silence

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alreadyfree
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silence

Postby alreadyfree » Wed Jun 03, 2020 3:52 pm

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
awakening is the seeing of no-self, that all is Oneness. This is far beyond a new belief, concept or understanding. It is also far beyond a mere mental process. Once it is seen there is no room for doubt. It is unshakeable & irreversible. It also goes by the name of enlightenment, self-realisation, god-realisation, nirvana, moksha etc

What are you looking for at LU?
To be guided in this awakening. To become free of spiritual seeking, wanting of external things & experiences, wanting of a romantic relationship, free of uncertainty & confusion. To find a lasting peace. Ultimately, to guide others seeking the same, without necessarily charging money. LU appeals to me as it seems to be a team approach & not based on financial gain. Until now, I've mainly listened to teachers who give pubic talks, retreats, record Youtube videos & write books. Apart from Youtube, all these cost money. LU seems based on the spiritual ideal of service - giving without expectation of any return. This ideal appeals to me strongly, & is something I have tried to live by - albeit in a modest way. I would love to be able to give in a more powerful & meaningful way, but without expecting any recognition or reward. In our troubled world, this seems a supremely worthy pursuit.
If I find LU helpful, I would certainly recommend it to others. I became a serious spiritual seeker 44 years ago. I'm now 69 & sometimes wonder if time for me is running out.

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
to become more aware of my blind spots & misguided beliefs. To become more spiritually aware & empowered. To become more empowered to live in absolute freedom, & hence possibly assist others to do the same. I would expect my guide to be totally honest with me. I would hope to be treated respectfully & yet confronted gently when I have gone astray. Of course, I would treat any guide in the same way. While a guided conversation seems like a teacher & student situation, perhaps it would be more like 2 equal friends exploring the truth. I would always remain open to learning & exploring, while maintaining 100% honesty & respect for each other.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
I became a spiritual seeker 44 years ago, when I took up Transcendental Meditation. As instructed, I meditated for 20 minutes twice per day using a mantra. I faithfully maintained this practise for 3 years. At the same time, I began voraciously reading spiritual books. I also began taking extended travels in Asia & Europe (totalling 3 years). 38 years ago I spent a year travelling alone around India in order to study & practise it's spiritual culture. This entailed staying in many ashrams & visiting various gurus such as Krishnamurti, Amma (the hugging saint"), the Dalai Lama & 2 direct disciples of Ramana Maharshi. 30 years ago I spent 2 months at the ashram of Osho, although he had died 9 months previously. I became initiated as a Sannyasin follower of him & given a new name.
32 years ago I began participating in 3 day live-in Enlightenment Intensives, the goal of which was to have a direct experience of enlightenment. I loved this workshop so much I took it 10 times. The day after the first Intensive finished, I did have 3 enlightenment experiences, each one lasting about 1-2 minutes. From 1995 to 2004 I followed an enlightened Australian teacher called Barry Long. I attended 3 of his 2 weeks teaching intensives, attended by about 300 international followers.

From 2005 - 2012 I followed a female meditation teacher in the city where I lived. She declared herself to be enlightened & taught that through meditation her students could become enlightened too. I attended 30-40 of her weekend retreats. After 7 years of this I became disillusioned & quit. It felt like I was "flogging a dead horse" & that she was unable to help me. I then became very keen on mindfulness practise as a substitute for formal sitting meditation. Meanwhile I studied & practised at various Buddhist centres in my city - Tibetan Buddhism, Triratna Buddhism, Zen & the teachings of Thich Nhat Hahn.
4 years ago I began studying the new wave of Nonduality teachers, including Tony Parsons (UK), Richard Sylvester (UK), Adyashanti (USA), Rupert Spira (UK), Fred Davis (USA), GP Walsh (USA), Eckhardt Tolle etc etc. I currently belong to a Meetup group involving the study of Nonduality. I have been & still am a voracious reader of spiritual books for over 40 years. The irony is, perhaps 44 years of spiritual seeking has become a barrier to awakening.

On a scale from 1 to 10, how willing are you to question any currently held beliefs about 'self?
10

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s-p-a-c-e
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Re: silence

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Wed Jun 03, 2020 4:35 pm

Hiya,

Lovely to meet you, and thank you for the introduction.
That's quite some spiritual journey you're on.

If you'd like we can explore this together, see what we can discover along the way.

Let me know and we can set off.

With best wishes,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne

Author, The Faun's Apprentice - see on Amazon:
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fauns-Apprenti ... B01AR2B63U

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alreadyfree
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Re: silence

Postby alreadyfree » Mon Jun 29, 2020 2:15 pm

Hi John

Lovely to meet you too. Thanks you for your email.

I'm really looking forward to being guided through the LU process.

