Confusion to Clarity

Welcome to the main forum. When you are ready to start a conversation, register and once your application is processed a guide will come to talk to you.
This is one-on-one style forum, one thread per green member.
User avatar
Rufus
Posts: 65
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:29 pm

Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:32 pm

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
Thoughts, smells, tastes, sights, sounds, feelings, emotions- all arise but there is no separate entity or 'self' that experiences them- there is just what arises. My understanding of this is (or seems to be) completely intellectual rather than experiential.

What are you looking for at LU?
The man focus of my life over the last year or so has been this non-dual enquiry and it feels like I've reached a real sticking point in this endeavour. Rather than read another book, watch another youtube clip or listen to another meditation, I would be grateful for the one-to-one input and a rigorous examination of the very sticky sense of 'me-ness' that 'I' cant seem to get passed. I have a deep yearning for clarity around purpose/work which seems to get interwoven with the yearning for a deeper 'non-dual' realisation so I would like to explore that

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
I'm honestly hopeful of a breakthrough and a falling away of 'me' and in turn more clarity and sense 'coming home'. I expect the process to be searching and demanding and that my assumptions and beliefs will be challenged in a far greater way than I could ever manage on my own.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
I'm in my late 40's and have been 'seeking' since roughly my early 20's. I have been to various therapists, read the books and attended retreats. In the last 18 months I have taken part in 6 ayahuasca ceremonies which, while hugely beneficial, I came to see as yet more 'experiences' that came and went. For the past year or more I have deeply explored and immersed myself in non-duality- initially with the teachings of Adyashanti, but more seriously in the last year with those of Rupert Spira.

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

User avatar
Vivien
Posts: 1908
Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:07 am

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Vivien » Sun Apr 14, 2019 5:04 am

Hi Rufus,

My name is Vivien, and I am happy to assist in exploring 'no-self', though I can only point the way. You have to 'see' it for yourself. That is why we are described as guides, not teachers.

You and I will simply have a conversation, the aim of which will be for you to make the realisation that there is no such entity as a 'self'. That will be our focus. I will tend to ask various questions and set you some exercises, but nobody will be judging you. You can't get this wrong.

This process is essentially an extension of your own inquiry. It is 'guided' so that specific areas may be examined.
I am not a teacher. This is YOUR inquiry. I will not be giving you new ideas and beliefs; only assisting you in examining and questioning the ones that you already have.

Before we begin, here are links to information I would like you to read please.
Disclaimer:-
http://liberationunleashed.com/disclaimer-2/

Terms & Conditions:
https://www.liberationunleashed.com/register/terms/

“Liberation Unleashed is not …” in the FAQ’s of LU.
http://liberationunleashed.com/about/faq/#faq-1041

A few ground rules:
1. Post at least once a day, if you cannot post, or need more time, please let me know.
2. Be 100% honest in your answers and inquiry.
3. This exploration is based on Actual (or Direct) Experience (AE or DE) - smell, taste, sound, sensation, color and thoughts - only. Long-winded analytical and philosophical answers are best avoided and may even hinder progress. This is not a self-improvement process. There is no ‘self’ to improve.
4. Put aside all other teachings, philosophies and such for the remainder of this investigation. Really put all your effort and attention in to seeing this reality, as it is. If you have a daily and essential meditation practice, it is fine to continue that.
5. Understand that I will be guiding you, rather than teaching you, and the more you put into this process the more you will get out of it.

A few technical support:

- You can reply to this thread by pushing the 'Post Reply" button at the left bottom of this page.
- You can learn to use the quote function, instructions are located in the link below this line:

viewtopic.php?f=4&t=660

Technology is not perfect and sometimes there is a glitch which can wipe out your responses. It is advisable that you copy and paste questions asked into Word, answer them there and then copy and paste them to your thread. Always save a copy of what you have done, it will save time in the long run.


If you are happy to agree to the above and have me your guide, we can start the process.

How will Life change?
How will you change?
What will be different?
What is missing?


Throughout this exploration I would like you to answer ALL questions that I have written in blue text. Please answer questions INDIVIDUALLY, remembering to use the Quote function to highlight the question being answered.

