I'm not real! What now?

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Nerea
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I'm not real! What now?

Postby Nerea » Mon Feb 08, 2016 2:52 pm

What brings you to Liberation Unleashed?:L

ife. I have been a seeker for a long time. Yesterday, after series of happenings, I realized I'm not real. For many years I've been searching for an ego, searching for an observer, searching for something. Always something. The realization was that I AM the ego. Me! And I don't exist! I'm not real. I am merely a collection of stories and pieces (experiences, thoughts, sensations) that have been building up through life. These stories along with the genetics and complex biological systems in this body, have somehow combined and grown to an "I", an identity, which I have mistaken to be real and something tangible.
Even this description is wrong somehow, it's like there are no words to whatever this is. It doesn't apply. It just is! And the whole thing just makes me laugh, because it's so absurd but simple and real at the same time. I even feel funny to write "I" since I know it's just a pointer that points to, well, nothing. Haha.

What are you looking for? What do you expect from this:

Honestly, I don't really know. And that's why I'm here. I'm not sure where to go from here. I'm open to whatever comes. Somehow I still feel (and I recognize it's just a thought in the mind) that I need some guiding. I feel like a child that fell through the rabbit hole, and on the other side everything is the same as before, but still somehow unknown and new. I'm still seeing the world through this "I", though I know I don't exist. But there is this aliveness in the body, this feeling of excitement and kind of fury! I need to go forward! This is the beginning. I'm overwhelmed by these thoughts, these senses and this new kind of... space.

What is your background in terms of seeking and inquiry?:

I first became interested in spirituality when I was 14 (26 now). Over the years I've read all kinds of stuff, tried meditation and yoga, but I think I never was really into serious "practice". I know I was always searching for something that wouldn't require me to meditate for years. I didn't want to "give up" this experience of being human by wasting my life sitting in meditation for hours on end. I felt that truth had to be simpler than that.
First experience of "getting closer" was when I read Eckhart Tolle's The Power of Now few years ago. It was life changing for me, but not simple enough. There was something there, but also so much unnecessary filling. I got a glimpse, but nothing more. Then came Alan Watts and some others, nonduality, occasional glimpses and understandings, but nothing lasting.

Few days ago I finished reading Jed McKenna's first book, which kind of sent be down a spiral of no return. From that moment on it has been quite a ride. I then read Gateless Gatecrashers, been looking and pointing and asking and feeling frustrated, angry, furious and lost. But then last night, just in the verge of sleep, there was a thought that popped into existence. It's not an ego that's not real. There is no ego. "I" cannot observe "my" ego. "I" am the ego, "I" am the observer, and "I" do not exist. There is only life, happening. No words can really describe this, but I guess you know what I mean :)

And so, here I am (not)!

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s-p-a-c-e
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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Mon Feb 08, 2016 6:51 pm

Hello,

Welcome to Liberation Unleashed and thank you for the intro. :)

What is it that doesn't exist?

Thanks,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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Nerea
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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby Nerea » Mon Feb 08, 2016 8:28 pm

Hi, thank you, and thanks for replying! :)
What is it that doesn't exist?
Well, nothing! Haha. But then I'm not sure if there is such a thing, so I'm just gonna say everything. Or are they the same thing?

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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Mon Feb 08, 2016 8:38 pm

You write, "I'm not real! What now?"

What is not real?
What is real?

Thanks,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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Nerea
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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby Nerea » Mon Feb 08, 2016 8:49 pm

What is not real?
Me, or anyone, as a separate self.
What is real?
Life. Existence. This body, this mind, these cells, these neurons, the thoughts this mind produces, all as a part of the whole.

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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Mon Feb 08, 2016 10:14 pm

Hi,

Please write what comes up naturally to the following questions - ta!

- Is there a separate entity 'self', 'me' 'I', at all, anywhere, in any way, shape or form? Was there
ever?

- Explain in detail what the illusion of separate self is, when it starts and how it works from
your own experience. Describe it fully as you see it now.

- How does it feel to see this? What is the difference from before you started this dialogue?
Please report from the past few days.

- What was the last bit that pushed you over, made you look?

- Describe decision, intention, free will, choice and control. What makes things happen? How
does it work? What are you responsible for? Give examples from experience.

- Anything to add?

many thanks,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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Nerea
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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby Nerea » Tue Feb 09, 2016 12:44 am

Hey John,
Thanks for your reply. Here are my answers with 100% honesty:
Is there a separate entity 'self', 'me' 'I', at all, anywhere, in any way, shape or form? Was there ever?
No, there isn't, and there never was.
Explain in detail what the illusion of separate self is, when it starts and how it works from your own experience. Describe it fully as you see it now.
Well, I see it kind of like this:

You need a space suit to explore space, diving gear to explore oceans. In the same way you need this body-mind with identity to explore life as a human being. Except that there is not actually anyone exploring or something to be explored, everything is just happening. The human experience is happening as a part of life happening.

