Available to guide you

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Bezuda
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Available to guide you

Postby Bezuda » Mon Dec 10, 2012 3:13 pm

Wanna see through the ilusion of self?

Reply this post and we can start right away :)

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Paulo
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Paulo » Wed Dec 19, 2012 11:03 pm

Hello Bezuda,

Would love to be guided by you, and am available to post pretty much everyday.

I don't have many expectations about the journey, or the outcome, but am interested in taking a new perspective, and whatever that may bring.

Thanks, Paulo.

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Bezuda
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Bezuda » Thu Dec 20, 2012 12:25 am

It's a pleasure for me to guide :)

Please, drop all your expectations, it will not help you.

By the way Paulo, where are you from?

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Paulo
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Paulo » Thu Dec 20, 2012 4:23 pm

Thanks again Bezuda,

Looking forward to it all.

BTW: I'm from the UK (But don't let the Spanish sounding name fool you, just parents with pretensions, ha!)

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Bezuda
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Bezuda » Thu Dec 20, 2012 4:50 pm

ahah, thought you were portuguese.

So, what is 'I' or 'me' ?

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Paulo
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Paulo » Thu Dec 20, 2012 8:34 pm

Had to think about that one for awhile - so grab a coffee, this is a long one ...

Two thoughts came to mind-

Firstly, that ‘I’ is a selected grouping of ‘stuff’ (experiences/memories/objects/beliefs/selves) which I define as different from other ‘stuff’ and give them the label ‘me’. I make these selections based on a set of rules (i.e. habits/beliefs/concepts). What constitutes ‘my stuff’ and what the set of rules contains, can change over time.
Secondly, it occurred to me that the set of rules which defined ‘me’ from ‘other’ were also ‘me’ in a sense because they were themselves created/selected to define and maintain ‘me’ in the presence of experiences which challenged a previous ‘me’.

I want to keep this as close to my own experience as possible so will illustrate with an example –

I regard myself as being smart and intellectual - I study philosophy/psychology/religion and am working in an academic field and associating with people I perceive as being of a similar mind set. I avoid the ‘rough’ parts of town and people who I perceive as shallow or superficial. But when I was a teenager I lived on a council estate and regarded myself as ‘tough’. I thought people who were intellectual were ‘snobs’ or ‘stuck up’ and didn’t have a lot of time for them. Two very different people, but both ‘me’ at different points in time and both created by establishing a boundary between ‘self’ and ‘other’.

Going to college put me in contact with new people, ideas and possibilities, and my ‘tough guy’ self wasn’t so popular in this new social setting. The rules (i.e. habits/beliefs/concepts) defining ‘me’ changed as my horizons opened up, and the 'stuff' (experiences/memories/objects/beliefs/selves) that was me changed too.

I hope all that made sense,

Paulo.

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Bezuda
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Bezuda » Thu Dec 20, 2012 9:06 pm

Writing helps you clarify things in the mind so don't be afraid of it :p

'I' or 'me' is only a label for this body, mind, and thoughts. Can you see this?

So, Is there a 'me', at all, anywhere, in any way, shape or form? Was there ever?

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Paulo
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Paulo » Thu Dec 20, 2012 11:41 pm

Hello Bezuda - another long one for you ... good to give the mind a workout once in awhile :-)
'I' or 'me' is only a label for this body, mind, and thoughts. Can you see this?
Yes, I can see that ‘me’ is a label for a collective of ‘stuff’ (body, mind, thoughts, feelings) I associate with.

I saw a cat in the garden this morning scent marking various twigs, grasses and fencing, and I’d like to think he was saying ‘this twig is me’; ‘this fence is me’. He does it every morning, and I can see parallels with my own labeling of ‘stuff’ as ‘me’, and putting little metaphoric post-it notes on them to identify what ‘I’ am and what ‘I’ am not.

[Just a side thought – I perceive that our labeling is a bit more selective than just a blanket labeling of body or thoughts as ‘me’. An example for the body - there is a condition called ‘Alien hand syndrome’ where individuals perceive their hand, or a limb, as belonging to someone else, i.e. part of their body is a ‘not me’. An example for thoughts – when I have a nightmare I create those scary thoughts but do not label them as ‘me’, instead I run away from them (e.g. the concept of ‘the shadow’ from psychoanalysis). And we can also dissociate thoughts and memories, from traumatic experiences in childhood, for example.]
So, Is there a 'me', at all, anywhere, in any way, shape or form? Was there ever?
At the moment I do think there is a ‘me’, but I regard ‘me’ as being something more abstract than objective. I label ‘stuff’ (body, mind, thoughts) as ‘me’ and therefore that collection of ‘stuff’ becomes ‘me’ by virtue of my labeling it as such.

