paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

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psymitch
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paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby psymitch » Fri Oct 03, 2014 10:07 pm

Hi there,

I'm very interested in obtaining a guide to help me sustain the glimpses behind "Mitch-ness" I've been experiencing. At work, I'm a psychologist working with kids and families and also do mindfulness training with clinicians to enhance their work. At home I'm dad to two wonderful young kids and husband to an amazing non-practicing wife (which is itself part of the story I'm stuck on).

And then there's the "me" who seeks . . . Obsessively so in recent years. I have a growing hoard of meditation/practice-related books and am always on the hunt for the next non-new slant on "how to" get somewhere that I know (but can't hold onto the knowing) is and always has been just here.

There's an increasing convolution to my practice that almost seems suffocating at times. There's been a funneling, a whirlpool of incessant practice-shopping until here/now I sit asking for a guide to help me finally/now drop the seeking and grasping and simply (elusively) rest. There's an increasingly clear roller coaster of compulsion and addiction to practice (among other things) that I'm increasingly noting as bounded and binding.

Anyone interested in taking "Mitch-ness" on would be much appreciated!

Deep gratitude in advance . . .

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Vivien
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Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby Vivien » Fri Oct 03, 2014 11:04 pm

Dear psymithc,


My name is Vivien, wonderful to have you here. Thank you for your introduction. I am happy to assist in exploring 'no-self', though I can only point the way. You have to 'see' it for yourself. That is why we are described as guides, not teachers.

You and I will simply have a conversation, the aim of which will be for you to make the realisation that there is no 'self'. That will be our focus. I will tend to ask various questions and set you some exercises, but nobody will be judging you. You can't get this wrong.

But before we start, let’s get through the formalities first:
If you haven't already seen it, there is introductory info here, the disclaimer and a short video too.
http://www.liberationunleashed.com/

A few ground rules:
1. Post at least once a day, if you cannot post, or need more time, let me know.
2. Be 100% honest in your answers and inquiry.
3. Answer only from direct experience (felt senses and observed thoughts). Longwinded
analytical and philosophical answers are best avoided and may even hinder progress.
4. 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.
5. Understand that I will be guiding you, rather than teaching you, and the more you put into this process the more you will get out of it.

A few technical support:

- You can reply to this thread by pushing the purple-orange coloured button 'Post Reply" at the left bottom of this page.
- You can learn to use the quote function, instructions are located in the link below this line:
viewtopic.php?f=4&t=660
- Please click the 'subscribe topic' link at the very bottom of the page to ensure you get an email whenever a reply comes in.


If you are happy to agree to the above and have me your guide, we can start the process.

What are your expectations for seeing through the illusion of the self?
How will Life change?
How will you change?
What will be different?

Please answer these questions in great detail. No expectation is too small to ignore.

Can I call you Mitch?

Love, Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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psymitch
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Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby psymitch » Sat Oct 04, 2014 2:22 am

Hi Vivien

Thanks so much for your response. Yes, this all sounds fine. Very happy to have you as my guide. I'll take a look at the intro material and get back you with my responses.

Regards,
Mitch

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Vivien
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Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby Vivien » Sat Oct 04, 2014 2:28 am

Dear Mitch,

Thank you for your quick reply. I’ll wait for your responses.

Love, Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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psymitch
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Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby psymitch » Sat Oct 04, 2014 10:02 pm

Thank you again, Vivien, for agreeing to guide me and help point my way through this process . . . This is where I wish I were beginning this inquiry process without having read so much. How am I to know that what’s coming forward in response to these inquiries is genuine experience and knowing, or just memory regurgitated from my readings?

Anyway, in terms of general expectations for seeing through self, I’m not really sure. I expect that life will lighten considerably. Seeking will end. My compulsion to buy more and more dharma books and endlessly sample new practices will end. I don’t expect any real change in my basic patterns of being, my personality, my habits, preferences and inclinations. I suppose “Mitch” will go on pretty much as has been the case over the past 42 years, with echoes thereof in the lives of those (my parents in particular) from generations before. From everything I’ve heard (and again, read) and occasionally glimpsed – things will “stick” less in my experience. There will no longer be “my” experience. It will simply be experience. Being in awareness. Presence. Nothing to run after or run from.
My mind knows that there will be no parting of clouds and heavenly light shining down at “that” moment of awakening. It will just be another moment. There will just be no veil of separation. The curtain won’t keep falling down in front of awareness as has been the case in recent years. I suppose life will not change. It will just be that experience will be enough. Thought and personal identity will become tools, not the territory – the sum total of being. I’m not even sure my wife will notice any difference. Though I do worry that she will – I worry that abiding awakening will lead “me” away from that which persists in separation—my wife, kids, my work. I guess I worry that without “Mitch-ness” at the helm, life will steer me away from all that I’ve known and found comforting and within my circle . . . Maybe this fear of change is part of what keeps me standing at the Gate??

