Hi Liberation people

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elStefan
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Hi Liberation people

Postby elStefan » Mon Mar 12, 2012 6:24 pm

my name is Stefan

I read some of the Stuff here and on this other website where people insulting each other towards liberation :) . And it sounds really interesting, also im having some doubts if that stuff works, but im willing to give it a try and i would be really happy if someone would take some time to "lead" me to/through "the gate"

here are some background information about myself:
i startet Meditation about 10 years ago. i have about 9month of Retreat time in Mahasi style and concentrative praxis, but did not attained stream entry or the concentrative Jahnas. I also dont know where on the Vipassana Stages of Insight im hanging out at the moment. could be Eqaunimity if i had to guess. but not sure about that.
im doing daily praxis of about 1-2 hours.


how I experiencing "myself" while doing meditation:
while doing Meditation i can easily see the Anatta effect by watching my own thoughts or feelings arising on their own. but i would say that i identify myself with the watcher or observer while in meditation. there is a feeling of "thats me" while beeing in the observer mode.

Allright maybee thats already enought to start with. Looking forward to begin ! Greetings.

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GrahamB
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby GrahamB » Mon Mar 12, 2012 7:23 pm

Hi Stefan. Welcome to LU. I am willing to help you see that there is no self.

This is how it works: I ask questions, and you investigate, looking deeply and reporting honestly what is found. We commit to make every effort to post here at least once a day.

If this is ok with you, we will get going.
how I experiencing "myself" while doing meditation:
while doing Meditation i can easily see the Anatta effect by watching my own thoughts or feelings arising on their own.
This is good. So there is seeing that there is no self and there is no one doing the thinking?
but i would say that i identify myself with the watcher or observer while in meditation. there is a feeling of "thats me" while beeing in the observer mode.
Is this not the ego mind, thought, claiming that 'it' is doing the watching?

Best wishes,
Graham

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elStefan
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby elStefan » Mon Mar 12, 2012 11:39 pm

Hi Graham,

thank u for taking the time to write to me. i really appreciate that. writing ones a day is fine!

Right, i can see thoughts often as empty of a self and arising on their own. Also im getting lost in thoughts often, as soon as i become aware of the thinking prozess im getting detatched from the thought and can watch it with some distance.

im just comming up from the cushion and it seems often that my ego is doing the whole meditation. im in some kind of observer mode, but still the ego/the i is there and doing the observing and the noting.

greetings. Stefan

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GrahamB
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby GrahamB » Tue Mar 13, 2012 6:20 pm

Hi Stefan,
thank u for taking the time to write to me. i really appreciate that. writing ones a day is fine!
Thank you.
Right, i can see thoughts often as empty of a self and arising on their own. Also im getting lost in thoughts often, as soon as i become aware of the thinking prozess im getting detatched from the thought and can watch it with some distance.
You get lost in thought because all 'you' are is a thought, or thought construct, and so the 'self', can easily get lost within other thought, as there is no essential difference.

When you are engrossed in some task you are not at all thinking of yourself but only the task, and only become 'aware of yourself' at intervals, perhaps when you 'take a break' or when the task is done. In other words 'you' are only a thought that arises from time to time, and are not 'there' all the time; there being just a 'stream' of experience, but no experiencer.

You, ego, self, exist only in imagination. The body is real; thoughts are real, but the content of thought is entirely imagination.
im just comming up from the cushion and it seems often that my ego is doing the whole meditation. im in some kind of observer mode, but still the ego/the i is there and doing the observing and the noting.
There is an experience; the 'I' thought arises and then the thought arises that the experience is 'mine'; further thoughts arise that create a story of what the experience means. Experience has no inherent meaning; all meaning is created by thought stories.


What arises after reading these comments? Please write fully, clearly and as honestly as possible, to the best of your ability.

With best wishes,
Graham

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elStefan
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby elStefan » Tue Mar 13, 2012 10:40 pm

Hi,

it seems that Mindfullness comes always with a sense of self. As soon as im Mindfull there is also a sense of "Me". i mean i can watch thoughts as beeing empty of a self, but with Mindfullness it seems different, it seems when beeing mindfull i also have a stronger sense of myself. So i cant imagine how it would be to be mindfull without that sense of me coming with it. And it also feels nice to be Mindfull, also there is a sense of self included.

When you are engrossed in some task you are not at all thinking of yourself but only the task, and only become 'aware of yourself' at intervals, perhaps when you 'take a break' or when the task is done. In other words 'you' are only a thought that arises from time to time, and are not 'there' all the time; there being just a 'stream' of experience, but no experiencer.
when im busy with a task and doing the task without thinking of myself i would call that "not beeing mindfull" and as soon as i become aware of it i would try to switch to mindfull mode. But I guess that u only wanted to show that the I is absent in that time and not to suggest me to try to stay in this busy, not mindfull mode as an kind of exercise !?

