cloud, rain, but no Rainer.
Yes. This is the simplicity of how things are, without a story.
Is it really just a pattern? No sticking, no nothing, just a pattern playing out?
Why don’t you find it out for yourself? :)
Kept coming back to your words earlier in our exchange “the body is the experience, not the experiencer”.
Let’s look at this a bit more.

Sit down, and just feel the sensations called ‘body’.

Can you find any sensation that is the experiencER and not experiencED?
Any sensation that is a perceivER and not perceivED?

Is any sensation aware?
And you, are you aware?


Really notice if you are aware of not.

Are you aware or not?
Is there any sensation that is aware?

Is there any sensation that knows what is going in? That knows this present experience?
Or ALL sensation, without exception, are KNOWN, are experiencED?


Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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awakeningbk
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Re: Halfway there?

Postby awakeningbk » Sat Sep 12, 2020 7:01 pm

Hi Vivien,

Thanks so much, this all is very helpful and makes a lot of sense. On part I do want to clarify, in case it matters:
you interpreted his words through the belief that I am the body, and I (the body) am going to be able to merge with others, since you (the body) will recognize other bodies being the same body as you. Or something like that.
So almost... I think my expectation was more that seeing would be clearer?? Like recognition, I guess. But not a feeling - more an understanding. Not so much involving the body, you’ve been so good at helping me see through that. But still, I see that’s an expectation, and you’ve been patient about making it clear that any and all expectations, no matter what, get in the way.
Can you find any sensation that is the experiencER and not experiencED?
Any sensation that is a perceivER and not perceivED?
Sitting down, and trying to be with this... No. I can feel the sensations, but no sense-er. There is awareness of the sensations.
Is any sensation aware?
And you, are you aware?
No sensation is aware, that I can see, it just is. Am “I” aware? Oh - looking at it, I don’t know who there is to be aware? There just is awareness! I could say “I” am awareness, but there is nothing independent and volitional there.
Are you aware or not?
Is there any sensation that is aware?
There is awareness watching this cycle called “awakeningbk” play out - like a waterfall or smoke, existing, turning, changing, moving. I promise I am not saying that from a conceptual view, but rather referencing my original noticing earlier in our exchange when I realized that identifying with my thoughts is like identifying with a process or a waterfall - the body is the same, from what I can tell. There is awareness of this body called “awakeningbk” - but again, There is nothing autonomous there.
Is there any sensation that knows what is going in? That knows this present experience?
Or ALL sensation, without exception, are KNOWN, are experiencED?
Sensations that are aware of the experience? No - no, not at all. Not even close. From what I can tell, all sensations are experienced, But no one is there - it just is.

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Vivien
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Re: Halfway there?

Postby Vivien » Sun Sep 13, 2020 5:03 am

Dear awakeningbk,
So almost... I think my expectation was more that seeing would be clearer?? Like recognition, I guess. But not a feeling - more an understanding. Not so much involving the body, you’ve been so good at helping me see through that. But still, I see that’s an expectation, and you’ve been patient about making it clear that any and all expectations, no matter what, get in the way.
OK. Let’s dig a bit deeper with expectations, in general.

You are waiting for something to happen. You are waiting that sometimes in the future you will be able gain more clarity, more understanding, or whatever.

But awaking is not something to wait for to happen in the future.
It’s not in the future.
It’s here now.

It’s ALREADY here, waiting for you to NOTICE.
Here now is the only place and time to look and notice.

You are trying to judge it by some expectations, based on how you imagine how it would feel like or be like.
So in essence, you are waiting for the by-products you expect to happen.
So you are not noticing what is here now, rather you are seeking to find those by-products.

But realization isn’t recognized by its by-products.
The realization is self-evident, no by-product is needed.
If you are looking for the by-products, then you are just simply searching for by-products.
But realization is no equal to its possible by-products.
Those could only be by-products, but not IT.
Realization is the simple noticing of what IS, here-and-now, in this very moment.
Moment by moment. That’s all.
It’s very simple.

So when you look here-now, what do notice?
What IS right now?
No sensation is aware, that I can see, it just is. Am “I” aware? Oh - looking at it, I don’t know who there is to be aware? There just is awareness! I could say “I” am awareness, but there is nothing independent and volitional there.
Is there a need for someone in order to know what is going on?
Or aware-ing or knowing is part of the whole package?
There is awareness watching this cycle called “awakeningbk” play out - like a waterfall or smoke, existing, turning, changing, moving. I promise I am not saying that from a conceptual view, but rather referencing my original noticing earlier in our exchange
OK, so you are referencing back to a memory of a previous looking.
But realization doesn’t exist in the past either.
Only here now.

