Introduction

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WesleySPK
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Introduction

Postby WesleySPK » Tue Apr 05, 2016 10:53 am

What brings you to Liberation Unleashed?:
I have a roommate who mentioned it to me a few months ago and it instantly sounded appealing but I took no action until he showed me some videos with exercises that he considered to be similar to Liberation Unleashed and they were very powerful for me. My curiosity reached the tipping point and I decided I wanted to try this. I have a regular Zen practice and have practiced other spiritual practices and I really appreciate the method of seeing clearly what is in front of you and in direct experience as that has been most efficacious for me.

What are you looking for? What do you expect from this?:
Efficiency and simplicity. I am looking to deeply explore Liberation Unleashed as another method of cultivating awareness. I also would like to learn another technique to try out aside from Zen and my other practices to be able to see what seems to work for me and what perhaps doesn't work for me. I expect this to be simple and direct, noticing what is already the case in my present experience - I would like to add that I am not seeking some massive, storybook awakening,(though I am not opposed to that). However, one thing I am looking for would be an end to doubt. I was told that the guides work to help you through the process until you reach a point where there isn't any doubt left, and I value that as I have experienced various states of awareness but simultaneously encountered doubt whether I "should" be experiencing what I am currently, or just simply making sense of what it is I am experiencing.

What is your background in terms of seeking and inquiry?:
I began by reading the Power of Now. This sparked an almost immediate interest which grew to a quest for enlightenment. After some time backpacking and practicing becoming aware of my thoughts, feelings, and the present moment, I experienced an awakening and shift in my sense of identity to what I would describe as pure awareness/pure consciousness. I began practicing zazen, self inquiry, meditating on silence, on just the sounds happening around me, meditating on emptiness/nothingness, paying attention to the sense of "I Am". My most recent practice has been a Zazen practice of following my breath, koan practice, "what is it that is looking through my eyes right now", concentrating on the present moment - be it sounds or just a wide open availability. And very recently (within the last couple of days), a D.E. Harding practice of pointing to things and observing their form/color until you make your way to pointing directly at your own eyes and sensing no form, no color. This practice I have found to be powerful so far.

How ready are you to question your beliefs about who you are and see the truth no matter what? On a scale from one to ten (ten being most ready). : 11
"See with your eyes, hear with your ears, nothing is hidden."-Zen Master Tenkei

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Canfora
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Re: Introduction

Postby Canfora » Thu Apr 07, 2016 11:27 am

Hi Wesley and welcome to the LU forum!
Thank you for your introduction.
I can be your guide if that's okay with you.

I'm not going to make comments about everything you're saying and I will mostly ask questions and point you where to look at. There is nothing I can say to make you see what we point to, you have to look for yourself.
I have a regular Zen practice and have practiced other spiritual practices and I really appreciate the method of seeing clearly what is in front of you and in direct experience as that has been most efficacious for me.
That's very good.
I am looking to deeply explore Liberation Unleashed as another method of cultivating awareness.
Nope. LU is not a method of cultivating awareness. Why would awareness need to be cultivated?
I would like to add that I am not seeking some massive, storybook awakening,(though I am not opposed to that).
Hmm... okay, good to know.
However, one thing I am looking for would be an end to doubt. I was told that the guides work to help you through the process until you reach a point where there isn't any doubt left, and I value that as I have experienced various states of awareness but simultaneously encountered doubt whether I "should" be experiencing what I am currently, or just simply making sense of what it is I am experiencing.
Guides help you to see there is no you to be found here and now. But I think I understand what you're saying.
I began by reading the Power of Now. This sparked an almost immediate interest which grew to a quest for enlightenment. After some time backpacking and practicing becoming aware of my thoughts, feelings, and the present moment, I experienced an awakening and shift in my sense of identity to what I would describe as pure awareness/pure consciousness. I began practicing zazen, self inquiry, meditating on silence, on just the sounds happening around me, meditating on emptiness/nothingness, paying attention to the sense of "I Am". My most recent practice has been a Zazen practice of following my breath, koan practice, "what is it that is looking through my eyes right now", concentrating on the present moment - be it sounds or just a wide open availability. And very recently (within the last couple of days), a D.E. Harding practice of pointing to things and observing their form/color until you make your way to pointing directly at your own eyes and sensing no form, no color. This practice I have found to be powerful so far.
For the time being, could you stop all these practices and seeing of videos and reading about these subjects?

