would like to be guided through the Gate

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would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby just truth now » Mon Jun 16, 2014 7:37 am

My User name is Just truth now. I am a man, 49 from England but presently living in East Asia. I have been a serious student of Buddhism for nearly 20 years. Joined the Triratna Buddhist Order in 2001. I have been reading Gateless Gatecrashers and I am ready to plunge in. A few close friends have done this and are very positive about it. With all emotions I ask myself "Who is feeling worried?" (etc) There comes a softening of the separation between inside and outside. I look within and find no one specific who is here separate from everything else. But all the time I act and feel as if there is someone very important here. My self story has provided the back bone of my life. I always refer back to it. But it is increasingly seen a a mirage. I am aware also that i usually live up in my head when around other people. I just feel so tense every day and wanting approval from others. This tension and worry is exhausting me. I would particularly like a man to guide me with this task, but this is only a preference and any guidance would be gratefully received.

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Re: would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby moondog » Mon Jun 16, 2014 10:27 am

Hi just truth now and welcome,

My name's Pete and I live in Somerset, UK. That leaves a bit of a time difference between us, but I often work with that and it's not been a problem, so it should be ok.

Thank you so for letting me know about your background, and how you've arrived at this point. I'd be very happy to guide you through so that you can clearly see for yourself that there is no separate self entity. Just truth now seems a bit unwieldy, so what would you like me to call you?

There are a few things that we need to go over before the journey begins.

There are a few standard ground rules before we start:

You agree to post at least once a day, even if only to say that you're still around, and I'll do the same. Sometimes it might just not be possible for one of us to post substantively and of course we'd find a way to work round that.

I am not your teacher, all I can do is point and you look, until clear seeing happens.

In general, I will ask questions and you look deeply and respond with 100% honesty.

Responses require simple, uncontrived, honest looking. There are no wrong or right answers.

Responses are best from direct experience (the physical evidence of seeing, hearing, touching, tasting, smelling, prior to the story or explanation about them). Long-winded, analytical and philosophical or stream of consciousness answers are best avoided and may even hinder progress. Just listen very closely to the answers that arise in you, and answer to the very best of your ability at that time. (Read the article at http://liberationunleashed.com/articles ... xperience/ for more help on distinguishing what is direct experience.)

Put aside all other teachings, philosophies etc. for the duration of this investigation. Really put all your effort and attention into seeing this reality, as it is. (If you have a daily and essential meditation practice, it's ok to continue with that. And it's fine to read threads in this forum and the Gateless Gatecrashers book.)

Please learn to use the quote function, see http://liberationunleashed.com/nation/v ... ?f=4&t=660 for instructions.

If you haven't already seen it, there is intro info at http://www.liberationunleashed.com/, together with our disclaimer and a short video.

Please confirm that you have seen these, that you agree to the disclaimer, and that you'd like me to be your guide and then we'll begin.

Let's start with a summary of what you're looking for and what you expect to find. I know you've already answered some of these, but please forgive any overlap and just fill in the gaps where you haven't, and we'll get started.

What are your expectations for this process?

What is it that you are searching for?

How will you know that you found it?

How will this feel?

How will this change you?


Finally, here's a couple of helpful points:

1) You can press 'subscribe to this topic' in the blue bar at the bottom of this page and receive a notification email every time I post here.

2) The site has a nasty habit of logging you out while you write a reply, which can mean you lose what you have written. One way to avoid this is to write elsewhere, then just paste the message into the 'reply' window when you're ready to send.

And don't worry, I don't intend to send any more posts this long, if I can help it! This is just to set things up for you nicely.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Kind regards,

Pete
'Just consciousness taking the shape of experience from moment to moment.
Just this'

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Re: would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby just truth now » Mon Jun 16, 2014 4:57 pm

What are your expectations for this process?

