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Posted: Sun Nov 10, 2013 11:48 am
by bid
Hi Ilona

We have not met but you have met my partner, Caz. I trust her instincts and she has encouraged me to make this leap into new/old territory but it is a struggle to know what to write.

I am seeking liberation yet I am caught up in an intellectual battle. I see that I am not my thoughts and thoughts just happen. I became aware of this on a 10 day silent meditation retreat. I have experienced this truth. Yet I am currently caught up in a dilemma about meaning and meaninglessness.

I have a very strong sense that I cannot be what I want to be. I am not good enough. This feeling has pervaded my experience most of my life.

To put this into context (all be it somewhat trivial) I have made art but now I don't, I write poetry. When I write there seems to be an 'I' involved in this process; an inner critic, a voice. And this voice says things like, 'That's rubbish!' or 'Why are you doing this?' or 'There's no value to this unless other people see it.'

There appears to be some truth in this voice, even though I know it is thought-led, my experience seems to echo it.

As I write this down I become aware of a confusion, what are my expectations? I want to be free of something that I cannot name.

The desire to write sometimes overwhelms me to the point of paralysis and I seek distraction away from this frustration.

I seem to have lost the thread of what I wanted to say. Anger comes up!

Apologies for the incoherence...


Re: confusion

Posted: Sun Nov 10, 2013 1:03 pm
by Ilona
Hi bid,

Thanks for the call! Nice to meet you, it's great that you made this step.

Yes, you can not be what you want to be, because you already are. Wanting is tension that idea of not good enough brings into feeling.

What is not complete this very moment?

The thing with meaning is that there is no need for meaning. Life just is, for no reason, just because. What is the meaning of wind or rain? It does what is does. Rain happens when conditions arise. What is a meaning in that? Only one that you may give it. Mind is a meaning making machine- it's dreaming.

What is here underneath thinking? What does you direct experience right now tell you?

Take your time with answers and write when you had a good look. There is no need for a special time or meditation, notice what is here in most ordinary experiences, dish washing, shower, mundane task.

Ps. If voice in the head would be telling how good you are, how wonderful, would at be a problem?

Re: confusion

Posted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:52 am
by bid

Fundamentally, I can reason it all through intellectually but essentially what I notice is fear. I'm afraid of losing what I might call my 'identity'

When I look closely I cannot find a self. But accepting this as reality, seems too challenging. I see it, then I hear that voice saying this cannot be so.

What you say about 'meaning' makes sense, ironically. I guess my problem is my attachment to my idea of who or what I am. If I give this up what do I become? If I truly want liberation, surely this would be as easy as breathing but something is holding me back.

I see that what is underneath thinking in direct experience, is something nameless. A sense of 'being' that just is, doing what it is doing.

I think problems occur more readily when I am see myself in relationship to other. As a separate self. My anger, my space, my body, my head...

that's all for now, bid

Re: confusion

Posted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 1:32 pm
by Ilona
Fundamentally, I can reason it all through intellectually but essentially what I notice is fear. I'm afraid of losing what I might call my 'identity'
you can not loose something that was never yours. so don't worry, nothing that is true, real, disappears, only a belief in ownership drops.

if you let this thought in- there is no separate self, no i, no manager, no controller, no driver that is in charge of this piece of life, no witness, no observer, no doer, thinker, feeler, none as in ZERO, all there is is life flowing freely as one movement.- what do you notice, what happens in the body, what thoughts appear?
do you feel resistance?
or relaxation?

write what comes up.
sending love

Re: confusion

Posted: Mon Dec 02, 2013 11:13 am
by bid

Wow! So 'I' have been watching, observing, taking notice of everything and I'm astounded! I really see how much of my experience just happens without any thought what so ever. In fact everything seems to happen, just happen. Washing-up, driving the van, cleaning my teeth...effortlessly just happening (no thought) This has been a revolutionary realisation. Just being with what is. It's beyond language.

So now when I find thought taking over, 'I' am practicing seeing what is 'really' happening. What are hands doing, what are eyes doing, what is body doing??? This takes me out of my mind and back into experience.

I'm still troubled by anxiety, fear, worry...etc but somehow by checking what is really, really happening these emotions fade.

Strangely, it is in stillness (meditation) when I find my body less active, that I struggle the most with thought. This makes me question, why meditate? Instead, just live!

What work needs to be done now? What is ego? I found you comment about the mind being a 'meaning making machine' so helpful.

Where to go from here?

bid ;0)

Re: confusion

Posted: Mon Dec 02, 2013 1:10 pm
by Ilona
Thank you for answer, beautiful.
Can you say with big dat YES, that it's clear- the separate entity I - the doer and thinker- is an illusion?
If not, what "but..." shows up?

Sending love.

Re: confusion

Posted: Tue Dec 10, 2013 10:44 am
by bid
Big problem with emotions right now, can't make sense of why they appear. Up one minute down the next, really struggling with seeing reality as it is. So many thoughts, WHY?

Interaction with other beings seems truly problematic. Rupert Spira says, with realisation comes peace. Where is that peace to be found. The world exists, but it doesn't exist. Or does it. If everything is perception, why do I have such a problem accepting this.