So in essence, it doesn’t matter too much what has been seen yesterday, an hour ago, or even a minute ago.
The only thing that matters what is SEEN / NOTICED in this very moment. Now… and now…. and now…

If I cannot see something in this very moment, then I cannot see it. Then it’s just a belief in this very moment, since I rely on a memory, because it’s not something that I can see now.

Therefore, looking always has to be afresh. You can never rely on a memory.
Sensations that are aware of the experience? No - no, not at all. Not even close. From what I can tell, all sensations are experienced, But no one is there - it just is.
OK. So sensations are not aware.

Is there anything else to the body than sensations?

If you say no, then how could you say that I am the body, if the body is not aware, since no sensation is aware?


Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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awakeningbk
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Re: Halfway there?

Postby awakeningbk » Mon Sep 14, 2020 1:43 pm

Hi Vivien
But realization isn’t recognized by its by-products.
The realization is self-evident, no by-product is needed.
If you are looking for the by-products, then you are just simply searching for by-products.
But realization is no equal to its possible by-products.
Those could only be by-products, but not IT.
Realization is the simple noticing of what IS, here-and-now, in this very moment.
Moment by moment. That’s all.
It’s very simple.
I see, thank you.

Reading this, you’ve helped me clarify that my intentions have been all wrong, despite my thinking otherwise. It’s obvious, reading what you’ve written, that thing I’ve deep down been wanting, searching for, has been the benefits. The “by-products” - and of course it’s been difficult for me to see with clarity as a result. My actual intention hasn’t been properly honed - seeking the goodies and not the truth.

At my core, I do know that I want the truth, because the alternative is not-truth. I don’t want to live my life on a bedrock of sand, but seeing the world with clarity also seems to be such a process of relinquishing, can be scary, that maybe in some senses I’ve used this notion of “goodies” or “benefits” to keep my head in the game. As a result, of course I’ve been finding it hard to let go of expectations. You’ve made it clear that these things are either not what I think they are, or are hindrances to trying to see with clarity.

Thank you for your kindness with my Vivien, I’m sure you’ve already seen that my intention hasn’t been perfectly clear, and you were patiently guiding me.

Seeing it now, I think I’ll just say this, both as a statement for myself and a reminder, but also to let you know I really want this: I am doing this because I want to see how things ARE, and let go of illusions clouding reality. That is all - seeing clearly requires giving up preconceived notions and desires regarding that seeing.
So when you look here-now, what do notice?
What IS right now
What is right now, is a body sitting, typing, taking part in this inquiry at a desk.

There are thoughts about the body, thoughts about it’s trajectory in the world, images of the body doing various things. There is a sensation of contact with the chair the body is sitting on, wood against the wrists - but these are all singular sensations, and the labeling process is occurring as well. There is breathing - in and out motion of the breath. There are incoming sounds, the breath of dog nearby, a plane overhead, creaking of chair while shifting - and of course, the labeling continues.
Is there a need for someone in order to know what is going on?
If I say yes (I am trying to be thorough) - “yes, there is a need for someone in order to know what is going on” - then how do I define “someone”? As an autonomous, lasting, eternal individual? Where is that someone? The body exists, but it is not autonomous. The thoughts exist, but they are not autonomous. Sensations absolutely cannot be controlled, nor can emotions. No control whatsoever, that I can find.

There isn’t anything there that I can find. Roving awareness, but no driver. So the answer is no - there is no need for someone in order for awareness of what is happening.
OK, so you are referencing back to a memory of a previous looking.
But realization doesn’t exist in the past either.
Only here now.
So in essence, it doesn’t matter too much what has been seen yesterday, an hour ago, or even a minute ago.
The only thing that matters what is SEEN / NOTICED in this very moment. Now… and now…. and now…
If I cannot see something in this very moment, then I cannot see it. Then it’s just a belief in this very moment, since I rely on a memory, because it’s not something that I can see now.
Therefore, looking always has to be afresh. You can never rely on a memory.
This makes complete sense, thank you for this.
Is there anything else to the body than sensations?
If you say no, then how could you say that I am the body, if the body is not aware, since no sensation is aware?
I think I see what you’re saying:
“The body is sensations -> sensations are not aware -> to say the body is aware is inaccurate”

There is an awareness OF the body - heck, it still seems there is an awareness WITHIN the body (again, the vantage point) - but the body itself is not aware.