You get lost in thought because all 'you' are is a thought, or thought construct, and so the 'self', can easily get lost within other thought, as there is no essential difference.
As i wrote before,as soon as i become aware of a thought i get detached from the thinking, so it should be the same with the sense of I, just that its some kind of really sticky thought that has to been seen many times before i become detached from it !?


when i was reading your comments i agreed in your points, i am experiencing these things in somekind in meditation but it seems that i just have to see it more often or clearer to realy get detached from the illusion of a self!

good night

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GrahamB
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby GrahamB » Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:37 am

Hi Stefan, Thank you for your response. Let's start looking at it.
it seems that Mindfullness comes always with a sense of self. As soon as im Mindfull there is also a sense of "Me". i mean i can watch thoughts as beeing empty of a self, but with Mindfullness it seems different, it seems when beeing mindfull i also have a stronger sense of myself. So i cant imagine how it would be to be mindfull without that sense of me coming with it. And it also feels nice to be Mindfull, also there is a sense of self included.
Thanks for your explanation. My understanding of mindfulness, is that there is no self in mindfulness, but I do not want us to get stuck on a label, a definition, so lets push on...
When you are engrossed in some task you are not at all thinking of yourself but only the task, and only become 'aware of yourself' at intervals, perhaps when you 'take a break' or when the task is done. In other words 'you' are only a thought that arises from time to time, and are not 'there' all the time; there being just a 'stream' of experience, but no experiencer.
when im busy with a task and doing the task without thinking of myself i would call that "not beeing mindfull" and as soon as i become aware of it i would try to switch to mindfull mode. But I guess that u only wanted to show that the I is absent in that time and not to suggest me to try to stay in this busy, not mindfull mode as an kind of exercise !?
Good spotting! Your last sentence is correct. Thanks for your explaining your position on mindfulness

To 'me' mindfulness is direct experience. It being, for example: fingers touching keys... ache in head... cramp in shoulders... view of screen... car going by... shaking of head... No sign of a 'me' anywhere, although in this stream a thought may come that 'I need to go get a birthday card; now there is a knowing here that there is no 'me' and all this thought means is that the body needs to go get a card; so still no 'me' anywhere. And on this stream of experience goes....

But, as I say, I do not want us to get stuck on a label, a definition; so let's just call what I am referring to 'direct experience'. Ok? Of much more benefit is looking at what direct experience actually is - which I attempted to describe in the preceding paragraph.

Just to clarify, is your description of direct experience the same as mine?

And you are right. I do not want 'you' to make direct experience into an exercise, as it is what is actually happening. Do 'you' now see this?
You get lost in thought because all 'you' are is a thought, or thought construct, and so the 'self', can easily get lost within other thought, as there is no essential difference.
As i wrote before,as soon as i become aware of a thought i get detached from the thinking, so it should be the same with the sense of I, just that its some kind of really sticky thought that has to been seen many times before i become detached from it !?
Yes, this sounds good, although I would not say that that thought has to be seen many times before 'you' become detached from it, as there is no you to become detached; all the thought of 'you' is is a thought. The body is real; thoughts are real, but the content of thought is entirely imaginary. So all that needs to be seen is that the content of all thought is imaginary including the thought of 'me'.
when i was reading your comments i agreed in your points, i am experiencing these things in somekind in meditation but it seems that i just have to see it more often or clearer to realy get detached from the illusion of a self!
So are you agreeing that there is no self, and that all the self has to see is that it is not!? It CANNOT see this as it IS NOT!



Pleased to be corresponding with you.

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elStefan
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby elStefan » Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:11 pm

Hi,

Hmm in theory my defenition of direct experience is the same as urs i guess( experiences the 6 senses, what is right now). But doing that in praxis i have a sens of self while experiencing the 6 senses.

So all that needs to be seen is that the content of all thought is imaginary including the thought of 'me'.
yes thats what i want to see, but as the i cant see it, or seeing it would destroy the i, it seems that i cant do anything to see it other than observing the i (or would that be the i is watching the i?) and waiting that the sense of i disappears through watching and understanding that ists just an illusion.
would u say its not a matter of seeing it more often but more deeply ?

