In search of a guide

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Edward Q
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In search of a guide

Postby Edward Q » Thu Dec 29, 2016 11:16 am

What brings you to Liberation Unleashed?:
I believe that there is a deeper truth to life. I have been searching for this truth for most of my life. I am finally ready to stop the search, and I hope that I have found the right place to do that.

What are you looking for? What do you expect from this?:
I hope for guidance. I hope to not only learn the true nature of our existence, but experience it, first hand.

Mostly, I just want to know deeply that I am living from a place of truth and that a search is no longer needed.

I want to better my understanding so I can learn to help others.

What is your background in terms of seeking and inquiry?:
The earliest memories I have of searching for the truth go back as far as nine or ten years old. I am now thirty five and I am still searching. I consider myself Buddhist, but have never developed the discipline to sit on a regular basis. One of the defining moments that has really re sparked my desire for truth was about 6 years ago when I experienced Astral Projection. This experience has really made me question who or what we really are. I have not experienced it since, and now spend my time studying and listening to podcasts on nonduality and self enquiry.

How ready are you to question your beliefs about who you are and see the truth no matter what?: 11

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b0dhi
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Re: In search of a guide

Postby b0dhi » Wed Jan 04, 2017 8:20 pm

Hey Edward

Sorry for the delay in responding to you, things are quite busy here.

I'd be happy to guide you if you're ok with that?

What can I call you - is Edward ok?

Have you done much reading about what this process is about?

This is quite useful as background reading: http://liberationunleashed.com/about/faq/#faq-1041

Have you read any of the books from LU - for instance gateless gatecrashers? http://liberationunleashed.com/books

If so, please let me know what your thoughts are on the content of the books.

Let me know when you are ready to begin.

Regards

Bodhi
Bodhi

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Edward Q
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Re: In search of a guide

Postby Edward Q » Wed Jan 04, 2017 11:41 pm

Hi Bodhi

It is very nice to meet you. Thank you for your time in helping me. I am very excited to get started !

You can call me Ed.

I have read about the process of Liberation Unleashed as well as self enquiry in general.

I have also read The Gateless Gatecrashers. Reading the book, I can understand the concept that there is no self, but I have not experienced this first hand.

When I practice self enquiry, I often have trouble seeing how I create a sense of "I"

When I explore the "I" sense, all that really comes to mind is I am the one who is making decisions for this body. Also that I am the one behind the experience that is conscious. e.g. Thought, vision, taste...etc






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Re: In search of a guide

Postby b0dhi » Thu Jan 05, 2017 5:48 pm

Hi Ed

Great to meet you too. Very happy to be your guide on this journey :)

It will be useful for you to learn to use the quote function, like the quoted text below.

The link is here: viewtopic.php?f=4&t=660
There's a video explanation here: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=-fAToDNh9hQ
I have read about the process of Liberation Unleashed as well as self enquiry in general.

I have also read The Gateless Gatecrashers. Reading the book, I can understand the concept that there is no self, but I have not experienced this first hand.
This is very useful to know, and the background reading will serve your own enquiry well.
When I practice self enquiry, I often have trouble seeing how I create a sense of "I"

When I explore the "I" sense, all that really comes to mind is I am the one who is making decisions for this body. Also that I am the one behind the experience that is conscious. e.g. Thought, vision, taste...etc
So you have a strong sense of self, of this "I" who is a doer. That's perfectly fine and we will be looking at this in depth to see if it actually true. Is there really an "Ed" there who is in charge of "his life"? :)

I would love to hear what your expectations are, so let's begin there.

What do you expect is going to happen? What do you think this process is going to be like, and what are you hoping to get out of it?

How are you going to feel? How are you going to be changed by it?

Be as detailed as you can with the answers, I'm keen to hear what you have to say. In particular I would like to know if you have any expectations based around second hand information - something you may have read, heard, been told and so on.

I look forward to your response.

Warm regards

Bodhi
Bodhi

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Re: In search of a guide

Postby b0dhi » Thu Jan 05, 2017 5:50 pm

Hi Ed

My apologies, here is the correct link to the quote function.