So I'm ready to start as soon as you are.

best wishes
Phil

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Re: silence

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Mon Jun 29, 2020 4:28 pm

Hi Phil,

Lovely to meet you too. Thanks you for your email.

I'm really looking forward to being guided through the LU process.

So I'm ready to start as soon as you are.

Ok, good.

Phil, in a nutshell, what is this inquiry about for you?

Best wishes,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne

Author, The Faun's Apprentice - see on Amazon:
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fauns-Apprenti ... B01AR2B63U

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alreadyfree
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Re: silence

Postby alreadyfree » Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:35 am

Ok, good.

Phil, in a nutshell, what is this inquiry about for you?

Best wishes,
Joh

For me this is about awakening from the illusion of self, & thereby living without suffering (or less of it) & more clarity of perception & awareness. I want to live in a happy, peaceful & contented way. I'd also like to help others in an effective & powerful way. I hope this reply is enough. I can write more if necessary.

I apologise for the delay in replying. I didn't realise I should check the LU forum for your response. Usually I can reply within a day; since I'm retired & have no kids, grandkids, pets & plenty of free time.

Thanks John
Phil

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Re: silence

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Wed Jul 01, 2020 12:42 pm

Hiya Phil,

For me this is about awakening from the illusion of self, & thereby living without suffering (or less of it) & more clarity of perception & awareness. I want to live in a happy, peaceful & contented way. I'd also like to help others in an effective & powerful way. I hope this reply is enough. I can write more if necessary.

Ok, grand. So share briefly what the words 'illusion of self' mean for you right now.

I apologise for the delay in replying. I didn't realise I should check the LU forum for your response. Usually I can reply within a day; since I'm retired & have no kids, grandkids, pets & plenty of free time.

If you wish you can click on the Subscribe option. When you click on the thread, there's a POST REPLY button, and then a little Spanner icon. Click on that and select SUBSCRIBE - which will send you email notifications (usually) :)

Many thanks,
john
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne

Author, The Faun's Apprentice - see on Amazon:
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fauns-Apprenti ... B01AR2B63U

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alreadyfree
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Re: silence

Postby alreadyfree » Thu Jul 02, 2020 2:48 am

Ok, grand. So share briefly what the words 'illusion of self' mean for you right now.


Hi John

Thanks for your response.

Illusion of self for me means this belief in me having a separate identity: I am this body & mind with this name Phil. This means I am separate from everything outside this body/mind. This is the root of all my suffering.

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Re: silence

Postby alreadyfree » Thu Jul 02, 2020 5:38 am

If you wish you can click on the Subscribe option. When you click on the thread, there's a POST REPLY button, and then a little Spanner icon. Click on that and select SUBSCRIBE - which will send you email notifications (usually) :)

Many thanks,
john


Thanks for the subscribing advice. I followed your instructions. However, I'm still unsure if I'm subscribed & will be emailed whenever you reply. I also studied all the instructions under FAQ. I was already automatically clicked on the option "notify me when a reply is posted" although this has not happened so far. Will have to wait & see if it works. I would like to be notified when you reply so I can reply more quickly.

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Re: silence

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Thu Jul 02, 2020 9:28 am

Illusion of self for me means this belief in me having a separate identity: I am this body & mind with this name Phil. This means I am separate from everything outside this body/mind. This is the root of all my suffering.

Ok, good. Now, a thing with a belief such as this, is that we are subject to it, you might even say subjected to it.

If we weren't subject to it, we would be free of it.

Let this in for while and see what that's like - to notice the way in which you are subject to this belief.

Share with me when you're ready.

Best wishes,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne

Author, The Faun's Apprentice - see on Amazon:
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fauns-Apprenti ... B01AR2B63U

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alreadyfree
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Re: silence

Postby alreadyfree » Thu Jul 02, 2020 2:58 pm

Ok, good. Now, a thing with a belief such as this, is that we are subject to it, you might even say subjected to it.

If we weren't subject to it, we would be free of it.

Let this in for while and see what that's like - to notice the way in which you are subject to this belief.

Share with me when you're ready.

Best wishes,
Joh

The first thing I notice is that when I'm suffering - such as feeling depressed, sad, irritable, pessimistic - I automatically & instantly identify with the suffering. ie. I'M depressed etc. But if I no longer held this belief in a self, or viewed it as just another questionable belief, then I would view the suffering as separate from me & other than me. It reminds me of the saying: "you are the sky. Feelings & thoughts are just the clouds that come & go". I'm also aware that no beliefs are ever true.

This is like viewing "my" suffering from a different angle, a potentially liberating one.

