How to stop searching

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AnastasiaChe
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby AnastasiaChe » Tue Jul 20, 2021 5:29 pm

Hi Jon!
Does it seem that each sense is "open" ?
Yes, “open” is a good description of what I see and feel regarding all senses.
Yes, that can be said, of course, but go a little simpler than this. Dont worry about "eyes" or "tongues" being "involved" That's thinking about things. Notice the absolute baseline of sensation, free from any concern about how it may or may not happen, like a baby , before words or ideas.
I tried my best to see as a baby. So, all these senses are just some kind of somewhat different sensations that just appear. I don't really know whether to call them sensations or not. Seeing is the farthest from what I understand under sensation, but if I examine it as a baby, I probably don't want to label it somehow. All the senses are just something what happens. And they are not limited by sense organs.

A lot of thoughts about everything appear again. Like “I have probably imagined all this” and “how could it be possible that they are so-to-speak “open”” and “wtf am I doing at all”. And I remembered one episode of House MD there one woman “saw with ears” and “heard with eyes” and as I know, they use only real (or at least somewhat real) cases in the episodes. These were the only registered thoughts, maybe they were more.

And yes, there seems to be anxiety about all this. Maybe that's the unconscious reason why I skipped to answer yesterday and feel irritated and somewhat depressed all day yesterday and today. But I’m not sure this is connected.

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JonathanR
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby JonathanR » Wed Jul 21, 2021 5:40 am

Hi Nastia

. And yes, there seems to be anxiety about all this. Maybe that's the unconscious reason why I skipped to answer yesterday and feel irritated and somewhat depressed all day yesterday and today. But I’m not sure this is connected.
Thank you for telling me this. Anxiety does happen sometimes as we investigate "self" but it can often be helped.

It can be very helpful to quietly sit and see where this comes up. You already mention many thoughts. It may help to ask Head if it is happy? and then wait to see if there is an answer. (This may sound 'mad' but it isn't). Whatever Head may say, thank it very much for this, tell it that you love it very much. Give it a hug. And ask it if it would like to relax now? If Head does want to relax, ask it when it would like to do this.?.

If head relaxes that is great. If not do not worry. Move to Heart. Again, notice what is going on with Heart. Ask heart if it is happy? Wait for a response. Whatever happens (or not) with Heart also give it a hug and tell it that you love it, so much. Would heart like to relax?

It is possible, often, to speak with fear and to let that feeling know how much it is appreciated for trying to protect. What an amazing job this instinct has done throughout the generations and in our life to protect from harm. But now, in this case, nobody can be 'hurt' or even needs protection. It's already noticed that there isn't a 'self' that could be hurt or harmed , do it's possible to relax. Give gear a big hug and let it know that it's free to stand down and not worry.


Let me know if these things help and we can look at the other things you wrote about in your post.

With love

Jon

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AnastasiaChe
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby AnastasiaChe » Wed Jul 21, 2021 8:42 pm

Hi Jon!

Looks like it helped, maybe not 100%, but at least 80%. It seems that everyone has calmed down.

Love, Nastia

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JonathanR
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby JonathanR » Thu Jul 22, 2021 10:50 pm

Great Nastia,

In that case very gently keep investigating sensations as you have been doing.

It may happen that no self will be noticed.

Notice if there's an 'I' that "does " any of this looking.

Out in the park or countryside ,notice if there's a line where "you" end and "everything else starts

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JonathanR
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby JonathanR » Thu Jul 22, 2021 10:52 pm

Great Nastia,

In that case very gently keep investigating sensations as you have been doing.

It may happen that no self will be noticed.

Notice if there's an 'I' that "does " any of this looking.

Out in the park or countryside ,notice if there's a line where "you" end and "everything else starts

Love

Jon

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AnastasiaChe
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby AnastasiaChe » Fri Jul 23, 2021 9:42 pm

Hi Jon!

Today I’ve noticed several episodes of a strong feeling (or though) of “I”.

