Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

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Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby Sr.K » Tue Aug 21, 2012 11:39 am

Hello, My name is Òskar, from Barcelona.

I'm a bit nervous about what can come out. But anyway I'm looking for a guide to start working in myself here. A bit of spanish will be a lot useful because my english is not the best but I'll promise I'll make a great effort to understand and explain myself.

I've interested in buddhism since young, today I'm 42 years old, and while I've been practising a bit of meditation since then I've started to meditate seriously just three years ago, first zazen lately advaita. Yesterday was my bithday and just found some blog pointing to this forum so I thought I must give it a try.

I understand intelectualy that there's no Self but I fail to realize that truth. So I'm asking for someone to help me a little bit in this matter.

Thank you very much

K.

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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby mag » Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:22 pm

Hi Òskar,

I could help you. My name is Henri. Would you accept me as your guide in this process?

Warm regards,

Henri
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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby mag » Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:24 pm

If yes, tell me your expectations about liberation, what would change in your life?
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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby mag » Tue Aug 21, 2012 1:32 pm

... and just a few things to ensure a straight-forward process for us both:
  • I will be making questions to you and expect you to answer honestly based on your immediate experience. Stories and philosophies are nice, but not needed here :)
  • we both commit to writing at least one message per day unless otherwise informed
  • you can leave all other materials and practices for the duration of this dialogue
Do you understand everything said above? Let me know if there is uncertainties about the process.
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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby Sr.K » Tue Aug 21, 2012 4:27 pm

Thank you for answering Mag, I accept you of course!

About the rules, ok, I'll try to write daily, I could fail could be one saturday o sunday, but if you find this inacceptable I'll try to change my habits and obligations for a while. When you say "You can leave other pactices" do you mean that you recommend doing so? Ok I will stop meditation if this is part of the proces or it can help.

You ask what would change in my life after liberation? How can I know? I havent been there! but as long as I know I will reach more peace and joy my ilfe as it is, and above all I want to know the reality, the truth, I want to know if "I" is really a dream, I want to know things like they are and could be get rid of the fear of death.

I will answer honestly based on my immediate experience, and I will take time to work on everything that you ask me. I'm here to work for the truth.

Muchas gracias

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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby mag » Tue Aug 21, 2012 8:48 pm

Thank you for answering Mag, I accept you of course!

About the rules, ok, I'll try to write daily, I could fail could be one saturday o sunday, but if you find this inacceptable I'll try to change my habits and obligations for a while. When you say "You can leave other pactices" do you mean that you recommend doing so? Ok I will stop meditation if this is part of the proces or it can help.

You ask what would change in my life after liberation? How can I know? I havent been there! but as long as I know I will reach more peace and joy my ilfe as it is, and above all I want to know the reality, the truth, I want to know if "I" is really a dream, I want to know things like they are and could be get rid of the fear of death.

I will answer honestly based on my immediate experience, and I will take time to work on everything that you ask me. I'm here to work for the truth. Muchas gracias
Hi Oskar,

Good.... If you are leading a very busy life, you don't need to feel bad about missing a day in the weekend or so. It's definitely a plus if we are able chew these things on a daily basis. You could leave a formal meditation practice for the time being and use that time instead for LOOKING whatever we are focusing at.

Your expectations are fine... it's allways a good intention to desire for Truth, reality, rather than any passing emotional states.

I appreciate your honest and sincere approach towards this work that we are starting now together.

We'll start with the classic LU opening question, not a big surprise for you if you have read other threads.

What kind of thoughts and feelings are triggered when I say following:

Oskar, you don't exist, and never did.
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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby Sr.K » Wed Aug 22, 2012 7:17 am

Good morning!

