Meditator wants to break through

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budgie
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Meditator wants to break through

Postby budgie » Tue Nov 08, 2016 3:45 am

What brings you to Liberation Unleashed?:
I heard about it online. I am a long term meditator with experience mostly in the Vipassana tradition. I have also been interested in Nonduality for a number of years. Interested in finally "breaking through" the illusion of the self

What are you looking for? What do you expect from this?:
Some pointers and help in seeing through the separate self. I have worked with several teachers over the years with no sense of final awakening but I am still seeking. I continue to meditate daily

What is your background in terms of seeking and inquiry?:
Long term exposure to Buddhist and Hindu thought, meditation. In more recent years going to satsangs and listening to interviews with teachers online.

How ready are you to question your beliefs about who you are and see the truth no matter what?: 8

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Xain
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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby Xain » Wed Nov 09, 2016 10:56 am

Hello Budgie

Welcome to the Liberation Unleashed Forum - My name is Xain, and I am a guide here.
I heard about it online. I am a long term meditator with experience mostly in the Vipassana tradition.
Great! I am guiding someone who is a Vipassana meditator at the moment and we are having success.
In fact, the 'focus' that is developed with Vipassana is useful and important in the exercises that I offer here in my guidance.
Interested in finally "breaking through" the illusion of the self
Sounds good. That's what we're here for :)
Long term exposure to Buddhist and Hindu thought, meditation.
What we are aiming for here in Buddhist terms is 'Stream Entry' - That is, the realisation that there is no inherent self (usually referred to as 'I'). It is the realisation of the emptiness of the self. It breaks the first fetter of the ten fetter model (indeed, it breaks the first and the second and third are also broken at the same time).
I have worked with several teachers over the years with no sense of final awakening but I am still seeking. I continue to meditate daily
Your term 'final awakening' . . .
This guidance will aim to realise 'no separate self', but this isn't an end point. It can be considered a very important first step (and the biggest initial hurdle in the process).
In the Buddhist path, there are further fetters to be broken.
However, once it is 'seen' it is impossible to go back. My guidance is aimed for you to realise with 100% certainty and clarity that there is no inherent separate self.

You say 'I meditate daily' - I understand.
Where we would be going with this guidance is for you to realise that no inherent person has ever meditated. There was never a separate self - There isn't one here right now, and there will not be one in the future.

Do you have any expectations or worries about this guidance?
What expectations do you have about the end goal? Do you expect anything specific to happen, or to be experienced?

Best wishes to you
Xain ♥

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budgie
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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby budgie » Wed Nov 09, 2016 8:32 pm

Hi Xian,
first of you I want to thank you in advance for taking the time to work with me.

Let me see if I can use the quote function:
Your term 'final awakening' . . .
This guidance will aim to realise 'no separate self', but this isn't an end point. It can be considered a very important first step (and the biggest initial hurdle in the process).
In the Buddhist path, there are further fetters to be broken.
However, once it is 'seen' it is impossible to go back. My guidance is aimed for you to realise with 100% certainty and clarity that there is no inherent separate self.

You say 'I meditate daily' - I understand.
Where we would be going with this guidance is for you to realise that no inherent person has ever meditated. There was never a separate self - There isn't one here right now, and there will not be one in the future.

Do you have any expectations or worries about this guidance?
What expectations do you have about the end goal? Do you expect anything specific to happen, or to be experienced?
Yes I realize now that my use of the phrase "final awakening" is not really the best term for the realization we are talking about here.
As far as worries the only thing that might give me pause is the experience of the "dark night of the soul" that is often mentioned in relation to spiritual growth. This ties into a brief experience of "depersonalization/derealization" that I had a few years ago in relation to a period of a lot of stress I was going through. The experience had a spiritual quality to some extent but was not a pleasant one. It seemed that material reality had lost its weight but thoughts and awareness was still there. I don't wish to repeat that experience but I think it is a worry that is there.
I don't really know what I expect to happen. I have read and listened to a lot of other people's experiences.
I have had experiences that I would term "oneness" but they were experiences only.

