Passing a threshold

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Tangerine
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Re: Passing a threshold

Postby Tangerine » Fri Jun 14, 2019 10:44 pm

Is there anything other than experience in the present moment?
I don't know.
What do you have, or own, other than your experience? Consider your [stuff] ... can they be separated from the experience of them? In the absence of the experiencing, what are they? Is anything yours except experience?
Nothing cam be separated from my experience of them. Wardrobe, bus seat, family, etc, are a mixture of sensations/perceptions and memories revolving around labels. All I have is my experience. Yet there might be something to them that isn't experienced. The experience is the closest thing I know I have, regardless. I can't tell if I own experience; I don't know what that would be like or how I would confirm it, but I know it's more mine than anyone else's.
Try pointing at you, your self. What happens? 
There's some confusion as to what direction to point in, how will i know if i got it. A rush of images and thoughts about me being a body/mind. Finger pointing to heart or behind eyes. That's all i got. It seems like another impossible task.

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Tangerine
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Re: Passing a threshold

Postby Tangerine » Sat Jun 15, 2019 12:28 am

Does a new one every second’ fit comfortably with the definition of a self? How would that work - what would be creating or generating these selves?
Not traditionally, but this *could* be a more accurate description of the self. Not an entity, but something generated every moment.
Look at the following list and tell me which one is most like the idea of you...

A dining table.
A university.
Batman.


I think they all connect in a way.
A university seems most like the most accurate analogy of the idea of me, because its a collation of lots of things, constantly moving and evolving. Batman is like a central figure, always clearly one thing, so that's kind of what I think the idea of me is like when unexamined. Both are imaginary in a sense - they depend on our subscription to certain ideas.
What does this imply about the existence of a hearer or a see
If it exists, it certainly can't be experienced.
Try this with other sensations too ... Can you find a feeler - or is there just the experience of feeling?
Exactly the same. No feeler can be found, just feeling. There's a sense that the feeler is in the feeling, like there's no distance. And obviously the thought "Its me! I am the one!"
So, what might this thing that you can’t see or hear or touch because it’s the thing that is looking, hearing, feeling etc - what could it actually be?
The sense organs of this body/mind, or awareness itself, or something that can't be pointed to with concepts.
Look at the people around you - can you see the selves that they are?
I can see/feel their bodies, hear their words, smell, etc, and there are thoughts that link their behaviours to some story of 'them'. They should have private thoughts/ experiences, but I cant directly experience that.
Medical science ... has never ever located the essence of a person, the self. Why not?
It could be a combination of it being very complicated and not knowing what we're looking for. Of course you're not going to find anything but meat, but this meat could tell you how this sense of self works.

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Tangerine
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Re: Passing a threshold

Postby Tangerine » Sat Jun 15, 2019 1:05 am

Go now and look in the mirror for a while ... is that image Tan? ... Do you see evidence of a self anywhere?
I see an image of a face. There are thoughts that this image is *of* me. It is a reflection of this organism and no other. The image itself isn't actually me, just something the mirror is doing. But if thought says turn head left, the head turns left, and image reflects this, then that seems like evidence of some subconscious, non experienced intelligence generating these connected phenomena - much like connecting the dots of a crime scene to infer the scenario or perpetrator. The perpetrator never seems to be caught in action though.
So what is the trigger that prompts the apparent choice point in these cases? ... Do you choose to have those remediating thoughts?
You're right, sometimes it seems like a natural cause effect relationship. There is suffering, recognition of suffering, wanting to stop suffering, then there is the memory of what causes suffering, then there is relinquishment. Other times it seems totally new and spontaneous, but that could be due to a lack of saddened of the underlying stream of causation.
At what point does it become apparent that a pattern is unhealthy - is this self not on duty the first time it happens to kaibosh it immediately
It could be that this self is merely acting on the information available, and it isn't fully self aware or in control. Im kind of playing devils advocate because i want to be absolutely sure, but i do see what you're saying. A self isn't really anything substantial if its always wrong and going back on itself.
Is that what you are - a personality? Makes you sound like some long established TV show host.
It does! But that's part of what "I" points to. All these things come with "I" and make it possible to talk about the organism/character, but it doesn't point to anything else in present experience.
Have you ever had or known a pet...? They have distinct personalities don’t they? Do they have selves? How are you different?
I have thoughts about my cat that ties together images of it with memories of its behaviours, my feelings towards it, etc. Nothing else can be found. On the one hand it seems that I'm not different because im also a mishmash of memories and thoughts and behaviours etc, but on the other hand it is self evident that experiencing is happening, which i don't have for my pet. I'm confused.

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Tangerine
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Re: Passing a threshold

Postby Tangerine » Sat Jun 15, 2019 1:20 am

What is it that is hiding or could hide? What could possibly come under threat from the insecurities of others?
The thing that comes to mind immediately is the thoughts i have about myself. If someone says something that contradicts my opinion of myself, i feel hurt, which i realise now means my sense of self feels threatened, which im also realising means the web of stories being clinged onto as self could change. I then distract myself or leave in order to avoid this suggestion. In experience, nothing other than these thoughts of "me" can be found.

P.s. i feel a bit daunted with how much there is to reply to, and confused with with seeing theres the thought of me and awareness but not knowing what is supposed to not exist.