What is it that you are searching for? I am searching for an end to suffering

How will you know that you found it? I will see things differently. Without me at the centre of it all, separate from others

How will this feel? The same as now but very different in perspective. Maybe I will laugh a lot or cry in relief

How will this change you? I will go about my day lighter and more open to experience not spending hours in selfing. Have an objectivity. Be genuinely compassionate towards others. Generosity more natural. Not feel at odds with the world. Go beyond this dreadful mistrust of the world and others. More spontaneity to follow my enthusiasm for living. Much less fear and not living with fear of will I be alright all the time.

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Re: would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby just truth now » Mon Jun 16, 2014 4:58 pm

Please call me Karuna

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Re: would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby just truth now » Mon Jun 16, 2014 5:04 pm

I will go to bed now. See you tomorrow. Thanks Pete, Karuna

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Re: would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby moondog » Mon Jun 16, 2014 7:46 pm

Hi Karuna,

Good to see you figured it out!

Please confirm that you accept all the various conditions, agree to the disclaimer etc.
I am searching for an end to suffering. I will see things differently. Without me at the centre of it all, separate from others. (This will feel) the same as now but very different in perspective. Maybe I will laugh a lot or cry in reliefI will go about my day lighter and more open to experience not spending hours in selfing. Have an objectivity. Be genuinely compassionate towards others. Generosity more natural. Not feel at odds with the world. Go beyond this dreadful mistrust of the world and others. More spontaneity to follow my enthusiasm for living. Much less fear and not living with fear of will I be alright all the time.
Thanks for sharing your expectations, and for your understanding of what seeing that you have no separate self might be like. It's natural, of course, to wonder and speculate about what this liberation/awakening will be like but, by its very nature, I can assure you that it's just not like anyone expects, although it does differ for each one of us. I'd just stress that the work we do is definitely not intellectual or thought-based. That being so, it's best to put aside any expectations, as they reside in thoughts about the future and so are not within direct experience.

Rest assured, that when you see that there isn't and never has been a 'you', a self-entity, with my guiding to help you see that fact for yourself, you'll just know. In exactly the same way that you know that unicorns aren't real, Batman doesn't exist, and there's no Santa Claus. It isn't fundamentally at all difficult, amazingly simple in fact, but only if you don't rely on trying to figure it out by thinking it through but, instead, just LOOK, LOOK, LOOK in direct experience.

So, excellent, as I've already said, actually seeing for sure that there is no separate self, and never has been, is different for everyone. It can come with a definite pop of realisation, or it might creep up gradually until it is seen. Also the effects on life lived after liberation can vary widely.

It’s worth mentioning at this early stage that what can hold a lot of people back, and something that we can perhaps knock on the head now, are assumptions around what one would 'be like' or what life ought to 'look like' once it’s seen that there’s no self-entity. There is a view that 'getting it' is tantamount to kind of somehow seeing it all the time, or being in some kind of state in which negative emotions or problems don’t arise.

It's really helpful to be clear that it's not any kind of state - it's simply direct knowing, insight. The Santa example puts it very well - 'seeing through' Santa, i.e. knowing for sure that there is no Santa, doesn't mean that little kids then spend the rest of their lives constantly thinking, 'there's no Santa'! Nor does it mean that Santa isn't apparently spotted in shopping malls in December. It's just that the story has been seen through. The direct knowing of no-self may be recollected at any time, but states still continue to come and go - pleasant, unpleasant, 'positive', 'negative'. However, that said, changes will be noticed, some possibly quite dramatic, including in relation to suffering arising from a pre-occupation with a separate self that simply doesn't exist!

I'll post once a day, perhaps occasionally more, and will tell you in advance if I know I won't be able to post. It would be good if you could do the same.

I hope that's helped to clarify the background stuff a bit. Don't hesitate to ask me about any

Moving on towards the core of this work - just look at the following statement, and ponder it every which way you can:

Nothing exists outside the present moment.

Can you find anything, anything at all, that does?


And next:

There is no self at all, no manager, no controller, no doer, thinker, watcher, none as in zero. All there is is life flowing freely, as one movement of totality, that includes all.

What thoughts, sensations, feelings come up? If there is fear, what feels threatened?


Pete x

Ps.To make your replies as clear as possible and to help me guide you, please use the quote function. To do that, simply highlight the relevant sentence(s)/paragraph(s) that you're replying to in my previous post and press 'copy', then press the 'Quote ' button in the bar above the section you're typing in, then place the cursor in the centre of the two bracketed quote words and then press "paste". That should do it.
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Just this'

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Re: would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby just truth now » Tue Jun 17, 2014 1:46 am

I accept the various conditions and the disclaimer

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Re: would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby just truth now » Tue Jun 17, 2014 4:24 am

Thanks Pete for your time and energy. It all seems very relaxed at the moment.

I am using copy and paste in the normal way. Is that okay?

Replies:

"Nothing exists outside the present moment."

I will look. There is anxiety. sounds. Tension in my neck.The breath changes. Sort of a hum everywhere. I get really curious about the present moment. Smiling. Slight tightness in my chest. Will invite it closer. Worry. “you are being the ideal student” Self-hatred arises. Jerks or spasms go up the spine. No. nothing found outside the present moment in experience. It's all here. Everything else is a fabrication. Memory and speculation. Not wrong or useless necessarily but not happening now in a sense.

Can you find anything, anything at all, that does?

No. But I will look.. I laugh as I think, “ where are other people?” They are where they have always been. Laughing. Nothing that exists outside of the present moment. I notice that the assumption of an 'inside' me and an 'outside' me is present. The labelling in the mind goes “There is a pain in my head. This is inside of me. The sounds in the street are outside of me. So there is the assumption of a me here experiencing it all.

And next:

“There is no self at all, no manager, no controller, no doer, thinker, watcher, none as in zero. All there is is life flowing freely, as one movement of totality, that includes all.”

Yes. Looking now to see. Sensations, yes. Yawning. Who is looking, watching, doing? Thoghts come and go. There seems to be an inner and an outer world. I feel fear when I look at the outer world. Anything could happen out there! Anything could happen in here to, inside the so-called me. So fear comes up there too. Fear comes up in relation to an imagined future. But right now, birds are chirping, the hum of the City of Seoul. Voices. Life is flowing freely as one movement of totality, as it were. None of it is graspable. And new experiences keep arising. If anyy of it were graspable then nothing new could arise. And the watcher, the doer, the guilter, the hero, the thinker, the controller, the self, is nowhere to be found.

“What thoughts, sensations, feelings come up? If there is fear, what feels threatened?”

As above. Weariness, sadness, worries, sighs, peacefulness all come up. Hopes and fears. What feels threatened? As I look, I have the feeling that I know this truth but there is a reluctance to live from this truth because life lived in dramas and dreams seems more interesting. So at the moment the insight seems dry and dull even, and I think I wilfully choose to look the other way. But now am looking. It feels ordinary. No spiritual fire-crackers. In this sense, insight, seeing, feels like a calming, sobering experience. Just calmly seeing what is there. And this is what I need to do in my life actually. Relax out of all this speculating and worrying and just see what is there. Feel like I have to be someone special just to be okay.

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Re: would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby just truth now » Tue Jun 17, 2014 5:13 am

After writing all that I got into computer stress that I couldn't work the computer.( Here are my rambling thoughts which you may not want to read as not directly relevant to the questions.) Than I got stressed with my partner because she couldn't help me. Something about being helped, dependent going on. I felt she was angry at me and I felt ashamed of myself. Then felt like a fraud because I can watch and record all this stuff so maturely and then completely lose it (Who completely loses it? It's just life going.. It's no big deal. I feel I have to be a saint. But there is no saintly me. There never was and there never will be, or could be. ) And I feel just like a child and that I can't possibly be loved as I am, and that I am a complete fraud with all this spiritual stuff. Ha ha Thought I would record all this to help me and also to help others who might also feel a bit messed up and contradictory. And yes, like a fraud.

Okay, so WHO is a fraud? Just sensations. There is no me who is a fraud. I want to control it all but I can't. WHO wants to control it all? Burning in heart area. Thoughts. " You are so self obsessed." "You are just wasting your time." "Pete doesn't want to hear all your ramblings". Despair. Go into it with love. Who is despairing? " I ruin everything" Who does? There is no you. No I. Question: What do you get for believing this story? I get an "I". A problem to be solved. (Looking.) Just warmth here. "I can't do it." Who can't do it? Okay , I will look.

Felt stressed, because I want to exist, And I want my girl-friend to exist. She is in Canada and I miss her. If all that exists is the present moment, then, when she is not here then she doesn't exist. Ha ha. See how the mind is? Worry. But what is true? Who is worried? Look.

OKay, Nothing exists outside the present moment, is also, everything exists inside the present moment? Right? As a flow everything is existing. ( Nihilism is no option!) Yes, the present moment is all there is, but this moment is vast and unfathomable and connects to everything and everyone. The only sensible response is love.

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Re: would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby just truth now » Tue Jun 17, 2014 5:15 am

So much for being relaxed! See you later. Should eat! And thank you Pete.

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Re: would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby moondog » Tue Jun 17, 2014 4:22 pm

Hi Karuna,
I am using copy and paste in the normal way. Is that okay?
Yeah, that's fine. So long as it's easy to distinguish 'mine' from 'yours', no problem :)
Nothing exists outside the present moment. Can you find anything, anything at all, that does?
No. But I will look.. I laugh as I think, “ where are other people?” They are where they have always been. Laughing. Nothing that exists outside of the present moment. I notice that the assumption of an 'inside' me and an 'outside' me is present. The labelling in the mind goes “There is a pain in my head. This is inside of me. The sounds in the street are outside of me. So there is the assumption of a me here experiencing it all.
These first questions are really just so that, as guide, I can find out a bit more about where you're at with this stuff; and maybe clarify it for you too. From what you say though, you clearly can't envisage anything outside of just this, right now. I like your musings on inside/outside 'me'.
Yes. Looking now to see. Sensations, yes. Yawning. Who is looking, watching, doing? Thoughts come and go. There seems to be an inner and an outer world. I feel fear when I look at the outer world. Anything could happen out there! Anything could happen in here to, inside the so-called me. So fear comes up there too. Fear comes up in relation to an imagined future. But right now, birds are chirping, the hum of the City of Seoul. Voices. Life is flowing freely as one movement of totality, as it were. None of it is graspable. And new experiences keep arising. If anyy of it were graspable then nothing new could arise. And the watcher, the doer, the guilter, the hero, the thinker, the controller, the self, is nowhere to be found.
Ok, great observations on what's happening Karuna. Particularly the final sentence.

Thanks for all your subsequent 'ramblings'; I enjoyed them, particularly:
OKay, Nothing exists outside the present moment, is also, everything exists inside the present moment? Right? As a flow everything is existing. ( Nihilism is no option!) Yes, the present moment is all there is, but this moment is vast and unfathomable and connects to everything and everyone. The only sensible response is love.
To which I say yes, yes, yes, and YES! And love isn't even a response, it is 'the present moment'.

Your answers were both informative and enjoyable to read. All the areas and aspects you mention will be covered as we move away from thought and speculation and enter into simply looking in direct experience. I like to maintain a specific skeleton structure to this process of looking, which then allows us to explore much more loosely within each and every area within experience where a separate self might be found.

As I'm sure you'll have seen, the initial questions point you towards looking into 'your' direct experience, which is, as I say, where I'll be frequently pointing you to look, and where this investigation will take place. That's as opposed to thought content. Direct experience is the very core of what we're doing here with this. Essentially, and utterly fundamentally, all there is, and can ever be, is here right now in this moment. So looking to see whether a separate and separating self is to be found can only take place within direct experience of this. Now. There's nothing else. It follows therefore that all of our work to realise and actually know that there is no self is done by investigating In direct experience. To this end, we can divide direct experience into thought, sensations (seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, feeling [tactile and kinaesthetic] and an unmistakable sense of Aliveness (presence/being). I referred to the useful article on direct experience in the introductory post, and you might want to have another look at that.

As I keep saying, the whole of this investigation centres around looking in direct experience to see if a self-entity can be found anywhere there. This is accompanied by seeing that it is in thoughts and only in thoughts that 'I' ever 'occurs' and that 'I' doesn't actually occur there either because thoughts, or at least their contents, are neither reliable nor real in any sense.

So anyway, let's start at last investigating in direct experience where a self-entity might be by looking at sense arisings and the self as experiencer:

When you look at something, a book, a tree outside or whatever, can you find an 'I' that is looking or seeing, or is there just seeing?

If there is an 'I', where are the boundaries between what is being seen, the seeing process itself and the seer?

Please do the same with hearing: birdsong, music, a pneumatic drill or whatever; and similarly with each of: tasting, tactile feelings and smelling.


Pete x
'Just consciousness taking the shape of experience from moment to moment.
Just this'

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seeing how things are

Postby just truth now » Wed Jun 18, 2014 1:28 pm

Dear Pete,

"When you look at something, a book, a tree outside or whatever, can you find an 'I' that is looking or seeing, or is there just seeing?"

There is just experience. An experience of awareness, aliveness. That's all there is but that's a lot!

I will go for a walk on the mountainside and just look and see if I can find a separate “I” that is looking, hearing, smelling, tasting, or touching. ….....


I went walking in the early morning. A strange thing happened. Either I have changed,or just because of the nature of the task you set me, but I noticed so much more on this walk than I have ever done before. I have done this walk many times but it was like I had never done it before. I was seeing so much around me. The squirrels in the trees. The giant boulders towering over head. The walk seemed to take so much longer than usual too. The world has opened out into a larger space.

When I look at something, can I find an 'I' that is looking/seeing or is there just 'looking/seeing'? No, there is no 'I' which is looking. There are 'eyes' and there is 'tree'. There is 'seeing'. The 'I' thought is extra. In fact it gets in the way of seeing. The 'I' thought is not necessary for seeing to take place.

However, at first the sense of separation caused by selfing was stronger and the dead tree I was looking at seemed 'over there' and separate. And then as I walked forwards a few paces, the dead tree looked so different from a new angle, that the sense of an 'I' was seen through. Similarly the sense of a fixed separate dead tree was seen through. It was a new tree to me now and 'I' was instantaneously a new 'I'. So this showed that there was no fixed anything. No graspable tree and no graspable 'I'.

With the other senses it was much more straightforward. There was clearly no fixed 'I' who could be identified as hearing, smelling, tasting or touching sense objects. So I learned that, there was, in the eye sense, a much stronger sense of separation than in the other 4 bodily senses. The visual sense seems dominant for me. Maybe it is because I wear very powerful glasses ( I am long sighted by +8 or +9) but the world seems very much out there when experienced through the eyes, but with the other senses there seemed little insistence on 'I making' going on. To add an 'I' in to the experience seemed absurd.


"If there is an 'I', where are the boundaries between what is being seen, the seeing process itself and the seer?"

When the 'I' sense was quite strong, I looked for these boundaries. I looked and looked again. There were no boundaries.

"Please do the same with hearing: birdsong, music, a pneumatic drill or whatever; and similarly with each of: tasting, tactile feelings and smelling."

See above. With each new 'object' of sense I gazed at, or listened to, etc., a different and distinct feeling arose as if to signify a new 'me' arising with each new experience. Very pleasant to be fresh and new with each new impression. I noticed this most strongly when looking at other people in the subway train opposite me. This proved that no separate, fixed 'me' was ever in existence. There is clearly no substantial single 'me' to discern. The questions you asked led me to feel more directly that all is flow.

Looking closely at my experience: There seemed to be just a field of awareness/experience. With touch – no 'I'. With smelling – just smelling going on – no 'I'. With tasting – no 'I'. And hearing – the same – no 'I'.

Tension was releasing as I sat in the massive supermarket, an environment I would usually get out of as quickly as possible. Tears came as the pain in my body dissolved. It seemed like it was the pain of 'My life' or 'My story'. The internal pressures melting.

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Re: would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby moondog » Wed Jun 18, 2014 4:04 pm

Hi Karuna,
When you look at something, a book, a tree outside or whatever, can you find an 'I' that is looking or seeing, or is there just seeing?
There is just experience. An experience of awareness, aliveness. That's all there is but that's a lot!
Amazing isn't it, when all there just seeing/experiencing?
A strange thing happened. Either I have changed,or just because of the nature of the task you set me, but I noticed so much more on this walk than I have ever done before.
Yes, there's often a noticeable 'opening out' and more clarity when the illusion of a separate self is being seen through but, when you say (either) I have changed, what would that 'I' be that might have changed? Is there anything to be found in direct experience that could undergo such a change?

Don't worry Karuna, I'm just poking around there to see what you've seen. It's great that you're noticing changes, and they can be a good indicator. But just remember, in the end this seeing is not a state. States come and go but, as with Santa Claus, once it's known there's no separate self, that's it, it's known, no matter how 'you' feel.
When I look at something, can I find an 'I' that is looking/seeing or is there just 'looking/seeing'? No, there is no 'I' which is looking.
Excellent.
There are 'eyes' and there is 'tree'. There is 'seeing'. The 'I' thought is extra. In fact it gets in the way of seeing. The 'I' thought is not necessary for seeing to take place.
But, in direct experience, are there eyes, or a tree to be found? Can you find 'eyes' anywhere in 'your' direct experience? Can you find a 'tree' that's a discrete object, separate from seeing?
The 'I' thought is extra. In fact it gets in the way of seeing. The 'I' thought is not necessary for seeing to take place.
Spot on!
Similarly the sense of a fixed separate dead tree was seen through. It was a new tree to me now and 'I' was instantaneously a new 'I'. So this showed that there was no fixed anything. No graspable tree and no graspable 'I'.
Ah, I think you've answered my earlier question here. Good.
With the other senses it was much more straightforward. There was clearly no fixed 'I' who could be identified as hearing, smelling, tasting or touching sense objects.
Can you that I n fact there's just no 'I' at all, whether fixed or not?
When the 'I' sense was quite strong, I looked for these boundaries. I looked and looked again. There were no boundaries.
It's just amazing when you see and realise that isn't it?. Just no separation. No inside or outside discernible.
Looking closely at my experience: There seemed to be just a field of awareness/experience. With touch – no 'I'. With smelling – just smelling going on – no 'I'. With tasting – no 'I'. And hearing – the same – no 'I'.
I'm really please that you can see that.

Just to be sure, there seemed to be more resistance when you were doing the seeing exercises (literally this time, as in sight). Even if there's a stronger feeling of separation with seeing, is it clear to you that this sense of separation is really just the product of thoughts, perhaps in conjunction with bodily sensations, telling you that there's separation? Were you able to find any seer separate from seeing, or object separate from seeing? Or was there just seeing?
Tension was releasing as I sat in the massive supermarket, an environment I would usually get out of as quickly as possible. Tears came as the pain in my body dissolved. It seemed like it was the pain of 'My life' or 'My story'. The internal pressures melting.
That's good to know Karuna.

Pete x
'Just consciousness taking the shape of experience from moment to moment.
Just this'

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Re: would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby just truth now » Thu Jun 19, 2014 12:05 am

Dear Pete, I hope this is not too long winded.

Your first question: "when you say (either) I have changed, what would that 'I' be that might have changed? Is there anything to be found in direct experience that could undergo such a change?"

Using your questions as my structure, my spring-board.

Worried ( as ever) about losing something I can't get back. Time to get real! So I am risking it. Writing this 'live' even if I do get timed out. What is there to lose? Can't live like that any more. Fear that I will bore you, be taking your time. Fear I will go off the point, get it wrong, look a fool. All this is natural.

The question is trust and loyalty. I have started this thing and inevitably, part of me wants to give up, shrink back. Don't want this to get into being therapy, cos it isn't. But part of me does want that. Is this stream of consciousness? You said you didn't think that was helpful for this. Just answer the questions and look, you said.

Well to do this for real, this question of trust and loyalty comes up. I feel I am talking to the Universe as I don't know you Pete. And it feels very exposing because it is not ono-to-one as I had thought but an open book. Anyone can read it in the world, national restrictions not withstanding. But do I need to trust you personally? Well obviously not because I don't know you..And I fear being disloyal to my good friends in Triratna by doing this thing. As if I am saying that this might be better than what I've got, that this might change me when Triratna(ha ha as if Triratna exists as an abstraction) has not.

Great, at last I have got to your excellent question and observation.
"when you say (either) I have changed, what would that 'I' be that might have changed? Is there anything to be found in direct experience that could undergo such a change?" Well, is there anything to be found which could undergo such a change? I thought so up until now. Looking.....Is there an 'I' that might have changed? In direct experience? ....Who believes in an 'I' that can change? I just want to believe that I have changed, can change, should change...It's natural. But it is based on the assumption that there is someone here to change. And that there is someone to make that assumption. Well is there? ...There is no me to change. 'I' is merely a linguistic convenience, a thought . There is change , but no 'me' to change.

It is unfolding in me. Ha ha. Who is it unfolding in?

And disloyal? Is it true that I am being unfaithful to my teacher, my movement, my friends? No, because I am being as truthful and open as I can about it. I told some people I am doing it but now I feel vulnerable and fear getting into deep water that I can't swim in. Who is there to drown in this liberation water? ...one moment gives way to the next. I trust my teacher(s). Oooh, I had a dream last night about one important mentor of mine. He borrowed my small rucksack, in the dream, as he walked off. Was he (I) exiled? I felt sad for him.

I feel so ashamed of myself sometimes. Who is ashamed of who? Shame can be positive but self hatred is not, it is hatred. Hatred is a way to reinforce a sense of 'I'.

So no one changes. No changer to be found. Fear. Who is afraid?

You asked: "But, in direct experience, are there eyes, or a tree to be found? Can you find 'eyes' anywhere in 'your' direct experience? Can you find a 'tree' that's a discrete object, separate from seeing?"

No eyes to be found in my direct experience. The experience of 'tree' constantly changes. No tree to be found, a mere label, a linguistic convenience when I reflect and look. Usually I am too lazy or preoccupied with 'I' projects and 'I' worries. So this is great. A voice says, “ don't be so serious. Trees are okay!” “Self is okay” “ just get on with life” “you are avoiding life with all this thinking about stuff'”. Well, thank you thoughts! And 'He' who thinks he sees you, my dear impersonal thoughts, is another thought, nothing more. All impersonal!

Your question then was: "Just to be sure, there seemed to be more resistance when you were doing the seeing exercises (literally this time, as in sight). Even if there's a stronger feeling of separation with seeing, is it clear to you that this sense of separation is really just the product of thoughts, perhaps in conjunction with bodily sensations, telling you that there's separation? Were you able to find any seer separate from seeing, or object separate from seeing? Or was there just seeing?"

Thanks for that Pete. Great question again. Please really probe me. You have my permission. I feel your care in that. No, it wasn't that clear to me that this feeling of separation was the product of thoughts and bodily sensations, telling me that there is separation. I feel this separation when selfing is strong. It feels real at the time. It feels like the tree is over there and 'I' am over here. An emotional charge is there when 'I' am disliking something. Or liking something. A tension. Dukkha. I don't have to resolve the tension between self and world. Is there a self? Or world?...Looking...No, there is just experience when I stop and look. Who is stopping and looking?...No one is stopping and looking. Just life living itself. Awareness.

Thank you for helping me get back on fire with the Dharma Pete. Who is on fire? ...It's just a process.