Chat soon

Bodhi

http://liberationunleashed.com/nation/v ... ?f=4&t=660
Bodhi

Nothingness dances to an unhearable song

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Re: In search of a guide

Postby Edward Q » Fri Jan 06, 2017 1:42 am

Hi Ed

My apologies, here is the correct link to the quote function.

Chat soon

Bodhi

http://liberationunleashed.com/nation/v ... ?f=4&t=660

Hi Bodhi

I am having a bit of trouble with the quote function. I am using Tapatalk for IPhone and could not figure out how to use it correctly from the video.

What do I expect is going to happen ?

I expect to learn the true nature of my existence. To deeply experience what is really beyond this body, mind and emotions. I want to experience the truth, and have no doubt in my mind that the search for those answers is over.

What do I think this process is going to be like ?

I believe that as someone who has seen the truth, you can get a sense of what is obscuring my vision. You will ask me to look at aspects of my experience, and I will take a honest and thorough look at each question, which will uncover the nature of my/our existence.

What am I hoping to get out of this ?

There is so much that has been written about Enlightenment.... so many people who claim that there is no self. Above all, I would like to know the truth about it all. I would like to see the truth so clearly that I will be able to help others with their journey as well.

How am I going to feel ?

I can't really say for certain. I have always imagined that I would be a lot less caught by the stories that the mind makes about what we perceive. Being able to see what is actually happening, and being more in the present moment. I guess a part of me also feels like I would feel a deeper connection to everything.

How am I going to be changed by it ?

I think that it will change the way I see life itself. How that will effect my day to day life, I am not quite sure.

Second hand knowledge about Enlightenment ?

Most of my second hand information regarding Enlightenment comes from listening to YouTube videos and reading books by Mooji, Adyashanti, Eckart Tolle and Actualized.org.

Here is everything I can think of that I have picked up second hand:

1. We are consciousness itself.
2. You can not find any "thing" that is
behind our experience.
3. We are all one.
4. We are the universe experiencing
itself from various points of view.
5. We are that which is prior to the " I
am "
6. Being more in the now is a part of it.
7. Simplifying your life is a part of it.
8. Experiencing each moment fully, for
what it is... with no added story from
the mind, no matter if it is good or
bad is a part of it.
9. Being enlightened, you will
experience things more deeply, but
it will matter less. Experience will be
less sticky.


Although I can understand much of the secondhand knowledge on a mental level....it still remains just that, secondhand knowledge. I have not experienced any of this for myself.

-Ed





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Re: In search of a guide

Postby b0dhi » Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:49 am

Hey Ed

Thanks for that most helpful response.

Regarding the quote function, your format for responding is very considerate so I can understand what you are saying. I think we will be able to communicate without the quote function if you cannot use it. When you want to refer to something in a previous post, please do make the reference clear and we shall be just fine!

I am very happy with the clear breakdown of the secondhand knowledge you have given. What you are here to see is the truth - directly realized. Any second hand knowledge will get in the way. In this short journey from here to here, we need to discard all the baggage we don't need else it does not let us leave, or arrive! :)
Although I can understand much of the secondhand knowledge on a mental level....it still remains just that, secondhand knowledge. I have not experienced any of this for myself.
So let's agree to put all the second hand knowledge and expectations aside. You can collect them later if you choose to.

We are going in search of the truth, the real truth and nothing but the truth :) This is the truth of you, of Ed, to discover for yourself.

As you know the process at LU is not about adding more conceptual understanding to a seekers already full plate. It is about stripping bare what this "you" is, so that you can see it all clearly for yourself.

All clear for now? Then let us begin!

First tell me what happens when I say that there is no Ed. There is no you as you know you.

You have not existed, you do not exist now, and you will not exist in the future.

What is happening right here and now, does not need or require or depend on Ed - in any way shape or form.

Ed simply does not exist.

Life is happening, without the need for an Ed.


Internalize this and respond with what comes up. There is no wrong or right answer here, we want to look at whatever comes up as direct experience. Describe as fully as possible the reaction to this.

Chat soon Ed.

