So then let’s have a deeper look on thoughts. Sit for about 15 minutes or longer and look similarly as you looked for the gaps between thoughts. Look for the ‘answer’ BEFORE thought interpretation kicks in.
Practiced looking several times yesterday for about 15min each and again this morning. Recorded the questions onto my phone’s voice recorder so I could listen while searching.
Where do thoughts come from?
I don’t know. It seems like they stream from a source. I can’t find it though. Imagine sensory experiences and current and past experiences aide in the formation of thoughts.
Where are they going?
I don’t know. They come and go as they please in and out of existence/awareness.
Can ‘you’ stop a thought in the middle?
This is a tricky one. Thoughts often come layered in multiple streams. IF I tell myself to stop a thought midstream, it works on that thought. But most of the time, they just stream through the mind uninterrupted.
Can ‘you’ predict what will be the next thought?
I cannot predict what the next thought will be. I can only become aware of a thought as it passes through awareness. No preview available.
Can 'you' choose not to have painful or negative thoughts?
Another tricky one. Generally speaking, no I cannot. There are times when when I rather not think about something…or deal with something. So I avoid it via distracting myself with other things. In that sense yes I can.
Can an 'I' be found that generates thoughts?
This depends upon how you define ‘I’. In the context of me being a living entity that eats, drinks, and sleeps in this body..then I generate thoughts much like I generate waste. It happens automatically. But I can’t find a source for the generator of thoughts other than say it’s much like how outside stimuli helps generate waste that the body produces. So goes with the mind and myself.
“I think” - What is 'I'? What is the one that thinks?
I don’t know. This is similar to the question about finding an ‘I’ that generates thoughts. I looked for an ‘I’ that thinks. I could only find a feeling of a ‘me’ that thinks. What is ‘me’ then? Which goes back to how do you define ‘I’.
What is the thinker of thoughts? – don’t think, rather look for a ‘thinker’
I am unable to find a thinker other than say thinking happens in this body vessel that we conveniently label as ‘I’ or ‘me.’
Does the thinker of the thought appear in experience? Can it be found?
This is like a hand trying to clap itself or an eye trying to see itself. Thoughts are real. They happen inside this body. A thinking ‘me’ cannot find my own source. So I look for a looker who’e looking for a thinker. Yeah it gets convoluted from there.
It’s worth mentioning that during the searching, I experienced quick flashes of something I don’t know how to describe. They would happened after a realization / aha understanding of wait, who is really here looking? The flashes have only happened a handful of times. And in spite of their quickness, there is no mistake of its intensity. Almost feels dangerous. Too real to be true.
Or could it be that the 'I' that thinks is also just a thought?
Yes I agree it could just be a thought. A label given to the experience of being.
Do you think thoughts or you are just ‘being thought’?
I don’t know. Can thoughts exists without a doer? If I’m being thought, who’s thinking through me?
Is it possible to prevent a thought from appearing? Including the thought 'I'?
Again, generally speaking I cannot prevent any given thought from appearing. There are situations where I can prevent specific thoughts from appearing. Like when climbing a very tall ladder, I tell myself not to look down to prevent thoughts of panic from arising.
Try to answer them only from direct experience, and leave aside all intellectual interpretation or understanding. Please, DON’T THINK about the answers, rather LOOK at what is before thoughts. Take your time.
I did search for answers before thinking about them. Each time I searched/looked, no answers would appear. Always blank/emptiness. There is feeling of a searcher expecting a response and was met with silence instead.