So are you agreeing that there is no self, and that all the self has to see is that it is not!? It CANNOT see this as it IS NOT!
Ok, the I cannot see this. so seeing the truth is rather an body-mind-complex becomming aware of that there is no i ?!
it seems best to just drop that whole i concept, but as i said before it seems that the only way of doing it is to watch the i wearing itself out and not trying to do anything about it coz trying to get rid of it would be another "i" effort !?

it already seems that by writing to u and thinking my replys over im getting some kind of insights on how tricky and sticky that whole topic is, everywhere i look i can see the "i" lingering around.

greetings. Stefan.

greetings. Stefan.

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GrahamB
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby GrahamB » Wed Mar 14, 2012 9:44 pm

Hi Stefan,
Hmm in theory my defenition of direct experience is the same as urs i guess( experiences the 6 senses, what is right now). But doing that in praxis i have a sens of self while experiencing the 6 senses.
Sensation is a tricky thing; we assume that what our senses suggest we are experiencing must be true. Yet it is possible to fully experience something imaginary. We do it all the time.

Do this little exercise—close your eyes and imagine you are holding a slice of watermelon in your hands. Imagine it so vividly, that you feel its weight, shape, temperature, texture, its scent. Take a bite, roll it around in your mouth, fully appreciate the lovely taste. Got it?
Now open your eyes.
What happened to the melon? How about the sensation that was so believable?

Self is also vividly experienced by most of us, and it is equally imaginary. Once you SEE how 'self' is constructed and labels experiences, it becomes clear that there is no self in reality at all.

Is this seen?
So all that needs to be seen is that the content of all thought is imaginary including the thought of 'me'.
yes thats what i want to see, but as the i cant see it, or seeing it would destroy the i


But the I wanting is just more 'positiong' of the I isn't it; a way of locating itself in some context?
it seems that i cant do anything to see it other than observing the i (or would that be the i is watching the i?) and waiting that the sense of i disappears through watching and understanding that ists just an illusion.
You tell me whether it is the I observing the I. You are the imaginary one imagining that you exist and can watch yourself, and wait for yourself to disappear through watching and understanding that all this imagining is an illusion.

This sounds silly doesn't it? The I is an illusion, as you well know when you write "it seems..." This is just another attempt of the I to locate itself somewhere.

What do you fear would happen without a 'me'?
would u say its not a matter of seeing it more often but more deeply ?
It is a matter of seeing it once. And I think 'you' have seen it but are not acknowledging it. The ego is persuasive in its seeming attempts to place itself someplace.
So are you agreeing that there is no self, and that all the self has to see is that it is not!? It CANNOT see this as it IS NOT!
Ok, the I cannot see this. so seeing the truth is rather an body-mind-complex becomming aware of that there is no i ?!
This is just another 'I' story. Come out of the mind and see the I story(s) clearly!
it seems best to just drop that whole i concept, but as i said before it seems that the only way of doing it is to watch the i wearing itself out and not trying to do anything about it coz trying to get rid of it would be another "i" effort !?
Who does this seem best to.... the only way of...? This is just another 'seeming' 'I' story - another way of continuing the self's existence in mind as a 'thoughtful being' thinking about what seems best, the only way out... and on and on...; another way of positioning a self. (yawn).
it already seems that by writing to u and thinking my replys over im getting some kind of insights on how tricky and sticky that whole topic is, everywhere i look i can see the "i" lingering around.
Time to give this seeming 'I' thing the boot'! Either it is or it is not; and it is not!

Unseemingly,
Graham

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elStefan
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby elStefan » Thu Mar 15, 2012 6:05 pm

Hi Graham,
;Self is also vividly experienced by most of us, and it is equally imaginary. Once you SEE how 'self' is constructed and labels experiences, it becomes clear that there is no self in reality at all.

Is this seen?;
i would say it is seen temporarily. sometimes i can see the ego construct clearly, but then a few moments later i got fooled by it again. then i see it again and a few moments later got fooled by it again.



Somehow i dont really know what to write now. Its obvious that this ego is not really excisting and there is no way of arguing about it. Its like i understood it but still dont accept this truth fully.

What do you fear would happen without a 'me'?
i guess i would fear to lose control, do things i dont like. but of course without an me there is no one to fear that me doing things i dont like. it just seems too abstract...

It is a matter of seeing it once. And I think 'you' have seen it but are not acknowledging it. The ego is persuasive in its seeming attempts to place itself someplace.
ok, so what to do about it to acknowledging it. as the i cant acknowledge it. is it that "it just has to be acknowledged".


im trying to SEE through the ilusion, and sometimes im having the feeling that im close to understand it. but still there is something backing up from the truth.

greetings. Stefan

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GrahamB
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby GrahamB » Thu Mar 15, 2012 9:37 pm

Hi Stefan, 'You' are doing well. Thank you for the honesty.
;Self is also vividly experienced by most of us, and it is equally imaginary. Once you SEE how 'self' is constructed and labels experiences, it becomes clear that there is no self in reality at all.