Illusion? Can't seem to stay with that. Keep wanting to fix on something. Still very confused, why can't I stay in peace???

Re: confusion

Posted: Tue Dec 10, 2013 1:25 pm
by Ilona
ok, one thing to stop the craziness is to drop the question WHY? this question only produces stories about stories, it is useless in finding answers. all answers to this question come from thoughts, not from experience. so drop this, it's pointless. or accept the answer- just because.

is there a problem with what arises when you no longer look for answer to why question?

peace is always underneath. but collapse of belief system is not peaceful, it is challenging, intense and brings up all kinds of feeling and stories. to notice peace, you just need to look right here right now, is anything not ok as it is?

what is not ok?

you can not stay in peace. you can only notice, that peace is always here now. not in the stories, but in actuality. not in thinking, but in sensing. it's underneath all that is happening. test this.

sending love.

Re: confusion

Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2014 11:45 am
by bid
After our meeting last week, I am finding the WHAT? as opposed to WHY? line of questioning very useful in seeing what is actually happening rather than why it is happening.

So there's still a lot of what I want to call 'mind-noise' perhaps an uncomfortable sense of WHO? A clinging to an imagined identity.

Again I notice this is not constant, it comes and goes but feels particularly strong at the moment...I seek distraction.

I suppose in recognising what mind is doing there is some clarity, however it appears to be effecting behaviour. (getting in the way of being)

that's all for now, with love & gratitude, bid

Re: confusion

Posted: Fri Jan 17, 2014 8:22 am
by Ilona
Nice to hear from you, bid.
Can you focus on the sense of being, have a closer look, is there a who other then in language? Is there anything that word who points to in actuality? Is there a subject that is doing being?

What is clinging to identity? What is the glue made of? What is that needs to identify with something? Is it being, or it's a voice in the head telling stories?

Here are some questions for you play with. Keep looking!
Write what you notice.

Sending love.

Re: confusion

Posted: Fri Jan 31, 2014 8:56 pm
by bid

Something has changed. For just over a week, my thoughts have suddenly lost their power to distract me. The noise of thought has been turned down and peace arises. It's truly so different. There seems to be an expansiveness, a calmness, and an openness. This is like nothing I've ever experienced before. The busy, hectic, thought world has gone. Or at least my need to listen to it to get sucked into it has gone.

I feel so different, I can not really explain. But the overwhelming peace is so wonderful.
I can only put this down to seeing through the illusion of self, although it doesn't appear to be an entirely conscious act. It just seems to have happened. Every time I go towards thought I just remind 'myself' of the truth. Or rather I look for the truth of experience. What's actually happening? Do I believe that there is an 'I' doing this? Not an 'I' as such. But is does feel like there is conscious 'effort' involved.

That's all, much love, bid

Re: confusion

Posted: Sun Feb 02, 2014 9:45 am
by Ilona
Mmmmm, wonderful!
So can you say with big fat YES, that it's clear, that self is an illusion, a concept?
If so, are you ready for he final questions?

Enjoy the peace!
Sending love.

Re: confusion

Posted: Sat Feb 15, 2014 2:46 pm
by bid
I've given some time to this, & I can say without doubt that the concept of self is an illusion!

Stuff still comes up that test this but when I come back to this I can let go much quicker of things I used to hold on to.

I think I'm ready for the question.

Much love, bid

Re: confusion

Posted: Sat Feb 15, 2014 4:55 pm
by Ilona
Sweet! Here they are :)

1) Is there a separate entity 'self', 'me' 'I', at all, anywhere, in any way, shape or form? Was there ever?

2) Explain in detail what the illusion of separate self is, when it starts and how it works from your own experience. Describe it fully as you see it now.

3) How does it feel to see this? What is the difference from before you started this dialogue? Please report from the past few days.

4) What was the last bit that pushed you over, made you look?

5)can you talk about decision, intention, free will, choice and control? What makes things happen? How does it work? Give examples from experience

6) Anything to add?

Please answer in full, when ready.

Much love.

Re: confusion

Posted: Mon Mar 10, 2014 3:18 pm
by bid

I'd like to approach this one question at a time. Here is my response to question 1.

1) Is there a separate entity 'self', 'me' 'I', at all, anywhere, in any way, shape or form? Was there ever?

I see that ideas such as ‘self’ ‘me’ ‘I’ are just that ‘ideas’ or concepts. As acceptance of this happens these concepts begin to dissolve. So any belief that I attach to these concepts ‘I am a failure’ begins to dissolve as well. When I really look I cannot find the thing I refer to as ‘me’. However, I do find a body, sensations, breath, life. Yet even as I write these words down I sense any attachment to them as truth has the potential to undermine. Language loses its potency. Life can be lived without language being necessary. Birds fly without needing to say this is flying. Body walks without needing to say it’s walking. It appears that all experience from ,thought to sensation, is truthfully outside the realm of language and that it is not necessary to label anything in order for ‘life’ to go on ’living’.
Therefore, clearly, there never was an an ‘I’ ‘me’ ‘self’.