While I was on the countryside, I caught a very strong and “retro” feeling of “I”. I call it retro because it somehow reminded the feeling of my teenage years, about 20 years ago, where was no awareness of any kind. And then the limits appeared, the limits of the physical body. But not exactly. My clothes, footwear and glasses were included in the sense of this “I”. =) That's funny.

Another moment when there seemed to be a strong feeling of “I” – while arguing with my husband about our daughter’s behavior. Like there was something to protect. On a deeper level it seems like the one who needs protection is the “I” itself.

Next, the most interesting sensations were during physical body movements. First I was walking and asking “who is walking?” and next I was putting my phone into a pocket and asked “who is putting the phone in the pocket?” Like physical body movements are the most questionable, like there should be someone, who does it and if not – it is the weirdest thing in all this inquiry. At the same time it was so exciting to imagine or to try to feel that there is no "I" who was walking or doing any other body movements.
Notice if there's an 'I' that "does " any of this looking.
It seems that today I am too far away from seeing the absence of a self. It really feels like there is some source of looking. Some kind of consciousness that possesses looking, investigating, an intention to investigate. I feel like I haven’t done a good job today.
Out in the park or countryside ,notice if there's a line where "you" end and "everything else starts
It seemed the simplest for today. I’m quite used to the feeling of no boundaries, it often appears in my meditations or other practices. So, no, when you look deep inside, no boundaries could be found. At the same time, as I mentioned earlier, afterwards quite strong “I-thougth” appeared.

Was it important to do it exactly in a park or countryside? Would there be any difference if I would do it in my apartment or in a city or by the sea?

Love,

Nastia

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JonathanR
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby JonathanR » Sat Jul 24, 2021 11:01 am

Hi Nastia
While I was on the countryside, I caught a very strong and “retro” feeling of “I”. I call it retro because it somehow reminded the feeling of my teenage years, about 20 years ago, where was no awareness of any kind. And then the limits appeared, the limits of the physical body. But not exactly. My clothes, footwear and glasses were included in the sense of this “I”. =) That's funny.
Almost like a package-deal version of "I" ?
Another moment when there seemed to be a strong feeling of “I” – while arguing with my husband about our daughter’s behavior. Like there was something to protect. On a deeper level it seems like the one who needs protection is the “I” itself.
Its fascinating to see this as it happens.
Next, the most interesting sensations were during physical body movements. First I was walking and asking “who is walking?” and next I was putting my phone into a pocket and asked “who is putting the phone in the pocket?” Like physical body movements are the most questionable, like there should be someone, who does it and if not – it is the weirdest thing in all this inquiry.
Ha ha! Yes! What is going on? These body movements, all quite well coordinated, as when driving a car, all do seem to happen, regardless of whether anyone is "home" or not! Where is the one that's imagined to be controlling all these things?

I have a suggestion that you could try. Where you ask " who is walking?" try changing the wording to "What is walking"?
It seems that today I am too far away from seeing the absence of a self. It really feels like there is some source of looking. Some kind of consciousness that possesses looking, investigating, an intention to investigate. I feel like I haven’t done a good job today.
No worries. This happens. The illusion of a self that "does" things or "doesn't do a good job" can be very convincing. Is there anything that could prevent such thoughts from appearing sometimes, and from being believed for a while?
Was it important to do it exactly in a park or countryside? Would there be any difference if I would do it in my apartment or in a city or by the sea?
Its important that its somewhere where there's nature. So, by the sea would be fine, in the countryside is great, or even in a park would do. The main thing is to find somewhere where life is all going on, weather, sun, air, grass, sea, clouds, trees, insects, animals, birds, people, where everything is alive . (Concrete apartments are not the best for this).

Once you're there, notice all this life happening around and also any sensations or thoughts going on 'inside' too. Then look for an edge or line where 'You' end and 'everything else' begins. Can such a line be found, anywhere is experience?


with love

Jon

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AnastasiaChe
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby AnastasiaChe » Sun Jul 25, 2021 6:50 am

Hi Jon!
Almost like a package-deal version of "I" ?
Indeed. And if continue to investigate, this package would include a lot of everything else.
when driving a car, all do seem to happen, regardless of whether anyone is "home" or not! Where is the one that's imagined to be controlling all these things?
That's great that you mentioned car driving, because on this very day I had an experience of driving "when nobody was home" after a little insufficient sleep. And everything happens even without any (imaginary) control for a couple of seconds.
I have a suggestion that you could try. Where you ask " who is walking?" try changing the wording to "What is walking"?
In that case the answer looks very easy. The body is walking. The legs are moving, the hands are moving.