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Xain
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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby Xain » Thu Nov 10, 2016 4:45 pm

First of you I want to thank you in advance for taking the time to work with me.
Hey, no problem at all - I enjoy guiding, and if I can genuinely help someone out then all the better.
As far as worries the only thing that might give me pause is the experience of the "dark night of the soul" that is often mentioned in relation to spiritual growth.
Yes, I am aware of it. If you feel that worries or fear comes at any part of the guidance, we can look into this together.
Generally though, it's pretty smooth going without the need for any problems.

The guidance isn't about removing, killing, or destroying anything. The only thing that will come to an end is the belief that there ever was a 'real' self.
There never was an 'I' other than in thoughts. There wasn't one yesterday, there isn't one here right now and there won't be one tomorrow. The only thing to be done is to realise this.
It seemed that material reality had lost its weight but thoughts and awareness was still there. I don't wish to repeat that experience but I think it is a worry that is there.
Ok - Thanks for mentioning that.
We are not going for any sort of experience either temporary or permanent. It is not a question of going from one state to another.
This would, of course, imply that there IS a self. A self that has an experience of some-sort, or a self going from one state to another.
I don't really know what I expect to happen. I have read and listened to a lot of other people's experiences.
I have had experiences that I would term "oneness" but they were experiences only.
Each realisation is different. Is it important not to think that your realisation will be the same as someone elses.
It could be as simple as 'Oh, right - Yes, of course - There's no self'. And that's it.

I will ask you to put all expectations aside other than the realisation that I mention.
All expectations will have an 'I' component. The guidance is to show that 'I' is 'an illusion'.
What use is any expectation to illusion?

Please read the FAQ - In particular, 'What Liberation Unleashed is not'
The link here:
http://liberationunleashed.com/about/faq/

Xain ♥

P.S. Good that you've found the QUOTE function - It's very useful! :-)

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budgie
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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby budgie » Fri Nov 11, 2016 3:01 am

Hi Xain,

Thank you. I have re-read the FAQ as you suggested and I'm going to copy a portion to this post to refer to.
This is not a way to escape your daily life.
This is not about gaining something extra, becoming something special.
This is not about cultivating an altered state of consciousness.
This isn’t a trick of the mind, or twisting the mind into believing certain thoughts.
This is not about gaining a particular bit of knowledge.
This is not about having a certain thought or sequence of thoughts.
This is not about becoming a holy, good, moral or better person.
This is not a belief, religion, or a philosophy, it not magical or mystical.
This is not going to lead you to eternal peace and happiness, it is not about happiness.
This is not about freedom from emotions and intense feelings.
This is not about getting rid of self, ego, I.
This is not a solution to problems in relationships.
This is not a way to get free of depression or other diseases.
This is not about stopping thoughts, changing thoughts, getting rid of thoughts.
This is not a way to make the story of you disappear.
This is not about convincing you of anything.
This is not something that will lead to accumulation of money or things.
This is not a self improvement program.
I am onboard with all of the above. Although my hope is that seeing through the illusion of the separate self would lead to less suffering.
I am aware that language has a lot to do with what we are talking about here. Perhaps I need to be careful with "I" and "my". I could use the term "bodymind".....if i said "the bodymind appears to cling to certain thoughts, habits, fears, desires, etc. which lead to the creation of the sense of a self" would that be accurate?
Since I still meditate I am introducing the idea of "resting in the spacious awareness"

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Xain
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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby Xain » Fri Nov 11, 2016 11:12 am