Vivien

User avatar
Rufus
Posts: 65
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:29 pm

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Sun Apr 14, 2019 5:06 pm

Hi Vivienne,

Pleased to meet you. I have read all the links you supplied and I'm ready the get going.
How will Life change?
I assume Life won't change all that much- it will just continue 'Lifing'.
How will you change?
I assume my relationship to Life 'Lifing' will change. Rather than feel like an observer of Life 'Lifing', I will be more in tune with it.
What will be different?
I have a sense (hope?) that realising 'no-self' will unlock a sense of constrained potential in me and that direction, trust and less suffering will unfold. I understand that life will still 'life', but perhaps my relationship to it will be different.
What is missing?
All that comes up with this question is 'a sense of direction'. As I mentioned in my introduction comments, I have a deep yearning for clarity around direction which is the reason for all my seeking in the first place. In some sense, this seeking of direction has fallen away as my 'non-dual' exploration has gone on, but it does linger.

Best,
Rufus

User avatar
Rufus
Posts: 65
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:29 pm

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Sun Apr 14, 2019 5:10 pm

Hi Vivien,

I just noticed a spelt your name incorrectly- apologies!

User avatar
Vivien
Posts: 1908
Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:07 am

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Vivien » Mon Apr 15, 2019 1:42 am

Hi Rufus,

Thank for answering the questions.
I have a sense (hope?) that realising 'no-self' will unlock a sense of constrained potential in me and that direction, trust and less suffering will unfold.
Suffering usually lessens after seeing the illusion of the self, but it still can arise due to a lifelong conditioning. However, upon further looking it can be seen for what it is. So suffering might happen, even a sense of sufferer might arise, but when looked at it, it can be seen that suffering is nothing else than conditioned thought patters and sensation labelled as such and such emotion, but without a center, without an inherently existing sufferer.

Please let me know what comes up by reading the above.


So, let’s get start it. What we are going to do is that I’ll give you some exercises, physical ones, in which I will ask you to describe the experience of the senses. We call this direct experience, or the uninterpreted moment. This refers to the data from the sensations themselves, before the mind tries to make sense of it and begins to describe what is happening. Observing with the five senses — seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, touching/feeling. These exercises can help to see what is ‘real’ and what is not.

So, the first thing to investigate is to find out what you currently believe yourself to be.
This should be kept very simple and should not be anything requiring in-depth analysis or thought.

The standard view of 'I', 'me' is that of a person - A body with a mind.
The standard view is that 'I' refers to this body that appears here in awareness. I am this body. Also 'I' have control over this body.
Since 'I' am this body, 'I' see, 'I' hear, 'I' feel, etc - I perform all the senses.
This body was born - It will live a number of years - And then it (I) will die.

Feel free to reject what I have suggested if they don't match what you currently believe yourself to be.

Currently, would it be fair to say that you believe that currently you are a person sitting in a chair, looking at a computer screen and reading words off it right now?

What does the word 'I' point to?
What makes this body ‘yours’?
What makes this body ‘you’?

I will write all questions in blue, please always answer ALL of them. These questions are pointers where to LOOK. Of course, you can also reply to any other parts of my posts if you feel need to.
I just noticed a spelt your name incorrectly- apologies!
No problem :)

Vivien

User avatar
Rufus
Posts: 65
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:29 pm

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Mon Apr 15, 2019 12:26 pm

Hi Vivien,
Currently, would it be fair to say that you believe that currently you are a person sitting in a chair, looking at a computer screen and reading words off it right now?
Putting all knowledge of non duality aside- yes, that statement is my AE.
What does the word 'I' point to?
The totally of my experience- hands resting on the keyboard, seeing them type these words, hearing the wind outside and my kids upstairs, tasting my tea, pressure of the body on the chair, thoughts arising of what to write next- a sense of ‘me’ directing, at least some, of my actions.
What makes this body ‘yours’?
I have some, but not a complete, element of control over it. I can cross and uncross my legs if I wish, take another sip of tea should that desire arise. I can do a yoga class and hold my body in various positions. I can feed it or deny it food. When I look in the mirror it is me that stares back, no-one else.
What makes this body ‘you’?
My experience, through these bodily sensations, are happening ‘here’ to ‘me’, in my awareness. They are not happening to anyone else, as far as I know. The sensation of my fingers that my mind labels as ‘cold’ is happening to me through my body. When I look in the mirror, it is me staring back, not anyone else.