The hands are holding the phone and typing.
The illusion of a self that "does" things or "doesn't do a good job" can be very convincing. Is there anything that could prevent such thoughts from appearing sometimes, and from being believed for a while?
When the real experience of seeing of a self absence happens, this kind of thoughts don't appear for a while, but this experience or seeing doesn't “prevent” thoughts from appearing. They just don't appear, no preventing. And they can come back “as they like” =) and no one and nothing can stop them when they do.
Once you're there, notice all this life happening around and also any sensations or thoughts going on 'inside' too. Then look for an edge or line where 'You' end and 'everything else' begins. Can such a line be found, anywhere is experience?
I haven't been in nature that yesterday, will leave this exercise once again for tomorrow.

With love,
Nastia

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JonathanR
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby JonathanR » Sun Jul 25, 2021 11:04 am

Hi Nastia
. Almost like a package-deal version of "I" ?

Indeed. And if continue to investigate, this package would include a lot of everything else.
Yes. How much goes with the belief in a separate"I"?
. That's great that you mentioned car driving, because on this very day I had an experience of driving "when nobody was home" after a little insufficient sleep. And everything happens even without any (imaginary) control for a couple of seconds.
Good to notice. An interesting thing is , even with imaginary control, what is it that is actually making driving, or anything else, happen?
. " What is walking"?

In that case the answer looks very easy. The body is walking. The legs are moving, the hands are moving.
Sorry, I meant to out it like this :. Walking is happening. "Legs and hands" move, for sure. But what entity, if any, can be found that is "doing the walking" ?

Walking along, do "legs exist" when looking at the sky?
. When the real experience of seeing of a self absence happens, this kind of thoughts don't appear for a while, but this experience or seeing doesn't “prevent” thoughts from appearing. They just don't appear, no preventing. And they can come back “as they like” =) and no one and nothing can stop them when they do.
True.
. I haven't been in nature that yesterday, will leave this exercise once again for tomorrow.
Ok. Great. Let me know how it goes?


With love

Jon

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AnastasiaChe
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby AnastasiaChe » Sun Jul 25, 2021 11:58 pm

Hi Jon!
How much goes with the belief in a separate"I"?
Almost everything. Even all other people and all other creatures and everything visible and even almost everything invisible.
An interesting thing is , even with imaginary control, what is it that is actually making driving, or anything else, happen?
That's good, you pointed it out. Why did I pick the case “without control”? How different are these cases? They’re not. What is making everything happen? Can't find anything. Everything just happens by itself.
But what entity, if any, can be found that is "doing the walking" ?
I can not find anyone.
And here comes out doubt on a stage. I had a discussion with my husband again. While I was talking to him I had quite strong feeling of “no-self” and the topic of our conversation was the meaning of life. I told that everything is seen like some kind of a game just for fun, but he argued that he feels that he has a feeling of a deep sacred meaning of his life.

And when I say that there is no one, I feel anxiety because it feels meaningless. But it feels like there should be a deep meaning of everything, still without too much drama. I welcome anxiety and these thoughts, which “invited” anxiety on a stage. “Hi, dear, there is no one to protect. Everybody's fine”. =) Why the thought about meaninglessness came? Is it true that if there is no I, everything is meaningless? Who knows. And does it really matter.
Walking along, do "legs exist" when looking at the sky?
That's funny again. I remembered that feeling I wrote about earlier — the body as a shell. And now with this question it develops. So, I never ser my back. Ok, sometimes in a mirror. So, this means it doesn't exist when I don't touch it. =) So do the legs and anything else. When I close my eyes, everything that is not touched, is gone. This is so much fun.