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Locustafiera
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Re: Passing a threshold

Postby Locustafiera » Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:52 pm

Confusion is a good sign! Seriously. We can’t decode long established beliefs that we have take for granted all our lives, that our whole culture and worldview is based upon, without becoming confused first. It’s OK to feel confused.
All I have is my experience.
Yes. What is there but experience, including the experience of thoughts that say ‘this belongs to me’.
Finger pointing to heart or behind eyes. That’s all i got. It seems like another impossible task.
Right, so it’s ‘you’ pointing, with ‘your’ finger, but it’s not possible to point at ‘you’. Interesting no?
….this could be a more accurate description of the self…
Let’s be clear, we are not trying to arrive at an accurate definition of a self here. It’s not an academic exercise. We are trying to find - literally find it - the thing referred to when you say ‘I’ or ‘me’. There’s a big difference between these two approaches. The first assumes there is a thing called ‘self’ that needs defining in the first place - it’s an exercise in defining an idea - ‘ here’s an idea and here’s what it means’. The second is simply a search or quest to find something in direct experience and it’s the whole key to this process. Can we find this thing called a self, I, me in direct experience.
A university seems most like the most accurate analogy of the idea of me, because its a collation of lots of things, constantly moving and evolving …
Again, this is an analytical response, maybe because of the way I phrased the question. Consider this - take away the students from the university for ever. Is it still a university? No way. Take away something pretty important from this ‘collation’ of you, let’s say the eyes. Is it still you? Halve the IQ. Still you? Do you see what I mean? Can you imagine a blind, clueless Batman? It’s still Batman isn’t it? Which one is more like the way you perceive yourself in everyday real life, rather than in an analytical, academic exercise?
No feeler can be found, just feeling. There’s a sense that the feeler is in the feeling, like there’s no distance. And obviously the thought “Its me! I am the one!”
Yes! There’s no distance between feeler and feeling, that’s a lovely description. Then the thoughts come and start separating it into this and that. That’s what thought does. But before thought, no distance.
you’re not going to find anything but meat, but this meat could tell you how this sense of self works.
OK, so if there is only meat, is there a self or not? Do you care about how this ‘sense of self’ works - is that why you are here? If there’s a ‘sense of self’ what does it feel like - what kind of sensation is it?
…that seems like evidence of some subconscious, non experienced intelligence…
Sure - there is intelligence. But is it the intelligence of a self? Did you know that it has been shown that certain animals have what you referred to as a ‘sense’ of self - mainly other great apes, chimpanzees and orang utans for example. The test involves seeing if they can recognise their reflection in a mirror.
… A self isn’t really anything substantial if its always wrong and going back on itself.
Great that you see this. Do you see how as we challenge this idea of self we start to back away, deciding that maybe it doesn’t have the kinds of power we normally attribute to it - It’s not fully aware, it doesn’t have enough information, isn’t in full control etc etc. These begin to sound like excuses. Try defining where the boundaries of control for self are. What can self control and what can it not?
i feel a bit daunted with how much there is to reply to, and confused with with seeing theres the thought of me and awareness but not knowing what is supposed to not exist.
I hear you. Sometimes it’s useful to come at this from several angles at once - it stops us getting bogged down in analysis. Many of the questions I ask have yes/no answers. Don’t worry about what is ‘supposed’ to be the case. This is about finding stuff out for yourself, doing the maths, it’s not about learning by rote. For now, let’s just clear up one thing:

What is this thing that you have been referring to when you say ‘I’ or ‘me’? Not the ‘accurate’ definition of self but what you really feel you are. I think there are some clues in what you have written to date, like;

What even is it that we all think we are, but infact are not?
And

…. (this could be a more accurate description of the self. ) Not an entity…..
Best

LocustaFiera

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Tangerine
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Re: Passing a threshold

Postby Tangerine » Wed Jun 19, 2019 8:31 pm

What is there but experience, including the experience of thoughts that say ‘this belongs to me’.
I feel it would be dishonest of me to exclude the possibility that there are things outside of experience. But, for sure, I would agree that experience is all I ever contact, and anything "outside" can only be known through and as experience. And I get we're just concerned with experience here.
Right, so it’s ‘you’ pointing, with ‘your’ finger, but it’s not possible to point at ‘you’. Interesting no?
Exactly! argh. I can't fathom the answer to this riddle. Is it because I am it, that I can only know it by being it, and there isn't a seperate one to be pointed at, just the one that I am?
Can we find this thing called a self, I, me in direct experience.
It hasn't shown up so far.
take away the students...Is it still a university? No way. Take away...the eyes. Halve the IQ. Still you? ... Can you imagine a blind, clueless Batman? It’s still Batman isn’t it? Which one is more like the way you perceive yourself in everyday real life...?
I see what you're saying. In everyday life, I'm more like Batman. hmm but to stretch that, the last thing you can take away from me before I no longer exist is my thoughts - like in deep sleep.
OK, so if there is only meat, is there a self or not?
In experience, no, only meat (i.e. seeing, hearing, feeling, etc). Thought says maybe some of that meat behaves in an self-ish organised way, like a university. One meatself would not be the same as another meatself.
Do you care about how this ‘sense of self’ works - is that why you are here?
If this sense of self is making it harder to see the truth in any meaningful, lasting way, then wouldn't it help to understand it?
If there’s a ‘sense of self’ what does it feel like - what kind of sensation is it?
I guess I don't have any frame of reference to compare to, but it's like a combination of all the senses. Or just a primal knowing. Again, hard to find.
But is it the intelligence of a self?
I don't even know anymore :')
...certain animals have what you referred to as a ‘sense’ of self...The test involves seeing if they can recognise their reflection in a mirror.
Implying that the self is this individual organism.
These begin to sound like excuses.
I get that - like it's this process of clinging.
What can self control and what can it not?
I don't find (or even think I could find) a self that can control anything. There is just how things go. BUT, within the "just how things go," this organism does have a limited range of impact. I (this organism) can flail my (its) limbs but not that of others.
What is this thing that you have been referring to when you say ‘I’ or ‘me’?
Okay. I will take this as my question for now. Reviewing my previous answers and looking freshly now, what comes to mind is either "this individual organism" or simply "a thought".


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