Please call me Graham btw.
Graham

User avatar
Rufus
Posts: 65
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:29 pm

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Mon Apr 15, 2019 12:30 pm

Please let me know what comes up by reading the above.
Yes, I see that more and more in my everyday experience. Whatever arises comes and goes. I can see old patterns arise from time to time and instead of getting carried away with them, I can mostly see them for what they are- transient. That’s not to say that attachment to these thoughts/emotions come and go with ease, but there is certainly less ‘stickiness’ to them than there would have been in the past.

Graham

User avatar
Vivien
Posts: 1908
Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:07 am

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Vivien » Tue Apr 16, 2019 2:08 am

Hi Rufus,
V: Currently, would it be fair to say that you believe that currently you are a person sitting in a chair, looking at a computer screen and reading words off it right now?
R: Putting all knowledge of non duality aside- yes, that statement is my AE.
Actually, this is not an actual experience, since AE is only sight/seeing, sound/hearing, smell/smelling, taste/tasting, sensation/touching. Also, seeing the arising thought is AE, the thought itself, but the content of a thought, what a thought is about is not AE. But we will look at this soon.

So it’s not AE, but rather a belief.
V: What does the word 'I' point to?
R: The totally of my experience- hands resting on the keyboard, seeing them type these words, hearing the wind outside and my kids upstairs, tasting my tea, pressure of the body on the chair, thoughts arising of what to write next- a sense of ‘me’ directing, at least some, of my actions.
So, there are hands resting on the keyboard and typing words,
There are the sound of wind and the sound of kids,
There is tasting and the taste of the tea,
There is a sensation that thoughts label as “pressure of the body on the chair’
There are thoughts arising,
There is a ‘sense of me’,
There is a seeming directing of actions.

But the question is, whether is some sort of agency behind all of it, doing and orchestrating the whole experience? Or to which all of these happens?

Please read through my above comment line-by-line, and stop after each line, and try to find the ‘me’, the agency, the doer, the director, or the one to which all of these happen. Let me know how it goes.
I have some, but not a complete, element of control over it. I can cross and uncross my legs if I wish, take another sip of tea should that desire arise. I can do a yoga class and hold my body in various positions. I can feed it or deny it food.
It SEEMS that there is someone controlling all of these. It SEEMS that some sort of control going in. But what if this is not the case? What if control is just another illusion? Just ponder on it for now. We will investigate control later.
When I look in the mirror it is me that stares back, no-one else.
This is another topic we will look at deeply. We will investigate the body and sensations thoroughly.
My experience, through these bodily sensations, are happening ‘here’ to ‘me’, in my awareness.
Read your above comment a few times. And see how thoughts ‘make’ a trick here.

So according to this statement, there is:
- a ‘me,’ to whom the bodily sensations happening to, and also this ‘me’ owns and has an awareness
- but it also says that all of these sensations are happening IN awareness.

If the ‘me’ HAS awareness, then how is it possible to all the sensations happen to the ‘me’ IN awareness? So the ‘me’ owns the awareness (so it’s outside of awareness), but at the same time the ‘me’ is IN awareness?
Do you see the contradiction even on the intellectual level?
The sensation of my fingers that my mind labels as ‘cold’ is happening to me through my body.
OK, let’s try to find the ‘me’ to which things happen through the body. Where is this ‘me’ located exactly?

All of these confusion is coming from the CONTENT of thoughts. So let’s to try to separate out thoughts from what is ‘real’.
But at first, as an example, let’s try to find Darth Vader from Star Wars.
We’re looking for a real Darth Vader that can be found.
In order to prove that it exists, we have to experience it directly by seeing, hearing, touching/feeling, smelling.