There is still this strong urge to say that awareness resides within the body - because the sensations that occur are directly linked to the body.

But I am also aware of other things in addition to the body, and that awareness does not have to be located within other areas for there to be awareness of them... But there is the vantage point, and that the vantage point IS the body. Awareness of both the body and others is true, and that awareness of the experience of the body is more close than awareness of (again, say) husband. But awareness is aware of husband as well, it just does not have accompanying sensations like the general pressure of sitting on a chair, or when eating something sweet.

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Vivien
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Re: Halfway there?

Postby Vivien » Tue Sep 15, 2020 9:09 am

Dear awakeningbk,
I think I see what you’re saying:
“The body is sensations -> sensations are not aware -> to say the body is aware is inaccurate”
Yes, but do you actually see this? Or rather this is just an intellectual understanding?

Can you find any body parts that is aware?
Or the body is being aware-d? All of it? All parts of it?
There is an awareness OF the body - heck, it still seems there is an awareness WITHIN the body (again, the vantage point) - but the body itself is not aware.
Ok. Then tell me where is the exact location of awareness inside the body. Tell me the exact location.
There is still this strong urge to say that awareness resides within the body - because the sensations that occur are directly linked to the body.
Are sensations LINKED to the body? Or body = sensations?

Saying that sensations are linked to the body is equal to saying that there are sensations + body. As if body would be something else than sensations. As if there were a body, and inside that body there are sensations.

But can you find a body that is not ‘made of’ sensations?
Can you see that body is just a concept, a label on sensations?

Are the words ‘body’ and ‘sensation’ pointing to two different things? Or these words pointing to the same experience of sensations happening?

But I am also aware of other things in addition to the body, and that awareness does not have to be located within other areas for there to be awareness of them...
Are you saying that in order to be aware of sensations, awareness has to be inside the body? Why would that be? Is sensation something else than the body? Is body something else than sensations?

Body = sensations

So if awareness were inside the body, then it would mean the awareness is inside sensations.

So find the exact sensation that contains awareness. Where is it?

But there is the vantage point, and that the vantage point IS the body.
No. Actually the vantage point are the eyes. It’s more specific than the body. It’s the eyes.
Awareness of both the body and others is true, and that awareness of the experience of the body is more close than awareness of (again, say) husband.
This is pure thinking with zero experiential evidence for it. What you are talking about is the distance between two bodies. You are talking about a spatial distance, which has nothing to do with the distance or the lack of distance between knowing sensations, and knowing another body.

Sit down and close your eyes.

Is there a distance between any sensation and the awareness of knowing that sensation?
Any distance at all? Or it’s completely devoid of distance, since the sensation is already the knowing of it?
Are there two things there? Sensation + the awareness of it? Or these are just two ways of describing the SAME and ONLY happening?


Now, open your eyes, and look at an object, like a table.

Is there any distance between the table and the knowing if it?
I am not talking about the distance between the body and the table, but rather the table and the awareness of it?


Or be even more specific.

Just notice the wholeness of the visual information. Don’t focus on any object, just notice the colors and shapes that are present.

Is there any distance between the visuals and the awareness of it?
Or these are just two different ways of describing the same happening?


Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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awakeningbk
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Re: Halfway there?

Postby awakeningbk » Tue Sep 15, 2020 1:51 pm

Hi Vivien, thank you this is great.

I am going to try hard this morning to really argue out every single one of my counter-points that seems to be holding me from seeing this clearly. Been frustrated lately. The body remains a barrier, and I think it’s because I don’t have a full understanding of what you mean.
Yes, but do you actually see this? Or rather this is just an intellectual understanding?
Can you find any body parts that is aware?
Or the body is being aware-d? All of it? All parts of it?
It itself is not aware, so to speak, but there seems to be awareness OF it.
Ok. Then tell me where is the exact location of awareness inside the body. Tell me the exact location.
Oh this is a great question... It’s quite literally the whole of it, fingers to toes, and that awareness does extend outside to everything around, roving with the positioning of the eyes, the ears.. Hm. BUT there is no sensational awareness (hand on desk) in the same way with external things, like the lamp across the room. I don’t *expect* there to be, I’m just observing what I’m experiencing.
Are sensations LINKED to the body? Or body = sensations?
Saying that sensations are linked to the body is equal to saying that there are sensations + body. As if body would be something else than sensations. As if there were a body, and inside that body there are sensations.
Can you see that body is just a concept, a label on sensations?
But - I know you’re going to say this is conceptual, just an idea, but there is a physical body that is more than just sensations - it is doing digesting, and breathing, it has muscles that move (that make it feel empty), it has nerve endings that cause the sensations - I can’t ignore these facts and dismiss them as conceptual? Sensations are a component of an organism that functions and moves through the world, but they are not *all* the body is, even in experience, in which we experience sounds, we live, we are sick and get better because of a functioning immune system. These things are true?? I really struggle with the notion of calling it conceptual to acknowledge these truths.
On the other hand, I agree that bundling these processes and putting a label on them as “awakeningbk” IS a concept - *that* I see. Awakeningbk breathes, is a collection of these processes - similar to the term “government” (where is “government”? Is it the legislative branch? Is it the judicial branch? Is it the judges, the lawyers, the buildings themselves? The books referencing “law”?) the body is conceptual in *that* way, yes - but it is not pure sensation in full truth.

