listening in

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blueelephant
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listening in

Postby blueelephant » Fri Sep 04, 2015 10:55 am

What brings you to Liberation Unleashed?
An interest in receiving reflection.

What is your background in terms of seeking and inquiry?

Much seeking and inquiry, traditions and teachers, dual and non-dual, yes.

What do you expect of the conversation on this forum?

No expectations.

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apolsk
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Re: listening in

Postby apolsk » Wed Sep 09, 2015 1:45 am

Hi blueelephant,

My name is Andrei and I can be your guide if you are OK with it. What is your name, or do you prefer to be called "blueelephant" in our conversation?

I like that you have no expectations about this process, but can you please elaborate on "an interest in receiving reflection"?

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blueelephant
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Re: listening in

Postby blueelephant » Wed Sep 09, 2015 7:28 pm

Hi Andrei, yes I am OK with it. Thank you for offering to be my guide during this process. Please call me Jon.

So an interest in receiving reflection, what does that mean? Like seeing clearly into a mirror, it's the idea of discovery, in other words, an interest in realizing. Is that helpful?

Best Wishes,
Jon

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apolsk
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Re: listening in

Postby apolsk » Wed Sep 09, 2015 10:25 pm

Jon,

Great. Before we continue, let's set few basic rules that had proven to make the process more efficient.

Please try posting at least once a day, even if only to say, "still here!" You can click on "Subscribe topic" at the bottom of this page to receive notifications when I submit a new post.

I am not a teacher, only a guide. You are your own teacher. I mostly point and ask questions, you look and respond with what you see.

Responses require simple 100% honest looking and should come from the direct experience (felt senses and observed thoughts). Thinking, analytical and philosophical answers may actually block our progress.

It's ideal if you can temporary put aside all other teachings, philosophies, spiritual books and such for the remainder of this investigation. Your own actual experience is all we need.

Please learn to use the quote function so that our conversation stays more clear.

If you haven't already seen it, there is intro info at the main page, our disclaimer and a short video too.

For ease of seeing, my questions will appear in bold text.

If you could confirm that it is OK with you, let's begin.
So an interest in receiving reflection, what does that mean? Like seeing clearly into a mirror, it's the idea of discovery, in other words, an interest in realizing.
What or whom do you expect to see in the "mirror"?

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blueelephant
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Re: listening in

Postby blueelephant » Thu Sep 10, 2015 11:20 am

Hi Andrei, yes it's OK with me. Very good, let's begin.
What or whom do you expect to see in the "mirror"?
There is no expectation of seeing something and/or someone in the mirror, there is just the seeing.

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apolsk
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Re: listening in

Postby apolsk » Thu Sep 10, 2015 4:30 pm

Hi Jon,

OK, cool.
There is no expectation of seeing something and/or someone in the mirror, there is just the seeing.
It's a bit hard to detect over the Internet whether this is your actual realization or just a belief acquired from reading books, but we'll get to the bottom of it.

If there is no expectation whatsoever, then what brought you specifically to this forum, instead of e.g. choosing to watch some movie on TV? What is it that you lack or seek that you think you can find here?

If there is no expectation of seeing anything in particular, then how do you know that anything that you experience is not a mirror/reflection? For example, look at the floor. Without other expectations, isn't that a reflection you are looking for? What else could it be right now?

Thanks,
Andrei

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blueelephant
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Re: listening in

Postby blueelephant » Thu Sep 10, 2015 10:07 pm

Hi Andrei,
It's a bit hard to detect over the Internet whether this is your actual realization or just a belief acquired from reading books, but we'll get to the bottom of it.
Well said my friend, spot on, and very much appreciated.
If there is no expectation whatsoever, then what brought you specifically to this forum, instead of e.g. choosing to watch some movie on TV? What is it that you lack or seek that you think you can find here?
Exploring Liberation... Unleashed opened the way, and a resonance with the forum brought me here. Is there anything lacking or something to be sought here? Good question, otherwise, we probably wouldn't be having a conversation. There is a feeling that there is and there is not, simultaneously. Speaking to the feeling that there is, that's what's interesting.
If there is no expectation of seeing anything in particular, then how do you know that anything that you experience is not a mirror/reflection? For example, look at the floor. Without other expectations, isn't that a reflection you are looking for? What else could it be right now?
Yes, in looking at the floor, without other expectations, the floor is a reflection of looking, right now.

Thanks,
Jon

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apolsk
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Re: listening in

Postby apolsk » Fri Sep 11, 2015 1:17 am

OK, so it sounds like you are in a mild version of the seeker's hell, so to speak. There is a sense that something is missing and needs to be found or done, but what is it, you have no idea. Does it sound about right?

Let's do some basics first to get down to a very simple level. We'll explore the difference between thoughts and direct experience and will learn how to tell them apart.

