Not all who wander are lost

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BigDaddaOmac
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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby BigDaddaOmac » Sun Oct 11, 2020 1:19 pm

Hi Ilona, that video you recommended was very helpful. I got grumpy with my kids today and I know that previously you have pointed out that unpleasant emotions and feelings will still arise but I was so hyper-aware that what I was getting upset about was that the girls were taking so long to get ready before we left the house. I knew it was not a big deal. I knew if I was patient then things would happen in their own time. But 'I' was impatient. I could feel the 'me-ness' in the situation. I was asking myself 'who am I?' and 'what is me?' while I was in a shitty, sullen, despairing spiral but it persisted and I was in a funk for a while. Finally we got to the park and we were playing and my mood improved but then I became aware that I was wondering if other people in the park would be thinking that I was a great dad and it really struck home how far I have come from those glorious weeks when I looked at all that was happening in my experience as manifestations of the same life force and spared not a single thought for the opinion of others, as Lao Tzu describes it, I saw all people as straw dogs.

Ilona I don't understand what is happening to me. I had this experience and I can still remember the nature of my reality from these memories but it is like that reality doesn't apply anymore. So like your vid describes I had a glimpse. But why does it feel like I am going backwards when all day I am searching for and not finding my self. But I still get caught up in self obsessions. AAAARGGGH!!!! I am so frustrated!!!

I will watch your video again as I am sure the answers to all these ravings are in it.

Thanks so much Ilona,
love,
Oly.

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Ilona
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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby Ilona » Mon Oct 12, 2020 6:55 am

Hi Oly.
Don’t worry, all is unfolding as it should. There is nothing wrong with you or with life. But here comes the clean up stage. All these little patterns come up to be seen. Like impatience, thinking about other people’s opinions. They are still here till they resolve. So meet it as it comes.

It’s normal. It’s desirable. It’s here. There is no way out, but only meeting this. Anything that comes up can be seen as ready to self release. Welcome that and it’s no longer an obstacle, but feather the next step in the clean up process.

When you are looking for a self, what do you find?

Love.

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BigDaddaOmac
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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby BigDaddaOmac » Tue Oct 13, 2020 1:17 pm

Hi Ilona, thanks for your reassurance. I'm feeling much better. After reading what you said about this being the clean up stage I was able to reflect on how different my existence is now. I think I kind of got used to the changes but still held expectations for how things 'should' be.

When I look for self I realise I can only find it floating in one thought to the next. No 'self' exists without being thought of. Certain thoughts seem to come up repeatedly to reinforce this sense of self. When I dig down through these 'self' supporting thoughts I notice that the common underlying theme is fear. Whether my thought is about what others think of me or worrying about work the next day fear is at the root. From reading Jed's books I understand that all fear stems from an underlying awareness that there is no self. So it looks like the self, being aware that it is not real, manufactures fear based thought patterns to grab attention and emotional energy which then reinforce the sense of self and it's importance.

On a more personal level I have been having amusing dialogues in my own head, asking a question of a thought that has just happened, asking it who thought that thought? Then asking who thought that asking thought. And so on. Eventually I feel dizzy and the thoughts fade away. I think about infinity going away from me in a ll directions and then infinity going into me smaller and smaller until it becomes the same as limitless, vast space forever. I have been feeling the energy in my body much more strongly. I feel love for my guru in my heart so deep and profound. When I follow my breath I just float along. My meditation is so much better and deeper. I don't time myself anymore I just do what feels right. I feel peace, real peace. I have started journaling my thoughts on this journey. It is helpful.

Thank you as always Ilona, so many thanks,
love,
Oly.

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Ilona
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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby Ilona » Wed Oct 14, 2020 8:30 am

Dear oly,

Thank you for update! This is an interesting time. I remember too, how amusing it was in the beginning when the mind would talk to itself about all this stuff. It felt like an amusement park opened up for the mind rides :) in a good way.