I've read just three threads in the "Liberations or there is no Gate" section. It's better to read more of them or just keep working with you?
What kind of thoughts and feelings are triggered when I say following:

Oskar, you don't exist, and never did.
This morning this statement doesnt trigger much feelings, nothing very noticeable. Could be it's because I dont really know how is "life without Oskar". Right now it's all very intellectual. Could be is arising a small feeling of peace but I think it's because my idea of no-I reminds me of peaceful moments of meditation

Also there're thoughts arrising trying to figure how is this possible and how it will be ¿peace? ¿will I see the world in a different way when I realize that? ¿how will I feel?

Then I

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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby Sr.K » Wed Aug 22, 2012 7:23 am

Then I remember the "and never did" part and get a feeling of confusion. Now I'm starting to feel confused about this statement but I dont really know why, could be I'm confusing "Oskar", ego, and the thoughts?. The later existed in the past (and now) but not Oskar? But what are we really meaning with Oskar? or by "existence"?

Confused.

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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby mag » Wed Aug 22, 2012 10:04 am

Hi Oskar,
I've read just three threads in the "Liberations or there is no Gate" section. It's better to read more of them or just keep working with you?
There is no any benefit reading other threads. It may be distraction. Just focus on your own LOOKING.
What kind of thoughts and feelings are triggered when I say following: Oskar, you don't exist, and never did.This morning this statement doesnt trigger much feelings, nothing very noticeable. Could be it's because I dont really know how is "life without Oskar". Right now it's all very intellectual. Could be is arising a small feeling of peace but I think it's because my idea of no-I reminds me of peaceful moments of meditation


OK, this is fine. Long-time practioners of spirituality and meditation don't necessarily have so great fears about not existing, no-self.
Also there're thoughts arrising trying to figure how is this possible and how it will be ¿peace? ¿will I see the world in a different way when I realize that? ¿how will I feel?
Oskar, what is the current evidence in your direct experience (no stories) that you exist as a personal being?

Is there anything personal in bodily sensations or sensory perceptions around you? There is some warmth in feet and if you look around you and don't label with mind anything, what is there?
Then I remember the "and never did" part and get a feeling of confusion. Now I'm starting to feel confused about this statement but I dont really know why, could be I'm confusing "Oskar", ego, and the thoughts?. The later existed in the past (and now) but not Oskar? But what are we really meaning with Oskar? or by "existence"?
Body and mind exists for sure, but from where do you derive the sense of self, being Oskar?
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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby Sr.K » Wed Aug 22, 2012 10:53 am

Oskar, what is the current evidence in your direct experience (no stories) that you exist as a personal being?

Is there anything personal in bodily sensations or sensory perceptions around you? There is some warmth in feet and if you look around you and don't label with mind anything, what is there?
Body and mind exists for sure, but from where do you derive the sense of self, being Oskar?
Where or how arise the sensation of being a BEING a SELF?. Ok, it's not an easy question. In fact I've been observing myself and found it quite difficult to say.

Mainly I think is a perception thing, I label myself as the one who perceives: sees, hears.

Time ago could have believed that I was my thoughts but with time you see that your thoughts are not you. You stop thoughts and till have a feeling of being a self. You perceive thoughts in a similar way to seeing or hearing.

So I think my sense of self derives from believing "I'm the one who perceives"

Could be my answer is too much influenced by the advaita idea of the witness, but no other answer comes to mind now.

You ask too about evidence of personal being. I think we base that in the sense of "presence", and that sense of presence comes from being the witness of percepcions. I found a continuity in witnessing perceptions and we call it Oskar. Continuity have got a lot to do with memories, could be my sense of self comes from remembering perceiving thing always from de same viewpoint? the point of view of Oskar?

You ask too about looking around and not labeling, I dont know it this is totally possible, but I can try and see just perception: forms colors, noises... But I label them, it's not really a totally unlabelled perception. When I feel a warmth in my feet and dont label it's just a perception of a body feeling, I dont find easy to go further than that... I've got a sensation of where (in my feet) and what (warmth) but to know that I think I've labelled it before!

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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby Sr.K » Wed Aug 22, 2012 4:49 pm

Ok, a witness of perception could be is not aware of itself so we need consciousness to "see the witness" in a way.