Although my hope is that seeing through the illusion of the separate self would lead to less suffering.
We do not address suffering directly, although suffering may decrease as a BY-PRODUCT of the realisation - But not because of it.
Suffering due to the thinking process is not going to stop as a direct result of the realisation.
In the fetter model, suffering is addressed next (fetters 4 and 5) but can only be examined once it has been realised that there is no inherent self.
Perhaps I need to be careful with "I" and "my". I could use the term "bodymind".....if i said "the bodymind appears to cling to certain thoughts, habits, fears, desires, etc. which lead to the creation of the sense of a self" would that be accurate?
No.
Bodymind is still something considered separate that is 'doing' something or responsible for something. It is still a separate self.
No change of language is needed - Please use normal descriptions - I will understand what you mean.
Since I still meditate I am introducing the idea of "resting in the spacious awareness"
This will not help in this investigation. In fact, this belief might hamper it. Once again it will be believed that 'I am resting' - That there is a person, a separate entity, a bodymind doing something or responsible for something. This will be realised to be an illusion.

For this guidance, please put all non-dual, buddhist, spiritual and scientific beliefs and ideas completely to one side, and approach this from very basic simple principles.

Also, I would request that you post at least once per day to try to maintain a momentum in the guidance.
If you know you won't be able to respond for a time, just let me know beforehand - I will attempt to do the same.

Xain ♥

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budgie
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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby budgie » Fri Nov 11, 2016 5:03 pm

For this guidance, please put all non-dual, buddhist, spiritual and scientific beliefs and ideas completely to one side, and approach this from very basic simple principles.

Also, I would request that you post at least once per day to try to maintain a momentum in the guidance.
If you know you won't be able to respond for a time, just let me know beforehand - I will attempt to do the same.

Ok, yes, I am, on most days, able to post multiple times.

So I am not clear of what one does, if anything, to awaken. I understand that the self is a construction
that can be seen through....and I understand that it is right in front of me, but how do I "realize" this?

Is there a process? Will it happen in the natural course of the dialogue?

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Xain
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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby Xain » Fri Nov 11, 2016 9:59 pm

Is there a process? Will it happen in the natural course of the dialogue?
Just follow my guidance - Do the exercises / inquiries that I ask and see what you can find and what becomes clear to you.
It's very simple.

First of all, let's consider 'I', which is normally used to refer to a separate self.
What is your current honest belief about yourself - What you do truly believe 'I' refers to.
I'm not asking about non-dual / buddhist ideas - I am asking what you truly believe.

Let's consider this very simply and basically.
For example, do you believe that you are looking at a screen right now reading words off it?
Perhaps it is believed that the 'body' (body/mind) here right now is 'you'.

Perhaps you believe that 'I' is responsible for the senses, so 'I see', 'I hear', 'I feel' etc - And what is doing these things is 'the body'.
Perhaps you believe that 'I' controls the body - 'I move my arms', 'I move my fingers when I type'
Perhaps you believe that 'I' has choice / free-will - 'I choose what to reply', 'I chose to start this guiding conversation on LU'
Perhaps you believe that 'I' thinks, imagines and has ideas.

Those are a few basic standard ideas - Tell me in your own words what you currently believe.

Xain ♥

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budgie
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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby budgie » Sat Nov 12, 2016 12:29 am

For example, do you believe that you are looking at a screen right now reading words off it?
Perhaps it is believed that the 'body' (body/mind) here right now is 'you'.

Perhaps you believe that 'I' is responsible for the senses, so 'I see', 'I hear', 'I feel' etc - And what is doing these things is 'the body'.
Perhaps you believe that 'I' controls the body - 'I move my arms', 'I move my fingers when I type'
Perhaps you believe that 'I' has choice / free-will - 'I choose what to reply', 'I chose to start this guiding conversation on LU'
I'm looking at the word "believe" and I don't know if that really describes how I look at it. There does seem to be choices that happen. There are decisions that are made: I can decide to move my arm, chose to have coffee or tea. There appears to be a functional "I" that operates but it is does not depend on what is believed.
So on one level.....everyday reality described in everyday terms, then yes, I believe I am looking at a screen reading words being typed. OTOH, I think I would accept the description that typing is just
happening. Or even that it's all an illusion or dream state in which it appears that words are being typed on a laptop.
I once came up with the idea that at bottom you could say that "something is happening" or "something is going on" even if it's just the play of consciousness.
So the only thing that I can believe with certainty is that there is consciousness.