Regards

Bud
Bodhi

Nothingness dances to an unhearable song

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Re: In search of a guide

Postby Edward Q » Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:42 pm

Hey Ed

Thanks for that most helpful response.

Regarding the quote function, your format for responding is very considerate so I can understand what you are saying. I think we will be able to communicate without the quote function if you cannot use it. When you want to refer to something in a previous post, please do make the reference clear and we shall be just fine!

I am very happy with the clear breakdown of the secondhand knowledge you have given. What you are here to see is the truth - directly realized. Any second hand knowledge will get in the way. In this short journey from here to here, we need to discard all the baggage we don't need else it does not let us leave, or arrive! :)
Although I can understand much of the secondhand knowledge on a mental level....it still remains just that, secondhand knowledge. I have not experienced any of this for myself.
So let's agree to put all the second hand knowledge and expectations aside. You can collect them later if you choose to.

We are going in search of the truth, the real truth and nothing but the truth :) This is the truth of you, of Ed, to discover for yourself.

As you know the process at LU is not about adding more conceptual understanding to a seekers already full plate. It is about stripping bare what this "you" is, so that you can see it all clearly for yourself.

All clear for now? Then let us begin!

First tell me what happens when I say that there is no Ed. There is no you as you know you.

You have not existed, you do not exist now, and you will not exist in the future.

What is happening right here and now, does not need or require or depend on Ed - in any way shape or form.

Ed simply does not exist.

Life is happening, without the need for an Ed.


Internalize this and respond with what comes up. There is no wrong or right answer here, we want to look at whatever comes up as direct experience. Describe as fully as possible the reaction to this.

Chat soon Ed.

Regards

Bud
Bodhi,

For the rest of our journey here, I will put aside any second hand knowledge and trust that all will become clear upon investigation.

1. There is no Ed/ Ed does not exist now.

When I question this, these things come to mind: Sight happens on its own, but I can choose what to see. Hearing happens on its own, but I can choose to focus the listening. Touch happens on its own, but I can choose what to touch. Thoughts occur mostly on their own, unless I actively think of something. I can say that I am alive, because I have consciousness of the senses that occur to this body. I can say I am somewhere within this body because decisions are being made. I have a sense that I am the one who has the will over the body, the one that directs its actions. I have a sense that I am the one who is perceiving the various senses.

2. I have not existed.

I think back through the events of my life. I have memories of what has passed. Although the memories now feel like shadows, it still feels as though there was a part of me that was conscious during those events. A part of me that had made the decisions, felt the experience. Some part of me that led me down a specific path that led to this point.

3. I do not exist in the future.

I can see that I could not possibly exist in the future. The future is a concept that we have created to organize aspects of our existence. The idea of a "future" has a practical application for our lives, but simply does not exist. There is only a Now. When I think about a "future" it is merely a thought/emotions that is happening in the now.

4. Life is happening right now, and does not
require an Ed.

I can see that there is a process to life. The trees grow, the seasons change...even my body maintains itself without any "doing" on my part. I can see how all of this could maintain itself without an "Ed" present. That aside, I feel that any action that occurs with this body can not happen without the will of an "Ed". Other than the automatic processes of the body, a deliberate action feels like there is an "I" doing it.

-Ed


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Re: In search of a guide

Postby b0dhi » Sat Jan 07, 2017 9:21 am

Hi Ed

Thank you for your response - your communication is very clear and descriptive. This will aid the guidance immensely as we go along.

I am going to be getting on a flight in about 12 hours time and will be unavailable for about 16 hours after that. I wanted to make sure you have enough to work with during this time.
For the rest of our journey here, I will put aside any second hand knowledge and trust that all will become clear upon investigation.
That's great! As we move onto doing some exercises, it will be useful if you put away any information gathering (reading, videos, podcasts etc) of a spiritual nature. We are interested in reality, directly experienced and realised. Any further concepts, descriptions or ideas could actually divert you from this deep looking. Given the nature of our little discussion at present, it seems that the time for "seeking the seeker" is here, hence your focus and attention is required. Please confirm that this is ok with you?