That’s what I have in terms of expectations at this point. Trying to have as few as possible. Trying to keep it simple and to simply let go . . . I have that phrase framed on the window sill at my office . . . “Let go” and I find it to be the most challenging of all practices.

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Vivien
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Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby Vivien » Sun Oct 05, 2014 2:21 am

Dear Mitch,

Here is a bit more help on how to use the quote function. It will be quite useful tool throughout our conversation.
When you post not by pressing the ‘Quick Reply’ but with ‘Post Reply’ (purple-orange button in the left corner of the bottom of the page), then under the text box all the previous posts will appear. You can also “Expand view” of the previous posts if it’s needed. Select/highlight the lines you’d like to quote, press the quote button, and it’ll be automatically put into the text box.

Thank you for your honesty and the detailed list about the expectations.
This list is important, because every expectation is in a way of seeing what is here, right now. Every expectation is a ‘hindrance’ in realizing what IS. Expectations are about the future. But liberation cannot be found in the future.

I go through all the expectations one-by-one. While you read them, please pay attention to what arises in the body. Is there any resistance to any of it?
How am I to know that what’s coming forward in response to these inquiries is genuine experience and knowing, or just memory regurgitated from my readings?
Yes, that is a good question. More and more expectations can develop with every book read, and every ‘spiritual teacher’ listened. Some or (rather say) many of them quite unrealistic, and ALL the expectation is about the future.

Therefore, for the time of our conversation, I’d like to ask you not to read or to watch any teachers, not to read any spiritual books or articles.
I expect that life will lighten considerably.
Life or outer circumstances won’t change with seeing through the self. Life is always is as it is. Only the perception changes. So everything will be the same, although everything might look different.
Seeking will end.
Yes, this may be reasonable expectation, however it is important to note that seeking is the result of X years of conditionings. At LU we only go so far as no self; but seeing that the self is just an illusion is just the first step, however the most important one. X years of conditioning won’t go away in an instance, but without a centre, a ‘me’, there is nothing they could attach to or stick to, so gradually they fall away. This falling can last until the end of the organism. So expecting that seeing through the illusion of the self is the end is quite unrealistic.

Seeking, self-referencing thoughts and stories still can arise as a content of thoughts. However, upon investigation (or sometimes without any investigation) it can be seen that they are only thoughts and nothing more, nothing ‘real’.
My compulsion to buy more and more dharma books and endlessly sample new practices will end.
Same as above, compulsion is also a conditioned habit. There is no guaranty that it would drop away immediately, although it can happen.
I don’t expect any real change in my basic patterns of being, my personality, my habits, preferences and inclinations. I suppose “Mitch” will go on pretty much as has been the case over the past 42 years,
Good.
There will no longer be “my” experience. It will simply be experience.
After seeing through the self, self referencing thoughts (I, me, my) still can arise. But upon investigation, it is seen that there is nothing behind the thought.
Being in awareness. Presence. Nothing to run after or run from.
Here comes the tricky part. These words seem to stem from intellectual knowledge gained from ‘spiritual teachers’. And in general, there is nothing wrong with them, however, this knowledge are only second-hand concepts. I also read a lot of books before and as a result, a lot of expectation developed about liberation along the way. All those expectation needed to be deconstructed (or at least seen as unrealistic expectations).

The word ‘awareness’ can be very tricky, because it can be used for the hidden desire to have a new identification. The belief that ‘I am a separate entity’ can be replaced (or rather layered over) with a new belief “I am awareness”.
What if there was no identification whatsoever?
My mind knows that there will be no parting of clouds and heavenly light shining down at “that” moment of awakening. It will just be another moment.
Here is another hidden expectation that liberation is a one-time event. It is not. Seeing through the illusion of the ‘self’ is just the first step. Falling away of a lifetime of conditioning can last at the end of the organism.
There will just be no veil of separation.
The word ‘separation’ is so often misunderstood. I don’t go deeper into this now because none of my explanation would help you at this moment. Rather I let ‘you’ discover for ‘yourself’ what is separation or non-separation really is.
The curtain won’t keep falling down in front of awareness as has been the case in recent years. I suppose life will not change. It will just be that experience will be enough.
You see, here is the hidden identification with awareness. So I’m no longer this body, this personality, but from now on, ‘I am awareness’. Therefore, the belief in ‘me’ is kept ‘alive’, only the object changed, but ‘me’ the subject is totally intact.
Thought and personal identity will become tools, not the territory – the sum total of being.
Here is another phrase read from a book. There is nothing wrong with this pointer, however it is important to see that this is just a pointer, nothing more.
I’m not even sure my wife will notice any difference.
She might or might not notice anything.
Though I do worry that she will – I worry that abiding awakening will lead “me” away from that which persists in separation—my wife, kids, my work
“abiding awakening” – big, big expectation, with a ‘built in’ obstacle.