Perhaps an example to illustrate my thinking here – I see something white in the sky and I might say ‘there’s a cloud’. But there is no cloud, just a collection of water droplets floating around on the breeze that just happen to be in proximity to each other. I create the cloud by perceiving the water droplets as a single object and label it so. The collection of water droplets is not the label ‘cloud’, this is true, in fact no cloud ever existed in the objective sense, but for me there is a cloud in the sky.

It reminds me of the koan ‘if a tree falls in the forest and there is no-one to hear, does it make a noise’ – for something to exist it needs an observer. I create the world through the act of my perceiving it. Likewise with ‘me’ or ‘cloud’ I perceive/create these things and so from my perspective at least they exist as real.

To put it more simply – there is no ‘me’ in an objective or absolute sense, but there is a ‘me’ which I create and perceive as such.

Thanks Bezuda, Paulo.

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Bezuda
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Bezuda » Thu Dec 20, 2012 11:52 pm

Where is that me? Is it your brain? Is it your thoughts?

Move around your home! Jump, move your arms and legs.

And LOOK! Who's jumping? Who's moving the arms? Who's moving the legs?

What did you find?

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Paulo
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Paulo » Fri Dec 21, 2012 2:47 pm

Where is that me? Is it your brain? Is it your thoughts?
I don’t experience ‘me’ as being any ‘where’ in particular, it’s an ongoing sense of just ‘being’ and experiencing I suppose, a vantage point. Definitely not just brain or thoughts, but a feeling of being these things and more.

To follow on from that question I asked myself where am I when I dream? – I have an awareness of existing and being some ‘where’ as I move through the ever changing dream, but what is constant is a vantage point (again, that phrase!), a consciousness. I’m rarely in my ‘dream body’ when I dream but looking at the scene from all kinds of disembodied angles. In my waking life I experience through my senses and thoughts, the sensory information pulls at my attention, so the focus of my ongoing experiencing is rooted there, and remains fairly fixed. Thoughts also come into my awareness when awake, moreso when I shift from the physical and relax a little and ‘I’ experience the thoughts like a dream. But through it all there is a vantage point observing and experiencing which I perceive as ‘me’.
Move around your home! Jump, move your arms and legs.
Ha, that was funny!
And LOOK! Who's jumping? Who's moving the arms? Who's moving the legs?
What did you find?
I didn’t experience any ‘who’ in the movement. A thought arose to move, I pictured myself moving and where I would move, and then I moved. The movement followed a thought and a feeling to move. The movement was created in my thoughts before it occurred, but the actual movement happened all too fast to see the process. I perceived movement of my body just the same as I perceived the thought that came before it. I can only describe it as observing what was happening, but being in the movement at the same time.

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Bezuda
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Bezuda » Fri Dec 21, 2012 3:45 pm

Who was perceiving the movement?
Who was interpreting the movement?

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Paulo
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Paulo » Fri Dec 21, 2012 7:53 pm

Aargh! (took me awhile to chew on that one).

There is no 'who'. There is a perspective, but when I try to pin down who is at that perspective, or behind it, I can't grasp anything. I can't find a 'who' there that I can say is Paulo, or XYZ, because when I percieve a Paulo, I am one step removed from Paulo looking AT Paulo. I can't be looking at something from a perspective outside it, and at the same time be that thing.

It feels like trying to see the back of my head without a mirror :-)

[BTW: Thanks for responding to my postings so promtply Bezuda]

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Bezuda
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Bezuda » Fri Dec 21, 2012 8:37 pm

Thank you for letting me help you :)

So once more, Is there a 'me', at all, anywhere, in any way, shape or form? Was there ever?

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Paulo
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Paulo » Fri Dec 21, 2012 10:37 pm

So once more, Is there a 'me', at all, anywhere, in any way, shape or form? Was there ever?
In short - no, and no.

A perception of 'me' exists, but that is not 'me'. 'Me' is percieved only because it is outside that which is percieving.

I'm finding it hard to describe that 'point of percieving' without using a symbol/form/description, but realise that in order to describe it I'm percieving what I'm describing, and therefore it cannot be that which I want to describe.

There is no 'me' behind it all, awareness, just awareness.

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Bezuda
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Re: Available to guide you

Postby Bezuda » Fri Dec 21, 2012 10:56 pm

Good.

Explain in detail what the illusion of separate self is, when it starts and how it works.


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