To summarise your last thread, there is the sense of an individual agency in life. That is, something called Ed that has an amount of control over his destiny and the ability to choose and perceive reality in a way that suits. You have mentioned that you have choice, free-will and decision making ability. There is also the idea of separation - life is happening "out there", and Ed is running his own little show "in here".

Ed is "managing" and "directing" and "in charge of" his life.

We will be directly examining this for evidence and realness. What is there that actually exists.

Before we move forward, I'd like you to note that all the above assume that there is an "I" in the first place. If we remove the "I" then what happens to free-will, choice, decisions? If we remove the "I" what happens to the see-er of images, the hear-er of sounds, the sens-er of objects and the think-er of thoughts?

Once the "I" is seen through then choices, decisions and will are all seen from a larger perspective, a "more at ease with what is" sort of feeling :)

Once the "I" is seen through then images, sounds, sensations and thoughts just appear and disappear - it's just life happening - to life, by life, for life....I hope this is making you smile a bit :-)

What if this "I" is just an assumption? Just another concept? A mirage, a phantasm...once you look for it, it is GONE? Then what will be left?

I pose the above for you as background questions to assist with the overall "recurring theme" of your search. They are not to be answered now, all at once, but to be your go-to guy as you proceed. Let them sit inside there to work themselves out.

So let's start doing some searching.

Let's look at thoughts for a bit. There are three exercises for you below. Please do them in order and do not read forward. Read and complete exercise 1. before you read exercise 2 and so on...

For a few minutes, sit quietly and become intently aware of thoughts. Once this awareness is established move forward:

1. For the next few minutes, control every thought that appears.

2. Once you have done this, let's stop all random thoughts for the next few minutes. Sit quietly and ensure that for the next while you do not have random thoughts.

3. Once you have completed this exercise, choose to have only happy thoughts for a few minutes. Then choose to have only sad thoughts.

Do not read further than this point until you have completed these exercises to your satisfaction.

-------------------- FOR READING AFTER THE EXERCISE --------------

Is it possible to control thoughts? Is it possible to decide which thought comes next?

Of course not - in order to do so would mean that we would have thought a thought about an upcoming thought before the thought has occurred!

So who is thinking these thoughts? Is there an Ed thinking, or are thoughts sort of just being "thunk"? Can we find this think-er, this controller of thoughts? Where is this director of thoughts, can he be found? If he cannot be found, is it possible that thoughts are just happening? Like the heart beats, the lungs breathe, food digests and cuts heal without your conscious intervention - are thoughts the same?

I'd like you to become intently aware of thoughts and these questions for a couple of days. Without reverting to learned concepts, let me know when you write next what it is that you have uncovered.

My warmest regards :)
Bodhi

Nothingness dances to an unhearable song

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Re: In search of a guide

Postby Edward Q » Sat Jan 07, 2017 3:43 pm

Enjoy your flight :) We will talk soon

-Ed


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Re: In search of a guide

Postby b0dhi » Mon Jan 09, 2017 11:37 am

Thanks Ed

Back to my own zone now ~ Life continues :)

Awaiting your reply when you are ready.

Cheers
Bodhi

Nothingness dances to an unhearable song

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Re: In search of a guide

Postby Edward Q » Mon Jan 09, 2017 3:32 pm

Hi Bodhi

I hope you had a nice trip !

".....it seems that the time for 'seeking the seeker' is here, hence your focus and attention is required. Please confirm that this is ok with you ? "

Yes ! I am ready to offer all of my focus, to see this to the end. I have been asleep for too much of my existence, and now desire to see the truth !

I have done the exercises you have offered and this is what comes up:


Is it possible to control thoughts ?

Sometimes when I am caught in the story of the moment, it would seem as though There is a "Me" that is creating thoughts. When I am not deeply involved in a story, and able to look at the experience of "thought" from an open perspective, thoughts arise out of nothingness, have their time and then fall back into nothingness.



Is it possible that thoughts are just happening ?