Think about some kind of food that you have at home, e.g. an apple. Imagine how it looks like, how you take it into your hand, its texture, smell... Look "away" from it and then "back at it" again. Imagine how you take a bite from it, the sound, the taste, the texture and the juice on your tongue. Try to do it as good as you can. Then repeat a couple of times and compare how each repetition is similar or different from the previous one. Try variating the imaginary experience, make it a sour apple, a sweet apple and so on.

Then take the real apple (or whatever it might be) and repeat the same procedure. Then please describe to me the difference between the imaginary and actual experience. It is important to identify the cues that you can use to identify if something is produced by your imagination or is given as a direct experience.

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blueelephant
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Re: listening in

Postby blueelephant » Fri Sep 11, 2015 3:13 pm

OK sounds about right, thanks.
Then please describe to me the difference between the imaginary and actual experience.
With imagining the apple, there are thoughts of the apple, of looking "away from it" and then "back at it" again, and thinking about it's sound, taste, color, in whatever variation.

In the actual experience, without thinking, there is the apple, and the looking, touching, tasting, etc. If the apple is green, it is green. If it is sweet, it is sweet. And after the last bite, if it is gone, it's gone.

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apolsk
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Re: listening in

Postby apolsk » Fri Sep 11, 2015 6:38 pm

So was the actual experience exactly as you expected it? Detail-wise, what was richer - the imaginary or the real experience? Did the imaginary apple take some mental effort to produce all these details? How about the real one? Did you have to make any effort to see what it looks like, or it simply presented all details as soon as you looked? When you "looked" and the imaginary apple and "looked again", did it "look" exactly the same? How about the real one?

In general, did you catch enough differences to be able to detect when something is made up/simulated with thoughts, as opposed to the direct experience that comes through the senses? Please let me know.

In our further exploration we will focus solely on the direct experiences and play little attention to the content of our thoughts. Reporting that a so-and-so thought has appeared is OK (since its appearance is the part of direct experience), but descriptions of you think about your experiences, or about your thoughts about your experiences and so on are not relevant. Thinking is essentially dreaming with open eyes, and anything can be made up in a dream.

Do you think you got enough feeling from the exercise to recognize a thought as a thought? You can do more stuff like that, e.g. imagining a song and then listening to it for real; imagining how you pinch yourself and then pinching and feeling real pain (that almost always stops all thinking for a moment); and so on.

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blueelephant
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Re: listening in

Postby blueelephant » Sat Sep 12, 2015 4:40 pm

Hi Andrei,
So was the actual experience exactly as you expected it? Detail-wise, what was richer - the imaginary or the real experience? Did the imaginary apple take some mental effort to produce all these details? How about the real one? Did you have to make any effort to see what it looks like, or it simply presented all details as soon as you looked? When you "looked" and the imaginary apple and "looked again", did it "look" exactly the same? How about the real one?
The actual experience was exactly as experienced, was effortless, and was the richer. Effort was noticed in choosing the details for the imaginary apple. When looking away from the imaginary apple and looking back at it again, it "looked" exactly the same. The real apple "looked" exactly the same as well.
In general, did you catch enough differences to be able to detect when something is made up/simulated with thoughts, as opposed to the direct experience that comes through the senses? Please let me know.
Yes, discriminating between the imaginary and the actual experience was clear.
Do you think you got enough feeling from the exercise to recognize a thought as a thought?
Yes, there is enough feeling.

Thanks,
Jon

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apolsk
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Re: listening in

Postby apolsk » Sun Sep 13, 2015 1:09 am

Sounds good, Jon. Now, when you say "I am", what comes up in the direct experience? What is you? Describe what feelings, what thoughts come up.

Be careful to notice if both feelings and thoughts appear at about the same time. Such mix-up is where all the confusion lives.

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blueelephant
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Re: listening in

Postby blueelephant » Sun Sep 13, 2015 1:24 pm

Now, when you say "I am", what comes up in the direct experience? What is you? Describe what feelings, what thoughts come up.
OK, when "I am" is said, the thought "I am" is noticed. The "I am" is noticed arising without any other thoughts and feelings.

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apolsk
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Re: listening in

Postby apolsk » Sun Sep 13, 2015 3:40 pm

Can you spot any "I", "me", "self" other than the thought? And when there is no such thought, is there any you to be found anywhere?

When I say that there is no you in any shape or form, none whatsoever, never was and never will be, what comes up as a response?

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apolsk
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Re: listening in

Postby apolsk » Sun Sep 13, 2015 3:45 pm

Also, when "I am" is said, is truly only a thought, or is there at least some feeling accompanying it? E.g. a small tension in the throat as if you were trying to say it aloud, or tension in the back of the neck, or in the stomatch/diaphragm area? Similarly, when you read that you do not exist, can you sense any tension, like a protest, rejection or fear arising inside the body?


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