In need of assistance here

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JimmyG
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In need of assistance here

Postby JimmyG » Fri Nov 07, 2014 7:20 pm

At an Eckhart Tolle Retreat I got introduced to a book of Bernadette Roberts, which instantly caught my attention with just the title alone “No-Self”. Then after hitting this road of Nonduality I soon discovered Robert Wolfe’s books which also caught my attention right away. It looked like the final spurt to enlightment. But that hasn’t happened and I feel like far, far away from truly comprehending the Absolute. Well, intellectually I sometimes feel like getting it all. But still truly that’s just another illusionary notion. I am 52 years old, family with 3 kids and I live in Switzerland, German part, but I prefer to communicate in English. Is there anybody ready to give me a helping hand? I am willing to honestly communicate.

JimmyG

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Freddi
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby Freddi » Fri Nov 07, 2014 10:46 pm

Hi JimmyG, Welcome to LU!

My name is Fred and I would be happy to guide you.

There are a few standard rules before we start:

Please agree to post at least once a day, even if only to say that you're still around, and I'll do the same.

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, and 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.

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 viewtopic.php?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 then we'll begin.

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.

I look forward to working with you.

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

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JimmyG
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby JimmyG » Fri Nov 07, 2014 11:55 pm

Hi Fred

Thank you so much for immediate reply. That's all fine with me.

I look forward to working with you :)

By the way, where are you from?

JimmyG

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JimmyG
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby JimmyG » Fri Nov 07, 2014 11:56 pm

Ok, I just found out: Perpignan, France

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Freddi
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby Freddi » Sat Nov 08, 2014 8:08 am

Hi JimmyG

Could you start by telling me what you expect from this conversation?

What are you looking for?

What would liberation be like?

How would it change you?

Thanks!

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

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JimmyG
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby JimmyG » Sat Nov 08, 2014 10:50 am

Hi Freddi
Could you start by telling me what you expect from this conversation?
A guiding hand that might enable me to actually look at “what is” as it is.
What are you looking for?
I look for a more profound understanding or – in other words – an experiential experience of what this one actuality truly is, maybe a taste of no-self.
What would liberation be like?
To see through identification my mental activities, my thought streams, which still torture me regularly – with uncertainties and severe doubts about what to do here. Liberation would probably be somewhat like a calm breeze.
How would it change you?
I would probably not change that much but there’d be this profound “knowing”, a knowing that would connect me with the timeless and spaceless presence, again taste of no-self, out of which I would probably act slightly different on a daily basis, a basic trust in life that is enfolding just as it is.

I am totally new to this so it's rather spontaneous thing.
Please let me know how I am doing. Thank you so much for your kind consideration.

JimmyG

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Freddi
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby Freddi » Sat Nov 08, 2014 1:46 pm

Hi JimmyG,
I look for a more profound understanding or – in other words – an experiential experience of what this one actuality truly is, maybe a taste of no-self.
What if I told you that Truth has nothing to do with understanding? In fact, the ‘mind’, our thinking cannot grasp it (much that it would like to), or own it. Truth is not hidden, it is tapping you on the shoulder at every moment, but our mind overlooks it.
What if I told you that you have never not experienced no-self? You only think you experience a self. You only think you experience non-duality.
I am totally new to this so it's rather spontaneous thing.
Spontaneity is exactly what we’re looking for here. No mental arithmetic or logical deduction. Just what is seen, heard, felt, touched, directly experienced here and now. All else is mental projection.
with uncertainties and severe doubts about what to do here
Let’s smoke out any resistance or fear that may (or may not) be lurking behind this investigation.

Could you tell me, in your own words and your own time, what comes up if I tell you that, in reality, there is no ‘you’, at all, anywhere, in any way, shape or form. No character called JimmyG in charge of life. There is only Life moving freely, with no general manager...