The image projected to the cinema screen is not it.
The poster on the wall about Darth Vader is not it.
The memory in ‘my head’ about Darth Vader is not a proof of its existence.
A thought suggesting that “he may be exist somewhere in the galaxy” is just an idea, but not a proof of it.
A lego figure of Darth Vader is not a real Darth Vader.
A life size wax figure exhibited in a museum is not it.
A twelve-year old boy dressed in a Darth Vader costume is not it.

Now, try to find the ‘I’ that supposedly owns the body. Look everywhere. Search every corner of the body, memories, feelings, thoughts, or any other places. Don’t leave any stones unturned.

Let's take 'seeing' as a first example.

Right now, these words on the screen are being seen. Examine the actual experience right now.

Now, can it be found what is seeing them?
Do you see a seer?
Can be located, found, tracked-down etc the 'thing' that is seeing these words on the screen right now?

Vivien

User avatar
Rufus
Posts: 65
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:29 pm

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Tue Apr 16, 2019 3:45 pm

Hi Vivien,
V: What does the word 'I' point to?
R: The totally of my experience- hands resting on the keyboard, seeing them type these words, hearing the wind outside and my kids upstairs, tasting my tea, pressure of the body on the chair, thoughts arising of what to write next- a sense of ‘me’ directing, at least some, of my actions.
So, there are hands resting on the keyboard and typing words,
There are the sound of wind and the sound of kids,
There is tasting and the taste of the tea,
There is a sensation that thoughts label as “pressure of the body on the chair’
There are thoughts arising,
There is a ‘sense of me’,
There is a seeming directing of actions.

But the question is, whether is some sort of agency behind all of it, doing and orchestrating the whole experience? Or to which all of these happens?

Please read through my above comment line-by-line, and stop after each line, and try to find the ‘me’, the agency, the doer, the director, or the one to which all of these happen. Let me know how it goes.
Ok-so separating these out a little, I’m not directing or doing the hearing, tasting, sensing or thinking- they are just happening and ‘I’ am aware of them happening. Actions, such as typing or reaching for the tea, seem to be initiated or directed by me in that I seem to be choosing to undertake these actions.
I have some, but not a complete, element of control over it. I can cross and uncross my legs if I wish, take another sip of tea should that desire arise. I can do a yoga class and hold my body in various positions. I can feed it or deny it food.
It SEEMS that there is someone controlling all of these. It SEEMS that some sort of control going in. But what if this is not the case? What if control is just another illusion? Just ponder on it for now. We will investigate control later.
As you may gather from my previous comment above, the issue of control is certainly a sticking point.
f the ‘me’ HAS awareness, then how is it possible to all the sensations happen to the ‘me’ IN awareness? So the ‘me’ owns the awareness (so it’s outside of awareness), but at the same time the ‘me’ is IN awareness?
Do you see the contradiction even on the intellectual level?
I think (?) I see the contradiction here. In other words, how can ‘I’ have awareness and be ‘in' awareness at the same time?
OK, let’s try to find the ‘me’ to which things happen through the body. Where is this ‘me’ located exactly?

All of these confusion is coming from the CONTENT of thoughts. So let’s to try to separate out thoughts from what is ‘real’.
But at first, as an example, let’s try to find Darth Vader from Star Wars.
We’re looking for a real Darth Vader that can be found.
In order to prove that it exists, we have to experience it directly by seeing, hearing, touching/feeling, smelling.

The image projected to the cinema screen is not it.
The poster on the wall about Darth Vader is not it.
The memory in ‘my head’ about Darth Vader is not a proof of its existence.
A thought suggesting that “he may be exist somewhere in the galaxy” is just an idea, but not a proof of it.
A lego figure of Darth Vader is not a real Darth Vader.
A life size wax figure exhibited in a museum is not it.
A twelve-year old boy dressed in a Darth Vader costume is not it.

Now, try to find the ‘I’ that supposedly owns the body. Look everywhere. Search every corner of the body, memories, feelings, thoughts, or any other places. Don’t leave any stones unturned.