Our goal is to look at reality as it is. You don't need a practice to see what is already the case. Or second hand knowledge.
This practice I have found to be powerful so far.
May I ask what is your main goal, what you're trying to reach by doing all these practices (I also did some of them!).

There is a how to use the quote function tutorial here: http://liberationunleashed.com/nation/v ... ?f=4&t=660

Sometimes this site can log you out and you may loose everything you wrote. I always do shift+A and shift+C before previewing or submitting a post.... if you write long posts, try to remember to do the same :)

Looking forward to your answer!
Sandra

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WesleySPK
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Re: Introduction

Postby WesleySPK » Fri Apr 08, 2016 5:47 am

Hi Sandra

Yes that is okay with me!
I'm going to try my best with the quoting, we'll see if it works.
Nope. LU is not a method of cultivating awareness. Why would awareness need to be cultivated?


Thank you for pointing that out, I see that now.
For the time being, could you stop all these practices and seeing of videos and reading about these subjects?

Our goal is to look at reality as it is. You don't need a practice to see what is already the case. Or second hand knowledge.
I live in a Zen center where I'm expected to practice so I cannot stop that. However, my intention is to give my focus to LU during the time I am engaged with it. Some of the other practices I do are therapeutic techniques as I recently went through a period of depression and still quite regularly experience anxiety.
May I ask what is your main goal, what you're trying to reach by doing all these practices (I also did some of them!).
To be honest, I don't really know. I have typed and erased reasons several times now and I will just have to say I am not entirely sure anymore. If I had to give a reason I would say I have to know who/what I am, and I want to have absolutely no doubt about it. But this was a good question, it made me realize that I really don't know why I do them.

Looking forward to doing this! Thanks for helping me
"See with your eyes, hear with your ears, nothing is hidden."-Zen Master Tenkei

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Canfora
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Re: Introduction

Postby Canfora » Fri Apr 08, 2016 10:05 am

Good morning, Wesley!
I'm going to try my best with the quoting, we'll see if it works.
Working as it should :)
I live in a Zen center where I'm expected to practice so I cannot stop that. However, my intention is to give my focus to LU during the time I am engaged with it. Some of the other practices I do are therapeutic techniques as I recently went through a period of depression and still quite regularly experience anxiety.
That's okay. Forget my suggestion to stop those practices.
To be honest, I don't really know. I have typed and erased reasons several times now and I will just have to say I am not entirely sure anymore. If I had to give a reason I would say I have to know who/what I am, and I want to have absolutely no doubt about it. But this was a good question, it made me realize that I really don't know why I do them.
The main goal of our conversation is to check in your experience if what you are is a separate self, a you, a entity that is in control of a slice of life. If you use this inquiry as a way to try to know what you are, you may miss what you are not. Am I making sense? Maybe that's why I have asked you to stop your practices for a while, because they seem to be oriented into finding this "I am".

Since you mentioned anxiety issues, I would like to check if you have fears around seeing experientially that there is no you. So, if I say that:

There is no separate self at all in reality. No agent that is in charge, no manager, no watcher, no owner of life; all there is is life flowing freely as one movement.


Watch, wait, notice, write - what comes up? Is there fear? Is there doubt? Resistance? Frustration? Something that wants to scream and make a turn away, something that says this is not working? Or maybe there is feeling of wow, joy, relief?

Notice all that is going on inside and just put it down in writing.

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WesleySPK
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Re: Introduction

Postby WesleySPK » Sat Apr 09, 2016 4:39 am

Good evening Sandra,
There is no separate self at all in reality. No agent that is in charge, no manager, no watcher, no owner of life; all there is is life flowing freely as one movement.

