Thanks again for this :-)
So, since ‘others’ are simply colour and sound…what is the seeming self?
I have looked at that before, and there is no self in a place, I can’t find it. However, there is a felt feeling of existence. I’m not sure how that relates to the self, but it seems to be what my inquiry hones in on when I look for my ‘self’. This is a sensation or feeling, no likely no different than any other feeling or sensation, it feels strong and convincing though.
Lovely! Continue doing this exercise for several days, until you are crystal clear on what AE is.
Thanks Kay, I will do.
For thought to be observed there would have to be a subject that is observing an object, in this case a thought. This points to separation.
Are thoughts actually seen or heard, or are they simply known?
Thoughts are known, but sometimes, especially in terms of self-referential thought, there is a perception of thought playing like a ticker tape, in terms of text, in the front of my mind. This would seem to be another thought though, there does seem to be some kind of visual aspect to it. I also can hear words in my head sometimes, say when thinking something through. Perhaps that’s just imagination being utilized by thought.
Do you need a thought to tell you when a thought has appeared or to tell you when colour, sound, sensation, taste or smell are?
No, I don’t think so. Taste, sound, colour, etc. are immediate and just happen.
Where does a thought (a known) end and the knowing of it begin? Is there a dividing line between knowing and known or is there just knowingknown?
There is no dividing line, the very act of thinking a thought means the thought is known, so it is knowingknown.
Great observation in seeing that attention only focuses on one experience at a time and that neither experience is more important than the other,
Let’s see if it is ‘you’ who is placing your attention/focus onto whatever is being known in that moment.
Close your eyes and sit quietly for 10-15 minutes.
Watch what focus does.
Focus on focusing, attention itself.
Do you move it, or it moves by itself?
I sat quietly for 10 minutes with my eyes closed. It feels like it mainly moves itself, but I also have the feeling that I have some minor element of influence on it.
Hold focus on breath - see how it moves to thoughts, sensations, feelings, sounds.
Is this something you control?
I held attention on my breath, and as expected the attention wandered from time to time to thoughts, sounds, etc. There did seem to be a noticing of this though, and at that point the attention switching back to the breath. This is the minor influence I mention above, it seems like somehow I am influencing that with the intention to focus on the breath.
What moves attention?
Whatever may or may not be appearing. For example, a car crash happens right in front of me, no matter what I am doing or thinking about prior to that, my attention will immediately be drawn into that scene. This seems to be the way with everything in AE, things appear in AE and some of them grab the attention and seem to draw it in.
Is thought in control of attention?
This is tricky to see clearly. I think thought claims to be in control, or it might be better to say it claims influence on attention, but I am not sure. In my experience of meditation over the years, it has seemed that, that minor element of influence I seem to feel that I have, say of drawing attention back to the breath, enables the attention muscle to be more in my control and so I can focus it more on one specific thing as opposed to another. However, overall, I don’t think thought is in control of attention, probably more like thought comments on what comes into attention.
Do they just appear equally, ‘beside’ each other without any hierarchy or link between them?
They look to appear equally. My attention seems to be able to bring one more into focus than the other which can give an impression of a hierarchy, but this can be done either way, on sight or sensation. So they are both still there equally in their own right. I don’t think they are linked. Perhaps it could be said that they complement each other in some way, in terms of enhancing the AE.
Look carefully at what I am pointing to here….how is it known that colour and sensation are different?
They have different characteristics in AE. Sensation has feeling components, and colour has visual components. That different data coming in makes them seem different. There can be abstractions of course, for example, the colour red maybe being associated with feelings of anger or power, but that is likely thought getting involved.
Here is a great clip which shows how there is no correlation between sensation and hand!
That’s brilliant :-)
I can see that I then connect the sensation and sight with a thought of ‘hand’, to describe the AE for language and relative communication purposes. That happens very quickly in real time. However, I can see that the sensation and sight, are there in AE in their own right, regardless of my labeling.
So where is this “I” that is labelling?
I can’t find an I in any specific place. There is that feeling of me, or my existence, which seems to sit somewhere in the centre of my chest most of the time, with a bit of the head thrown in every now and then. It seems that perhaps that is just a very strong belief that, that feeling of existence is me, but it is convincing though.
Thought says that the foot is ‘down there’. So presumably you are above your foot. Where are you? Sit quietly, close your eyes, take a few breaths and locate where you feel yourself to be. Locate yourself vertically in the body, horizontally to the left or right, and depth, how far in. Feel how big you are, where you reside. Then point with a finger to ‘you’. Open your eyes, where is your finger pointing?
My finger is pointing back at me, towards my chest.
Thanks again Kay,