Let's take 'seeing' as a first example.

Right now, these words on the screen are being seen. Examine the actual experience right now.

Now, can it be found what is seeing them?
Do you see a seer?
Can be located, found, tracked-down etc the 'thing' that is seeing these words on the screen right now?
Ok- I cannot find or cannot see a seer when I go looking. I cannot find a ‘thing’ that is seeing. I do experience , as I mentioned above, a sense of ‘me-ness’ behind the eyes but cannot locate it beyond that. I know that “intellectually” it is just another thought or sensation or a mixture of the two combining to make a ‘me’ or what appears to be a ‘me’ and I know that this appearance is occurring in awareness, but even so, a sense of ‘me’ still persists.

Best,
Graham

User avatar
Vivien
Posts: 1908
Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:07 am

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Vivien » Wed Apr 17, 2019 2:14 am

Hi Graham,
Ok-so separating these out a little, I’m not directing or doing the hearing, tasting, sensing or thinking- they are just happening and ‘I’ am aware of them happening.
What if you’re not even aware of them?
In order to be aware of something, there has to be an entity who could be aware of what’s going on. What if there is no such entity?
I think (?) I see the contradiction here. In other words, how can ‘I’ have awareness and be ‘in' awareness at the same time?
It cannot be. Something is fishy here :)
I do experience , as I mentioned above, a sense of ‘me-ness’ behind the eyes but cannot locate it beyond that. I know that “intellectually” it is just another thought or sensation or a mixture of the two combining to make a ‘me’ or what appears to be a ‘me’ and I know that this appearance is occurring in awareness, but even so, a sense of ‘me’ still persists.
There is a big difference between believing in the existence of an inherently existing self, and the ‘sense of self’. The sense of self is usually just a sensation, what is mistaken to be the self (like what you described as a sense of self behind the eyes). We will look at this deeply later.

The whole illusion is created by thoughts. So therefore, we will investigate thoughts and thought labels thoroughly.
So then let’s have a deeper look on thoughts. Sit for about 15 minutes and investigate these questions:

Where do thoughts come from?
Where are they going?
Can ‘you’ stop a thought in the middle?
Can ‘you’ predict what will be the next thought?
Can 'you' choose not to have painful or negative thoughts?

Can an 'I' be found that generates thoughts?
“I think” - What is 'I'? What is the one that thinks?
What is the thinker of thoughts?
Does the thinker of the thought appear in experience? Can it be found?
Or could it be that the 'I' that thinks is also just a thought?
Do you think thoughts or you are just ‘being thought’?
Is it possible to prevent a thought from appearing? Including the thought 'I'?


Please go through these questions and answer and quote ALL of them one-by-one. Don’t miss any. Try to answer them only from direct experience, and leave aside all intellectual interpretation or understanding. DON’T THINK about the answers, rather LOOK at what is before thoughts. Take your time.

Vivien

User avatar
Rufus
Posts: 65
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:29 pm

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Wed Apr 17, 2019 1:25 pm

Hi Vivien,
Where do thoughts come from?
They arise from nowhere.
Where are they going?
They disappear to nowhere.
Can ‘you’ stop a thought in the middle?
No.
Can ‘you’ predict what will be the next thought?
No.
Can 'you' choose not to have painful or negative thoughts?
No.
Can an 'I' be found that generates thoughts?
No.
“I think” - What is 'I'? What is the one that thinks?
There is no 'I' that thinks- just thinking arising.
What is the thinker of thoughts?
There is no thinker of thoughts- just thinking arising.
Does the thinker of the thought appear in experience? Can it be found?
No
Or could it be that the 'I' that thinks is also just a thought?
See above
Do you think thoughts or you are just ‘being thought’?
Thinking just arises including the 'I' thought.
Is it possible to prevent a thought from appearing? Including the thought 'I'?
No

What if you’re not even aware of them?
In order to be aware of something, there has to be an entity who could be aware of what’s going on. What if there is no such entity?
I"m a little tangle here. Thinking arises from nowhere. There is no thinker of thoughts including the 'I' thought. But thinking, sensing etc is known, is experienced- there is an awareness of them.