Watch, wait, notice, write - what comes up? Is there fear? Is there doubt? Resistance? Frustration? Something that wants to scream and make a turn away, something that says this is not working? Or maybe there is feeling of wow, joy, relief?
At this moment, I feel most of those things besides the wow and the joy. Initially I felt relief and a glimpse of recognition. Then, frustration that it isn't how I am experiencing life right at this moment, and fear that I never will. And yes, something saying that this is not working.
"See with your eyes, hear with your ears, nothing is hidden."-Zen Master Tenkei

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Canfora
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Re: Introduction

Postby Canfora » Sat Apr 09, 2016 8:00 pm

Thank you for your answer, Wesley.
It seems to me that you experienced mainly thoughts, unpleasant thoughts?
Maybe that means the fear isn't strong and we can move on?
Let me know if fear or anxiety are felt while you're doing this inquiry, please, so that we can deal with it.

I would like to know what is your idea of what we are looking for.
To you, what is a self?
When you use the pronoun "I", what do you think this I is?
And where would you say the I is located?

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WesleySPK
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Re: Introduction

Postby WesleySPK » Mon Apr 11, 2016 6:34 am

Hello Sandra,

Sorry I have not had time to get on my computer and am just quickly replying to let you know that I will respond ASAP but I want to give it my full attention and time which I can't do at this moment.
"See with your eyes, hear with your ears, nothing is hidden."-Zen Master Tenkei

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Canfora
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Re: Introduction

Postby Canfora » Mon Apr 11, 2016 10:01 am

Hello Wesley, thank you for letting me know what is going on.
Don't worry with finding the "right" answer. Our ideas change all the time and there are no absolute truths waiting to be found.

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WesleySPK
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Re: Introduction

Postby WesleySPK » Tue Apr 12, 2016 1:18 am

Thanks for your understanding.
Maybe that means the fear isn't strong and we can move on?
Let me know if fear or anxiety are felt while you're doing this inquiry, please, so that we can deal with it.
Okay I will let you know.
I would like to know what is your idea of what we are looking for.
To you, what is a self?
When you use the pronoun "I", what do you think this I is?
And where would you say the I is located?
To be honest, I observe in myself that what I'm really looking for is an end to the fear, anxiety, depression. I'm looking for liberation, and I believe I have tied that idea up with finding this "I".
A self is a thought I would say. Most of the time I would say I use the pronoun, "I", not aware of what I'm really referring to.
I also don't know where it is located. I'm inclined to say "in my head" and that that's where I experience it quite often, but I don't know...
"See with your eyes, hear with your ears, nothing is hidden."-Zen Master Tenkei

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Canfora
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Re: Introduction

Postby Canfora » Tue Apr 12, 2016 12:38 pm

Thank you for your honesty, Wesley.
To be honest, I observe in myself that what I'm really looking for is an end to the fear, anxiety, depression. I'm looking for liberation, and I believe I have tied that idea up with finding this "I".
Trying to change what is being experienced is one of the main causes of seeking. Seeking for something other than this now experience.
A self is a thought I would say. Most of the time I would say I use the pronoun, "I", not aware of what I'm really referring to.
I also don't know where it is located. I'm inclined to say "in my head" and that that's where I experience it quite often, but I don't know...
Can you have a look to the place where a self seems to be located and check if what you think is a self, is a self?

Also, when you write that you're looking for an end to the fear, anxiety, depression... why are you assuming that if you see there is no self separated from life, these kind of experiences will stop?

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WesleySPK
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Re: Introduction

Postby WesleySPK » Wed Apr 13, 2016 6:21 am

Can you have a look to the place where a self seems to be located and check if what you think is a self, is a self?
In a moment of looking where a self seems to be located, I just notice looking, perhaps thinking. But I cannot find a real sense of self.
Also, when you write that you're looking for an end to the fear, anxiety, depression... why are you assuming that if you see there is no self separated from life, these kind of experiences will stop?
Because of stories I have heard/read of other people. Very convincing stories that I then apply to my life and think that maybe if I can just experience/see/realize what this person did, I can have the same experience of freedom they claim to live in.
"See with your eyes, hear with your ears, nothing is hidden."-Zen Master Tenkei

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Canfora
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Re: Introduction

Postby Canfora » Wed Apr 13, 2016 11:57 am

Those are great answers, thank you.
It seems to me that you have looked and didn't found a evidence of the existence of a separate entity, a Wesley?