Is this seen?
i would say it is seen temporarily. sometimes i can see the ego construct clearly, but then a few moments later i got fooled by it again. then i see it again and a few moments later got fooled by it again.
Good! It has been seen that there is no you! So who is fooled?
Somehow i dont really know what to write now. Its obvious that this ego is not really excisting and there is no way of arguing about it. Its like i understood it but still dont accept this truth fully.
Good! There is this knowing that there is no self and this knowing cannot be known by ego mind. And ego mind is still trying to know this, understand this. How can something imaginary know this?
What do you fear would happen without a 'me'?
i guess i would fear to lose control, do things i dont like. but of course without an me there is no one to fear that me doing things i dont like. it just seems too abstract...
Guessing? Who is guessing? Who is trying to find a home in a thought realm? Look carefully.

There is no one to lose control as is all happening without you anyway. What is abstract? Observe carefully here. Abstract things exist only in thought.

There are still preferences with no me, it is just that there is no one to have them and no one to be overly concerned if they do not happen.
It is a matter of seeing it once. And I think 'you' have seen it but are not acknowledging it. The ego is persuasive in its seeming attempts to place itself someplace.
ok, so what to do about it to acknowledging it. as the i cant acknowledge it. is it that "it just has to be acknowledged".
There is a knowing that there is no me. This knowing does not exist in any thought sphere or context. You are playing around searching for yourself, guessing about yourself, assuming you exist at times. This is happening in thought, in mind! This is acknowledgement. Let this sink in deeply. Do not create or continue imagining that there is a you that has to acknowledge this. This needs no acknowledgement.

Thoughts about yourself may arise, but this is seen to be just another thought; a thought about a thought. So what!? Another thought comes... and another... So what? Thoughts do not mean anything. If a thought is thought to mean something, another thought has just arisen; that is all.
im trying to SEE through the ilusion, and sometimes im having the feeling that im close to understand it. but still there is something backing up from the truth.
Please explain what you are trying to see. And how you know that what you are trying to see is actually seeable and not another figment of imagination.

Imaginatively,
Graham

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elStefan
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby elStefan » Fri Mar 16, 2012 6:53 pm

Hi Graham,

Good! It has been seen that there is no you! So who is fooled?
the i is fooling ......... itself!? and than gets angry on itself sometimes!

Good! There is this knowing that there is no self and this knowing cannot be known by ego mind. And ego mind is still trying to know this, understand this. How can something imaginary know this?
clear point.

There is no one to lose control as is all happening without you anyway. What is abstract? Observe carefully here. Abstract things exist only in thought.
with abstract i mean the idea of fear of the ego of loosing control only exist becouse of the ego. well now it seems not that abstract. there is just some kind of loop in here.

There are still preferences with no me, it is just that there is no one to have them and no one to be overly concerned if they do not happen.
interesting point. i think u mentioned something earlier. it seems that im often forgetting about "myself" and only from time to time there is this "oh i have to do..." or "i am...." kind of thought feeling. And it happens more often in meditation that im having thoughts like that.
There is a knowing that there is no me. This knowing does not exist in any thought sphere or context.
"i" often have knowings like that but than the "i" kicks in and is claiming that it has understood it or has doubts about it or the "i" makes a comment about this knowing.

Thoughts about yourself may arise, but this is seen to be just another thought; a thought about a thought. So what!? Another thought comes... and another... So what? Thoughts do not mean anything. If a thought is thought to mean something, another thought has just arisen; that is all.
at the moment i have a lot of free time and normally i make a lot of plans, do this do that. But the last 2 days i was not following this plans much, it seemed somehow that i loosed interest in plans, or the thoughts which made up that plans. but at the same time "i" got worried about becomming a lazy bugger ;)

Please explain what you are trying to see. And how you know that what you are trying to see is actually seeable and not another figment of imagination.

well im trying to see things like: "i is just a thought construct" or "the i is an conditioned imagination " or im trying to "feel the selflessness" ...that last one always couses "myself" doubts if "im" really feeling it or making it up.
how do i know that it is seeable? Hmmm, sometimes when "reflecting " on this stuff there is an understanding of the matter (often followed by doubts or rationalization).
But sometimes it seems the only way of living with this truth is to not buying into it, justs leaving the whole topic behind accepting it without trying to understand it. but for now it seems that i have to understand more of it. but that feels like buying into it again ! ;)

clearly doubtfully
Stefan

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GrahamB
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby GrahamB » Fri Mar 16, 2012 8:51 pm

Hi there Stefan,
Good! It has been seen that there is no you! So who is fooled?
the i is fooling ......... itself!? and than gets angry on itself sometimes!
In your previous post you wrote:
i can see the ego construct clearly, but then a few moments later i got fooled by it again. then i see it again and a few moments later got fooled by it again.
You have seen there is no self, but the thought of a self arises and tries to assert itself, but it is seen that this self is entirely imaginary, so it departs, and this cycle may arise at times.