Thanks for your help, John

Phil

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Re: silence

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Thu Jul 02, 2020 3:47 pm

The first thing I notice is that when I'm suffering - such as feeling depressed, sad, irritable, pessimistic - I automatically & instantly identify with the suffering. ie. I'M depressed etc. But if I no longer held this belief in a self, or viewed it as just another questionable belief, then I would view the suffering as separate from me & other than me. It reminds me of the saying: "you are the sky. Feelings & thoughts are just the clouds that come & go". I'm also aware that no beliefs are ever true.

Ok, good. A belief is a perception with a marketing budget. :) But strip a belief down, and we are left with a perception, namely, how we see this or that.

For example, we get irritable one day because something isn't happening as we'd like. Let's say, we're having some work done on the plumbing, and it won't be done when they said it would. Damn, bastards. Means I've got no water for another day. And so we have this PERCEPTION about what's happening and how terrible it is.

A perception is a perception. As you say, neither true or false. A perception is a view, that's all.

Now, bring your understanding that a perception is mere perception, and check out a few more common perceptions you may have. Maybe a perception about yourself, how you see yourself. Maybe a perception about life, how you see life.

For example, stay with the perception of yourself.
You already know what it's like to act as if the perception is true, such that you are therefore subject to it.

So, bring your understanding that the perception of yourself is a perception only, not true or false, just a perception. And thereby, you are not subject to this anymore, free of it.


Explore this Phil, and let me know how it goes.

This is like viewing "my" suffering from a different angle, a potentially liberating one.

Good. Have a lovely day Phil, look forward to hearing back.

Best wishes,
john
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne

Author, The Faun's Apprentice - see on Amazon:
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fauns-Apprenti ... B01AR2B63U

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Re: silence

Postby alreadyfree » Fri Jul 03, 2020 4:37 am

Ok, good. A belief is a perception with a marketing budget. :) But strip a belief down, and we are left with a perception, namely, how we see this or that.

For example, we get irritable one day because something isn't happening as we'd like. Let's say, we're having some work done on the plumbing, and it won't be done when they said it would. Damn, bastards. Means I've got no water for another day. And so we have this PERCEPTION about what's happening and how terrible it is.

A perception is a perception. As you say, neither true or false. A perception is a view, that's all.

Now, bring your understanding that a perception is mere perception, and check out a few more common perceptions you may have. Maybe a perception about yourself, how you see yourself. Maybe a perception about life, how you see life.

For example, stay with the perception of yourself.
You already know what it's like to act as if the perception is true, such that you are therefore subject to it.

So, bring your understanding that the perception of yourself is a perception only, not true or false, just a perception. And thereby, you are not subject to this anymore, free of it.

Explore this Phil, and let me know how it goes.

Thanks John, I still haven't figured out the Quote function so bear with me. I'll read the instructions yet again.

It seems to me that my perception of myself is strongly linked to how I feel. If things are going well & I'm feeling happy, then I have a positive perception of myself. When things aren't going well & maybe I feel down, then my perception of myself can be quite negative. This may lead to thought's like "life is impossibly difficult, why is my life so hard, what's the use?" etc. But I know this mood & self-perception will eventually change to a more positive one.

So the feeling aspect is crucial in my perception of myself & the world & life in general

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Re: silence

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Fri Jul 03, 2020 7:49 pm

It seems to me that my perception of myself is strongly linked to how I feel. If things are going well & I'm feeling happy, then I have a positive perception of myself. When things aren't going well & maybe I feel down, then my perception of myself can be quite negative. This may lead to thought's like "life is impossibly difficult, why is my life so hard, what's the use?" etc. But I know this mood & self-perception will eventually change to a more positive one.

So the feeling aspect is crucial in my perception of myself & the world & life in general

Ok, good. Here's the general point - we take perceptions as true, no question. This is the basis of our suffering full stop.

If we feel shit - and nothing wrong with feeling shit by the way - but if we feel shit, this is reaction to a perception. We see it this way, and react to it. There'd be no point in feeling shit otherwise.

We can always explore this by asking: How do I see this, such that I feel this way?

And this will start to show up the perception.

For example, perception: "Oh I can't even sort X out" -> reaction: feel shit.

Have a work with this Phil - get to the place where you can see the connection between emotion and perception.

Share when you're ready.

Best,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne

Author, The Faun's Apprentice - see on Amazon:
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fauns-Apprenti ... B01AR2B63U

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alreadyfree
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Re: silence

Postby alreadyfree » Sat Jul 04, 2020 2:51 am

Ok, good. Here's the general point - we take perceptions as true, no question. This is the basis of our suffering full stop.

If we feel shit - and nothing wrong with feeling shit by the way - but if we feel shit, this is reaction to a perception. We see it this way, and react to it. There'd be no point in feeling shit otherwise.

We can always explore this by asking: How do I see this, such that I feel this way?

And this will start to show up the perception.

For example, perception: "Oh I can't even sort X out" -> reaction: feel shit.