I mean we need to know that we're perceiving to stablish the sense of self.

So its not enough to perceive thoughts and feelings and percepctions, we need to know that we're perceiving, and that's consciousness, isnt it?

So consciousness could be the core of the feeling os self?

I keep thinking about it...

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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby mag » Wed Aug 22, 2012 6:38 pm

Oskar, let's simplify....

STOP.

Describe what kind of raw sense data is perceived in the place labeled "Oskar". I write "in the place called Oskar", because you don't exist as a person, as a separate self, even if you are hypnotized to believe so.

Describe in great detail what is 1) heard, 2) smelled, 3) sensed, 4) tasted and 5) seen in that space of "Oskar". Spend 15 minutes on each category. It's not easy to express these perceptions in a language other than your mother tongue, so don't worry about that, but just be sure that you LOOK at perceptions of each 5 categories carefully and one category after another. Look at perceptions non-conceptually, without analysis, just register them in their very primitive form.

Do you think those sensations would be happening without there being a self to observe those? Just mind registering them. What is the need for a self, Oskar? Are you able to find any sense of self in the sensations that you described? Is the sense of being Oskar derived even partially from the warmth felt in the bottom of your feet?

Which one is more truthful:
- Oskar types on a keyboard... or typing happens on a keyboard? Isn't it so that when you LOOK around you, all that there is, are different processes of life: body walking, wounds on skin healing, mind thinking, fingers typing, trees growing, etc? Just in your current perspective you have day dreamed an "I" to be in the center of all these activities. How crazy is that?

Now, if you close your eyes, can you feel that "I-am-ness", the sense of being alive, which has allways been there?

What is that which labels that impersonal "I-am-ness" as "Oskar"?

After previous examinations, can you tell me from where do you get the sense of being "Oskar", right now?
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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby Sr.K » Thu Aug 23, 2012 7:45 am

I havent done my exercises yet, I'll do them this evening but regarding to seeing and hearing I've done that practice often and I'll write some draft impresions now and this evening or tomorrow morning, when I have finished my exercices I will write more. You dont have to answer or even read this if you think I should do the complete exercise before.

My impressions about raw seeing and hearing is that the percepcion enhances a little bit, things look brighter and new. It's felt too a subtle sensation of no-mind, no-self, during the exercice I thought I had glimpse of what's to be out of the hipnosis of Self. You feel nobody is there seeing or hearing, just the seeing of the hearing So yes, I felt there's no need of Self in perception, no need for an observer.

About the sense of being alive, is it just the body sense? that warmth in my feet?

But ok, I was confusing things, that sense of being alive is a different thing, it's not the sense of Oskar, right?
Now, if you close your eyes, can you feel that "I-am-ness", the sense of being alive, which has allways been there?

What is that which labels that impersonal "I-am-ness" as "Oskar"?

After previous examinations, can you tell me from where do you get the sense of being "Oskar", right now?
OK, yes, in my meditation (which I'm not doing these days) I focus on the "I-am-ness" so I see clearly that it's a body feeling or something similar and it seems to have no Self, no Oskar, no label.

So could be I was wrong some posts ago and the Oskar label comes really from thoughts?. While meditating I disidentify Oskar from thoughts (at least to an extent) but not during the rest of the day. I've been trying to observe and I think that when a thought starts, Oskar starts. By thought I mean that inner voice talking inside my head, and it's always talking like Oskar: "I should do that" or "I shouldnt". Of course there are thoughts were the "Oskar" thing is less present, like when you thing about third-party events or other persons.