My *experience* of the body is as sensation - that I can see.
Are you saying that in order to be aware of sensations, awareness has to be inside the body? Why would that be? Is sensation something else than the body? Is body something else than sensations?
No - but the “vantage” of sensations is from the point of the body - the eyes yes, but also the hearing, smell, and yes whether you’re standing in the shower or laying in bed. I know you’ve tried to address this a couple times, but I just can’t seem to see past it - sensations occur dependent upon *where the body is located*. There is a child within 20 feet of my window yelling, and my experience of sound reflects that. My eyes rove the room and show I am sitting on a chair, and I have the sensation of the body sitting in the chair?
Body = sensations

So if awareness were inside the body, then it would mean the awareness is inside sensations.

So find the exact sensation that contains awareness. Where is it?
Fundamentally, I think I am struggling with “body = sensations” - as I went on about above, I don’t believe the body is just sensations. From an experiential standpoint, sure, but awareness is not within the sensations itself - the senses are not aware. Rather, sensations occur within the body, and awareness occurs as a result. We have nerve endings and receptors that create these sensations, and a brain that interprets them - a whole functioning orchestra.

I just can’t get beyond labeling this process as conceptual, when in truth it is real??
No. Actually the vantage point are the eyes. It’s more specific than the body. It’s the eyes.
But it’s not, from what I can see? In the same way there is a vantage point with the eyes, there is a vantage point with sound, with smelling, with physical sensation - with quite literally all of the senses, there is a vantage point contingent on location - I cannot see how this is conceptual?
A dog barks from 50 feet away and it is not so loud, but a dog barks right next to me and it is very loud. The eyes rove and see different things, food is cooking in the kitchen - if the body is in the kitchen it can smell more strongly, if the body is on the sidewalk it cannot smell at all. The body is in bed and feels accompanying sensations (singular ones, with label such as “bed”), different ones than if the body was in a hot shower (with a mental label “hot water”) - despite the labels, the actual sensations are so different?

Is there a distance between any sensation and the awareness of knowing that sensation?
Any distance at all? Or it’s completely devoid of distance, since the sensation is already the knowing of it?
Are there two things there? Sensation + the awareness of it? Or these are just two ways of describing the SAME and ONLY happening?
No - there is no distance between the sensation, and the knowing of it. None whatsoever. The sensation is already the knowing of it (lovely phrase on your part to capture the essence).

There are not two things there - just two ways of describing the same and only happening. That’s very interesting! This is an interesting thing, you’re right.
Now, open your eyes, and look at an object, like a table.
Is there any distance between the table and the knowing if it?
I am not talking about the distance between the body and the table, but rather the table and the awareness of it?
..No - there is no distance whatsoever between the table and the awareness of it. The seeing is the awareness, in a weird way.
Or be even more specific.

Just notice the wholeness of the visual information. Don’t focus on any object, just notice the colors and shapes that are present.

Is there any distance between the visuals and the awareness of it?
Or these are just two different ways of describing the same happening?
Wait - yes! There is no distance at all. Wait.

Sensations and awareness are just the same thing??? Hmmmmmmmmmmmm I really need to sit with this..

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Re: Halfway there?

Postby Vivien » Wed Sep 16, 2020 2:06 am

Dear awakeningbk,
It itself is not aware, so to speak, but there seems to be awareness OF it.
Yes. The body is not aware, but rather aware-d, or known.
No - there is no distance between the sensation, and the knowing of it. None whatsoever. The sensation is already the knowing of it (lovely phrase on your part to capture the essence).