Have a work with this Phil - get to the place where you can see the connection between emotion and perception.

Share when you're ready.

Best,
John
Thanks John - very interesting. By the way, this issue of feeling shit has been a huge challenge for me for about 40 years. I've been on antidepressants many times including the past 16 years, been to many many therapists & tried many many alternate therapies. And yet the issue continues. Yes I know LU is officially not a solution to depression etc. However, to be honest, it is a key reason why I'm trying LU. Only yesterday I was thinking that if LU doesn't work for me then I've run out of options - having tried virtually everything else (especially spiritual seeking).

To answer your suggestions: I'm always very aware that most of the great awakened teachers say that happiness comes from within & not from external circumstances, events & people. And yet I still find it difficult to actualise or make this real in my life. If I feel shit I continue to blame external circumstances - the winter weather, my chronic isolation, my chronic lack of success with online dating, physical health problems such as enlarged prostate due to my age (I'm 69), disillusionment with endless spiritual seeking etc.

I try to counter this "blame game" by acknowledging all the good things in my life, which helps to some degree, although I get tired of this ongoing struggle.

It seems to get beyond this impasse, there's another step I need to take. The only step I can think of is to continually remind myself whenever I fall into blaming those external things - to remind myself "this is just another questionable or false perception".

By the way, in the past 2 days I'm having a lot of trouble trying to login to the LU Gate. Either the website doesn't open at all or is extremely slow to do so. I have posted a message on their Facebook page asking if there's a problem with the website - no reply yet. I don't have this problem with other websites so maybe the LU website is overloaded with users etc. Do you have this problem too?

I'm grateful for your excellent help.
Phil

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Re: silence

Postby s-p-a-c-e » Sun Jul 05, 2020 11:25 pm

Hiya Phil,

Thanks John - very interesting. By the way, this issue of feeling shit has been a huge challenge for me for about 40 years. I've been on antidepressants many times including the past 16 years, been to many many therapists & tried many many alternate therapies. And yet the issue continues. Yes I know LU is officially not a solution to depression etc. However, to be honest, it is a key reason why I'm trying LU. Only yesterday I was thinking that if LU doesn't work for me then I've run out of options - having tried virtually everything else (especially spiritual seeking).

Thanks Phil. How would you briefly describe the issue you mention here to a complete stranger.

To answer your suggestions: I'm always very aware that most of the great awakened teachers say that happiness comes from within & not from external circumstances, events & people. And yet I still find it difficult to actualise or make this real in my life. If I feel shit I continue to blame external circumstances - the winter weather, my chronic isolation, my chronic lack of success with online dating, physical health problems such as enlarged prostate due to my age (I'm 69), disillusionment with endless spiritual seeking etc.

Phil, none of us like to face ourselves, for the simple reason we know we won't like what we find. :) But at some point, we can find a way to approach this that is fruitful. So we start to open up to ourselves, as my mother would say, to let the air get to whatever is hurting us.

I try to counter this "blame game" by acknowledging all the good things in my life, which helps to some degree, although I get tired of this ongoing struggle.

Yes, we all do it, but essentially its escapism, running away from the hurt we feel. But it's ok, doesn't matter what age we are, we can slow down, stop running and consider turning around to face what we don't wish to.

One of my favourite books is The Wizard of Earthsea by Ursula LeGuin, which is about just this topic. Beautiful book, have a read if you fancy it.
It seems to get beyond this impasse, there's another step I need to take. The only step I can think of is to continually remind myself whenever I fall into blaming those external things - to remind myself "this is just another questionable or false perception".

Well, yes, but before that, some healing of our heart is always beneficial. Perceptions are neither true or false, they are the way we get to know stuff, so they are totally useful. Even if what they are presenting is say, that "I am no good, useless", knowing it's a perception I know it's not necessarily true, so I don't have to run away from it. At the same time, I want to know if there's something to learn here, cos' if there is, I'm all ears. :)

So, I may explore ""I am no good, useless" and discover that actually, this is something I believe about myself. And then I can explore how come? Whether it's past it's sell by date? Even thank it for the reminder.

Because it's a perception, I don't have to fix it, but I can use it.

Does that make sense?

By the way, in the past 2 days I'm having a lot of trouble trying to login to the LU Gate. Either the website doesn't open at all or is extremely slow to do so. I have posted a message on their Facebook page asking if there's a problem with the website - no reply yet. I don't have this problem with other websites so maybe the LU website is overloaded with users etc. Do you have this problem too?

Yeah, we have web problems Phil, but all sorted now.

With much love,
John
"The more he looked inside, the more Piglet wasn't there." - A.A.Milne

Author, The Faun's Apprentice - see on Amazon:
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fauns-Apprenti ... B01AR2B63U


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