There was a description in Jed McKenna's book, about identity kind of being like a suit, and that resonated with me. In order to interact with this world and human beings or other animals and doing human stuff, I need to slip into this suit that consists of my name, my race, my gender, my nationality and everything else. It doesn't mean I am what I wear. It's just a suit. And even the suit is part of the happening.
How does it feel to see this? What is the difference from before you started this dialogue? Please report from the past few days.
Oh, whoah. It has been a rollercoaster. But simple. Just one-step-rollercoaster. Lots of contradicting thoughts, when mind tries to understand and write analytically about things that are undescribable. In the beginning I felt like I was going in circles. I was so furious and tired of all this searching, never coming to an end. It's true that you just have to let go, not add.

At the moment there is a feeling of being a little owerwhelmed, but still kind of peaceful. There's aliveness in my body, also space. I can now laugh at myself and don't take myself so seriously anymore. And with "I" I'm referring to my "character", the "suit".

Otherwise everything is pretty much the same. Life flows, the same as it did before. Everything is. Now I just feel part of it.
What was the last bit that pushed you over, made you look?
The next day after reading Gateless Gatecrashers I watched "Waking Life". Seen that many times before, but somehow everytime I find something new and notice how my thinking is different. (On a sidenote, I higly recommend that movie to everyone, it's amazing.) After that I went to bed, and just on the verge of sleep the "push" happened, as I realized "I" don't exist!
Describe decision, intention, free will, choice and control. What makes things happen? How does it work? What are you responsible for? Give examples from experience.
I feel intentions rise from my previous experiences and how the dance of life has danced. Then when I make a decision, make a choice, my mind will process through previous experiences and memories and comes up with the best option, taking into account the current environment and other conditions. Even if I don't consciously know it. So the question of free will is kind of absurd, since life just happens. There is no one to control it.

Example: Am I the one making a decision when choosing which job to apply, X or Y? Nope. There are probably thousands of things, memories and experiences that will have an effect on the outcome. I have heard a comment from my dad when I was young that X people are the lowest of the low, so minus to X. There is a cool guy working in Y, so plus to the Y. You can trace these events back to the big bang. Everything has been leading to this exact moment, and is happening the way it should, and choices are made with or without an effort.

But of course my character feels responsible for what it does, and our society says it is responsible. It's part of being human.
Anything to add?
I feel weird interacting in the world right now. When I do something I enjoy, like painting or playing video games, I feel like I'm in the flow and there are less thoughts. The mind becomes much quieter. Whenever I put my "suit" to for example talking to people, going shopping, thinking about work (I'm on a long sick leave because I broke my foot), it often kind of gets stuck. I still identify with my character, but also remember it quite quickly and laugh at myself for being silly.

I guess I just wanted some pointers where to go from here, how to cultivate this sense of awareness? How to reduce the periods identifying with my character?

Thank you so much for doing this :)

- Nerea

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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Tue Feb 09, 2016 1:23 am

Nerea,

Thanks for the honest responses - much appreciated.

As a general point, don't hold too tightly to metaphors that claim to explain, or rationalise this - I suspect you're bright enough not to do that :) - as they soon become beliefs about what's happening, and doors that are open start to quietly shut. For example, you might see if you can find a mind to call your own.
I feel intentions rise from my previous experiences and how the dance of life has danced. Then when I make a decision, make a choice, my mind will process through previous experiences and memories and comes up with the best option, taking into account the current environment and other conditions. Even if I don't consciously know it. So the question of free will is kind of absurd, since life just happens. There is no one to control it.
For example, "life just happens" can easily become a new motto, as if we knew what life was, never mind what happening is. So, continue to engage, to wonder, to ask questions of perceptions - especially the taken for granted ones. And more and more space will open up.
Example: Am I the one making a decision when choosing which job to apply, X or Y? Nope. There are probably thousands of things, memories and experiences that will have an effect on the outcome. I have heard a comment from my dad when I was young that X people are the lowest of the low, so minus to X. There is a cool guy working in Y, so plus to the Y. You can trace these events back to the big bang. Everything has been leading to this exact moment, and is happening the way it should, and choices are made with or without an effort.
Again, I know its tricky to talk about :) - but don't be too sure how this all clicks together. Have the joy of not-knowing and not having to know. Curious.
I feel weird interacting in the world right now. When I do something I enjoy, like painting or playing video games, I feel like I'm in the flow and there are less thoughts. The mind becomes much quieter. Whenever I put my "suit" to for example talking to people, going shopping, thinking about work (I'm on a long sick leave because I broke my foot), it often kind of gets stuck. I still identify with my character, but also remember it quite quickly and laugh at myself for being silly.
That stickiness - when noticed, see that its un-owned, its not your stickiness. Then the pattern does not need to be stopped, because it is no longer yours. And it will fade from having no function.
I guess I just wanted some pointers where to go from here, how to cultivate this sense of awareness? How to reduce the periods identifying with my character?
The pointers shared above will apply to these points.