There are not two things there - just two ways of describing the same and only happening. That’s very interesting! This is an interesting thing, you’re right.
..No - there is no distance whatsoever between the table and the awareness of it. The seeing is the awareness, in a weird way.
Wait - yes! There is no distance at all. Wait.
OK. So this, what you just saw, is non-separation. The word ‘oneness’ point to this. That there is no distance between a thought and the knowing of it. There is no distance between sensations and the knowing of them. There is no distance between the visuals and the knowing of them.

This is what the words ‘non-separation’ or ‘oneness’ or ‘nonduality’ point to.
This is it!
Nothing more, nothing less. This is it! :)
We have nerve endings and receptors that create these sensations, and a brain that interprets them - a whole functioning orchestra.
This is purely a learned, intellectual information.

Can you experience ‘receptor endings’?
Can you experience a brain?
Can you experience or observe the process how the brain is processing the information coming from the sensory receptors?

If you don’t think the words brain/receptors then what is left?


I’m not saying that scientifically it’s not valid. What I’m saying that this is just an inferred information, and not your immediate experience.

We are not denying science.
But science is just an inferred and learned information, which is utterly useless if you want to see for yourself how things actually are.

In relative terms, science is valid.
But our investigation is not on the level of consensual reality.
We are going deeper, to the roots.
Where no thought can enter.
What we are investigating is BEFORE thoughts.


For a baby, there is no brain, no receptors, nothing like that.
For a baby, there is only the wholeness of experience with the inherent knowing of it.
As a whole. As one unit.
That’s all.
This is it.

Even what you imagine about the brain-thing is not how it is. I’m giving you a video where someone explains the scientific standpoint on how seeing, hearing happens, and also how the self is constructed. I usually don’t show anything intellectual, since it’s very easy to cling onto. But maybe it could help to calm down your hungry intellect :)

(He is talking about other stuff too at the end, just ignore that).

Please listen to this several times, and just periodically stop the video, and just check what the guy is saying.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jE0ffE ... E3mn1DVGtg

Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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awakeningbk
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Re: Halfway there?

Postby awakeningbk » Sat Sep 19, 2020 5:46 pm

Hi Vivien,
I think I had a hard time replying today because I feel stuck in a weird way. I wanted to be thorough and try to see clearly and get this done, but I still have some sticking points. Specifically, the vantage point thing keeps going on with me — referenced below.

Anyway, this is what I wrote:
Vivien: OK. So this, what you just saw, is non-separation. The word ‘oneness’ point to this. That there is no distance between a thought and the knowing of it. There is no distance between sensations and the knowing of them. There is no distance between the visuals and the knowing of them.

This is what the words ‘non-separation’ or ‘oneness’ or ‘nonduality’ point to.
This is it!
Nothing more, nothing less. This is it! :)
Whoa! Really?? Ok I need to sit with this even more - that’s so interesting!! But what does that mean? Why is this the all-important thing? It’s so immediate, and I am excited at least to have this pointed out
Can you experience ‘receptor endings’?
Can you experience a brain?
Can you experience or observe the process how the brain is processing the information coming from the sensory receptors?
If you don’t think the words brain/receptors then what is left?
Ok - I cannot experience ‘receptor endings’, nor a brain, nor how the brains processes information. These things *are* concepts, you’re right...

I listened to the video you forwarded, and I’ve been contemplating it. I really appreciated that, thank you. I need to listen to it a couple more times, and I am trying to remember why you sent it - so I can release some of these concepts I’ve been clinging to as hard reality.

I just tried walking around my living room bringing the early question to the forefront: Am I the body? Considering what you say about non-duality - awareness rests on the couch, no distance between the image of the couch and the knowing of it, no distance between the feeling of the desk beneath my arm and knowing it - and I suppose I am not sure what to do with that information? There is still this pervasive sense that “I am the body”, but maybe I need to keep rereading our correspondences to see why? I think I keep going back to the vantage point thing from my previous comment - I am the vantage point for hearing sounds (disturbances in air pressure :) cool), I am the vantage point for visuals, I am the vantage point for physical sensations/phenomena arising.... To reference it again:
Awakeningbk: A dog barks from 50 feet away and it is not so loud, but a dog barks right next to me and it is very loud. The eyes rove and see different things, food is cooking in the kitchen - if the body is in the kitchen it can smell more strongly, if the body is on the sidewalk it cannot smell at all. The body is in bed and feels accompanying sensations (singular ones, with label such as “bed”), different ones than if the body was in a hot shower (with a mental label “hot water”) - despite the labels, the actual sensations are so different?
I think this is why it’s so hard to see how I could possibly be anything other than the body? If the body is the vantage point?