When you read the above words, sit quietly, step out of the thought stream for a moment, come to your breathing, notice what is seen, heard, touched, felt. Just what is alive, in this moment.
Do you notice any reaction? Any contraction, or anxious feeling?
Take a good look and let me know what you find.

Warm wishes,

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

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JimmyG
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby JimmyG » Sun Nov 09, 2014 8:20 am

Hi Fred

By contemplating your last questions I felt slighly mysterious.
When you read the above words, sit quietly, step out of the thought stream for a moment, come to your breathing, notice what is seen, heard, touched, felt. Just what is alive, in this moment.
Do you notice any reaction? Any contraction, or anxious feeling?
Take a good look and let me know what you find.
Breathing happens. The world of things is there, mutually transparent, mutually silent until there is recognition. And with recognition comes naming and labelling – forms, colors, events – before that everything is transparent. There one source of light, one source out of which everything appears and disappears. Then until recognition there is sound. By noticing, labelling happens. A constant tinnitus, a car somewhere out, machine, the ticking of a watch. Out of one bed of sound, one source a variety is recognized by labelling. It seems that through the body things, sounds, touch and events is recognized and somehow labelled. Stories happen. Since resting beneath a blanket, warmth happens, comfortable feeling, another story. Everything seems to be neutral until there is recognition hence labelling. In this kind of awareness the body has no sharp contours and its functioning only appears by recognition – like the rest of the appearances. Wondering happens about the perfect functioning.
Without JimmyG recognition, labelling and stories happen. If conditions are labelled in a certain way, pleasure results, another labelling results in displeasure – feelings, emotions and if focused on thought stream happen. Recognition and labelling happens with an I-ness or I-thought which refers everything to its own center. But by looking for this center, there’s no center. A mysterious happening is going on.
Instead of contraction there’s a subtle opening, a subtle recognition though with a bit of confusion too.

Have a nice day
JimmyG

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JimmyG
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby JimmyG » Sun Nov 09, 2014 8:40 am

Hi Fred

Regarding my last post please let me know if it is too intellectual because at times this "I" seems to be a Master of Intellect only to fall off the tower of hypocrisy.

JimmyG :)

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Freddi
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby Freddi » Sun Nov 09, 2014 12:12 pm

Hi JimmyG
Regarding my last post please let me know if it is too intellectual because at times this "I" seems to be a Master of Intellect only to fall off the tower of hypocrisy
That’s for you to tell me! Always ask the question: am I looking into thoughts for the answer or am I scanning direct experience, what is true, here and now? All I need is for you to tell me what you see, not what you think. It really is that simple!
It seems that through the body things, sounds, touch and events is recognized and somehow labelled
What is doing the recognising and the labelling? Is it the body?
Everything seems to be neutral until there is recognition hence labelling …Without JimmyG recognition, labelling and stories happen. If conditions are labelled in a certain way, pleasure results, another labelling results in displeasure
Good thing to notice! Everything just is, then the commentary happens and ‘things’ don’t appear as neutral anymore. We start seeing highs and lows, likes and dislikes.
What is that JimmyG that is doing the recognition? Take a good look. Is there a separate entity that can do this?
But by looking for this center, there’s no center. A mysterious happening is going on. Instead of contraction there’s a subtle opening, a subtle recognition though with a bit of confusion too.
That’s clarity, thank you ;-)
Confusion is good, that’s the mind unable to grasp.

A little exercise to keep us focussed on the actuality of experience.
After you have read these lines, close your eyes.
Can you feel/experience a boundary, a limit between ‘you’ and ‘not you’, between ‘JimmyG’ and ‘not-JimmyG’?
Is it the skin? Is the skin directly experienced?
Notice where the different experiences are taking place, the hearing, the smelling, the touching, even the thinking (but not the content of thought), where is it all taking place?
Is there an inside and an outside, or is it all taking place in the same space?
Is the body doing the experiencing or is it experienced?
Are 'you' the body?

