Guide Request Please

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Steve627
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Guide Request Please

Postby Steve627 » Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:42 am

Hi, I've previously posted on Liberation Unleashed before but lost focus and never saw the process through. I'm just staring a 2 week break from work and would really like to try and see whether this is true once and for all.

I'm not particularly experienced in all things spiritual. I've never got into meditation or been on retreats or a part of any religious group. It all started for me when I had a bout of depression in my early 20's and during this time I had a feeling that there was something I was missing about life. Since I had no idea what it was that led me to reading books to see if anyone else knew what was going on. And that's pretty much all I've done.

I'm now in my mid 30's and tired of reading about this stuff. I want to just forget I ever started reading all these books but there's still this nagging thought that there's truth to what's being talked about here. So some guidance would be helpful so I can see this or not.

Thanks

Steve

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Freddi
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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Freddi » Mon Jun 30, 2014 11:39 am

Hi Steve

I'm Fred and would be happy to accompany you in this investigation.

To get started there are several formalities that we must dispense with first. If you haven't already seen it, there is intro info here, our disclaimer and a short video too. http://www.liberationunleashed.com/

Additionally, There are a few ground rules, please respond to confirm:

1. You agree to post at least once a day.
2. In general, the guide will ask the questions for you to respond to
3. Responses require your utmost honesty
4. Responses are best from direct experience (felt senses and observed thoughts). Long-winded analytical and philosophical answers are best avoided and may even hinder progress.
5. Put aside all other teachings, philosophies and such for the remainder of this investigation. Really put all your effort and attention in to seeing this reality, as it is. If you have a daily and essential meditation practice, it is fine to continue that.
6. Please learn to use the quote function; instructions are located in the link below this line:viewtopic.php?f=4&t=660”

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

Fred
"To come to your senses you have to go out of your mind" - Alan Watts

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Steve627
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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Steve627 » Mon Jun 30, 2014 4:10 pm

Hi Fred,

Thanks for agreeing to guide me. I've watched the video, read the disclaimer and I'm happy to follow the ground rules above.

Steve

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Freddi
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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Freddi » Mon Jun 30, 2014 4:19 pm

Hi Steve

Great - let’s get this show on the road. By the way it would be good to know where you are, so I know when to expect a post from you. I am in France.
It all started for me when I had a bout of depression in my early 20's and during this time I had a feeling that there was something I was missing about life
Can you tell me more about this. What could you be missing about Life?
What brings you here? What do you hope to see and find? What would this Truth that is talked about here look like?
How will this process change you?
I'm just staring a 2 week break from work and would really like to try and see whether this is true once and for all.
Is this something you want to do during your break? Where would you place this investigation on a scale of 1 to 5 of priority?

Thanks!

Fred
"To come to your senses you have to go out of your mind" - Alan Watts

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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Steve627 » Mon Jun 30, 2014 6:53 pm

HI Fred,

I'm in England. That's probably the easiest answer I will have to give!

At the time of my depression there was just a feeling that life was unsatisfactory that there must be more than the present experience. To be honest looking back I think that these feelings were because I had an expectation of how life would be and my life wasn't matching this. I think as a child I was sold an ideal of this perfect life, good job you love, great friends, financial freedom, meeting the love of your life. I'm not sure there was really anything missing, just unmet expectations.

What brings me here? Just a feeling that there might not really be any "me" here and a need to know this for sure. Having said that there are still thoughts of how if I see this my life will change for the better. That if this is seen my life will suddenly be easier, less stressful and that I'll be better at my job and with relationships. I know this is most likely untrue but because I'm not sure of the outcome my mind likes to daydream. In the same way I daydreamed that England might do well at the world cup but I knew the reality would probably be far different ;).

I'm not sure how the truth will look. As I understand it, this is about seeing that there isn't really a me here. If this is true than this is already the reality and nothing will really change, except the belief in me.

This is something I want to do in my break. I've known these 2 weeks were coming for a while and this was always my intention. I have a job interview tomorrow morning but after that I have no plans but looking at this.

As for my priority, I want to say 5, but I think 4 is more truthful. There's a thought that I won't be able to see this, that I'll get frustrated and give up.