There is something important in your post. You have touched on fear. Let’s keep looking at it.
From reading Jed's books I understand that all fear stems from an underlying awareness that there is no self. So it looks like the self, being aware that it is not real, manufactures fear based thought patterns to grab attention and emotional energy which then reinforce the sense of self and it's importance.
I would not agree with Jed’s idea about where the fear comes from. There is no self to be aware of itself as not real. That’s the key. It appears as it is. And the fear is to protect that illusion from being seen through.

To simplify
There is a snake on the road. It is dark. In the light it’s seen as a rope.
The darkness makes the rope appear as a snake and with that a relationship with it, fear of it.
But in the light it’s clear that a rope is a rope, it was never a snake, it did not transform, snake was an idea superimposed on the rope.

Ok so snake is separate self.
Rope is reality. (Life, aliveness, being, consciousness- whatever Word works to connect to you actuality of being.)
Darkness is not knowing the reality
Light is knowing the reality.

Can you see how a belief of a separate self entity is superimposed on what is presently here.

Explore the fear and how it shows up in your experience. What is it protecting? And what is behind it.

Love.

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Ilona
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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby Ilona » Wed Oct 14, 2020 8:30 am

Dear oly,

Thank you for update! This is an interesting time. I remember too, how amusing it was in the beginning when the mind would talk to itself about all this stuff. It felt like an amusement park opened up for the mind rides :) in a good way.

There is something important in your post. You have touched on fear. Let’s keep looking at it.
From reading Jed's books I understand that all fear stems from an underlying awareness that there is no self. So it looks like the self, being aware that it is not real, manufactures fear based thought patterns to grab attention and emotional energy which then reinforce the sense of self and it's importance.
I would not agree with Jed’s idea about where the fear comes from. There is no self to be aware of itself as not real. That’s the key. It appears as it is. And the fear is to protect that illusion from being seen through.

To simplify
There is a snake on the road. It is dark. In the light it’s seen as a rope.
The darkness makes the rope appear as a snake and with that a relationship with it, fear of it.
But in the light it’s clear that a rope is a rope, it was never a snake, it did not transform, snake was an idea superimposed on the rope.

Ok so snake is separate self.
Rope is reality. (Life, aliveness, being, consciousness- whatever Word works to connect to you actuality of being.)
Darkness is not knowing the reality
Light is knowing the reality.

Can you see how a belief of a separate self entity is superimposed on what is presently here.

Explore the fear and how it shows up in your experience. What is it protecting? And what is behind it.

Love.

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BigDaddaOmac
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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby BigDaddaOmac » Fri Oct 16, 2020 12:55 pm

Hi Ilona, I really liked the analogy of the snake, rope, darkness and light. I experience glimpses of how the sense of self tries to slip in with strong feelings of attachment. fantasies and anxiety. When I check to find the source of who is the experiencer of these things it is like a light is thrown on them and they go up in flames like a vampire. Then I check 'who is checking' And so on...

I think my greatest fear is that this process will result in me becoming psychotic and losing everything. I think I actually did go a little psychotic earlier on when it kicked in but it wasn't a destructive psychosis. I am really fixated on how Jed describes the process involving burning through all layers of identity and meaning and connection and attachment and I think of my wife and kids and I feel torn. I want to follow this through to the end but Jed paints this picture of being barely human and not capable of human connectedness. I want to be what he describes as 'truth realised' but I don't want to lose my family. Or maybe I am afraid that I have even been considering it, weighing it up. Anyway I know that ship has sailed, that something is happening to me, I am shedding layers. I guess I just want some reassurance I can keep my family after this is done.

Thanks so much Ilona, I really appreciate your time and energy,
love,
Oly.

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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby Ilona » Fri Oct 16, 2020 3:45 pm

Hi Oly,
I know where you are and how this feels. To this I can say, nothing real gets lots. Love for family is not lost, caring for loved ones is not lost. What is lost is ideas of how this should be, what this should look like. As you see clearer and clearer how life is unfolding, effortlessly, spontaneously, there is wonder and gratefulness.