In the same way, you can look for a mind.
You can try and find some awareness.

Take some time - check it out - and share any discoveries.

best wishes,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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Nerea
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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby Nerea » Tue Feb 09, 2016 11:34 am

Hey John, and thanks.
...as they soon become beliefs about what's happening, and doors that are open start to quietly shut. For example, you might see if you can find a mind to call your own.
Yes, you're right. Thank you. As I see it, there is no "my mind", just thoughts that come and go, and brain that thinks.
For example, "life just happens" can easily become a new motto, as if we knew what life was, never mind what happening is ... don't be too sure how this all clicks together. Have the joy of not-knowing and not having to know. Curious.
Oh, yes. I can see what you mean. I may come off as more confident and absolute in my words that I mean to be. I want to keep an open mind. Sometimes letting go is hard, and I feel the urge to control things. It can be scary to just... be. To trust.
That stickiness - when noticed, see that its un-owned, its not your stickiness. Then the pattern does not need to be stopped, because it is no longer yours. And it will fade from having no function.
Yes, I get this, but also I struggle with it a bit. When I do notice, it's not really a problem, there is focus and space. It's whenever I don't notice, or how to say, remember. It's kind of funny, I don't even know how that works. I mean there are moments I kind of forget what I have realized, and go on living as the old "me", identifying with my character and not even knowing it. For example, there might be negative thoughts emerging, and my mind automatically clings to them, tries to analyze them, solve them, and focuses on them. Then after a while I remember again, and usually just laugh at myself. Is this usual?
Take some time - check it out - and share any discoveries.
Thanks, I will. I'll write again later, when I have something. You have been a great help, and I hope we can still continue to chat!

- Nerea

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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Tue Feb 09, 2016 11:44 am

Yes, I get this, but also I struggle with it a bit. When I do notice, it's not really a problem, there is focus and space. It's whenever I don't notice, or how to say, remember. It's kind of funny, I don't even know how that works. I mean there are moments I kind of forget what I have realized, and go on living as the old "me", identifying with my character and not even knowing it. For example, there might be negative thoughts emerging, and my mind automatically clings to them, tries to analyze them, solve them, and focuses on them. Then after a while I remember again, and usually just laugh at myself. Is this usual?
The approach is the key here - we're not trying to perfect anything, get rid of anything etc. Very easy to fall into that trap. In one way, its learning the art of un-hookiing, so that it starts to un-hook itself. :) Un-hooking happens in seeing that the pattern is un-owned. For example, that sense of 'Oh, I'm doing this again', or 'I've got stuck again' - this is a habit which will continue for a little while, and its fine, its not your habit - it is also not not-your habit. :) Ownership becomes a moot point - neither yours or not yours. See if you can get a feeling for that.

Have a play...explore.

/John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Fri Feb 12, 2016 5:52 pm

How's it going? :)
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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Nerea
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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby Nerea » Tue Feb 23, 2016 4:59 am

Hi John,

Everything is well. I'm sorry I have been silent for the past two weeks, been on a break from the internet. There have been so many changes lately, this being one of them :)

Actually, I don't have any more questions.

If you still have questions for me, I'm happy to answer! I would very much like to have an invitation to some of those facebook groups. Would be nice to meet new people and chat about these experiences :)

- Nerea

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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Tue Feb 23, 2016 11:14 am

Hi John,

Everything is well. I'm sorry I have been silent for the past two weeks, been on a break from the internet. There have been so many changes lately, this being one of them :)

Actually, I don't have any more questions.

If you still have questions for me, I'm happy to answer! I would very much like to have an invitation to some of those facebook groups. Would be nice to meet new people and chat about these experiences :)

- Nerea
Hi Nerea,

Lovely to hear from you. Yes, please share as much as you wish about what has changed in the last two weeks with respect to our inquiry.

With many thanks,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/

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Nerea
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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby Nerea » Tue Feb 23, 2016 12:13 pm

Yes, please share as much as you wish about what has changed in the last two weeks with respect to our inquiry.
For the first time in my life I am completely content that I don't know that much about anything. There is so much happening! Everywhere, all the time. And when I look, all the happenings seem to be inseparable. Even non-happening is inseparable from happening.

If I look: Right now there are tears, tickling sensation on my cheeks, salty taste, happiness, this indescribable feeling of aliveness. Thoughts arise that want to label life, thoughts arise that accept life as a mystery.

Before I was stressed about all kinds of stuff, for example going to work after my sick leave. Now I know when the time comes, decision will arise and that's that. Of course there are still thoughts of wanting to be in control, but they come and go. No need to get stuck.

- Nerea

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Re: I'm not real! What now?

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Tue Feb 23, 2016 12:17 pm

Cool :) And the self? A separate self? Share what shows up in response.

Thank you,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne
https://johnchristophercoaching.wordpress.com/


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