Round 2

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Benjobanjo
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Round 2

Postby Benjobanjo » Tue Apr 29, 2014 9:53 am

Hello,

I'm looking for a guide. I have been recently working with a guide for roughly 6 weeks or so and was given some very useful tools/steps in discovering and seeing through the illusion. Unfortunately we weren't able to get through totally in this round.

It was recommended to take some time out but I can't switch this off now! I'm happy, I feel at ease, and comfortable. I don't feel any frustration or negative effects of not getting it. Each day I understand a little more. I keep reading.

So, at present I understand and know that thought content is not Real. Reality is seen in direct experience before thought arises. There is practicing being aware of thought and discrediting them as storyline/plot of Ben's life.....
I understand/know there is no controller....I can't control my interest in seeking!
I have had moments of realising there is no perceiver, only the perceiving but maybe there is work needed on this.

The problem before was that there was working through it logically. I was "trying to figure it out". Practicing bare awareness now. I can't find self without labelling after experience. Some times there is a gap, a space, a freedom sort of but this is not IT.

Anyone who would like to talk with me?

Thanks

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Paulo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Paulo » Tue Apr 29, 2014 10:35 am

Hi Ben,

I've been following your thread with Mike over the past week or so, but we will have a completely fresh start here. This means that I may be asking questions similar to those you responded to with Mike, but I want you to only respond from where you are now.

I will be guiding you, not teaching you, and expect you to post at least once per day. If you can't post, or need to take a break, let me know in advance.

In one sentence, what do you see as being the sticking point in seeing through the illusion of there being a separate entity called 'self'?

Great to have you here, Paulo.

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Benjobanjo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Benjobanjo » Tue Apr 29, 2014 10:44 am

Hi Paulo,

Greatly appreciate your guidance here. Thankyou.

To slim it down into one small sentence, perhaps;

Thoughts continually arise that re-enforce the story of self.

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Paulo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Paulo » Tue Apr 29, 2014 1:34 pm

Hi Ben,
Thoughts continually arise that re-enforce the story of self.
Thoughts arising about a self is absolutely fine, they're just thoughts after all, imaginings ABOUT reality.

Does the self in those thoughts, or in that story, refer to an actual discrete entity, having an independent existence outside that story?

Share an example if you wish - we'll work with specifics here.

Paulo.

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Benjobanjo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Benjobanjo » Tue Apr 29, 2014 2:36 pm

Hi Paulo,
Does the self in those thoughts, or in that story, refer to an actual discrete entity, having an independent existence outside that story?
This self in the thoughts does not have a descrete identity ouside of the story, no. You are of course aware of the running commentary, labelling, sorting, making sense....adresses myself as I. "don't forget I need to do this..." "oooh, I feel a bit hungry right now", "I like this record".

Anyhow, nothing new. There is no stopping these thoughts of course, I realise this but once one thought is extablished, it is very easy to flow with them, taken down the road of living that role of doing what needs to be done to function as a normal human being.

So, when I am swept away in this running commentary, I am taken away from awareness, direct experience. I'd say that only when I am focused and in the mood can I really get into a space where direct experience is what is concentrated on. This is supposedly where Reality is seen. Often I forget to be looking......and while I am looking, I'm not able to crack on with living....I should be reading for my degree and while I am reading, I am not looking. Sometimes I am completely enthrawled in what I am doing. Flowing, is a great place to be and very productive. I have a tendancy to procrastinate though, and that is basically being a slave to mind wondering/not very disciplined behaviour... thought led.

Anyway... thinking too much... just letting a bit out Paulo...

Cheers.

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Paulo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Paulo » Tue Apr 29, 2014 4:52 pm

This self in the thoughts does not have a descrete identity ouside of the story, no.
Great, this is what we do here - simply look and see that there is no separate entity behind the scenes apart from it all. (The question asked if the self character in thought has an 'independent existence' outside the story - I take it that the 'descrete identity' means the same thing)
You are of course aware of the running commentary, labelling, sorting, making sense....adresses myself as I. "don't forget I need to do this..." "oooh, I feel a bit hungry right now", "I like this record".
No problem, this is just the mind at work, labeling, planning, etc. It all happens automatically, again, no being there behind it all, separate from that experience making it all happen.
So, when I am swept away in this running commentary, I am taken away from awareness, direct experience.
This is perfectly fine, we all get caught up in daydreams and fantasies, but there is still awareness. Just as long as you realise they ARE daydreams and fantasies, it's all good.