You know how Jed says, kill the Buddha?
Kill Jed.
Jed is a fictional character, ironically the book is not written by Jed, but about Jed from a first perspective. Genius. But what the essence of the book is - find your own truth, be honest with yourself, see fearlessly what is true to you, no matter what. Jed unnecessarily created this doom scenario, and there also many questionable ideas in the books passed as truth. It’s a great book, and there are many pointers that help the process of disillusionment. And it’s good to know that Jed does not know how it is for you! Only you know. If I could take only one thing from his writing, it would be this- sit down, shut up and figure what is true until you know. Which means kill Jed. And Ilona.

You can’t loose what you never had. And what is here is here, no need to hold on or do anything for this to be here.
So don’t worry! There is no danger in knowing what you are and what life is and see all that in your experience. It’s coming back to sanity. The fear of going insane, I know that too, but what is there behind it? What is there that needs to be protected?

Love.

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BigDaddaOmac
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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby BigDaddaOmac » Sat Oct 17, 2020 1:07 pm

Hi Ilona, I actually laughed out loud when you recommended 'kill Jed'. It was such a relief. That book and the course it describes really got to me. I can be a little extremist at times and I really felt the lure of crashing and burning through everything.

It seems silly to have feared that I could lose my love for my kids and wife. Thank you for your reassurances! I am still learning to trust what is happening.

With the fear of going insane I think what is behind it is the memory of all the other times I have experience what I thought were 'spiritual awakenings' that have ended up with me in a psyche ward being pinned down, drugged up, put in solitary confinement and told I am not having a spiritual experience actually I just have a chemical imbalance in my brain. I have carried core self doubt and fear because of my experiences with bipolar and the mental health system since my first episode at 18. Now it is a story, a well known familiar story that gets triggered into playing but doesn't have an audience any more and so it plays itself out. I've benefitted more through working with you than 10 years of therapy!

When I look now I see that this worry exists as a thought. A habitual thought program. A thought that then breeds other thoughts about the future or what others think of me. And this 'me' that is being thought of only exists as a thought. And these thoughts are happening but when I look I can find nothing for them to really stick to. And it is the sweetest relief to return to the delicious, vibrant beingness that really is 'me'.

Ilona thanks a million!
Love,'
Oly

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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby Ilona » Mon Oct 19, 2020 6:00 am

Dear Oly,
Thank you for sharing!
With the fear of going insane I think what is behind it is the memory of all the other times I have experience what I thought were 'spiritual awakenings' that have ended up with me in a psyche ward being pinned down, drugged up, put in solitary confinement and told I am not having a spiritual experience actually I just have a chemical imbalance in my brain. I have carried core self doubt and fear because of my experiences with bipolar and the mental health system since my first episode at 18. Now it is a story, a well known familiar story that gets triggered into playing but doesn't have an audience any more and so it plays itself out. I've benefitted more through working with you than 10 years of therapy!

This sounds very intense and sure thing, the memory of this is alive and sure thing, nobody wants to experience that again!
I’m so happy to hear that you are seeing this as thoughts, as habitual thoughts and are able to come back to the sweetness and lightness of being. That’s a huge step, congratulations.

Yes, the sweet point is seeing that thoughts can not stick to anything! There is nothing there to own them or be attach to thoughts. It’s like becoming Teflon :) things cook, but they don’t stick. And yes, all can burn, all lies can burn, all concepts that are still here and are no longer helpful, needed, useful can go into the fire. Let the fire consume all the crap. It’s here to help.

What else are you noticing? What do you see when you look at other people, are there separate selves in the bodies?

Love.

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BigDaddaOmac
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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby BigDaddaOmac » Thu Oct 22, 2020 12:50 pm

Hi Ilona, I hope this finds you well. I am noticing a lot of synchronicity. Really spectacular ones that make me laugh. They seem so unsubtle. I am noticing my habit of escaping into fantasies seems transparent so that while the fantasy is happening I am also aware of just 'being' underneath them and also of the energy of 'being' underneath the nature of the fantasy thoughts. I am aware that I experience frustration when I do a double take look at an attractive woman. There is conflict in me because I don't want to be so easily distracted and aroused. But then I think maybe I should just let it be what it is. But that doesn't sit well. I have been conditioned to find the curves of a woman's body attractive. It is just energy, matter, atoms and molecules in a dress, skirt or leggings. I can see that attractive women are just part of the seamless single majesty of this moment, this life unfolding but I carry something in me that makes me perceive these images as separate. It is something in me that I don't think is me. It is programming and I want to see through it. I would like to know what you advise I should do when I see a woman that stirs sexual feelings. Should I look away and try to ignore them? Or try to stare through them to realise the truth that there is only 'sexiness' in me, in my perspective, not out in reality. I'm so fed up with this situation. I feel embarrassed, ashamed, guilty.