I believe so...though I have to admit that during my daily life my mind is extremely quiet. I have very few thoughts throughout the day. When a thought comes, it is almost as if it appears out of nothingness. Even when I am talking to people, I am never really sure what I am about to say, until it is said.

It may just be an incorrect assumption, but it still seems like despite the fact that I do not "thought" , that there is still some sort of will. A deeper, unsaid intention. A lot of questions come up, but I have a feeling that I am getting ahead of myself. Right now the item in question is thought.

Thought is not my own. There is no "Ed" in these thoughts.

-Ed


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Re: In search of a guide

Postby b0dhi » Mon Jan 09, 2017 10:22 pm

Hey Ed

Trip was great, thank you. It's nice to be back in "my" home now ☺

Your response is excellent - well done.
Is it possible to control thoughts ?

Sometimes when I am caught in the story of the moment, it would seem as though There is a "Me" that is creating thoughts. When I am not deeply involved in a story, and able to look at the experience of "thought" from an open perspective, thoughts arise out of nothingness, have their time and then fall back into nothingness.
The more you look at thoughts, the more apparent it becomes that they appear from nowhere, have their say and then disappear back into nowhere. Being asleep we are caught up in the "story" of thoughts, the story of a self living a life, making choices and decisions. It's a dream-like existence of being caught up in this world, yet something is telling us - this is not it! Something is amiss! We end up here, looking for ourselves.

Beautiful - ain't it? ☺
Is it possible that thoughts are just happening ?

I believe so...though I have to admit that during my daily life my mind is extremely quiet. I have very few thoughts throughout the day. When a thought comes, it is almost as if it appears out of nothingness. Even when I am talking to people, I am never really sure what I am about to say, until it is said.


That's great. Spontaneity is a hint - things happen without the need for this self. When you are spontaneous, does it feel like there is a "you" present, or does what needs to happen just....happen?
It may just be an incorrect assumption, but it still seems like despite the fact that I do not "thought" , that there is still some sort of will. A deeper, unsaid intention. A lot of questions come up, but I have a feeling that I am getting ahead of myself. Right now the item in question is thought.

Thought is not my own. There is no "Ed" in these thoughts.
Wonderful!

Let's look at this sense of having "some sort of will" that you mentioned. I refer to this as a controller, or director or manager since it makes it easier to understand as a function. It's a sense of something tenuous, just outside our reach. Like the self. But does it really exist?

If there was some sort of controller, wouldn't it be possible to control thought?

Who is telling you that there is a controller or a will? Is it more thought? Is it another story being told by thought?

Wouldn't this director or manager appear prior to a choice being made? If this is "you" then wouldn't "you" be aware of this and be able to report about it. Who is making the choices, the decisions?

Please describe to me as fully as you possibly can how this "you" makes choices and decisions.

Ed look at all of this carefully - and deeply. Take your time to get to the root of it.

My warmest wishes
Bodhi

Nothingness dances to an unhearable song

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Re: In search of a guide

Postby Edward Q » Tue Jan 10, 2017 3:34 pm

Hey Ed

Trip was great, thank you. It's nice to be back in "my" home now [WHITE SMILING FACE]

Your response is excellent - well done.
Is it possible to control thoughts ?

Sometimes when I am caught in the story of the moment, it would seem as though There is a "Me" that is creating thoughts. When I am not deeply involved in a story, and able to look at the experience of "thought" from an open perspective, thoughts arise out of nothingness, have their time and then fall back into nothingness.
The more you look at thoughts, the more apparent it becomes that they appear from nowhere, have their say and then disappear back into nowhere. Being asleep we are caught up in the "story" of thoughts, the story of a self living a life, making choices and decisions. It's a dream-like existence of being caught up in this world, yet something is telling us - this is not it! Something is amiss! We end up here, looking for ourselves.

Beautiful - ain't it? [WHITE SMILING FACE]
Is it possible that thoughts are just happening ?

I believe so...though I have to admit that during my daily life my mind is extremely quiet. I have very few thoughts throughout the day. When a thought comes, it is almost as if it appears out of nothingness. Even when I am talking to people, I am never really sure what I am about to say, until it is said.


