When the student is ready...

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AllenEdgar
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When the student is ready...

Postby AllenEdgar » Fri Jan 18, 2013 5:00 pm

... the teacher will appear.

Where to begin? I suppose I should start with the story of “me”.

My name is Robert (AllenEdgar is a tribute to my late father). As a 52 year old male I have been an earnest seeker of truth for the last 8 years. It all started with a multi-day period of heightened awareness in the fall of 2004 that ending in a “I Am God” moment. Of course, going from self-professed atheist to God was quite the shock. Fortunately I came back down to my non-god reality before any real damage could occur. But then what remained was a new me. A “me” who could never see life the same again.

In the years that followed I searched every nook and cranny of philosophy, religion, mysticism, etc. Through it all I have come to the intellectual understanding and belief in the non-dual nature of reality. Unfortunately that’s all it is… an understanding. It is my undying desire to go past this understanding and “live” life as it is meant to be experienced.

I hate the seeking… it really is exhausting. Unfortunately, it has become such a part of who I am there can be no turning back. Luckily I feel I’m getting close, like a ripe fruit ready for the picking. Maybe all I need is a good shake of the tree to knock me loose. And maybe that is how I ended up here.

So there it is. If there is anyone who feels they can help point me in the right direction I would be most grateful. I realize the work is mine to do so I'm not asking for a handout. I am more than willing to put forth the time and effort… and I promise to not waste yours.

Thanks,
Robert

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s-p-a-c-e
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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Fri Jan 18, 2013 7:12 pm

Hey Robert,

A very warm welcome to Liberation Unleashed. :)

This is John from the UK. Happy to be your guide if you wish.

If you haven't already seen it, there is intro info here, our disclaimer and a short video too.

http://www.liberationunleashed.com/

If you could confirm you have seen all the above and would like me to be your guide - then we shall begin.

With best wishes,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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AllenEdgar
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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby AllenEdgar » Fri Jan 18, 2013 8:42 pm

Hi John,

Thank you for responding to my post. And yes, I would be delighted to have you as my guide.

I read the intro, the disclaimer and watched the video (along with others on the site). I also checked out your personal blog, and have to say, I am very excited about working with you. I suspect this will be a very productive journey... one way or another. ;) Thanks again!

Best Regards,
Robert

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s-p-a-c-e
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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:40 pm

Hi Robert,
Hi John,

Thank you for responding to my post. And yes, I would be delighted to have you as my guide.

I read the intro, the disclaimer and watched the video (along with others on the site). I also checked out your personal blog, and have to say, I am very excited about working with you. I suspect this will be a very productive journey... one way or another. ;) Thanks again!

Best Regards,
Robert
Great! I'm excited too. :)

Just to get a sense of where you're at Robert, right-here-right-now, on a scale 0f 0-100 with 0 being " 'Robert" is a complete fiction and not me” and 100 being ” ‘Robert’ is real and IS me”, where would you be right now on that scale?

With kind thanks,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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AllenEdgar
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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby AllenEdgar » Fri Jan 18, 2013 10:28 pm

Intellectually I’m probably a 20. Experientially I would say a 70. Therefore, if I’m being completely honest with myself, the me I believe myself to be is probably around a 50.

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s-p-a-c-e
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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Sat Jan 19, 2013 1:10 am

Hi Robert,
Intellectually I’m probably a 20. Experientially I would say a 70. Therefore, if I’m being completely honest with myself, the me I believe myself to be is probably around a 50.
Ok. Cool.

Perhaps you saw on the blog, an exercise about looking at a cup.

Place a cup in front of you. Look at it.
Ask yourself, "What am I seeing here, an object or the idea of a cup?"

As best you can, set aside the idea of a cup/labels of "cup" etc, and look again at the object.

If there's any sense of this object being known and labelled, see that and set it aside again.

Keep setting labels aside and looking until the object sits unknown.

Notice what is noticed and share what is found.

Speak soon,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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AllenEdgar
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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby AllenEdgar » Sat Jan 19, 2013 9:50 am

For the most part this exercise brought about slight pain and pressure in my head from the intense concentration. However, there were a couple of fleeting moments where it appeared the cup was not a separate object from the table. It was more like an appendage growing out of the table rather than an object sitting on top of it. What I don’t know is if this was an illusion caused from staring at the cup or a result of my “objectifying” the cup?

Regards,
Robert

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s-p-a-c-e
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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Sat Jan 19, 2013 12:20 pm

Hey Robert,
For the most part this exercise brought about slight pain and pressure in my head from the intense concentration. However, there were a couple of fleeting moments where it appeared the cup was not a separate object from the table. It was more like an appendage growing out of the table rather than an object sitting on top of it. What I don’t know is if this was an illusion caused from staring at the cup or a result of my “objectifying” the cup?
Excellent, that the object was seen - more for what is there - rather than, what is thought to be there.