Here's a little exercise to try next time you become aware that the focus has been 'IN' thought -

1 When you become aware that you've been invested in a daydream (for example, having an argument with someone), mentally shout STOP.
2 Then ask - 'Is this happening in Direct Experience?' - actually look around you. Is the person you are arguing with even in the room where you are? Is anything from that vivid thought around you now (furnishings, location, etc.)?
3 If the thoughts are parallel to what's actually happening then you're in a more effective position to deal with what's occurring. If they are not, then you can dismiss them as just thoughts, fantasies.

This will give you some idea of the DIFFERENCE between the content of thought, i.e. indirect experience, (virtual reality), and what's actually happening i.e. Direct experience.
I'd say that only when I am focused and in the mood can I really get into a space where direct experience is what is concentrated on.
This process isn't about awareness being in Direct Experience 24/7, it's simply looking and seeing that there is no entity, or being, separate from that experience and managing and controlling what is happening. Awareness can shift between thought or Direct Experience, that's fine.

I understand you may have been asked this question previously, but give it a go from where you are now -

What does 'I' or 'me' actually refer to?

Thanks, Paulo.

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Benjobanjo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Benjobanjo » Tue Apr 29, 2014 6:31 pm

Hi Paulo,
No problem, this is just the mind at work, labeling, planning, etc. It all happens automatically, again, no being there behind it all, separate from that experience making it all happen.
This is the thing; the mind at work...! It's easy for you to say there's no being behind it. It's easy for me to understand the LOGIC that there is no being behind all the labelling but because it comes from somewhere my mind assumes that it comes from me, AFTER it is thought. Automatic processing and labelling continues....
1 When you become aware that you've been invested in a daydream (for example, having an argument with someone), mentally shout STOP.
2 Then ask - 'Is this happening in Direct Experience?' - actually look around you. Is the person you are arguing with even in the room where you are? Is anything from that vivid thought around you now (furnishings, location, etc.)?
3 If the thoughts are parallel to what's actually happening then you're in a more effective position to deal with what's occurring. If they are not, then you can dismiss them as just thoughts, fantasies.

I don't tend to get into arguments and at the moment there are not many people around to interact with.
I will try to remember to do this next time I have an opportunity.....Is there a solo version?
This process isn't about awareness being in Direct Experience 24/7, it's simply looking and seeing that there is no entity, or being, separate from that experience and managing and controlling what is happening. Awareness can shift between thought or Direct Experience, that's fine.

Ok thanks for that. Continuing to experiment and see this for myself. I can't see a self, I see my body all the time and this is referenced as MINE so labelling continues to occur......I understand this. I can't find a self in DE, only labels that come after. I can't claim that I am in control, I just respond to what has happened, "buffering of reality" was a nice way to put it that was read once before.
Separation is the key one here that there is difficulty with.
What does 'I' or 'me' actually refer to?
Without seeing through the illusion I refers the character in the story of Ben. The culmination of labels, the one that takes ownership of experience. I can't see how there isn't an entity accumulating experience.
There is awareness. When I stop to look, stop thinking, stop logic, stop working it out there is awareness only but awareness is a label after being aware of awareness.
Two opposite things - I can allow thought to happen, but while thought is happening it is all logic.....working it out intellectually. This is not possible.
Slowing thought down to awareness is nice but still it's not directed anywhere. I can't look in the right direction because without thinking and exploring there is just nothing. Just sitting there gormless! dribbling...! (not dribbling but may aswell be!)

You are saying that thoughts can arise and awareness can happen similtaneously but can you direct me more?

I'm still far too logic. I am aware of mind wanting to work it out. I would prefer exercises to discover.
My most advancing exercise was to imagine an object fully and then experience the object for real. The comparison was remarkable and really stood out.
I am looking at where experience is heard or an object seen. An apple in front of me is an apple in front of "Me". there is separation. The sound outside is the sound outside.....
Did you read the post previously when I was shaving. This was the first time there was no shaver, I need to revisit that post myself. Revisit that exercise....