When I look at other people sometimes I see them as part of a gigantic, interconnected piece of clockwork, everyone is moving in their part in relation to everything around them. When talking to people more and more often I stop focusing on them and my gaze takes in everything visible and I stop hanging on their every word until there is a silence and somehow I know an appropriate thing to say. These interactions are very pleasant and relaxing. I gave my manager a lift home today after work and he was chatting away and I was focusing on driving and I couldn't tell you what we talked about but it was nice and I felt none of the usual anxiety about impressing him. When I talk to my wife I find myself looking into her eyes and wondering who is in there trying to 'be' Gabby and I think I can notice the difference when she is 'being' more naturally and carefree and when she is experiencing internal conflict about how to 'manage life'. I noticed when I took my kids and the neighbors kids to the park this evening there was a group of tough looking young men smoking and swearing and I felt I protecting instinct come up in me and I looked at these boys as a threat but then I thought of them as perfectly playing out their role and my anxiety lessened.

Thanks as always Ilona
Love,
Oly.

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Ilona
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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby Ilona » Sun Oct 25, 2020 7:37 am

Thank you for honesty and opening up. There is much to explore here!
There is conflict in me because I don't want to be so easily distracted and aroused. But then I think maybe I should just let it be what it is. But that doesn't sit well.
So we have this- I don’t want this. And I should let it be. Both are forceful statements. Should I let it be says I have to make myself to let it be. Do you want to?
What if it’s completely natural to enjoy sexuality? What does the fighting against it give you? You mentioned shame and guilt, is that the payoff? Is trying to control how you feel when you are seeing beautiful curves help? Who told you that it’s not good to get aroused by women? Can sexuality be seen and normal thing? Or is this something you are trying to get rid off?

What would you be without this conflict?
And what do you need this conflict for? What do you get?

Here are a few questions for you to explore.


Sweet that you are noticing synchronicities :) it’s good fun!

Love

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BigDaddaOmac
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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby BigDaddaOmac » Wed Oct 28, 2020 9:18 am

Hi Ilona, just checking in.
Love,
Oly.

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BigDaddaOmac
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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby BigDaddaOmac » Wed Oct 28, 2020 9:22 am

Sorry Ilona, disregard previous post. Your response had not loaded and I didn't get a notification of it so I was worried you had forgotten about me.
Love,
Oly.

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Ilona
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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby Ilona » Thu Oct 29, 2020 6:32 am

I haven’t forgotten about you, but forum software sometimes malfunctions. It’s a good idea to check for reply manually after a few days if you don’t receive a notification.
Looking forward to hear what you notice.

Love.

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BigDaddaOmac
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Re: Not all who wander are lost

Postby BigDaddaOmac » Fri Oct 30, 2020 1:25 pm

Hi Ilona, so I have been enjoying a much more relaxed and guilt and shame free existence since I reflected on your questions. I realised that the core of my issues with appreciating women's bodies was a Buddhist teaching about removing defilements like sensual cravings. I think I really subscribed to an ideal of being 'holy' and pure. It feels really freeing to just let it be as it is. I think I got out of this conflict a sense that I was virtuous for trying to go against my nature.
I had a weird couple of days where I would experience anxiety about speaking and then ruminate on what I had said and then look for self and not find anything and then be ok for a while but then I would lose this awareness and revert to the anxiety again. It wasn't that bad because I was aware of the insubstantiality of what was happening but it did feel like a weird regression.

Thanks so much Ilona
Love
Oly.


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