Many seekers believe that liberation is a completely different state that they are currently having, with some special qualities (happiness, bliss, constant peace or whatever) and not having any ‘bad’ or ‘unpleasant’ emotions any more. However, this is not the case. Rather it’s about encompassing all emotions, accepting whatever is arising in this moment.

Seeing through the illusion that there is a separate entity ‘self’ is not a state. When you SEE it, the knowledge becomes factual.

For example, did you ever once believe that Santa Claus or the Tooth Fairy was real? If you did at one point, and don't now, does the experience of discovery last? Or is it that the knowledge that there is no such thing as Santa or Tooth Fairy is just another ‘fact’?

Many seekers have the impression that seeing there is no self is a State to ‘abide in’. It's not.
will lead “me” away from that which persists in separation—my wife, kids, my work
This sentence suggest that there is some belief about what separation is with a negative story about bad consequences.

What if the beliefs you have about separation is not ‘true’ or something totally different?
Are you open to this possibility?
I guess I worry that without “Mitch-ness” at the helm, life will steer me away from all that I’ve known and found comforting and within my circle . . . Maybe this fear of change is part of what keeps me standing at the Gate??
Fear is just a protective mechanism, and it does its job well. It highlights that there is a story there about pain or negative consequences to this investigation.

What I’d like you to do is to investigate this fear. Examine it closely. Ask the fear as it were a some kind of entity:
What do you want to protect me from?
What is the ‘negative’ story, what would happen if the illusion of the self is seen through?

Observe what images and stories come up ‘justifying’ its right to fear.

If you ignore the stories (thoughts) and mental images what is BEHIND the fear?
Trying to keep it simple and to simply let go . . . I have that phrase framed on the window sill at my office . . . “Let go” and I find it to be the most challenging of all practices.
“Let go” – this is also quite often misunderstood. Why we try to let go, there is a lot of effort involved. Letting go cannot work because it involves effort-ing.

Actually, there is no ‘you’ that could let go of anything. And there is nothing to let go either. However, letting go can happen, but without an owner (you) doing it.

Before starting, please report what came up reading the comments about the expectations.
Was there any resistance to any of it?

Furthermore, please investigate the fear as I suggested and please let me know (by answering the questions) how it went.

Love, Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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psymitch
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Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby psymitch » Mon Oct 06, 2014 2:27 pm

Therefore, for the time of our conversation, I’d like to ask you not to read or to watch any teachers, not to read any spiritual books or articles.
I had an immediate visceral reaction when you asked me to discontinue all reading or dharma seeking. A sort of generalized restlessness in the body and the mind wincing and saying “no, you don’t really have to do that – she won’t even know.” It’s clearly difficult to consider dropping the search and yet the search is clearly an avoidance of this sense of restless (FEAR) that is NOW when looking behind the thought of not searching.
The word ‘awareness’ can be very tricky, because it can be used for the hidden desire to have a new identification. The belief that ‘I am a separate entity’ can be replaced (or rather layered over) with a new belief “I am awareness”.
What if there was no identification whatsoever?
This really resonates. There has indeed been a hiding of self inside “spiritual” language like “awareness” and “separation” and even “increased capacity for mindfulness.” There’s an acquisitive aspect – an achievement dynamic that has always been strong since my straight A student days. Strong conditioning calling for more “proof” of my worthiness, more validation of this needy self.
My “I” is certainly hiding within my practice via words/thoughts/images such as “awareness.” To consider no identification whatsoever suggests a freefall of sorts. Dropping away into a chasm. There’s a rushing disorientation to that that is there in those moments of restlessness in my body that I avoid through identification with practices, states or the distraction of substances or compulsive “self development” projects.
Thought and personal identity will become tools, not the territory – the sum total of being.
Here is another phrase read from a book. There is nothing wrong with this pointer, however it is important to see that this is just a pointer, nothing more.
There is certainly clinging to language. I think either things I’ve read or written myself that sound nice, poetic, “deep” – There’s a claiming and possessing in disseminating them. A “me” trying to prove I’m progressing.
This sentence suggest that there is some belief about what separation is with a negative story about bad consequences.