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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby mag » Thu Aug 23, 2012 8:10 am

I havent done my exercises yet, I'll do them this evening but regarding to seeing and hearing I've done that practice often and I'll write some draft impresions now and this evening or tomorrow morning, when I have finished my exercices I will write more. You dont have to answer or even read this if you think I should do the complete exercise before.
Ok, I will be waiting for your report after you have finished the exercise.
My impressions about raw seeing and hearing is that the percepcion enhances a little bit, things look brighter and new. It's felt too a subtle sensation of no-mind, no-self, during the exercice I thought I had glimpse of what's to be out of the hipnosis of Self. You feel nobody is there seeing or hearing, just the seeing of the hearing So yes, I felt there's no need of Self in perception, no need for an observer.
Good, just continue looking. If a self, Oskar, is not, what is?
About the sense of being alive, is it just the body sense? that warmth in my feet?
Being is already there before anything is sensed of body. That being IS, even if Oskar's body isn't.
But ok, I was confusing things, that sense of being alive is a different thing, it's not the sense of Oskar, right?
Right, there is no any connection between "being" and fictious "I" of Oskar. "I" just tries to claim that impersonal being, and to claim that's it's Oskar's personally.
So could be I was wrong some posts ago and the Oskar label comes really from thoughts?.
Yes, the label, Oskar, comes just from thoughts. "I" is just a thought. A thought doesn't think, decide or control anything. Can you feel the helplessness of not existing?
While meditating I disidentify Oskar from thoughts (at least to an extent) but not during the rest of the day. I've been trying to observe and I think that when a thought starts, Oskar starts. By thought I mean that inner voice talking inside my head, and it's always talking like Oskar: "I should do that" or "I shouldnt". Of course there are thoughts were the "Oskar" thing is less present, like when you thing about third-party events or other persons.
Thoughts are not real, don't beleive any of them. Just go with a pure feeling. Thoughts try to seduce you in beleiving that Oskar exists as a personal being, which is NOT true. Don't believe any of should's or shouldn't's.

Looking forward to your report.
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Re: Well, I'll try, is there a guide available?

Postby Sr.K » Thu Aug 23, 2012 7:00 pm

Exercise done! :)

Now I'm feeling a bit like a bad student, I dont have much to say. :(

I started in the order you suggested, first listening. What I can say it's that sounds appear in some space I think the mind creates (and it's the same for viewing). It's difficult to not focus in a concrete sound. Keeping a broad sense of hearing wasnt easy and it that case I tend to focus on the louder sound. Also it's difficult to hear sounds "as they are", you hear a sound and quickly you KNOW it's a motorbike, not the pure sound. Thoughts can be kept away most of the time if there's sounds. While you think you forget to hear, of course, but hearing keeps taking place in the background. While no thoughts arise the feeling is of no-self, you dont really need a Oskar there.

Then I start trying to focus on smelling. It's harder :), i burn some incense and focus in my personal smell too. The perception is felt in the nose obviously I cant go much further, of course the perception vanishes quite quickly and when I dont smell anything thoughts are more difficult to keep out. About Oskar, the same conclusion. No need for Oskar. These time I didnt perceive a relation perception-concept so evident like in the motorbike example. Could be I'm not very good at smelling. This part it's been a bit boring. :) Most if the time I was feeling only myself breathing

About the body sense, ok. Similar conclusions. Again perceptions appear in space (my body) but this time is less defined. Also I cannot say much about the raw data, they are body senses I dont know what more to say. The relation perception-concept is also weak. Thoughts arise often and I loose the focus on the body senses.

Tasting is very much like smelling but I felt it only at the mouth even we know that part of the flavour comes from the nose, so you can not always relay on what you feel. :)

Seen is a bit different, could be because I've been doing my exercise with closed eyes until now. The space sensation is the king here, everything is perceived in space, not in the eyes (obvious but it has to be said). It's not very difficult for me to concentrate on raw seeing it doesnt matter if in a broad sense or focusing on something, for example my cat. The feeling of no-self is quite strong for me in that exercise. Concepts are there (I see a cat) but not as verbal concepts, I just know this is a cat. Quite raw really. No self of course, just seeing. I felt a slight sensation of bliss, but I'm not sure about the reason, could be after an hour with so few thoughts I'm feeling quite a bit like when meditating.

Mag, sorry if all this is too trivial... :(


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