Graham

User avatar
Vivien
Posts: 1908
Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:07 am

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Vivien » Thu Apr 18, 2019 2:48 am

Hi Graham,
V: What if you’re not even aware of them?
In order to be aware of something, there has to be an entity who could be aware of what’s going on. What if there is no such entity?
G: I"m a little tangle here. Thinking arises from nowhere. There is no thinker of thoughts including the 'I' thought. But thinking, sensing etc is known, is experienced- there is an awareness of them.
It SEEMS that there is something that is aware. We usually label this something as ‘awareness’. And from here there is just a small step for a subtle identification that “I am awareness or consciousness”.

It SEEMS that this awareness is a subtle form of intangible entity, which has a property of knowing or being aware. But what if such entity doesn’t exist? What if awareness is just another illusion?

I’m not saying that knowing or aware-ing doesn’t going on. It does. Knowing or aware-ing is happening. But you see, I’m using a verb here, not a noun. A noun implies an agency. But can this agency be found?

Stop for a moment now and take a thought. Be aware of the presence of the thought.

Can a thought be separated from the knowing or awareness of it?
Try your best to separate the two from each other. What happens?

Is there a dividing line between the thought and the knowing or awareness of it?
Can you find the line where the thought ends and the knowing of it starts?

Can you find a though without the knowing of it?
Can you find knower or awareness without any object (like thought, sensation, sight, sound, taste, smell)?


Repeat this exercise many times during the day. Experiment not just only with thoughts, but also with mental images, sounds, taste, etc. Let me know how it went.

Vivien

User avatar
Rufus
Posts: 65
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:29 pm

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Thu Apr 18, 2019 4:33 pm

Hi Vivien,
It SEEMS that there is something that is aware. We usually label this something as ‘awareness’. And from here there is just a small step for a subtle identification that “I am awareness or consciousness”.

It SEEMS that this awareness is a subtle form of intangible entity, which has a property of knowing or being aware. But what if such entity doesn’t exist? What if awareness is just another illusion?

I’m not saying that knowing or aware-ing doesn’t going on. It does. Knowing or aware-ing is happening. But you see, I’m using a verb here, not a noun. A noun implies an agency. But can this agency be found?
No. There is a 'sense' of 'me-ness', but as we have already discovered, this is just a thought- but even still I am in a space of "I am awareness or consciousness". I can see the incompatibility of these positions.
Can a thought be separated from the knowing or awareness of it?
No
Try your best to separate the two from each other. What happens?
I can't separate knowing or awareness from thought, sounds etc.
Is there a dividing line between the thought and the knowing or awareness of it?
There is no separation- it is a seamless experience.
Can you find knower or awareness without any object (like thought, sensation, sight, sound, taste, smell)?
When you say 'without any object' do you mean 'separate from any object'? If so, no.
Repeat this exercise many times during the day. Experiment not just only with thoughts, but also with mental images, sounds, taste, etc. Let me know how it went.

I noticed that when, for example, sounds arose, knowing, in the form of attention, seemed to focus temporarily on one sound at a time. For instance, there is a range of sounds available in my current experience. There is the ocean, wind, distant voices, my tinnitus, traffic- all are available to knowing but atttention only permits one at a time to be known or aware-d

There is a knowing of knowing, an aware-ing of aware-ing.

There's quite a bit of brain fog with these exercises- quite a bit of resistance and expectation.


Best,
Graham

PS. How do I produce the box-with-a-box quote where you quote both you and me? eg the first quote box of your last response.