What if the beliefs you have about separation is not ‘true’ or something totally different?
Are you open to this possibility?
I’m willing to admit I may have no idea what separation will be. I can see how there is a morass of thought and belief around it. I can see that seeing all these as what they are – thoughts – is useful.
Fear is just a protective mechanism, and it does its job well. It highlights that there is a story there about pain or negative consequences to this investigation.

What I’d like you to do is to investigate this fear. Examine it closely. Ask the fear as it were a some kind of entity:
What do you want to protect me from?
What is the ‘negative’ story, what would happen if the illusion of the self is seen through?

Observe what images and stories come up ‘justifying’ its right to fear.

If you ignore the stories (thoughts) and mental images what is BEHIND the fear?
FEAR: I’m protecting you from losing everything you’ve gained through effort and achievement. I’m keeping score for you and don’t want to see all those A’s, degrees, pats on the back go to waste. I’m protecting you from the meaningless of not being special – of things being no better than they are now. I’m protecting you from the reality of looking that “Mitch” is not going to be some glorious messianic presence at some point down the line. I’m protecting you from the sadness and dejection of realizing that it’s all just mediocre.
That to stop all the seeking is to fall into oblivion. To not be noticed and to not really matter. To be run of the mill . . . Mundane. Nothing special. To be just like all the other know-nothings and become-nothings I grew up around. That all this differentiating myself means I’m not different after all.
If the illusion of self is seen through, there’s this regret that pops up – regret for having been so foolish as to seek, grasp, clamor about so compulsively and persistently for my entire life. I’ve heard people say they laugh at their prior strivings when the illusion clarifies, but I find it hard to imagine that laughter would be what authentically arises when the veil parts.
“Mitch-ness” feels right in his fear because he’s just doing his best to protect himself – just trying to take care of his quivering, insecure hold on life. He’s worked so hard, and so it’s only right that he get a tad fearful of losing all that he’s put into keeping himself afloat.
If I ignore the stories / thoughts and mental images what is BEHIND the fear raw restlessness is here. An itch desperately calling for scratching. A craving for another hit of dharma or validation from others or a kicking of the existential can down the road by drinking or some other addictive impulse.

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Vivien
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Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby Vivien » Tue Oct 07, 2014 2:55 am

Dear Mitch,
I had an immediate visceral reaction when you asked me to discontinue all reading or dharma seeking. A sort of generalized restlessness in the body and the mind wincing and saying “no, you don’t really have to do that – she won’t even know.” It’s clearly difficult to consider dropping the search and yet the search is clearly an avoidance of this sense of restless (FEAR) that is NOW when looking behind the thought of not searching.
I really appreciate your honesty. These are the things that I can suggest:

(1) Observing directly the raw sensation behind the fear and restlessness. Don’t run away, don’t try to push away, don’t do anything with it. Just observe it. Observe how it works (bellow you’ll find some direct pointing questions, how to do it)

(2) When something ‘must be’ read than I suggest reading the Gateless Gatecrashers book or reading our conversation several times.
Here is the free downloadable version of the book:
http://liberationunleashed.com/wp-conte ... ashers.pdf

(3) I can set you a lot of exercises to focus on. So the ‘seeking’ can be transmuted from a compulsive reading and knowledge gaining to REAL SEEING. From this point of view, seeking is not a bad thing. This can serve as a fuel, as energy to really LOOK and have experiences instead of a second-hand intellectual knowledge.

So you won’t have time to read any new books, because there will be a lot of exercises to focus on.

What I propose to do is to set you some exercises, physical ones, in which I will ask you to describe the experience of the senses. We call this Direct Experience, or the Uninterpreted Moment. This refers to the data from the sensations themselves, before mind tries to make sense of it and begins to describe what is happening. Observing with the five senses — seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, touching/feeling. These exercises can help to see what is ‘real’ and what is not.

Is the feasible for you?
Can you commit to post at least once a day?
Can you commit to use the ‘seeking desire’ for investigating the questions and exercises?
There is certainly clinging to language. I think either things I’ve read or written myself that sound nice, poetic, “deep” – There’s a claiming and possessing in disseminating them. A “me” trying to prove I’m progressing.
Thanks for your honesty again. From now on, I’d like to ask you to put aside all intellectual answers, answer only from ‘your’ actual, direct experience. Intellectual understanding won’t help (if it could you wouldn’t be here). Quite the contrary, intellectual understanding can be used as a way of avoidance to see what is right here, right now.
I’m willing to admit I may have no idea what separation will be.
Good. :) This is excellent starting point. You don’t even have to bother to figure it out.
FEAR: I’m protecting you from losing everything you’ve gained through effort and achievement.
It is important to see that all of this is just a mental story. A story that developed throughout a lifetime, and have been thought (re-played) hundreds or thousands of times. This is not a new story. This is just conditioned thoughts appearing here and now. Nothing more, nothing serious.

