Guide requet for Ilona

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Aragon
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Re: Guide request for Ilona

Postby Aragon » Sun Apr 27, 2014 4:56 pm

Quick update:

Feels like there are two worlds, the conceptual and non-conceptual. Feeling drawn to the non-conceptual, feels nourishing, feels like the source.

Definite reduction in irritability on my part. Sometimes others responses are felt as pain instead. Sometimes what would have registered, doesn't touch at all.

Remembering seeing very clearly the self come into being. Has never been so clear since. A noticible change in experience since then though.

Less caught up in thought today. Think (thought!) I have a belief I need thought to exist in the world, but beginning to see myself manoeuvre the world more and more without it.

Feeling less concerned with what I need to do. Happier to fit in with the life around me. Not wanting to make any great claims that this will continue - just noting present experience.

More soon...
... dancing in the ebb and flow of attention, more present than the breath, I find the origins of my illusions.... - Nirmala

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Re: Guide requet for Ilona

Postby Ilona » Mon Apr 28, 2014 2:26 pm

Lovely.
Can you say with a strong confident YES, that it's clear, a separate self, I does not exist?
If no, what is on the way of that yes?

Sending love.

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Re: Guide request for Ilona

Postby Aragon » Mon Apr 28, 2014 10:37 pm

Can you say with a strong confident YES, that it's clear, a separate self, I does not exist?
If no, what is on the way of that yes?
The honest answer is I have kind of been looking to you to help me verify that!

I can say a definite 100% yes to having seen the process whereby the self formulates itself through sensation, to labeling, to a 'story' about that labeling. This appeared to happen in a field of awareness but when I looked at that awareness it appeared to be only 'awareness of something' and stripped back it seemed like nothingness, emptiness where I disappeared. All this happened at the time, with perfect clarity, extremely vivid and clear. I had no doubts. It was clear to me how the self arose. I saw it and understood.

I have had had a definite change in my experience since that time but I do have doubts. I think, because it was so clear and obvious, I thought that from that moment on, I would always see things from that perspective. But it hasn't been like that.

I think I oscillate between the two. Sometimes (forgive the use of 'I') I'm caught up in thinking, and in feeling, sometimes in the reaction. Here I think the sense of self remains.

But also, there's been a definite change. I haven't really thought much in terms of 'I' since that 'seeing', I feel I've lost my agenda, am able to take what used to irritate and just experience the painful feeling. I feel I am responding to the world rather than from what I want out of it. I have more time for others and am much easier with them. Reactions that do happen blow over and I don't hold on to them. And often I just don't get involved in the feeling or story anyway.

Much of the time, I feel I am working on the level of sensation. This seems to be where I prefer to be. It seems much more simple and nourishing. And when I sit, eyes closed, most of the time, that feeling of 'space/awareness in which everything happens' returns

So I guess the question for me is this: After that 'seeing', how should it all unfold. Is the self supposed to fall away immediately so there is no longer ever any sense of me? Or is it a process? A gradual movement that takes place over time?

Because if it is the former, themn something is missing. If it is the latter, then I feel all is going well.

I do not doubt what I saw. But I wonder about how it is all playing out...

.
... dancing in the ebb and flow of attention, more present than the breath, I find the origins of my illusions.... - Nirmala

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Re: Guide request for Ilona

Postby Aragon » Tue Apr 29, 2014 1:28 am

Just to illustrate, from today...

My little girl is still not well, a little clingy, overtired and all that goes with a one year old being off colour. I'm home alone, looking after her and my elder four year old daughter, who's lovely, though self interested like most children, and relatively unaware of the pressures of fathering! And then there's the tiler, talking to me throughout, also seemingly unaware of the situation, and hindering rather than enhancing my attempts to feed and get the children ready for bed.

So I start to feel a contraction in the body. I'm not really thinking about myself but I'm aware that this feeling is familiar - it reminds me of the me before. And I'm aware I'm involved in it, I'm losing that space that has been surrounding such emotions of late. If I could take myself off somewhere, close my eyes, watch the process I'd probably be fine but I'm deep in it, can't get out of the situation, and I have lost the perspective - albeit I know I have.

Here I am starting to feel a sense of self. I'm not so much thinking about me, but its me in this situation. I feel me in the situation. I have the knowledge of how its all working but the experience is different. Much of what I experience is sensation and feeling - I'm not feeding it with stories, but its the loss of perspective that's really getting to me.

A while later I'm lying on the bed with the little one who I've managed to get off to sleep. I close my eyes and I'm back again. That feeling of space/presence is there and I can see sensation, labeling, feeling, thought - all happening within it. The perspective has returned.

I also notice when I react, what happens is the opposite of when I see the process unfold. The 'knowledge' seems to work on the story first. I don't believe the stories anymore. I see their emptiness. The stories stop and feeling is left. I stay with the feeling and it changes or ends. Then I move on.

Obviously I'm using 'I' a lot, and it isn't really like that. It's more of a process that happens within awareness. Anyway, I hope that illustrates what can go on with me, though that is my most intense reaction since the 'seeing' took place.

Wishing you well...
... dancing in the ebb and flow of attention, more present than the breath, I find the origins of my illusions.... - Nirmala

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Re: Guide requet for Ilona

Postby Ilona » Tue Apr 29, 2014 8:27 am

I can't tell you if you see or not :) you know when you know. Then no external confirmation is needed. As you say, you already seen how self forms itself.