Steve

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Freddi
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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Freddi » Mon Jun 30, 2014 8:36 pm

Hi Steve
Having said that there are still thoughts of how if I see this my life will change for the better. That if this is seen my life will suddenly be easier, less stressful and that I'll be better at my job and with relationships.
Just like the thoughts that told you in your depression that Life was not matching what it ‘should’ be, this is another expectation. How could Life be any different than what it already is? How would that be possible?
When it is seen with 100% clarity that there really is no ‘you’, Life continues just as before, with its highs and lows, its sunny days and cloudy skies, its stressful thoughts, good and bad hair days etc. Only now it is known that all this is happening to no one…
Would it be OK if Life continued just the same, after Liberation?
This is something I want to do in my break. I've known these 2 weeks were coming for a while and this was always my intention. I have a job interview tomorrow morning but after that I have no plans but looking at this.
What if this inquiry took longer than these two weeks? What would happen then? Would this go down in the list of priorities? No one can say how long this will take. For some it only takes one honest look, for others much longer. That all comes down to earnestness, ripeness and willingness to look for yourself.

First I would like you to tell me what comes up when you read that, in reality, there is no ‘you’, no character called ‘Steve’ managing ‘his’ Life. There never was, and there never will be. There is only Life, moving freely, with no General Manager in charge. Can you let me know what comes up. Don’t scan your thoughts to answer, scan your most immediate and intimate experience.

Always stay with the questions, let them work their way through. And give your answers to me just as plain as they come, in your time and your own words.

Fred
"To come to your senses you have to go out of your mind" - Alan Watts

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Steve627
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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Steve627 » Tue Jul 01, 2014 1:08 pm

Hi Fred,
Would it be OK if Life continued just the same, after Liberation?
Yes it would be ok if life continued the same
What if this inquiry took longer than these two weeks? What would happen then? Would this go down in the list of priorities?
This is fine as well. When I'm at work I have less time in my day to focus my attention on other things but I'm prepared that this process could take sometime.
First I would like you to tell me what comes up when you read that, in reality, there is no ‘you’, no character called ‘Steve’ managing ‘his’ Life. There never was, and there never will be. There is only Life, moving freely, with no General Manager in charge. Can you let me know what comes up. Don’t scan your thoughts to answer, scan your most immediate and intimate experience.
My most immediate reaction to this is a feeling of excitement but also nervousness in my stomach. Nothing else comes up, thoughts start happening trying to analyse and make sense of what's being said, but if I ignore that there's just that feeling in my stomach and then attention just naturally moves to my breathing.

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Freddi
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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Freddi » Tue Jul 01, 2014 6:45 pm

Hi Steve
Yes it would be ok if life continued the same.
This is fine as well. When I'm at work I have less time in my day to focus my attention on other things but I'm prepared that this process could take sometime.
Nice ;-)
My most immediate reaction to this is a feeling of excitement but also nervousness in my stomach. Nothing else comes up, thoughts start happening trying to analyse and make sense of what's being said, but if I ignore that there's just that feeling in my stomach and then attention just naturally moves to my breathing.
Thanks for the honesty. Excitement, nervousness in the stomach are all perfectly normal. And thoughts crowding in to try to ’own’ the experience are also normal. Great that you see you can ignore the content of the thoughts and come back to your stomach and your breathing. That is direct experience, that is WHAT’S HAPPENING, the content of thought is not.

I would like you to pick an object in front of you and observe it for a while. You can either do this with the screen you’re looking at right now, or go out and look at a tree (in that case take a notebook). Please consider the following questions for a moment. Scan your direct experience, what’s alive for you right here and now, and only answer from that place. We don’t want thought waffle, or spiritual teaching material here.
Say you’ve chosen the computer screen. Let’s call it the observed. And ‘you’ are the observer. Can you draw a line between this observed, the observing and the observer?
What about the space between the screen and you? Is that observed or observer?
What about the hands? Are they observing or observed? What about the end of your nose? Is that observing or observed? Where is this observer? Can it be experienced at all? Is there an entity called observer, that can be experienced separately from the process of observing?
When our thinking and language say ‘Steve is looking at the screen’, what is happening, in the reality of experience?
Have a good look and let me know what you find.

Thanks!

Fred
"To come to your senses you have to go out of your mind" - Alan Watts

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Steve627
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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Steve627 » Wed Jul 02, 2014 4:24 pm

Hi Fred,

I've found this a little difficult to put into words, sorry if it's not clear!
Say you’ve chosen the computer screen. Let’s call it the observed. And ‘you’ are the observer. Can you draw a line between this observed, the observing and the observer?
What about the space between the screen and you? Is that observed or observer?
What about the hands? Are they observing or observed? What about the end of your nose? Is that observing or observed? Where is this observer? Can it be experienced at all? Is there an entity called observer, that can be experienced separately from the process of observing?
If I just talk about the direct experience then there's focus on the lap top and then awareness of noises and other objects and a body sitting. But to write it makes it sound like there's all these separate things, but the experience is there is just everything. Nothing feels separate in the moment. It's only when thoughts start labeling things that it all starts to seem separate.

In my direct experience there's no observed or observer and there's no separate entity to the experience, it's just one whole complete experience.

If I think of the experience as observing though it makes it sound like there was an action happening and that doesn't seem true. I'm not sure I have a better way to describe it, life happening?
When our thinking and language say ‘Steve is looking at the screen’, what is happening, in the reality of experience?
There's just looking (again that doesn't seem to do justice to the whole experience but I can't find suitable words to describe it!)

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Freddi
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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Freddi » Wed Jul 02, 2014 4:43 pm

Hi Steve

No need to apologise about fumbling for words, we’re all doing that. In fact, as soon as we write or talk about it, it's not strictly speaking direct experience anymore. So the more fumbling it is, the closer to direct experience it is, further away from the spiritual teaching material. That’s just what we’re aiming for here.
In my direct experience there's no observed or observer and there's no separate entity to the experience, it's just one whole complete experience.
Exactly, when you ‘look’ at what is happening, in actuality instead of through the lens of the dualising thinking, you can’t find separate entities, just one happening. As you say, even calling it ‘observing’ implies some degree of volition, which is not really there. More like Life Life-ing, right?

Test this with other senses. For example ring a bell, or tap a glass, see if you can find a separate entity doing the ‘hearing’; taste a cup of tea, see if there is a line that separates a ‘taster’, ‘tasting’ and the ‘tasted’. Let me know what you see.

How about control? Who controls daily activities?
1) Can you choose the moment when ‘you’ fall asleep or ‘you’ wake up? A thought says ‘Steve is getting up’, but in reality what happens?
2) Do you beat your heart, grow your hair or control the breathing?
3) Can you control thoughts? Can you choose which thought to have next? Can you stop a thought halfway through?
4) After you read these words, get up and walk across the room.
Who controls the walking? Can you see a definite ‘you’ that controls that walking? Or is there just walking happening?

Thanks!

Fred
"To come to your senses you have to go out of your mind" - Alan Watts

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Steve627
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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Steve627 » Thu Jul 03, 2014 9:02 am

Hi Fred,

These are my best answers at the moment but as you'll read there's a few sticking points!
Test this with other senses. For example ring a bell, or tap a glass, see if you can find a separate entity doing the ‘hearing’; taste a cup of tea, see if there is a line that separates a ‘taster’, ‘tasting’ and the ‘tasted’. Let me know what you see.
With sounds there is no one doing the hearing, just the sound. With taste there isn't anyone tasting. In direct experience. My thoughts want to tell me something different with taste. That's me tasting but that's only a thought after the actual experience.
How about control? Who controls daily activities?
1) Can you choose the moment when ‘you’ fall asleep or ‘you’ wake up? A thought says ‘Steve is getting up’, but in reality what happens?
2) Do you beat your heart, grow your hair or control the breathing?
3) Can you control thoughts? Can you choose which thought to have next? Can you stop a thought halfway through?
4) After you read these words, get up and walk across the room.
Who controls the walking? Can you see a definite ‘you’ that controls that walking? Or is there just walking happening?
I can't choose when I sleep or when I wake up. I can't beat my heart, grow my hair and breathing takes place naturally.

With breathing though there's an appearance of some control. So I can deliberately make myself breath faster or slower or hold my breath? I can't find a breather when I look but the appearance of control is enough for my mind to insist on a me carrying out this action.

I can't control my thoughts, I can't stop them and I definitely can't choose them. If I did I would only ever have happy thoughts :)

No definite me that controls walking. It's tricky though, when I think about this whilst walking across the room there's still that sense of I'm walking but after I sat back down on the sofa I realised there had been no thought or me involved in the action of sitting. It just happened.

Steve

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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Steve627 » Thu Jul 03, 2014 9:21 am

Hi Fred,

Sorry with breathing, I realised that the thought that I could slow my breathing was immediately tagged as "my" thought and when the action of my breath getting slower happened it was tagged as "me" completing the action. If I look at the direct experience. There was a thought and there was an action but there wasn't actually a thinker or a doer involved with either. Just a belief that there was.

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Freddi
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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Freddi » Thu Jul 03, 2014 10:34 am

Hi Steve

I can’t really see these sticking points you mention. All I see is honesty and dedication in your looking into present experience, and reporting.

You see hearing, but no hearer, tasting, but no taster (only the idea of one suggested in a thought), breathing but no breather (again, just a thought suggesting a ‘you’ that can slow the breathing), walking but no walker.
You see the appearance of control but no controller can be directly experienced. The mind suggests and claims a ‘me’ that is doing all these actions, but no such ‘thing’ can be seen/found/experienced directly. How does it feel to see this?

So when you say, ‘I’, ‘me’, ‘Steve’, what are you referring to? Is there a reality that is pointed to with these labels?
Again look in your most immediate experience for this, not what science or anyone else tells you. That would be second-hand knowledge. What we aim to do here is question all assumptions, and all authorities, to test for ourselves what is real.

Now look at the body, in direct experience. Just for a moment, step out of the mind stream and come back to the breathing. Notice the seeing, the hearing, the smelling, the touching. Feel a pressure on what is labelled ‘back’? Feel a tingling sensation in what we call toes? Maybe a contraction in the abdomen? Whatever is experienced, right here and now.
Does all that amount to a body?
Close your eyes, can ‘you’ feel your skin? Can you feel the limits of your body? Where do ‘you’ end and the ‘not-you’ start?
Would you say that the ‘body’ is doing the experiencing or is it experienced?

Thanks!

Fred
"To come to your senses you have to go out of your mind" - Alan Watts

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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Steve627 » Thu Jul 03, 2014 1:25 pm

Hi Fred,
You see the appearance of control but no controller can be directly experienced. The mind suggests and claims a ‘me’ that is doing all these actions, but no such ‘thing’ can be seen/found/experienced directly. How does it feel to see this?
There's still a feeling of nervousness and excitement, a small knot in my stomach. When I look at the direct experience it all seems very simple and natural. All the evidence says there's no me. But if I pose the question is there a me, there's still hesitation. If I pose the question is my gender male then there's no hesitation because I know that to be true.
So when you say, ‘I’, ‘me’, ‘Steve’, what are you referring to? Is there a reality that is pointed to with these labels?
No there's no reality behind these labels.
Now look at the body, in direct experience. Just for a moment, step out of the mind stream and come back to the breathing. Notice the seeing, the hearing, the smelling, the touching. Feel a pressure on what is labelled ‘back’? Feel a tingling sensation in what we call toes? Maybe a contraction in the abdomen? Whatever is experienced, right here and now.
Does all that amount to a body?
Close your eyes, can ‘you’ feel your skin? Can you feel the limits of your body? Where do ‘you’ end and the ‘not-you’ start?
There are sensations that are felt, without words or labels they don't add up to a body. With my eyes closed I can feel pressure in certain areas, feet on the floor or my back against a chair. In those circumstances there is a feeling of an outline. But in other parts there isn't really much sensation at all, it's only because I am aware of a body that I can sense a vague outline, but where it ends is unclear. There's no defined sense of me and not me.
Would you say that the ‘body’ is doing the experiencing or is it experienced?
Neither. The body is just there, the sensations are just happening

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Freddi
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Re: Guide Request Please

Postby Freddi » Thu Jul 03, 2014 3:09 pm

When I look at the direct experience it all seems very simple and natural. All the evidence says there's no me. But if I pose the question is there a me, there's still hesitation. If I pose the question is my gender male then there's no hesitation because I know that to be true.
If ‘I pose the question’ … what is meant by this? If you enquire in an intellectual way, if you try to get it by logical deduction?
If I ask you whether your keys are in your pocket right now, you can either hesitate and rummage through your memories of when you last saw them - or you can just put your hand in your pocket and check. It is really as simple as that.
If you want to know whether there is a self, all you have to do is check for yourself. Your mind will not give you the answer.
Now if you ask the question whether you are male or female, you have tested it in reality, right? That is how you know for sure. With a ‘me’, where is the evidence?
it's only because I am aware of a body that I can sense a vague outline, but where it ends is unclear.
With your eyes closed, how are you ‘aware’ of a body? Is it an image in the mind? Is it habitual thinking kicking in and suggesting this vague outline of a body?
Look at an object in the room. Really look at it, see its shape, its colour, its size. Then close your eyes. Your mind tells you that it is still there when you are not looking, but how do you know for sure? Is there any way to know, apart from experiencing it? Does it actually exist outside of experience?

Thanks!

Fred
"To come to your senses you have to go out of your mind" - Alan Watts


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