The ‘I’ ‘lives’ in or through these stories. Without stories there is no ‘me’. So even if a story seems to be ‘negative’, ‘unpleasant’ or ‘fearful’, it is just a tool for keeping the illusion of the ‘I’ intact. It doesn’t matter whether it is positive or negative, as long as it serves the illusion. And so far, it has done its job very well, quite effectively.
If I ignore the stories / thoughts and mental images what is BEHIND the fear raw restlessness is here. An itch desperately calling for scratching.
Behind the story, there is ONLY the raw sensation. “Restlessness” is a mental label sticked to the raw sensation.
“An itch desperately calling for scratching” - is an arising thought interpreting the experience, the raw sensation.

Observe only the raw sensation. Observe how mental labels are attached to the sensation like “it is restlessness” and how thoughts arise interpreting the experience.

Does the raw sensation itself suggest in any way that “this is restlessness” or “this is an itch calling for scratching”?
Or just mental thoughts and images suggest this?
Does the raw sensation have any innate attributes or it is just a sensation?

Here is the first exercise. We try to find the ‘I’.
We are LOOKing for a real ‘I’. Real is something that can be found.

What I want you to do for our examination together, is to try to separate out thoughts from what is ‘real’.
But at first, as an example, let’s try to find Darth Vader from Star Wars.
We’re looking for a real Darth Vader that can be found.
In order to prove that it exists, we have to experience it directly by seeing, hearing, touching/feeling, smelling.

The image projected to the cinema screen is not it.
The poster on the wall about Darth Vader is not it.
The memory in ‘my head’ about Darth Vader is not a proof of its existence.
A thought suggesting that “he may be exist somewhere in the galaxy” is just an idea, but not a proof of it.
A lego figure of Darth Vader is not a real Darth Vader.
A life size wax figure exhibited in a museum is not it.
A twelve-year old boy dressed in a Darth Vader costume is not it.

Now, try to find the ‘I’ that supposedly owns the body. Look everywhere. Search every corner of the body, memories, feelings, thoughts, or any other places. Don’t leave any stones unturned.

Let's take 'seeing' as a very simple first example.

Right now, these words on the screen are being seen. Examine the actual experience right now.

Now, can it be found what is seeing them?
Can be located, found, tracked-down etc the 'thing' that is seeing these words on the screen right now?
What is found, what comes up?

Please go through all the questions and answer ALL one-by-one, don’t miss any. Try to avoid any intellectual reasoning, rather go to the actual, direct experience.

Love, Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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psymitch
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Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby psymitch » Wed Oct 08, 2014 3:10 am

Is the feasible for you?
Can you commit to post at least once a day?
Can you commit to use the ‘seeking desire’ for investigating the questions and exercises?
Yes, this is definitely feasible for me, and yes, once a day for posting is fine. And I really like the idea of redirecting my "seeking desire" into investigations of experiencing as opposed to simply adding to the pile of intellectualized understanding
Now, try to find the ‘I’ that supposedly owns the body. Look everywhere. Search every corner of the body, memories, feelings, thoughts, or any other places. Don’t leave any stones unturned.

Let's take 'seeing' as a very simple first example.

Right now, these words on the screen are being seen. Examine the actual experience right now.

Now, can it be found what is seeing them?
Can be located, found, tracked-down etc the 'thing' that is seeing these words on the screen right now?
What is found, what comes up?

Please go through all the questions and answer ALL one-by-one, don’t miss any. Try to avoid any intellectual reasoning, rather go to the actual, direct experience.
When I look for the "I" there's this sense that it's there, and I'm just not looking hard enough. It's there in the life story of "Mitch" but yet it's really not -- the story doesn't reflect what's seen now. Then there's the sense that "I" is in the brain, and yet I can't locate it there exactly either. What I'm coming up with is that it's certainly not a single structure or neuron, but is an impossible to pinpoint "web" of interconnections of cells . . . And yet this seems to just be a story I've believed as well.

I can't find the "I" and there's a shudder; a flash of shock.