User avatar
Vivien
Posts: 1908
Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:07 am

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Vivien » Fri Apr 19, 2019 3:02 am

Hi Graham,
PS. How do I produce the box-with-a-box quote where you quote both you and me? eg the first quote box of your last response.
Let’s say there is one line of my question, and a second line, which is your reply. At first, I select (highlight) the second line (your reply only), and put a quote on it. Then I select the whole thing (including my reply, your reply and the quotes to your reply as well), and put a quote on this whole bundle. You can preview how it went before posting it, if you press the preview button next to the submit button.
There's quite a bit of brain fog with these exercises- quite a bit of resistance and expectation.
Could you please tell me a bit more about this?
What is the resistance is about?
What is the expectation?
No. There is a 'sense' of 'me-ness', but as we have already discovered, this is just a thought- but even still I am in a space of "I am awareness or consciousness". I can see the incompatibility of these positions.
The ‘sense of me-ness’ isn’t just created by thought only. The sense of me-ness, usually have at least 3 if not 4 components.

1. a SENSATION (like the sensation of the eyes, or behind the eyes, or the sensation of the forehead, etc) which is labelled by thought as ‘me’ or the location of ‘awareness’
2. the second element is the THOUGHT LABEL put over the sensation itself ‘it’s me’, or ‘it’s the location of awareness’
3. sometimes it’s even accompanied with the MENTAL IMAGE about the head or eyes or forehead showing the location
4. AWARENESS itself, or rather say the process of knowing or aware-ing, which is mistaken by thought as an independently existing ‘thing’ or phenomenon

So the sense of self is created when these 4 are welded together, creating a bundle, and not seen them for what they are.

But we will look at this later. At first, we have to be very clear on the difference between the seeing of an arising thought and its content. Also, we have to investigate the body and sensations first, in order to be able to look at the above list effectively.

Thoughts can be looked at in 2 different ways:
- seeing the CONTENT of a thought, what is a thought ABOUT
- and only seeing the thought itself, as a ‘CONTAINER’.

When a thought is seen only as a container, and the content of a thought (what it’s about) is being ignored, is what we call the actual experience of a thought. Do you see the difference?

Thoughts as arising thoughts (the containers) are ‘real’, but their contents (what they are ABOUT) are not. Like when you think about Dart Vader. There is an arising thought, it cannot be denied, but its content “Dart Vader” is not real. Sometimes thoughts point to something tangible, like chair, however a thought about a chair is not a chair. A thought about a chair is just a mental concept with an arising mental image of a ‘chair’ but that image is not ‘real’. However, as an arising image is there, it is ‘real’, but not its content (what it’s about).

Certain sensations can be felt in the body that is labelled such and such emotion, like ‘cheerful’. However, ‘cheerful’ is just a mental label on the felt sensation. So the felt sensation is ‘real’, the arising mental label, simply as arising label is ‘real’, but its content ‘cheerful’ is just an idea. Can you see this?
V: Can you find knower or awareness without any object (like thought, sensation, sight, sound, taste, smell)?
G: When you say 'without any object' do you mean 'separate from any object'? If so, no.
OK. Pay attention to whatever is happening right now. There could be sounds, sensations, thoughts, smells, tastes, sights, mental images, etc.

Now, try to remove them one-by-one, until only pure awareness remains.

If there is such thing as awareness, then it can be experienced directly without any object of experience.
Nothing else, just pure knowing, pure aware-ing. No sound, no thought, no sensation, no sight, nothing, just knowing.
What is left of awareness if all the objects (sight, sound, smell, taste, sensation, thought) are removed?
I noticed that when, for example, sounds arose, knowing, in the form of attention, seemed to focus temporarily on one sound at a time. For instance, there is a range of sounds available in my current experience. There is the ocean, wind, distant voices, my tinnitus, traffic- all are available to knowing but atttention only permits one at a time to be known or aware-d
It's definitely SEEMS LIKE AS IF there were a ‘thing’ as attention.
But try to find this attention. So it seems like there are 2 strange, subtle entities here now.
1. Awareness
2. Attention

It seems that both of them could perform certain activities, like attention can be aware and know things.
And attention has the ability to focus on certain things that awareness already knows, so to speak.
It SEEMS LIKE that. But is this really the case?

Please look very closely.

Vivien

User avatar
Rufus
Posts: 65
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:29 pm

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Fri Apr 19, 2019 7:59 pm

Hi Vivien,

I will post on this tomorrow.
Graham


Return to “THE GATE”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests