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Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Sun Jul 14, 2013 10:09 pm
by Ilona
No need for apology. It was a step that needed to be made. It's nice to see you are back.

Good to hear that you did the experiment and noticed the difference, between sense experiencing and experiencing labelling. Take a closer look at labelling process, how does it work? What triggers labels? Look around the room slowly and watch how it's happening. Describe, what happens then you focus on labelling function.

Do you mean that self is another word for awareness? Or is it focus?
IS awareness DOING the looking?
Take a look now. This very moment, is there something that is aware? Is there a gap between seeing and the seen? Is there a seer outside seeing that is controlling the angle of lens? Test it, look at a hand, or any object, is there a seer present, or its more true to say that shapes and colours arise in this space of aware presence? How would you express what is happening?

Sending love

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 2:17 am
by BlakeRP
As I look around the room, I know what I see when I see it. If I let my attention sit on it long enough, the word for it appears. The labeling function itself isn't something I can focus on, I just observe it happening, arising ALMOST effortlessly. If the word doesn't come immediately, there's a slight gap between knowing what I'm looking at and the word that comes up - and once it was even wrong. I was looking at a leaf on a potted plant, but the word "tree" came up to which a thought responded, "No, not tree - leaf." That disconnect was odd, and the responding thought correcting it was odd because it was just there like the other thoughts. I had no sensation of thinking or correcting myself, it was just there. The labeling function based on a lifetime of conditioning and for the most part takes care of itself, it seems.

For the next part, I am saying that Self is the part that applies intention, that IS consciousness. It's not a "separate" self, just like consciousness is not individual or separated but is everywhere present, nor is it limited to what would be considered the illusory ego. It's not separate from the world and isn't just a social construction. It's the part where if a thought "just came in" that could then observe that thought and reflect on it. It would be the part that would then go, "Where does that come from? What belief is there?" The word "part" though is a bad word, an incomplete word, because this thing I call the "Self" is not a part, it's It. It just looks like a part.

It's the part of me that deliberately chooses to look at my hand and various parts of it. Yes, seeing just happens. The shapes and colors arise in the space of awareness - yet what I intend to focus on, to what degree I focus on it, to what degree I reflect on the thoughts that arise from it, that is the Self at work. The part that can experience a devastating life event and then be at observation of whatever comes up mentally, emotionally or socially and then make a choice or play with a different attitude or frame of mind would be the Self that I am indicating. It's not separated from everything but IS everything itself, as consciousness.

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 8:32 am
by Ilona
Ok, I see, what you call the Self, I call life, reality, some call it god, Brahman, this.

So is there a separate entity inside this bag of skin, that is managing life?
Are you in control what is happening in life of Blake?
Is there an I that is in charge of decision making and has free will, independent of what is happening?

How do you see all that?

Much love.

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 5:25 pm
by BlakeRP
To explain how I see all of that requires a bit of theory drawn from my mystical learning, but I see the whole being as threefold in nature. There are three interconnected aspects of human consciousness. There's the subconscious mind or the lower self, the part which regulates our autonomic functions like breathing and heartbeat, which contains the vast majority of the information that appears as thoughts or emotions "that just come up". It is also the part which receives energy and impressions from higher realms of consciousness, turns it into symbols it understands, and then sends those symbols up to the conscious self or middle self as emotions and thoughts. The conscious or middle self, or the named self, is the part which interacts with this physical reality. It can observe it, experience it, reflect on it, and yes - interact with it by intention. Is it IN CONTROL OF LIFE? No, I couldn't say that - but it is the part which develops intention and with which attention can be given. It's the part that, should a bunch of thoughts "just come in" that observes them and reflects on them. It's the part that requires the socialization process, the learning of language, for it to be developed fully and used optimally. It's the most temporal and impermanent aspect of our being and even shamans recognize it as an illusion and even an obstacle at times, yet it is still there and is a part of how our life works.

The final aspect would be the superconscious mind or the higher self or the Soul or whatever else have you. That's the immortal aspect, the part that is pure consciousness and energy and exists in total awareness of its oneness and interconnectedness with everything else. For me, I experience that directly during my meditations (and lately, more and more in my everyday life) as the pure peace of being, a presence within and around "me" that is far beyond "me." If the middle self is where free will exists, the higher self is where "divine" will exists. Between the three aspects of the whole being, Life happens.

The philosophy that there is no Soul because there is no separate self in the first place I see as flawed, because I have only said that the nature of consciousness, for me, is threefold in nature - I never said that any of them is separate from each other or from the world around me, but are three levels of experiencing and understanding and communicating with the world. When all three are in sync, I can communicate an intention that can then manifest it in my life - usually, it's not something that is "controllable" but it is a process that requires an intention from the middle self to the other aspects of being. I can, and have, receive intuitive guidance, healing energy, journey into the inner realms of being to communicate with the spirits there, and more. There are often times in my life that "Blake" is not control of where and when I must use these skills to serve others, but usually, most of this comes from having the intention to quiet my middle self so that I can be open to my whole being. In other words, there is, for me, an "I" that is in charge of some aspects of decision making, that has some aspect of free will. It doesn't mean it is in control of life, but it is in control of the intention I have, the attitude I have, the amount of resistance or openness I have to something. It doesn't need to be something I can rip out of my bag of skin and hold in front of you so that it can be considered real or having free will. It doesn't need to be in control of every aspect of my life and it doesn't need to be separate from what is happening for it to have free will and intentionality and reality. That's like science saying if they can't measure it with their instruments, it doesn't exist. It can be seen through, yes, like something invisible - but the belief that there is no self, no soul, no separate being and this is all just Life happening and there's no one there and no free will and everything else I've seen here just doesn't make any sense for me. After all, I've directly experienced all three levels of my being simultaneously - this isn't just theory for me. The "seeing no-self" to me is theory and belief that has to be forced into being, and once done - you're still there.

That's the biggest thing I don't understand about what I've seen here or the people in the Gateless Gatecrashers or even my own dad - you're still there. All my dad can say is, "Right. There's no one there, there's no personal self, AND YET, here you are. It's a paradox and it's just what the Universe does." The middle self is still there, because without it you can't interact with the world and with people. The subconscious mind has to still be there or you'd be dead. The only thing that seems to go away is a belief in the higher self because you all see the middle self is invisible. Again, this is just what it looks like after seeing it in action for over a year in my father, and from reading this site - it just doesn't make sense to my lived experience.

After re-reading this a few times, I wish I could find a way to shorten this but I don't know that I'd be totally honest with how I felt and how I see things if I didn't go into the depth I did. My inner writer has never been good with being simple and brief ^_^;;

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Mon Jul 15, 2013 9:46 pm
by Ilona
What do you mean by "you are still here"? Was there anything that had to vanish? Was there anything in here before that once is seen disappears? It's like saying, tha once it's seen that Santa story is a fantasy, then the Santa story disappears and no more Christmas presents happen. It's not like that Blake. There is nothing to disappear, just a belief drops.

And what is in charge of impulses? Is there an intendor that chooses where intention flows? Like
Focus driver?

Aside from all stories, look at what is true in your experience Right now. Is there anything separate from everything else? In which way?

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Tue Jul 16, 2013 6:41 am
by BlakeRP
I will admit, I have just been smoking. I live in California, you can imagine what. But... I saw something tonight. Or I think I see something. That is, nothing. You're right, I think? There's... no one there, but there is. Life has always been happening, and there's what this Life calls Blake happening. But this identity called the "I"? I have this sense of self I've always had, but it's very different.

My body feels relaxed. I feel joyful yet peaceful, happy and deliciously unwound in an area of my stomach that has always felt like it's carried something it won't let go of. Interestingly enough, earlier today, in the story of this life, Blake was doing a shamanic journey to connect with his warrior spirit guides who had been wanting to speak with him for a while. They showed him a fighting ring where he needed to face his biggest blockages - fear. It manifested as a giant t-rex, bringing back memories of childhood and teenaged years watching his favorite scary movie, Jurassic Park. It also contained fears about the conference I am about to attend, where I've been invited to take a very dynamic and important leadership role amongst others my age to discuss all of the fields I am passionately interested in, from consciousness to mysticism to social awareness and justice, etc. It also contained bundles of fear about the futures of the world, and my life, and more and more fear from all over my life just threatening to tear me to shreds. It also contained fears that some very, VERY bad mistakes and decisions in my distant past would one day come to light with karmic payback as well. As it charged towards me, it shrank and turned into a toy - a kind of trick to make you think it has become an ally or not a threat. Knowing this, I told it to leave or transform into light, putting it into violet flame and seeing it explode into streams of light. This same "unwinding" in my stomach had occured then as well, like something being let go of that had never ever fully relaxed or unwound.

Now, this is happening, and there seems to be an "editing" process. What I have called the intentionality that "thinks" about something, that goes back and edits it, or changes his attitude about it, or reflects on something. That just seems to be happening on its own, without personal effort - and yet, it's just happening, it's still there. Blake is still doing his thing.

But who am I? Who am I now? Where am I? I don't know. I'm not sure what state this is, other than the obvious influence. But the insight still seems true... I guess I'll know for sure, maybe, when I wake up in the morning.

Thank you for everything thus far. It is must appreciated.

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Tue Jul 16, 2013 3:06 pm
by Ilona
Yes, yes, all appearances are empty of selves.
Your shaman trip sounds quite powerful! Isn't it amazing how life unfolds. :)

Drop the question- who am I, instead ask is there an I. Is the I thought a separate entity that thinks thoughts?
Can a thought think?
Is I more then a thought?

Keep looking! And enjoy the ride down the rabbit hole :)
Much love.

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Wed Jul 17, 2013 7:19 am
by BlakeRP
There's a sense of I'ness that is required to function throughout daily communication. I spent the whole of today kind of observing from a new perspective. I often realized that I seemingly had "gone back to sleep" and was completely living from the I-dentity of Blake, but from a new way. Everything was smooth, organic, easy, honest, unwound. There was just a lack of a "controller" or trapped person in here who lives at the whim of the universe but also at the consequences of my choices. Choices happen and are made, the same as that "editing" process or reflecting or "intention" happens. Even if it seemed like "Blake" or "I" was making a decision, I could look at it from this different perspective and see, in a simple, quiet, calm and un-special way, that that is just the story of this life. Blake still loves everything he's always loved, and he still talks the way he talks - but now, there's no one to struggle with the story that is happening.

Is there an I? I am looking, and all I see is the process of life - even what I would call the communication between the three levels of self - just happening effortlessly. Thoughts that cycle around or are caught up in the past or present are still there, and sometimes there is "involvement" or "attachment" to them, but throughout the day there was also moments of seeing through them and seeing them as the stories that they are. I don't know to what degree this has been seen through or where it will go, because for the most part I don't feel much different. I just feel like there's a loss or letting go of something - such as the fears - and that as it settles and more looking is done there will be more I can share about it.

To answer your question, no, thoughts don't think - simply the next thought related to a thought may come up, and a reflection on it may happen. Observing this happens. Even though there's a sense of I-ness that is more than a thought to me, I cannot describe what that is. I do know that it's not separate from everything that is going on, but is part of the process.

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Wed Jul 17, 2013 5:30 pm
by Ilona
Very good post!
Ok, focus on sense of being for a minute. Just notice how information is coming through all perception channels, notice aliveness and simply rest there for a minute.

If you had to describe the sensation of being, what labels would you use?
Is label "I am" describes aliveness? Is it a label I that does the being?
Is being still here if you don't name it anything?
Are there boundaries to being?

What is obvious here?

Sending love.

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Sat Jul 20, 2013 9:11 pm
by Ilona
How is it going, Blake?

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Mon Jul 22, 2013 1:15 am
by BlakeRP
An unstoppable and uninterrupted stream of miracles and life-altering experiences within and around me from one moment to the next. Effortlessly I was moved, moment by moment, where I needed to be, saying what needed to be said, doing what needed to be done. I even met someone with a similar perspective in all of this. So much heart opening things. Beingness expressing Itself through the beautiful illusions and stories it enjoys creating so much. I can't even imagine where to begin. I am so exhausted, that I apologize but I may need a few more days before I can get into a stable dialogue again. But I had the great honor of being with don Miguel Ruiz today, and something he said described it perfectly. "Even though I can say I am so and so and I like this and I don't like that, the truth is, I don't know what I am, but I am. I am here. I am alive. Life is happening through me, and Life is Love." It's a bit fluffy but Blake can't really do any better than that!

Thank you so much for all that you do.

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Mon Jul 22, 2013 4:16 pm
by Ilona
Mmm, I like that. Don Miguel Ruiz has a nice way with words. It must have been a real pleasure to meet him.

No worries, write when you are ready again, to finish this.
Much love

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 7:03 pm
by BlakeRP
Tomorrow I fly out to Louisiana, but I have some time right now to write whatever obviously needs to be written, because it's happening, haha.

Something that I have learned to accept is that memory and thoughts are extremely imperfect and limited, often downright wrong. There are also culturally and parentally trained patterns that give a totally different viewpoint than what may have actually happened, when compared to the memories of others. This often creates drama and anger in the people around me, but now something is different. Now, what organically gets said, "Oh, wow, I am so sorry. I can't explain myself other than I must have mis-remembered and mis-spoke, so I apologize. I hope you can forgive my mistake and I really want to know how to make this right?" But it doesn't come from a space of begging for their forgiveness, it just comes out as a matter of fact. Normally, I might have covered everything up with layers of lies and denial and more drama, but suddenly that pattern disappeared. Nothing changed, but how it was handled was completely different, and happened without effort.

My understanding of time is different. People say you must be totally focused in the super immediate physical now and if your mind is thinking about the future or the past, you aren't in the now. To that I say, "Do you know how big the Here and Now is?" Thoughts that, say, plan for the future have to happen. Thoughts that are reflecting upon the past must happen. Being focused on the Here and Now is simply noticing that that is what is happening, and observing those thoughts, reflections, and feelings - whether they are about the "future" or the "past" or the "present." It's all part of the simultaneity and flexibility of the illusion of time. Because of this way of seeing time, I constantly felt like I was walking through time warps the past few weeks. A few minutes could stretch into hours, and then hours felt like only minutes had passed by, and simply being at the most miraculous spot at the most miraculous possible moment was just a given, a constant, and there was no Efforter making it happen. Even as struggling in growing up is still happening, there isn't that much of a Struggler that Suffers.

There's still some sort of... awkwardness, or sense of incompleteness? I'm not too sure about that - can you help me explore that a bit?

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Thu Jul 25, 2013 8:16 pm
by Ilona
Hi and wow, looks like there is a lot of interesting stuff happening :)

Nice to notice that responses change effortlessly and that time is not what it seems.
How is that sense of awkwardness, still there or it moved?

When you look at other people now, what do you see? Are there separate selves in them?

:) looking forward to you reply!

Re: I seem to be seeking a Guide

Posted: Sun Jul 28, 2013 3:44 am
by BlakeRP
The awkwardness has kind of shifted into this... Settlingness? I mean, I feel more identified with this personality than I did before. Whereas there were plenty of moments where I felt there was really no one and nothing "doing" what was being done, now I feel normal. Well, as close to normal as I could feel at this point. There is a difference. It's hard to say what that difference is now, because it's become so subtle. The only thing I can say is still different is the fact that I can go into any emotion and move through it easier. Like getting very nervous and scared while flying - I can go into it and look, finding whatever beliefs are there, and then I can just accept what's happening and it's easier to relax. Before my mind would just keep spinning into the fears and vice versa. It's easier to speak my mind - or to speak what needs to be spoken. My light body audio journeys take me into different spaces that are richer than ever - as if the illusory "resistor" has been removed. So now it just feels odd that I feel normal, before seeing what I saw. Gah!

When I look at other people, I understand that we are the same Beingness or Consciousness Itself or the Allness/Oneness, but I have also come to an acceptance that the stories of life has us all playing different parts. I have a deep abiding knowingness or understanding that we are the Same Thing, but I acknowledge the paradox of the apparent separation. I also realize that there's no relaying that oneness through the stories of life.

I just feel so much easier just being myself - whatever that is in the moment. The story of Blake is still happening, but there's no personal thingie attempting to control anything. There's still preferences, feelings, thoughts, identities, and the sense of being a separate character from other characters - but now there's this understanding that sits quietly beneath the surface of the waters, this understanding that every wave and ripple that is experienced as separate from each other is really just the movements of the whole ocean of Beingness. That's the best way I can put it, and metaphor is the ONLY way it can be put, I think.