And then right now, I'm seeing these letters, which are projections of light and dark on my laptop screen, and there's no sense of what's seeing them. Can't locate it. There's just the thought that "of course it's ME seeing them/writing them" But that's just another thought. Can't find the "I" that sees and / or writes.

Noticing "Mitch" trying to come up with an intellectualized, creative, "smart" answer to where "I" is . . . More thought. No "I" in memory, brain, body, identity story that captures the seeing. The seeing just is along with and without distinction from all "else" simultaneously. Blinking cursor . . . Tapping keys . . . Car out on the street . . . Words on top of sound, light and vibration.

These experiments are clearly important. More important than the books . . . More REAL

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Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby Vivien » Wed Oct 08, 2014 3:30 am

Dear Mitch,
Yes, this is definitely feasible for me, and yes, once a day for posting is fine. And I really like the idea of redirecting my "seeking desire" into investigations of experiencing as opposed to simply adding to the pile of intellectualized understanding
Good :)

You forgot to reply to this, so please investigate this too:

Behind the story, there is ONLY the raw sensation. “Restlessness” is a mental label sticked to the raw sensation.
“An itch desperately calling for scratching” - is an arising thought interpreting the experience, the raw sensation.

Observe only the raw sensation. Observe how mental labels are attached to the sensation like “it is restlessness” and how thoughts arise interpreting the experience.

Does the raw sensation itself suggest in any way that “this is restlessness” or “this is an itch calling for scratching”?
Or just mental thoughts and images suggest this?
Does the raw sensation have any innate attributes or it is just a sensation?

Go to the direct experience, and report from there.
When I look for the "I" there's this sense that it's there, and I'm just not looking hard enough.
How it is sensed that “you’re not looking hard enough”, with which of the 5 sensed it is sensed?
Is this really a sense, or is it the content of an arising thought that are believed in?
And yet this seems to just be a story I've believed as well.
What is this ‘I’ that believed in this story?
Where is this ‘I’ exactly?
The seeing just is along with and without distinction from all "else" simultaneously. Blinking cursor . . . Tapping keys . . . Car out on the street . . . Words on top of sound, light and vibration.
Good LOOKing :)

Currently there are words on the screen being read. Go to the actual experience itself, and ignore the suggestion of thoughts.
What reads these words?
Is there anything that is reading, or reading is just happening?

Look around in the room. Go to the actual experience itself, and ignore the suggestion of thoughts.
What sees?
Is there a seer somewhere, or there is just seeing happening?

Pay attention for the background sounds. Go to the actual experience itself, and ignore the suggestions of thoughts.
Is there somewhere a hearer, of just hearing happening?

Of course, thoughts and mental images suggest ‘explanations’, but when they are examined closely, are they really the case?

Love, Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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psymitch
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Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby psymitch » Wed Oct 08, 2014 4:10 pm

You forgot to reply to this, so please investigate this too:

Behind the story, there is ONLY the raw sensation. “Restlessness” is a mental label sticked to the raw sensation.
“An itch desperately calling for scratching” - is an arising thought interpreting the experience, the raw sensation.

Observe only the raw sensation. Observe how mental labels are attached to the sensation like “it is restlessness” and how thoughts arise interpreting the experience.

Does the raw sensation itself suggest in any way that “this is restlessness” or “this is an itch calling for scratching”?
Or just mental thoughts and images suggest this?
Does the raw sensation have any innate attributes or it is just a sensation?

Go to the direct experience, and report from there.
Very strange to investigate in this way . . . Very simple yet odd . . . NO -- there is nothing in the sensation that necessitates the labels of "restlessness" or "itch to be scratched." It's just there -- sensation. Right now there is sensation -- aching from a recent elbow surgery, but there can also be thoughts about it, but these are not inherent to the sensation itself. They're "extras" . . .
How it is sensed that “you’re not looking hard enough”, with which of the 5 sensed it is sensed?
Is this really a sense, or is it the content of an arising thought that are believed in?
It's just a thought that "I'm not looking hard enough" . . . No sensation there. It's just a story of how "Mitch" understands things.
What is this ‘I’ that believed in this story?
Where is this ‘I’ exactly?
"I" is a thought believing "itself" after the fact of raw seeing. It's nowhere and only now when it arises. It passes away until till "it" arises again. "I" is never the seeing itself.
Currently there are words on the screen being read. Go to the actual experience itself, and ignore the suggestion of thoughts.
What reads these words?
Is there anything that is reading, or reading is just happening?

Look around in the room. Go to the actual experience itself, and ignore the suggestion of thoughts.
What sees?
Is there a seer somewhere, or there is just seeing happening?