Ugh I’m sorry Vivien, I feel like we’re going in circles, but this thing just won’t get out of my way

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Re: Halfway there?

Postby Vivien » Sun Sep 20, 2020 5:14 am

Dear awakeningbk,
I think this is why it’s so hard to see how I could possibly be anything other than the body? If the body is the vantage point?
Just because there is a vantage point, it doesn’t mean that there is a ‘me’ at that seeming vantage point.

The thing is that I usually don’t go deep into investigating this topic, since this is not the important part. I went into this just because you had a false idea about oneness or non-separation.

But the thing is that you are stuck on a different level.
There is still a belief that whatever thought say is true, and more importantly I am thinking those thoughts.
That the thought of “what else I possibly be, other than the body?” is thought by me.
That I am the thinker.

But the one that is believed to be the thinker is simply not there.
But there is no clear seeing of this.

Also, there is still a belief in a self, in a me, who is trying to find an identity. “what else could I be than the body?” – but what if there is no I at all that could the body or anything else?

Where is the one that is trying hard to identify itself?
Where is the one that is trying to find what or who it is?

Who is searching? Who?
Is there a ‘who’ at all?

Is there someone or something searching for answers?

And who or what is thinking thoughts?

Who or what is thinking the thought of “it’s so hard how I could possibly be anything other than the body”?


Dear awakeningbk, you still thinking about the answers.
You are still relying on thoughts, concepts, ideas.
This is a total dead end.

Can you give it up? Can you give up relying on thinking and analysing?
Are you willing to let go of the safety of the intellect, and dive into the unknown (not knowing how things are)?

Ugh I’m sorry Vivien, I feel like we’re going in circles, but this thing just won’t get out of my way
Because you are looking in the wrong direction.

As if you wanted to go to north (experience), but you are ‘obsessed’ going south (thoughts).
North is not at south.
Stop going to south.
Stop.
Let go of the idea of south.
Just let go.
Let it go.
Then turn around.
And take a step towards north.

Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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Re: Halfway there?

Postby awakeningbk » Mon Sep 21, 2020 1:44 pm

Just because there is a vantage point, it doesn’t mean that there is a ‘me’ at that seeming vantage point.


Wrote this down. Duh. Thank you. This line struck to the heart of something.
But the thing is that you are stuck on a different level.
There is still a belief that whatever thought say is true, and more importantly I am thinking those thoughts.
That the thought of “what else I possibly be, other than the body?” is thought by me.
That I am the thinker.
Yes. That’s fair - I suppose it’s still true. I don’t believe there is an independent entity, I don’t believe there’s control.
But the one that is believed to be the thinker is simply not there.
But there is no clear seeing of this.
Well - I do see that there is not an independent thinker - I see that there are thoughts. I see that there are “identifying thoughts”, and often an ensuing cycle of believing the thoughts - but when I pause and breath, look at a tree, there is an understanding that it’s just a cycle playing out. Perhaps a lot of the work that we’ve been doing has been mining out all these previously invisible expectations?
Also, there is still a belief in a self, in a me, who is trying to find an identity. “what else could I be than the body?” – but what if there is no I at all that could the body or anything else?

Where is the one that is trying hard to identify itself?
Where is the one that is trying to find what or who it is?
Thank you for this question.
Sitting - looking - breathing - quiet... No one. Just thought, all just thought. There is nothing there other than thoughts.
Who is searching? Who?
Is there a ‘who’ at all?
Is there someone or something searching for answers?
And who or what is thinking thoughts?
Thoughts - thoughts - thoughts - ahhh all just damned thoughts. And again there was a believing of them - but that’s ok. Thoughts of “there must be something here to be claiming this awareness” And “the awareness is different from husband’s so it’s MY awareness”.
Who or what is thinking the thought of “it’s so hard how I could possibly be anything other than the body”?
Persistent spinning mounting thought. All damned thought.
Dear awakeningbk, you still thinking about the answers.
You are still relying on thoughts, concepts, ideas.
This is a total dead end.
Can you give it up? Can you give up relying on thinking and analysing?
Are you willing to let go of the safety of the intellect, and dive into the unknown (not knowing how things are)?
Not knowing how things are.

Ok - here is what I am going to try to do. I’ve written down a lot of the quotes from you that have opened up new understanding.