By the way, next time, take a short time to relax beforehand, maybe 2-3 mins, just to settle. Maybe close the eyes. Then, open the eyes and see what is seen. Noticing any overlays of thought/ideas and just swishing them to one side, "Not that", "Not this".

Get to know the unknown right before you. Also, play with using the hand too. It might start with a sense of "Oh yeah, that's my hand" and swish that aside, to see again. And so on.

PART II of this exercise

Is to notice the difference between: Looking and Seeing.

When looking at a cup or a hand, there's a tension in the eyes/eyeballs. It's like something is reaching out to "grasp" the object. It may feel like "someone" is looking from behind the eyes. Notice that.

...then take a minutes pause...

This time, with eyes open, notice that really, the eyes are they to RECEIVE light, which they do marvellously well. The focus is softened a little and the eyes relax. So there's no focussing on the object, and yet the object is seen. Light bouncing off being received automatically.

As this is happening, notice the change in an apparent "looker". It may have gone completely.

Have a go and speak soon.

With best wishes,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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AllenEdgar
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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby AllenEdgar » Sat Jan 19, 2013 11:25 pm

Hello John,

So I have to admit I initially felt a great deal of resistance to this exercise. My first thought was “Oh no, here we go again, more visualization exercises that I just don’t get”. That is until I dug around a little deeper.

As I was reading the stories on the site and the member’s blogs I finally realized that the single premise from which we are working from is that there is no “me” (I know, I'm a little slow). Everything we are/will do here is designed to point to one single fact; the “me” I thought I was is nothing more than a construct of my imagination. From that point on my attitude took a dramatic turn.

Does that mean that I saw/experienced the self for what it really is? No, I did not, or at least I don’t think I did. But I do feel like I sort of get it now. And for me that’s a promising start. At least now there’s a clear and direct idea from which to work from. It’s as if the muddy waters have settled a bit.

One interesting experience I had between your last 2 posts. As I was lying in bed this morning I focused momentarily on my legs. I realized I didn't have any physical sensation of them at that moment, and yet, I knew they were there. I then realized the only reason they were there is because I created them in my mind. I just assumed they existed. I was a very eye opening experience of seeing how my mind creates its reality.

Lastly, a question that occurred to me. If there is no self, what is “it” that experiences this life? What is that centralized awareness that follows this body around wherever it goes? If it is not my “self” then how do I conceptualize it?

Gratefully,
Robert

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AllenEdgar
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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby AllenEdgar » Sun Jan 20, 2013 12:30 pm

Some more questions about this awareness. The awareness seems to be the one constant and I think it is that which I believe I am. But now I'm starting to question even that.

Is awareness real or is it too just a function/result of this process of living? Is awareness no different than sound, color, or any other phenomenon we might experience? Is this awareness not me also?

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s-p-a-c-e
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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Sun Jan 20, 2013 1:10 pm

Hi Robert,
Hello John,

So I have to admit I initially felt a great deal of resistance to this exercise. My first thought was “Oh no, here we go again, more visualization exercises that I just don’t get”. That is until I dug around a little deeper.

As I was reading the stories on the site and the member’s blogs I finally realized that the single premise from which we are working from is that there is no “me” (I know, I'm a little slow). Everything we are/will do here is designed to point to one single fact; the “me” I thought I was is nothing more than a construct of my imagination. From that point on my attitude took a dramatic turn.
Yes, no me, never was, is or will be. Stark, basic, simple, empty and full. Everything falls into place on that pivot.
Does that mean that I saw/experienced the self for what it really is? No, I did not, or at least I don’t think I did. But I do feel like I sort of get it now. And for me that’s a promising start. At least now there’s a clear and direct idea from which to work from. It’s as if the muddy waters have settled a bit.
Excellent.
One interesting experience I had between your last 2 posts. As I was lying in bed this morning I focused momentarily on my legs. I realized I didn't have any physical sensation of them at that moment, and yet, I knew they were there. I then realized the only reason they were there is because I created them in my mind. I just assumed they existed. I was a very eye opening experience of seeing how my mind creates its reality.
Good. With no "I" there's no ownership of hands, legs, thoughts, actions. Check it out.
Lastly, a question that occurred to me. If there is no self, what is “it” that experiences this life? What is that centralized awareness that follows this body around wherever it goes? If it is not my “self” then how do I conceptualize it?
Ah, that's the million dollar question. Those clever Zen folk said it was beyond words for good reason. Any description, any map, is not it. To know it's nature, to be of it, is more than enough.

With best wishes,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Sun Jan 20, 2013 1:15 pm

Hi Robert,
Some more questions about this awareness. The awareness seems to be the one constant and I think it is that which I believe I am. But now I'm starting to question even that.

Is awareness real or is it too just a function/result of this process of living? Is awareness no different than sound, color, or any other phenomenon we might experience? Is this awareness not me also?
The word "awareness" is a pointer - thought different folk use it in different ways. Let's say there is the experiencing of that which is always constant, ever-present, perhaps ever-presence.

The identification with awareness is a common happening and it's good to see straight through it.

Where could awareness be located, where could it reside?

Once again, as far as "me" and "awareness" goes, best to taste the strawberry than talk about. :)

Brilliant stuff Robert.

Have a look at the questions and comments above and speak soon.

With best wishes,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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AllenEdgar
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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby AllenEdgar » Sun Jan 20, 2013 10:53 pm

Hi John,

Thank you for your input and patience.
The word "awareness" is a pointer - thought different folk use it in different ways. Let's say there is the experiencing of that which is always constant, ever-present, perhaps ever-presence.
So I examined this idea that the awareness is just a pointer and not my self. While looking at that idea a real fear arose. It was the “I’m about to crash this car and die” kind of fear. Very interesting and very telling.

Of course my next reaction was if I am not awareness I must be the emptiness from which awareness arises. Right then and there I saw the desperation of the mind to attach itself to something, anything. For the first time I became aware of the defensive mechanism in action. Progress I think.
The identification with awareness is a common happening and it's good to see straight through it.

Where could awareness be located, where could it reside?

Once again, as far as "me" and "awareness" goes, best to taste the strawberry than talk about. :)
Excellent, John. I will absolutely explore this until we get to the bottom of it. Should be fun... I love strawberries. ;)

Best Regards,
Robert

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s-p-a-c-e
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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Mon Jan 21, 2013 1:11 am

Hi Robert,
Hi John,

Thank you for your input and patience.
The word "awareness" is a pointer - thought different folk use it in different ways. Let's say there is the experiencing of that which is always constant, ever-present, perhaps ever-presence.
So I examined this idea that the awareness is just a pointer and not my self. While looking at that idea a real fear arose. It was the “I’m about to crash this car and die” kind of fear. Very interesting and very telling.
Ah, we're getting close. :) I like to see fear as the guardian of the unknown.
Of course my next reaction was if I am not awareness I must be the emptiness from which awareness arises. Right then and there I saw the desperation of the mind to attach itself to something, anything. For the first time I became aware of the defensive mechanism in action. Progress I think.
Yes! This is how it is. No thinker and yet thinking happens. No reader and yet reading happens. No seer and yet seeing happens. So where do you reside?
The identification with awareness is a common happening and it's good to see straight through it.

Where could awareness be located, where could it reside?

Once again, as far as "me" and "awareness" goes, best to taste the strawberry than talk about. :)
Excellent, John. I will absolutely explore this until we get to the bottom of it. Should be fun... I love strawberries. ;)
I love the spirit. :)

What if everything had no label. What if you knew the name of nothing. Looking around, nothing had a name.

What if you too had no name?

Have a play.

With warm wishes,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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AllenEdgar
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Re: When the student is ready...

Postby AllenEdgar » Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:47 pm

Good morning, John... or at least it is here in Texas.
Yes! This is how it is. No thinker and yet thinking happens. No reader and yet reading happens. No seer and yet seeing happens. So where do you reside?
Well the obvious answer to where I reside is no-where since there is no self to do the residing. However, my experience keeps saying "I" reside in my awareness. But I took your advice and examined this awareness closer.

What I learned is awareness is a product of experience rather than cause. Awareness can only happen when there is something to be aware of. How do I know this... when I go to sleep and body/mind shuts down so does awareness. Of course when I dream the mind/thoughts are at play and again awareness arises. Mathematically speaking object X subject = awareness.

Hope this makes sense. I'm going to continue to drill into this.
What if everything had no label. What if you knew the name of nothing. Looking around, nothing had a name.
What if you too had no name?
So the answer here is things get pretty quiet. Without labels and name there isn't much to think about. In fact thinking becomes nearly impossible. This actually is fairly easy for me to do since it's an exercise I've been working on for a number of years now... not the no label part but the not thinking part. Though I will say when I approach it from the no label angle it seems much cleaner and less effortless.

Anyway, I've been up all night from work and it's time to get some sleep. Look forward to hearing more from you.

Regards,
Robert


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