Take your time with these questions, make sure you answer all of them, scan what is alive, here and now, and see what comes up. Question all assumptions, any spiritual jargon or hearsay. Your direct experience is the only authority.

Thank you!

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

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JimmyG
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby JimmyG » Mon Nov 10, 2014 7:06 am

Hi Fred

This is what I have come up with:
It seems that through the body things, sounds, touch and events is recognized and somehow labelled

What is doing the recognising and the labelling? Is it the body?
No, not the body, it’s kinda instrumental. Recognition and labelling just happen. This “I”-ness attaches names and description it seems but even that eludes plausibility since the I-ness is not even there if you look for it. It does not know how hearing, touching, seeing, smelling is actually done. It – at least as JimmyG, my I-ness - has no clue of how much physical+ intelligence is involved in all this. So who or what is capable of recognizing and labelling? It must be some “thing” or some “no-thing” beyond I-ness – actually, it seems, it must be at least coupled with the source of all, if it’s not the source per se.
What is that JimmyG that is doing the recognition? Take a good look. Is there a separate entity that can do this?
I believe this is what I hinted at in the forgoing answer.
A little exercise to keep us focussed on the actuality of experience.
After you have read these lines, close your eyes.
Can you feel/experience a boundary, a limit between ‘you’ and ‘not you’, between ‘JimmyG’ and ‘not-JimmyG’?
No, it’s all one field of awareness, all pervasively present now. What is presently experienced seems to depend on the focus and results as my (illusive) I-ness, like taking a stance in an endless web of circumstance.
Is it the skin? Is the skin directly experienced?
No, with eyes closed there seems to be no skin. It’s more like a transparent something that defines a transparent something, the body.
Notice where the different experiences are taking place, the hearing, the smelling, the touching, even the thinking (but not the content of thought), where is it all taking place?
Is there an inside and an outside, or is it all taking place in the same space?
It’s more akin to say it all happens in a field of awareness, but where’s that field? It just seems to happen here and now…to whom it happens? …that mystery beyond the I-ness…
Is the body doing the experiencing or is it experienced?
The body is experienced within the field of awareness of the forgoing paragraph. The experiencer, the experienced and the experiencing, it all seems to be the same mystery.
Are 'you' the body?
No, no way.
***
I did the above questioning and answering yesterday afternoon and thereby gained some clarity, easiness – wow, that’s how simple it all is…I went for a walk in the forest and it felt like 20 pounds off. This morning when I awoke, again, there was this heavy depressive feeling, terrifying as usual. Still in bed I tried to regain “yesterday’s” insight but there I failed. Then I went downstairs and sat with the laptop doing questioning/answering all over. During this process the heavy terrifying feeling dissolved and I have again some clarity. What I want to say is that I feel like there is still something missing, making this clarity permanent.

Take care
Rolly

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Freddi
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby Freddi » Mon Nov 10, 2014 7:37 am

Hi Rolly (would you prefer if I called you Rolly from now on?)

Thanks for your honest and detailed answers. I am really enjoying your willingness to look into your raw experience.
So who or what is capable of recognizing and labelling? It must be some “thing” or some “no-thing” beyond I-ness – actually, it seems, it must be at least coupled with the source of all, if it’s not the source per se.
Here is a big assumption to question. Does an action need a subject? We have been conditioned to thinking that an action has a subject and an object, but in direct experience we notice seeing, hearing, no seer nor hearer. Then the ‘mind’ looks for, projects another subject, a big self, or God, or the Source, or awareness. Can that new, assumed subject be experienced, though? Can it be seen, touched, felt?
Still in bed I tried to regain “yesterday’s” insight but there I failed. What I want to say is that I feel like there is still something missing, making this clarity permanent
You are looking for a permanent state. That does not exist. What we are looking into is the Truth that lies below any state. For this we scan what is experienced rather than thought and we rely solely on that, as our authority.
This morning when I awoke, again, there was this heavy depressive feeling, terrifying as usual.
No matter what is seen to be the Truth, life will continue to unfold just the way it has always done. Highs and lows. sunny days and cloudy days, moments of bliss and moments of depression. There is no one at the helm. When these moments of depression come, don’t resist them, welcome them. They are your here and now, they are what is happening and they may have something they would like to say.
The moment your thinking is in conflict with what is alive, here and now, suffering starts.
You are already seeing that the self is an illusion, a mental construction without tangible reality to support it. When that is seen, all other assumptions come up for questioning.
Always bring your conditioned and residual thinking back to this moment, your direct experience, and ask ‘Is this true?’