Pay attention for the background sounds. Go to the actual experience itself, and ignore the suggestions of thoughts.
Is there somewhere a hearer, of just hearing happening?
Reading is just happening. "I" can arise as a thought, but it's not necessary for reading to just happen. Typing is happening just now and "I" arose but the typing was already occurring. "I" is a shadow of doing, seeing, feeling.

Looking around my room . . . Solid experience all at once. "Solid" just a word/thought . . . No "I" here. Just a lot of seeing, being, moving, vibrating . . . Tapping (touch) and seeing. "I" arising, but not inherent to the "ing's" here/now.

Thought keeps arising that "Mitch did this" . . . Just a thought. Seeing not predicated on "Mitch" . . . Light on trees out the window simultaneous with ringing in ears . . . simultaneous with tapping keys . . . simultaneous with seeing emerging words . . . I only arising when I "remember" . . . Thought arising "will this ever last?"

Thank you Vivien . . .

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Vivien
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Location: Australia

Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby Vivien » Thu Oct 09, 2014 12:39 am

Dear Mitch,
Very strange to investigate in this way . . . Very simple yet odd . . . NO -- there is nothing in the sensation that necessitates the labels of "restlessness" or "itch to be scratched." It's just there -- sensation. Right now there is sensation -- aching from a recent elbow surgery, but there can also be thoughts about it, but these are not inherent to the sensation itself. They're "extras" . . .
Good LOOKing :)

Is this REALLY odd, or ‘odd’ is just a mental label attached to the experience?
How is it know that the “aching is coming from a recent elbow surgery”?
Is it possible that the “aching from a recent elbow surgery” is just a currently appearing thought right here, right now, about a supposed ‘past’?

Let’s examine thoughts then. Sit for at least 15 minutes and investigate these...

Where thoughts come from?
Where are they going?
Can ‘you’ stop a thought in the middle?
Can ‘you’ predict what will be the next thought?

Can an 'I' be found that generates thoughts?
“I think” - What is 'I'? What is the one that thinks?
What is the thinker of thoughts?
Does the thinker of the thought appear in experience? Can it be found?
Or could it be that the 'I' that thinks is also just a thought?

Can 'you' choose not to have painful or negative thoughts?
Is there an 'I' that controls thoughts?
Is there an 'I' that has ownership of thoughts?
What do the thoughts belong to? What owns them?

Is it possible to prevent a thought from appearing? Including the thought 'I'?

Please go through these questions and answer ALL of them one-by-one. Don’t miss any.
"I" is a thought believing "itself" after the fact of raw seeing.
How it is known that the ‘I’ thought believes ‘itself’?
Can a thought believe anything?
Can a thought do anything?
Reading is just happening. "I" can arise as a thought, but it's not necessary for reading to just happen. Typing is happening just now and "I" arose but the typing was already occurring. "I" is a shadow of doing, seeing, feeling.
Good LOOKing.
“’I’ is a shadow of doing, seeing, feeling” – How is this known that the ‘I’ is a shadow?
Where is this ‘shadow’ exactly?

(Here are a lot of questions, so they can help you busy instead of reading :)
You can investigate these questions throughout the day, regardless where you are, or what are you doing.

Love, Mitch
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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psymitch
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Joined: Wed Oct 01, 2014 11:32 pm

Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby psymitch » Fri Oct 10, 2014 10:03 pm

Is this REALLY odd, or ‘odd’ is just a mental label attached to the experience?
How is it know that the “aching is coming from a recent elbow surgery”?
Is it possible that the “aching from a recent elbow surgery” is just a currently appearing thought right here, right now, about a supposed ‘past’?

Let’s examine thoughts then. Sit for at least 15 minutes and investigate these...

Where thoughts come from?
Where are they going?
Can ‘you’ stop a thought in the middle?
Can ‘you’ predict what will be the next thought?

Can an 'I' be found that generates thoughts?
“I think” - What is 'I'? What is the one that thinks?
What is the thinker of thoughts?
Does the thinker of the thought appear in experience? Can it be found?
Or could it be that the 'I' that thinks is also just a thought?

Can 'you' choose not to have painful or negative thoughts?
Is there an 'I' that controls thoughts?
Is there an 'I' that has ownership of thoughts?
What do the thoughts belong to? What owns them?

Is it possible to prevent a thought from appearing? Including the thought 'I'?