Have a look again, please.
Is there something, in your immediate experience that is a self - a real, separated, solid, unchangeable entity?
Can you find the self that thoughts talk about?

What happens when you ponder these questions?
What do you feel?
What do you think?

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WesleySPK
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Re: Introduction

Postby WesleySPK » Thu Apr 14, 2016 8:50 am

Is there something, in your immediate experience that is a self - a real, separated, solid, unchangeable entity?
Can you find the self that thoughts talk about?
In my experience after contemplating your words, no. There is no Wesley I can find.
I cannot find the self that thoughts talk about. In this moment my mind is very still and there is no self that I think/talk about in my head.
What happens when you ponder these questions?
What do you feel?
What do you think?
When I ponder these questions, it becomes very quiet. My thinking reduces.

I feel...not much. Perhaps some peace and tranquility is what I feel, it's just so quiet.

I start remembering other times I experienced something similar. I think, "I know I have experienced this seeing through a separate self, but what am I missing? What am I overlooking? How could I forget something so obvious, so important." And so on. If thoughts come, they are curious and generally positive, they have a different feel to them than the majority of my thoughts - those being always referencing this self, myself.
"See with your eyes, hear with your ears, nothing is hidden."-Zen Master Tenkei

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Canfora
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Re: Introduction

Postby Canfora » Thu Apr 14, 2016 3:12 pm

You have a wonderful capacity to notice what is going on, that's great!

It seems to me that you can see there is no self in your experience but you still think you should be having a certain kind of experience caused by this seeing? Maybe a expectation to step outside of "duality" and abide in a blissful "no self" state?

Let me know what you think/experience when you consider these questions:

- is it possible to experience something other than this here/now experience?

- did you ever experienced a permanent state, a permanent experience that didn't morph into something different?

- do you have any reason - other than thoughts about "want's / don't want's", "this is okay/i don't like this" - to expect this now experience to be different than it is?

- do you have the actual ability to bring about states or maintain states?

- do you have any reason to believe there is such a thing as an objective state of no self?

- if you don't find a self separated from this now experience, is there a who/what that has the ability to control what is happening?

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WesleySPK
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Re: Introduction

Postby WesleySPK » Fri Apr 15, 2016 8:11 am

It seems to me that you can see there is no self in your experience but you still think you should be having a certain kind of experience caused by this seeing? Maybe a expectation to step outside of "duality" and abide in a blissful "no self" state?
Exactly right. Honestly, I'm waiting for a big awakening experience, a big return. An escape from the remaining 23 hours 45 minutes of the day.
is it possible to experience something other than this here/now experience?
No. But thoughts come up of, "why does this not shake me like it once did? Why do I now read those words and feel as if they aren't alive anymore, not pointing to a reality which I see so clearly in my experience?"
did you ever experienced a permanent state, a permanent experience that didn't morph into something different?
No I didn't. Even the blissful states were followed by deeply frightening ones.
do you have any reason - other than thoughts about "want's / don't want's", "this is okay/i don't like this" - to expect this now experience to be different than it is?
No. It's like I'm still fixated on looking for when this now experience will turn into the magical now experience where I realize the nowness of it all. I feel very much a sense of something missing and then tell myself i just need to "come off it" - maybe that will do it. But no, in this moment I have no reason to expect it to be different. Again I still don't feel as if it's fully sinking in.
do you have the actual ability to bring about states or maintain states?
No I don't.
do you have any reason to believe there is such a thing as an objective state of no self?
Wow...No I don't. At first I read "objective state of self" to which I would have quickly answered. But "objective state of no self"...No...I don't see any reason to believe that, despite me doing so very often. I feel that this sunk in, like it moved me but that I am not fully seeing the truth of it.
if you don't find a self separated from this now experience, is there a who/what that has the ability to control what is happening?
No. This took me some time to contemplate. No there isn't...

I admit, the primary response to most all of this questions is I still feel that something is missing. What is missing? What am I not seeing? Why is looking and seeing not fulfilling that "something is missing"?
"See with your eyes, hear with your ears, nothing is hidden."-Zen Master Tenkei


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