A video game there exists only the visible part of map and everything else. It can be seemingly 3D, but eventually, you see the screen and understand that everything is 2D. I had this “2D” feeling after the question about legs and investigating the answer for it.

I see how people take offense when someone tells them “you don't exist as a separate entity”. But why? This is so much freedom and joy and openness, and you are everyone and everything.
I haven't been in nature that yesterday, will leave this exercise once again for tomorrow.
Ok. Great. Let me know how it goes?
Again, I wasn't out alone. I tried to do it while speaking with my husband inside and also tried to take into the focus cars and people and everything else outside at the same time. The limits are where your senses reach. So, first limit is set by sight and the next by hearing. There is no border between “me” and everything else. There is a feeling of being, an energy and this seems to end somewhere near the reach of senses.

I’ll repeat this one somewhere in nature.

Love, Nastia

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JonathanR
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby JonathanR » Mon Jul 26, 2021 6:16 am

Hello Nastia
. And here comes out doubt on a stage. I had a discussion with my husband again. While I was talking to him I had quite strong feeling of “no-self” and the topic of our conversation was the meaning of life. I told that everything is seen like some kind of a game just for fun, but he argued that he feels that he has a feeling of a deep sacred meaning of his life.
.
Maybe it is deep and sacred and fun all at the same time? Maybe sacred can be fun, fun can be sacred?

Sacred doesn't have to be only serious. Playful doesn't have to be interpreted as meaningless. It could be profound.
And when I say that there is no one, I feel anxiety because it feels meaningless. But it feels like there should be a deep meaning of everything, still without too much drama. I welcome anxiety and these thoughts, which “invited” anxiety on a stage. “Hi, dear, there is no one to protect. Everybody's fine”. =) Why the thought about meaninglessness came? Is it true that if there is no I, everything is meaningless? Who knows. And does it really matter.
You're right to mention this. Well done for meeting this anxiety. As long as there are thoughts there's the possibility of interpreting things as "meaningless" but it cuts both ways. "Meaninglessness is its self rendered meaningless by its own interpretation of things, (which is quite funny).
But it feels like there should be a deep meaning of everything, still without too much drama.
I agree about "without too much drama". What's to say there is not deep meaning? What's to say there isn't fun too?

Meaning/meaningless are interpretations ABOUT life whilst life unfolds anyway,, indescribably , whether these labels are applied or not.


With love

Jon

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AnastasiaChe
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby AnastasiaChe » Mon Jul 26, 2021 10:46 pm

Hi dear Jon!

I catched myself thinking that you became so near and dear in the meantime. And your guidance is so gentle and caring and neutral at the same time. Thank you for being here.

So, finally again I am in the woods, by the river. Where is a feeling of infinite being. And every single bird, insect or a tree, which I see hear or feel is the same experience as experience of this body. Not in terms that they are equal or the same, but in terms "for me" if there would be this “me”. It's a little hard to find the right words for these feelings and experience, especially in a foreighn language, but I'll try.

Like when I see a bird it is just an experience of seeing a bird, and hearing it. When an ant crawls on my hand, it is an experience of that sensation, not an experience of an ant. It doesn't belong to an ant, nor does it to “me”. No borders. Borders of physical body – could be. (Could be questioned as well). But borders of feeling/thought of self/me – no, there aren't. Everything starts and ends in a same place or space.
Maybe it is deep and sacred and fun all at the same time? Maybe sacred can be fun, fun can be sacred?
Yes, this is what I was trying to formulate somewhere. Fun and sacredness doesn't feel like mutually exclusive. Maybe even more – fun is quite sacred by itself.
I agree about "without too much drama". What's to say there is not deep meaning? What's to say there isn't fun too?
It seems some kind of religious heritage that only suffering can be sacred and meaningful. But I don't feel or see it that way. As I mentioned above – fun feels even more meaningful when you don't assume, how should everything be, but see it.