Please go through these questions and answer ALL of them one-by-one. Don’t miss any.
Yes, they are all merely thoughts . . . They don't come from anywhere, go anywhere, exist anywhere. I can't control, predict, stop, modulate them. They are events that arise, are here, go away on their own. There's no "I" to do anything to them. "I" is one of them. I can't find "I" anywhere. Just another thought. There is no thinker of the thoughts. There are simply thoughts/mental images arising. "I" can't choose positive or negative thoughts, and can't predict when they arise. "Positive" and "Negative" are thoughts/labels themselves and not inherent to raw experience. There is no ownership of thoughts. No originator. No controller. Just more and more thoughts in the now (or not). Can't prevent thoughts, including "I" thoughts.
How it is known that the ‘I’ thought believes ‘itself’?
Can a thought believe anything?
Can a thought do anything?
There is no "knower" of the "I thought" . . . There is simply more thought . . . Thoughts have no control or agency. Thought right now just is, can't do anything to itself or anything else that is that is.
“’I’ is a shadow of doing, seeing, feeling” – How is this known that the ‘I’ is a shadow?
Where is this ‘shadow’ exactly?
"Shadow" is just a thought . . . Everything written here is thought . . . Thought simultaneous with all sensation.

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Vivien
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Location: Australia

Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby Vivien » Sat Oct 11, 2014 1:35 am

Dear Mitch,

You did a very good LOOKing :)
"Positive" and "Negative" are thoughts/labels themselves and not inherent to raw experience. There is no ownership of thoughts. No originator. No controller.
Good observations. Let’s dig a bit deeper here. Here is an interesting exercise on control.

Go and make a cup of tea or coffee. As you do this notice whether a 'self' does it. Also notice if there are many or any moments in the whole procedure of going to the kettle, switching it on, getting the cup (etc) when 'you' control the process?

How the decision is made what to make a cup of tea or coffee?
Do ‘you’ choose putting or not putting milk into the tea (or coffee)?
Is there a moment of choice or it happens automatically?
Do ‘you’ 'make the cup of tea (or coffee) happen' or it just happens?
Can a chooser ‘I’ be located?
There is no "knower" of the "I thought" . . . There is simply more thought . . .
Can we say that there is no ‘knower’ of thoughts, only knowing is happening?

Let’s investigate a bit on time.

What is time?
How time is experienced with the 5 senses?
What is past and future?
How past or future is experienced with the 5 senses?
Does past or future ‘exists’ other than content of thoughts?
Is there a proof that you had dinner last night?
Is there any proof whatsoever that the past has ever happened?

Love, Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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psymitch
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Joined: Wed Oct 01, 2014 11:32 pm

Re: paid the Tolle...Stuck "I"ing the Gate...

Postby psymitch » Sun Oct 12, 2014 12:31 am

Go and make a cup of tea or coffee. As you do this notice whether a 'self' does it. Also notice if there are many or any moments in the whole procedure of going to the kettle, switching it on, getting the cup (etc) when 'you' control the process?

How the decision is made what to make a cup of tea or coffee?
Do ‘you’ choose putting or not putting milk into the tea (or coffee)?
Is there a moment of choice or it happens automatically?
Do ‘you’ 'make the cup of tea (or coffee) happen' or it just happens?
Can a chooser ‘I’ be located?
No self here making the coffee. "I" arises along the way, but during the doing of the coffee-making. It has always been a story to link "I" thoughts with making the doing happen. "I" can think about making coffee and end up making coffee, but that "I" thought didn't control coffee-making. Just a thought along the string of experience. The "choice" is not really. It's a thought occurring alongside doing that either is or is not in awareness though it all is what is. No coffee-chooser to be found.
Let’s investigate a bit on time.

What is time?
How time is experienced with the 5 senses?
What is past and future?
How past or future is experienced with the 5 senses?
Does past or future ‘exists’ other than content of thoughts?
Is there a proof that you had dinner last night?
Is there any proof whatsoever that the past has ever happened?
Time is a thought. It is not experienced in the senses. Raw sensation is just NOW and time is thought about WHEN other than now. Past and future do not exist except in thought that I can have NOW. There is only thought of the chicken parmesan "I" ate "last night." No proof other than thought and objects/"remains" in the sink that "I" can think about NOW and link to THEN/"last night." Very strange (thought/now) that "I" can never (thought) prove the past. The "future" is easier to recognize as mere thought. Past has always seemed to have been, but all evidence thereof devolves to mere experience/thought/image/sensation NOW.

As the illusion of self, past/future, choice/free will, and all other cherished conceptions arise now as thought -- all they have "ever" been, no special state -- no enlightened shock or heavenly cloud-parting happens. Nothing special other than merely what always only IS. Questions for the guide/Vivien arise and pop before fully forming in the light of no special state -- no future great awakening to be had, grasped for.


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