Let’s look some more into your first-hand experience:
Look at an object in front of you, say the computer screen. Let’s call it the ‘observed’. And ‘you’, Rolly, 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?
When our thinking and language say ‘Rolly is looking at the screen’, what is happening, in reality?
Take your time. Don't look into the stories our minds tell, look into what is alive in this moment. Have a good look and let me know what you find.

Warm wishes,

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

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JimmyG
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby JimmyG » Tue Nov 11, 2014 1:47 pm

Hi Fred

Great, you are keeping me busy here.

I am hanging in there so that a reply will come tonight or tomorrow morning.

JimmyG :)

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Freddi
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby Freddi » Tue Nov 11, 2014 2:47 pm

Thanks for letting me know, JimmyG, I look forward to your reply ...
Fred
"To come to your senses you have to go out of your mind" - Alan Watts

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JimmyG
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Re: In need of assistance here

Postby JimmyG » Tue Nov 11, 2014 10:31 pm

Hi Fred

Here's what I have come up with:
Here is a big assumption to question. Does an action need a subject? We have been conditioned to thinking that an action has a subject and an object, but in direct experience we notice seeing, hearing, no seer nor hearer. Then the ‘mind’ looks for, projects another subject, a big self, or God, or the Source, or awareness. Can that new, assumed subject be experienced? Can it be seen, touched, felt?
No, it cannot be seen, touched or felt, there’s not it. There’s just happening. The seeing and hearing happens only in the now, no past no future, no deviation of the present moment is possible. Any past or future is not real and exist only as perhaps a dream.
Still in bed I tried to regain “yesterday’s” insight but there I failed. What I want to say is that I feel like there is still something missing, making this clarity permanent

You are looking for a permanent state. That does not exist. What we are looking into is the Truth that lies below any state. For this we scan what is experienced rather than thought and we rely solely on that, as our authority.
“For this we scan what is experienced rather than thought and we rely solely on that, as our authority.” WOW, yes it’s not ever the situation or the experience that creates suffering – it’s thought, always only thought…and thoughts are like clouds always changing and ultimately totally unsubstantial.
I have been reading and pondering about this a thousand times but I never really looked…
No matter what is seen to be the Truth, life will continue to unfold just the way it has always done. Highs and lows. sunny days and cloudy days, moments of bliss and moments of depression. There is no one at the helm.
“There is no one at the helm.” If that would be completely comprehended, nothing else were needed.
Let’s look some more into your first-hand experience:
Look at an object in front of you, say the computer screen. Let’s call it the ‘observed’. And ‘you’, Rolly, are the observer.
Can you draw a line between this observed, the observing and the observer?
How the observing is ultimately done, is not known. Who the observer truly is, is not known. What the observed ultimately is or where it comes from, is not known. So, how could a line be drawn between the unknown?
What about the space between the screen and you? Is that observed or observer?
Space is also something “observed” which is an unknowable. Observer and observed, the same unknown thing.
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?
“There is no one at the helm.”
When our thinking and language say ‘Rolly is looking at the screen’, what is happening, in reality?
No-thing “is looking” at no-thing. No divisiveness.

Well, that's heavy stuff, I'd better let it sink in...

Can't await your message.
JimmyG (no-thing)


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