Thanks Paulo.

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Paulo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Paulo » Tue Apr 29, 2014 7:06 pm

It's easy for you to say there's no being behind it
Don't take my word for it. Take a look, what did you find?

A one sentence answer on this one please :)

Paulo.

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Benjobanjo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Benjobanjo » Wed Apr 30, 2014 7:55 am

Hi Paulo,

I'm not finding anything new here.

I find; thoughts, beliefs, memories, a body, habits, self dialogue, a mind. All the normal things one finds when someone looks for a self.

Ben

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Paulo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Paulo » Wed Apr 30, 2014 9:18 am

HI Ben,
I'm not finding anything new here.
Reality is what it is. Was there anything else you expected to find?

Let's take a look at what you found when you took a good look for a separate entity, existing apart from the body and independent of experience -

Thoughts = thought
Beliefs = thought
Memories = thought
A body = physical
Habits = thought
Self dialogue = thought
A mind = thought

Great, you observed the moment and found sensory sensations (physical) and symbolic sensory sensations (thoughts).

Where is this separate entity called self in thought or sensation?

Paulo.

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Benjobanjo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Benjobanjo » Wed Apr 30, 2014 2:43 pm

Hello Paulo!
Was there anything else you expected to find?

I wasn't expecting anything from that direction but obviously I'm expecting to see through illusion of self at some point.
Where is this separate entity called self in thought or sensation?

Its difficult to locate a thought or a concept. In fact it is impossible. It comes from nothing and goes to nothing. It's not tangible. It's a special kind of noun that is not physical (apart from body)

Cheers

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Paulo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Paulo » Wed Apr 30, 2014 3:08 pm

I wasn't expecting anything from that direction ...
And did you find a separate being there behind the running commentary, labeling, sorting, making sense?
but obviously I'm expecting to see through illusion of self at some point.
Describe what the illusion of self is in your own words.

What would seeing through the illusion of self look like, what (if anything) would be different?

Its difficult to locate a thought or a concept. In fact it is impossible
By separate entity, I'm actually referring to a discrete autonomous being - a ghost in the machine, so to speak, and NOT just a thought or concept. You looked at what IS, and found thoughts and physical sensations (i.e. the body) -

Did you find a separate entity called Ben there, or was there just awareness of thoughts and sensations?

Paulo.

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Benjobanjo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Benjobanjo » Wed Apr 30, 2014 3:26 pm

And did you find a separate being there behind the running commentary, labeling, sorting, making sense?
There is nothing tangible. Nothing solid. There is a seperate experiencer, an observer, a labeller....a thought about thoughts.....separate from what is being experience.
Describe what the illusion of self is in your own words.
The illusion of self is a belief in the above. A separate entity, a separate being/person/body, independent from the outside world.
What would seeing through the illusion of self look like, what (if anything) would be different?
I'm not sure what It would like like. The workld would look the same. It would be different in the way I would stop searching and stop thinking about looking for this, at this and about this. I will feel ready to live and focus my energies on living and getting on with it. I would not feel so wanting.....
Did you find a separate entity called Ben there, or was there just awareness of thoughts and sensations?
There are just thoughts, awareness, sensations. There is a person called ben that lives and people talk to and Ben responds to them.

Cheers Paulo

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Paulo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Paulo » Wed Apr 30, 2014 4:32 pm

Hi Ben,
There is a seperate experiencer, an observer, a labeller
What is it then that's experiencing this experiencer, observing this observer, and labeling this labeller?

Paulo.

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Benjobanjo
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Re: Round 2

Postby Benjobanjo » Wed Apr 30, 2014 5:28 pm

What is it then that's experiencing this experiencer, observing this observer, and labeling this labeller?
I was looking at this not much than 20 minutes ago. Lying on the bed and looking, hearing, experiencing, thinking. There was a "conclusion" that there isn't anything experiencing the experiencer etc It's just happening, hearing is happening, observing is happening, thinking is happening, there doesn't need to be anyone doing it. The observer observing the thoughts etc is thoughts thinking that it is....ego clutching at straws but its a few moments late, it's too late to claim ownership...


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