I am going to take today and have these two things as my mantra to try to beat off thought:

“All expectations come on behalf of a separate self”
“Thinking cannot help you see through illusion. Give it up. Literally, give it up.”

And I am going to keep these three questions at the forefront:

“Are you the body? Where is the you in the body? Is there such a thing as a separate self?” I know I will see, again and again, that it’s just thought - and try to remember the above while paying quiet attention to here right now and what *is*.

Honestly Vivien, I do think I keep seeing this to a minor degree, glimpses and small understandings, but you seem to think not and I really trust you and your understanding.

But, I made tea after reading your reply and starting to formulate mine, and the awareness of pure experience was right there. Right there- so immediate. The steam, the warmth of the cup. All just experience, and all just awareness of what was happening.
“Knowing” in a way - that phrase, that recognition from earlier in our exchange has a lot of meaning now.
Maybe one of the reasons I’ve struggled so much with this is that I don’t know how or when to pinpoint it and say “that’s it. That’s truth”. Previous expectations, reading, etc have really really muddied the waters.

Anyway - I guess that’s more thinking. I’ll go about my day today and bear the above in mind - sometimes having a simplified framework helps the most, and god knows I need all the help I can get with my hungry over-active mind.

As always, thank you for your incredible patience and willingness to work with me on this.

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Re: Halfway there?

Postby awakeningbk » Mon Sep 21, 2020 1:55 pm

Wait - and there is one thing.

As I submitted that, I started writing. I know that’s thinking sort of but is this the right track? It feels like it’s helped me have an understanding.

The realization that thought arises totally on it’s own, like a cloud and rain - there is no rain-er, there is no think-er. There is no one doing that, no one causing it.

This realization helped me see that there is truly no owner of the thoughts - they just are. They just happen. And that same realization occurred for the senses - there is no sense-er, just the experience of the senses. No rain-er, again.

Awareness itself. Jesus. I’ve completely left that stone unturned. Awareness is the same, duh! For god’s sake - sitting here, there is no control over awareness - there is no “aware-er” (no rain-er) - there is no entity causing the awareness. This damn thing was where a big source of identification has been hiding. Vantage point of awareness, that’s where it hid.

Awareness is just happening. It just IS. It isn’t being caused, it isn’t being directed deliberately by an entity - like thoughts, it arises, it moves, it occurs.

I need to sit with this. And not think too damn hard as much as I have the wild desire to. Just sit and observe.

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Re: Halfway there?

Postby Vivien » Tue Sep 22, 2020 4:57 am

Dear awakeningbk,
Yes. That’s fair - I suppose it’s still true. I don’t believe there is an independent entity, I don’t believe there’s control.
When you say that you don’t believe in an independent entity and control, what does that mean exactly? Is it similar when
I ask you if you believe in god? Or is this something you clearly SEE in the midst of your everyday life even when not looking?
but when I pause and breath, look at a tree, there is an understanding that it’s just a cycle playing out
Whenever you have an understanding, that is probably just an intellectual one. Saying that it’s just a cycle playing out is intellectual. This is not something that can be noticed and observed in experience. You can only THINK about cycles. This is not seeing. This is just thinking.
Thoughts - thoughts - thoughts - ahhh all just damned thoughts.
And who or what is judging thoughts to be damned?
Is there a judge? Is it awakeningbk the judge?
And again there was a believing of them - but that’s ok. Thoughts of “there must be something here to be claiming this awareness” And “the awareness is different from husband’s so it’s MY awareness”.
When there is a belief in a thought, what is it exactly that is believing it?
What is it that believes in thoughts?
Honestly Vivien, I do think I keep seeing this to a minor degree, glimpses and small understandings, but you seem to think not and I really trust you and your understanding.
No, I’m not doubting that you have glimpses of seeing. But glimpses here and there is not enough. This is something that needs to be seen reliably in the midst of your busy, everyday life, even when not looking.
Maybe one of the reasons I’ve struggled so much with this is that I don’t know how or when to pinpoint it and say “that’s it. That’s truth”.
When it’s clearly seen that it will be obvious. As long as there is any doubt, it’s not it.
This realization helped me see that there is truly no owner of the thoughts - they just are. They just happen. And that same realization occurred for the senses - there is no sense-er, just the experience of the senses. No rain-er, again.
And can you see this reliably again and again? I mean not just having an intellectual conclusion on what you saw before, but seeing it freshly again and again?
Awareness itself. Jesus. I’ve completely left that stone unturned. Awareness is the same, duh! For god’s sake - sitting here, there is no control over awareness - there is no “aware-er” (no rain-er) - there is no entity causing the awareness. This damn thing was where a big source of identification has been hiding. Vantage point of awareness, that’s where it hid.
OK, let’s look into this more. Make sure that you don’t come to any logical conclusion (by thinking), but by actually seeing it.

Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/

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Re: Halfway there?

Postby awakeningbk » Wed Sep 23, 2020 12:46 am

I ask you if you believe in god? Or is this something you clearly SEE in the midst of your everyday life even when not looking?
Everything moves, arises, falls. The rain happens, thinking happens, typing right now happens.

I don’t see it all the time, and sometimes I forget to look, but when I do look it’s very beautiful.

In terms of god? I don’t really know what that word means at the end of the day. I don’t believe in god in the way society does, that’s for sure. If there is a god, it’s everything, including me, and my dog who is currently eating her breakfast. That’s what it seems like.


but when I pause and breath, look at a tree, there is an understanding that it’s just a cycle playing out
Whenever you have an understanding, that is probably just an intellectual one. Saying that it’s just a cycle playing out is intellectual. This is not something that can be noticed and observed in experience. You can only THINK about cycles. This is not seeing. This is just thinking.
Ok.
I have been able to pause my brain, breathe, observe, be quiet, and see. At least I think I have? In those moments the completeness of the whole is gorgeous. Or just the elegance of it. But I defer to you if you still believe this is intellectual, and appreciate your persistence in helping see fully.
And who or what is judging thoughts to be damned?
Is there a judge? Is it awakeningbk the judge?
No. Ha. Thank you. It’s again, more thoughts.
When there is a belief in a thought, what is it exactly that is believing it?
What is it that believes in thoughts?
Believing, like anger, or like any emotion, or like any thought, seems to arise of it’s own accord. There is just the experience of it, it seems.
No, I’m not doubting that you have glimpses of seeing. But glimpses here and there is not enough. This is something that needs to be seen reliably in the midst of your busy, everyday life, even when not looking.
Thank you, yes that makes sense
When it’s clearly seen that it will be obvious. As long as there is any doubt, it’s not it.
Noted :)
And can you see this reliably again and again? I mean not just having an intellectual conclusion on what you saw before, but seeing it freshly again and again?
I often go to the easy route of the intellectual one out of laziness.
But when I pause, when I look, when I’m deliberate and frankly, when I can remember to - yes, I can see it again. When I stop and try to, when I work through the questions “is there control? Is there a thinker thinking these thing? Is there someone deciding to pick up that coffee cup or type on this keyboard? Is there a director of awareness?” All of these questions must be asked, and frankly it can be a little disconcerting or uncomfortable at first.

I will try to keep paying attention throughout the day, maybe that reminder of *looking* daily is what I need. It’s obvious when I pause, but not when I’m caught up in a problem or completing a task - which I know is likely fine.

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Re: Halfway there?

Postby Vivien » Wed Sep 23, 2020 2:18 am

Dear awakeningbk,
V: When it’s clearly seen that it will be obvious. As long as there is any doubt, it’s not it.
A: Noted :)
Let me add to this. When it’s clearly seen then it’s obvious, except if you have expectations and idea how it should be, then it’s not so obvious any more. Since when you have an idea how it should be, then you are seeking validation for your idea or expectation, and not just simply to see and notice how things actually are.

So sometimes the obviousness of this moment is missed, since you are after something else.
I often go to the easy route of the intellectual one out of laziness.
Please don’t do that. intellectualization will never help you. Only the clear experiential seeing of it.
Similarly, please don’t rely on a memory of a previous looking either. It doesn’t matter what you saw 5 minutes ago. If you cannot see it now, then you simply cannot see it, so it’s just a belief in this moment.
Seeing has to be always afresh.

Is there an individual entity here, called awakeningbk?
Is awakeningbk more real than Batman?
Does Batman choose what happens to him in the story? Similarly, does awakningbk choose what happens to her in the story?
Is Batman thinking thoughts? And Is awakeningbk thinking?
What is the difference between awakiningbk and Batman? Is there any?

Is there anything separate from life/experience happening?
Is there someone or something that life is happening TO?
Does life happening TO the body, or AS the body?
Does life happening TO awakeningbk, or AS awakeningbk?
Are you separate from the whole?


Vivien
The most profound discoveries arise from questioning the obvious.

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

Blog: https://fadingveiling.com/


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