With love, Nastia

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JonathanR
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby JonathanR » Tue Jul 27, 2021 5:49 pm

Dear Nastia

. catched myself thinking that you became so near and dear in the meantime. And your guidance is so gentle and caring and neutral at the same time. Thank you for being here.
It's my pleasure. And thanks for saying so.
. So, finally again I am in the woods, by the river. Where is a feeling of infinite being. And every single bird, insect or a tree, which I see hear or feel is the same experience as experience of this body. Not in terms that they are equal or the same, but in terms "for me" if there would be this “me”. It's a little hard to find the right words for these feelings and experience, especially in a foreighn language, but I'll try.

Like when I see a bird it is just an experience of seeing a bird, and hearing it. When an ant crawls on my hand, it is an experience of that sensation, not an experience of an ant. It doesn't belong to an ant, nor does it to “me”. No borders. Borders of physical body – could be. (Could be questioned as well). But borders of feeling/thought of self/me – no, there aren't. Everything starts and ends in a same place or space.
Beautiful.
. Yes, this is what I was trying to formulate somewhere. Fun and sacredness doesn't feel like mutually exclusive. Maybe even more – fun is quite sacred by itself.
Yes!
. It seems some kind of religious heritage that only suffering can be sacred and meaningful.
Yes that's quite a heavy and loaded judgement isn't it, somehow within culture and often assumed to be 'the truth'?

As I mentioned above – fun feels even more meaningful when you don't assume, how should everything be, but see it. [/quote]

Right.

Well, you've begun already to investigate how things happen but what do you make of "free will" or "choices" and "decisions".?

is it possible to find a find a choice being made? Or a decision? What is going on with these?


With love

Jon

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AnastasiaChe
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby AnastasiaChe » Wed Jul 28, 2021 9:58 pm

Dear Jon!

Yesterday I was exhausted and had no energy to look, sorry for missing a day.
Well, you've begun already to investigate how things happen but what do you make of "free will" or "choices" and "decisions".?

is it possible to find a find a choice being made? Or a decision? What is going on with these?
This question turned out to be quite diffucult. I assume that the right answer is that there are no really choices and decisions, but I don't see it.

Ok, everyday decisions like to “get a cup of tea", "raise from a chair" or "go to the store" cannot be found, in general – everything just happens. But sometimes there are thoughts that disguise themselves as decisions. For instance “the laundry should be washed”. It doesn't really feels like choice or decision just statement of fact.

But the most difficult to see it in the situations of let's call it life-changing decision. (I say it as if washed laundry or cup of tea doesn't change anything.=) But here I mean something more global). The “decisions” about which I think several days or weeks which way to choose. And (at least superficially) it seems like this thinking process leads to some kind of choice or decision. Of course, this “choice” is just a thought, but does it change anything? It still looks like a choice/decision.

Love,
Nastia

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JonathanR
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Re: How to stop searching

Postby JonathanR » Wed Jul 28, 2021 11:08 pm

Hi Nastia!
. But the most difficult to see it in the situations of let's call it life-changing decision. (I say it as if washed laundry or cup of tea doesn't change anything.=) But here I mean something more global). The “decisions” about which I think several days or weeks which way to choose. And (at least superficially) it seems like this thinking process leads to some kind of choice or decision. Of course, this “choice” is just a thought, but does it change anything? It still looks like a choice/decision.
Yes, I understand .

Actually it is quite difficult to investigate those apparently life-changing decisions or choices. So much time is spent in thinking them through that it really seems that "I decided".

What we can do successfully, however, is to look at exactly how "decisions" and "choices" happen. And that really had to be done in the present moment, to eliminate error, imagination or guesswork.

If the particulars of how everyday decisions happen are seen then this can give insight into even how "big decisions" happen.

Let's explore the everyday occasion of making tea.

Go and make a cup of tea, or coffee if you prefer, then bring it back here.

Now, there may have been a thought about going to get tea? An image or even words that appeared? Then , in thought, there is an idea about a 'me' imagined in a "future" getting tea. But did you notice any decision to move legs, or did they move without decision? Was there a decision to coordinate movements across a room towards the kitchen? Or did that happen automatically?

On reaching the kitchen was a choice noticed between tea and coffee?

Was a decision made to "fill kettle"?

Was a decision made to walk back?

With love

Jon


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