You asked: Was there any seer separate from seeing , or object separate from seeing, or just seeing? There is no object, no seer, just sensations. Yes, thoughts and sensations are worked into a story of self and world. Seer and tree. Fear is a factor here. So who is afraid? Can I let the fear in? Fear of loss.... I will watch Elena's video on this fear of losing something or someone. I am even afraid that if I really see what is really going on I will lose my partner. Well, let the fear in. Who is going to lose who? Is 'she' separate from 'me' or are thoughts inventing a separation? No, it is all experience with no distinct experiencer and experienced, all changing flow, a web of life unfolding by itself. You said this present moment is love. I will rest in that. Who........just rest, no rester, just love.

Thank you Pete for helping provide the conditions for this. It's deeper than I thought. See you.

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moondog
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Re: would like to be guided through the Gate

Postby moondog » Thu Jun 19, 2014 4:22 pm

Hi Karuna,
The question is trust and loyalty. I have started this thing and inevitably, part of me wants to give up, shrink back. Don't want this to get into being therapy, cos it isn't. But part of me does want that. Is this stream of consciousness? You said you didn't think that was helpful for this. Just answer the questions and look, you said.
It might help you to know that many folks, when they start to see that there's no self-entity running the show, (something they'd not even really questioned before, but implicitly believed a separate controlling/deciding 'me' to be part of the way things are) are frequently assailed by doubt, fear, confusion etc. Speaking metaphorically, this is the ego's way of trying to protect 'you', by putting you off so this fundamental truth won't be irrevocably uncovered. It's a good sign that the illusion is being seen through. As I'm sure you know, these negative emotions, particularly fear, are best faced, acknowledged, welcomed 'in' and then watched as they abide a while and then subside. Resistance merely gives credence to the notion that there's an actual 'I' to do the resisting, thereby exacerbating the whole apparent problem.
But do I need to trust you personally? Well obviously not because I don't know you.
No you don't know me but by agreeing to be guided by me you've shown a degree of trust, albeit 'impersonal' as we started as strangers. Speaking conventionally, I'm an experienced and effective guide. (Although really, it all 'just happens'.) Be assured that I'll do every thing I can to point you to see that there just ain't no you, ain't no me. By the way, there never was a separate 'you' but still life's just flowed on hasn't it. That being so, when this is seen through for what it is (or isn't) nothing really changes. Nothing is lost because it was never there to start with. But seeing that means energy need no longer be wasted on pampering, protecting and boosting this imaginary entity. Good idea to watch Elena's video.
Well, is there anything to be found which could undergo such a change? I thought so up until now. Looking.....Is there an 'I' that might have changed? In direct experience? ....Who believes in an 'I' that can change? I just want to believe that I have changed, can change, should change...It's natural. But it is based on the assumption that there is someone here to change. And that there is someone to make that assumption. Well is there? ...There is no me to change. 'I' is merely a linguistic convenience, a thought . There is change , but no 'me' to change.
You'll notice that you refer to what you thought and believed and, of course, thinking can be relied on to constantly shore up the belief in a separate self. Thinking is what maintains this illusion. This cannot be solved by thinking. There's nothing wrong with thinking; it's what we all do and it's part of living life, but thinking, or rather believing what thoughts tell you to be true, tends to encourage confusion, prevarication and doubt. Looking into direct experience undermines and destroys the illusion of self.
No eyes to be found in my direct experience. The experience of 'tree' constantly changes. No tree to be found, a mere label, a linguistic convenience when I reflect and look.
Good. In direct experience, no 'eyes'. No 'tree' as separate object.
I don't have to resolve the tension between self and world. Is there a self? Or world?...Looking...No, there is just experience when I stop and look. Who is stopping and looking?...No one is stopping and looking. Just life living itself. Awareness.
Well put.

I've said quite a bit about thoughts, so let's look at whether there's a self-entity involved or present in thoughts and thinking:

Not from what you think, but from direct experience, please say:

Where do thoughts come from?

Are you in control of them?

Can you stop a thought from coming?

Can you stop it in the middle?

Do you know what the next thought will be?

Is 'I' a different thought from the thought of say, a table?

Can a thought think?


I'm really enjoying this Karuna. I hope you are too. It's moving well.

Pete x
'Just consciousness taking the shape of experience from moment to moment.
Just this'


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