That's great. Spontaneity is a hint - things happen without the need for this self. When you are spontaneous, does it feel like there is a "you" present, or does what needs to happen just....happen?
It may just be an incorrect assumption, but it still seems like despite the fact that I do not "thought" , that there is still some sort of will. A deeper, unsaid intention. A lot of questions come up, but I have a feeling that I am getting ahead of myself. Right now the item in question is thought.

Thought is not my own. There is no "Ed" in these thoughts.
Wonderful!

Let's look at this sense of having "some sort of will" that you mentioned. I refer to this as a controller, or director or manager since it makes it easier to understand as a function. It's a sense of something tenuous, just outside our reach. Like the self. But does it really exist?

If there was some sort of controller, wouldn't it be possible to control thought?

Who is telling you that there is a controller or a will? Is it more thought? Is it another story being told by thought?

Wouldn't this director or manager appear prior to a choice being made? If this is "you" then wouldn't "you" be aware of this and be able to report about it. Who is making the choices, the decisions?

Please describe to me as fully as you possibly can how this "you" makes choices and decisions.

Ed look at all of this carefully - and deeply. Take your time to get to the root of it.

My warmest wishes
Bodhi,

You said " Please describe to me as fully as you possibly can how this "you" makes choices and decisions.

I 'think' that there is a will for your life to go in a certain direction. A will that comes from a deeper place than thought. I am not quite sure that actions are dependent on thought.

Admittedly, I can not find the one who makes the choices. If I am indeed wrong about a deeper will, then really all life would be is just a story that has already been written ? If there is no decisions to be made, really all we are is just consciousness, observing a reality that we can do nothing about ?

You said in your last message:

"Spontaneity is a hint...... when you are spontaneous, does it feel like there is a "you" present, or does what needs to happen just....happen "

My question is... if there is truly no self... as much of our inquiry is pointing to, then how could there even be such thing as spontaneous action ? Wouldn't that require a "me" to direct that action ?
Otherwise, we are just watching a movie that has already had its events written. Without a "me" wouldn't everything be spontaneous by its very nature ?

If there is no "me", nothing guiding my life's path....then what is to prevent me from becoming a horrible person ?

-Ed




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Re: In search of a guide

Postby b0dhi » Wed Jan 11, 2017 12:46 pm

Hi Ed

It’s starting to get sticky isn’t it? That’s ok – keep going. The real work has begun and we continue to go deeper and deeper to uncover what is true, what is real.
I 'think' that there is a will for your life to go in a certain direction. A will that comes from a deeper place than thought. I am not quite sure that actions are dependent on thought.
Who is thinking this? Is there an “I” thinking or are there just thoughts appearing creating a story about a deeper will? If you cannot be certain, then is this an assumption? Are you expecting to find something that is in charge?
Admittedly, I can not find the one who makes the choices. If I am indeed wrong about a deeper will, then really all life would be is just a story that has already been written ? If there is no decisions to be made, really all we are is just consciousness, observing a reality that we can do nothing about ?


What has really changed about reality except for your perspective on it? Reality was reality before, as it is now – regardless of if there is or isn’t a personal self.

Again, more importantly, are you expecting to see it in a particular way? Is what is happening a resistance to seeing what is presenting itself directly to you – because it does not agree with what you want it to be?

Wouldn't that require a "me" to direct that action ?
Same again – where is this me? Is it just an “assumption” of some sort of controller being required? Wouldn’t that be more thought? And this thought also has no personal thinker that can be found.

Are you the one directing the action? Or is it that the action happens and then the personal self takes credit for it?
If there is no "me", nothing guiding my life's path....then what is to prevent me from becoming a horrible person ?
What prevented you before? Does seeing through a belief that is untrue change this? If you realise a mirage is a mirage, do you suddenly become a maniac?

Is this more resistance? More thought preventing a deeper look?

What is this resistance trying to hide Ed?

Keep going Ed, you’re seeing into the illusory nature of this personal self, and resistance is a side effect. Keep pushing forth ☺

My warmest regards and encouragement
Bodhi

Nothingness dances to an unhearable song


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