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Xain
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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby Xain » Sat Nov 12, 2016 10:02 am

So the only thing that I can believe with certainty is that there is consciousness.
I understand what you mean, but please remember that metaphysical claims and non-dual pointers are not going to work in this guidance.
In different terms, there is little point in suggesting 'All there is, is consciousness' whilst truly believing that you are a person, a separate body (body-mind).

If I take LITERALLY what you've just said, then you CANNOT believe with certainty that choices and decisions happen (You choose to move your arm for example).
Is that what you mean?
There appears to be a functional "I" that operates but it is does not depend on what is believed.
You will find in this guidance that it does :-)
There is no 'real' functional 'I'.
That is why I am asking you what your true beliefs are. Not what you've been told by non-dual teachers, or read in books.
I believe I am looking at a screen reading words being typed
With what certainty?

With what certainty do you believe that the body is 'you'?

Xain ♥

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budgie
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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby budgie » Sat Nov 12, 2016 2:59 pm

With what certainty?

With what certainty do you believe that the body is 'you'?
I don't. You had suggested that I use ordinary language. I had preceded the phrase in quotes with "on one level" meaning that in ordinary everyday language, if you called me up and asked me right now what am I doing I would say that I'm typing on a keyboard.
On a deeper level i know with certainty that my body is not me.

I have had experiences that convinced me that the body is not me, I know with certainty that there is awareness but I do not identify it with a body.

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Xain
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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby Xain » Sun Nov 13, 2016 7:30 pm

On a deeper level i know with certainty that my body is not me.
Ok.

With that said, (i.e. you have complete certainty that the body is not you) what is your expectation with the guidance here?

Xain ♥

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budgie
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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby budgie » Sun Nov 13, 2016 7:47 pm

what is your expectation with the guidance here?
I will post a quick answer now and later on today I may be able to expand on it.

I would say that I do not believe that the body is me, but in day to day life I act "as if" it is....social programming, etc. ....but as far as expectations:

I feel like I am ripe to see things in a different way. I look for the self and I don't find it.

Long ago I had a very convincing out of body experience which convinced me that awareness is not in the body

But I don't see that I have made the flip, crossed the bridge into seeing things in a different way in day to day life. I was hoping that a teacher would guide me ...point the way, to knowing what is with more clarity.

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Xain
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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby Xain » Sun Nov 13, 2016 11:52 pm

I would say that I do not believe that the body is me, but in day to day life I act "as if" it is....social programming, etc. ....but as far as expectations:
When you say 'I act', what specifically are you referring to?
I look for the self and I don't find it.
Good. This sounds like you've done some inquiry already.
Can you give me an idea of what you've examined so far (and where you didn't find a self)?

Xain ♥

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Re: Meditator wants to break through

Postby budgie » Mon Nov 14, 2016 12:12 am

When you say 'I act', what specifically are you referring to?
In day to day life, like most people I act like someone with a sense of self: I plan ahead, I think about the past, about my personal history, about the health of my body. Deep down there is no belief that the self is real but I act "as if" it is real
Can you give me an idea of what you've examined so far (and where you didn't find a self)?
Through introspection I have looked for the self and do not find it in the body. Sensations are of things seen, heard, touched, etc. and these sensations are objects that come and go along with thoughts that come and go. There is an awareness that all these elements can combine to create a sense of self, but on close examination they are all objects of awareness that come and go and only awareness remains.

Having said that there is still a very strong sense of self, it's just that when I stop and examine it I can deconstruct it and see that it is not solid or real.


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