In this cycle, the longer the self thought is left unspotted, the more the self identification is thought to be real, more thought follows and emotion (feeling foolish, or angry) arises.

Every time a thought self 'pops up', it is known that self does not exist, that this is a thought only, so it is not identified with, and the self thought departs. This spotting, noticing, may need to be done consciously initially, but eventually becomes automatic.
Good! There is this knowing that there is no self and this knowing cannot be known by ego mind. And ego mind is still trying to know this, understand this. How can something imaginary know this?
clear point.
Great!
There is no one to lose control as is all happening without you anyway. What is abstract? Observe carefully here. Abstract things exist only in thought.
with abstract i mean the idea of fear of the ego of loosing control only exist becouse of the ego. well now it seems not that abstract. there is just some kind of loop in here.
SEE clearly! How can something be "not that abstract"!? Either it is or it isn't! Something abstract is a mental construct, The loop is a mental loop; entirely a going round in circles in the mind. Get out of all these loops! You are not in them are you!? You only imagine you are!
There are still preferences with no me, it is just that there is no one to have them and no one to be overly concerned if they do not happen.
interesting point. i think u mentioned something earlier. it seems that im often forgetting about "myself" and only from time to time there is this "oh i have to do..." or "i am...." kind of thought feeling. And it happens more often in meditation that im having thoughts like that.
Great! No one here having thoughts, just thoughts/feelings arising!
There is a knowing that there is no me. This knowing does not exist in any thought sphere or context.
"i" often have knowings like that but than the "i" kicks in and is claiming that it has understood it or has doubts about it or the "i" makes a comment about this knowing.
Great again! Yes that pesky 'I' pops up here too and it is just smiled at; and yes, sometimes 'I' get hooked too, but the knowing comes to the fore sooner or later.
Thoughts about yourself may arise, but this is seen to be just another thought; a thought about a thought. So what!? Another thought comes... and another... So what? Thoughts do not mean anything. If a thought is thought to mean something, another thought has just arisen; that is all.
at the moment i have a lot of free time and normally i make a lot of plans, do this do that. But the last 2 days i was not following this plans much, it seemed somehow that i loosed interest in plans, or the thoughts which made up that plans. but at the same time "i" got worried about becomming a lazy bugger ;)
Yep, the 'I' does all sorts of 'things' to regain a foothold. But you now know it can't!
But sometimes it seems the only way of living with this truth is to not buying into it, justs leaving the whole topic behind accepting it without trying to understand it. but for now it seems that i have to understand more of it. but that feels like buying into it again ! ;)
Wonderful! You have SEEN!

I think one more post from you and then the final questions from me. Unless you wish to answer them now. Please write clearly and fully on each topic. Here they are:

1) Is there a 'me', at all, anywhere, in any way, shape or form? Was there ever?

2) Explain in detail what the illusion of separate self is, when it starts and how it works.

3) How does it feel to see this?

4) How would you describe it to somebody who is very interested, but has never heard about this illusion.

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


Happy for you,
Graham

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elStefan
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby elStefan » Sat Mar 17, 2012 7:40 pm

Hey Graham,
Every time a thought self 'pops up', it is known that self does not exist, that this is a thought only, so it is not identified with, and the self thought departs. This spotting, noticing, may need to be done consciously initially, but eventually becomes automatic.
yes i know this automatic mode, this is whrere everything becomes lighter. A good practical advice here ! thanxs!


U think im already done?. was not that big of a deal. I see a lot of points clearer now. especially some last hiding places of the ego got lighted. I guess my meditation praxis helped here .but there was not a big shift well that was what "I" had expectet.

I will come back to the questions tomorrow. having heavy headache at the moment.

see u tomorrow. Stefan

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GrahamB
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby GrahamB » Sat Mar 17, 2012 9:36 pm

Not surprised you have a headache with all the 'sorting out' that has been going on there Stefan! Hope it eases soon. Good work! See you in due course, Graham

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GrahamB
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Re: Hi Liberation people

Postby GrahamB » Sun Mar 18, 2012 1:24 am

And yes, no big deal. :)


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