The experience that you had was an experience, no experience is permanent. No state lasts forever, no feeling is final.
But now you know where to look- here now- underneath all thinking. All situations that present themselves, are new opportunities to see, what is that all this is happening to?

How should it all unfold is a useless question. All shoulds need to go, especially the ones that say how this should be.
When you catch a should, examine it, is it true?

Nothing is supposed to happen. Nothing is happening that should not be happening. If it's here, that's what it is. The rest is in imagination- a story about what is not happening. And what is a use for that..

Now look, what is that sense of self is happening to? What is this sense of self if it's not named that? Is contraction = sense of self? Is feeling of tightness a self? And what is at feels that?


Sending love.
Truth realized will set you free.
http://ilonaciunaite.com/book

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Re: Guide requet for Ilona

Postby Aragon » Tue Apr 29, 2014 10:10 am

Hi Ilona, yes thank you, it seems so clear when its reflected back, I am still caught in stories. I am still believing my thoughts are real. I need to look more, to see more clearly. I have not been making enough time for this - I try to do it on the move but its not clear enough. Thank you. I will come back to your questions soon.
... dancing in the ebb and flow of attention, more present than the breath, I find the origins of my illusions.... - Nirmala

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Re: Guide request for Ilona

Postby Aragon » Tue Apr 29, 2014 2:45 pm

Now look, what is that sense of self is happening to? What is this sense of self if it's not named that? Is contraction = sense of self? Is feeling of tightness a self? And what is at feels that?
Yes I still feel that contraction as self. But on examination it is just thinking about labeling on sensation.

Thoughts seem like a solitary ripple in a pool. A lone voice in space. But when fed, believed they become the world. What feeds them, what believes them? The delusion of self.

I can see I am not there yet. This needs to be more examination. I'm kind of there but not there. The stories seem farcical now, after that looking today but I can see it needs to be seen through, not just seen.

I will keep at it, keep updating here..

.
... dancing in the ebb and flow of attention, more present than the breath, I find the origins of my illusions.... - Nirmala

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Re: Guide request for Ilona

Postby Aragon » Tue Apr 29, 2014 10:24 pm

I feel I made some progress with this today. It seems quite amusing now I was thinking I may have seen through it!

Thought is rampant in my head and dominates my experience. But now I am aware of it. I have been noticing the initial thought - from labeling, from memory, from a topic from a direction in my life - which just appears, as it were. It is captivating, presumably because it's from me, appears almost unnoticed, and is taken up by further thoughts in the same manner, with an energy that builds and builds.

These thoughts seem like a droplet falling into a pool of still water. But they can land silently without disturbing the water, or they can ripple through the pond.

Sometimes I notice the initial thought and it is given no energy. Other times it is taken up, and I notice the thinking. That awareness and the knowledge that it is the self spinning its own delusion, removes the energy from the thinking, and it dies.

It is amazing me, the scope and treachery of this thinking. It latches onto everything. A constant weaver of intricate webs.

It seems particularly prevalent in what I call my 'spiritual practice'. It takes experience and seeks to storyboard it. The seeking, the reflecting, the doubt, the failure, the success - all seem to be stories woven by this self.

I am getting more spaces between thinking now. I am noticing more initial thoughts. The thinking still has lots of energy but I am seeing through it.....

Of course, I know, I am not seeing through it... awareness of thought is seeing through it I guess - thought is not present during that seeing anyway.
Now look, what is that sense of self is happening to? What is this sense of self if it's not named that? Is contraction = sense of self? Is feeling of tightness a self? And what is at feels that?
Sense of self is the thinking mind. It is happening to itself. The contraction isn't the sense of self but the thinking mind labels the contraction and writes a story on it. Neither is tightness a self. Tightness is just a label placed on a sensation. The sensation is felt or experienced in awareness and a story written about it by the thinking mind, which believes itself.

Thank you again. Interested to hear your thoughts...
... dancing in the ebb and flow of attention, more present than the breath, I find the origins of my illusions.... - Nirmala

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Re: Guide requet for Ilona

Postby Ilona » Wed Apr 30, 2014 7:47 am

Good work!
It is amazing me, the scope and treachery of this thinking. It latches onto everything. A constant weaver of intricate webs.
Well said! The voice in the head does not shut up for a minute, just keeps talking and weaving intricate web of stories. Fun.

But what is it that this voice is talking to/ at? What is listening to the stories? Is the talking voice a problem? What is that does not like the voice talking so much? Is voice something you control or it's doing it's job on it's own, describing everything and narrating stories?


It's good to hear that you are noticing gaps between thoughts. Zoom into the silence. Ask: what do thoughts come to? Don't answer, just keep asking, notice mind goes silent. That is the answer. Silence is here underneath all thinking, rest in it.

What do you notice?

Sending love.
Truth realized will set you free.
http://ilonaciunaite.com/book

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Re: Guide request for Ilona

Postby Aragon » Thu May 01, 2014 1:39 am

Hi Ilona,

Thanks again for taking the time to respond. First to answer your questions:
But what is it that this voice is talking to/ at?
It is talking to me, or it is me communicating to someone else, or it is me trying to figure something out.
What is listening to the stories?
'Me' is listening too. But what is that me - just the thinking mind backed by emotion which it has connected to the subject in question.
Is the talking voice a problem?
No. It is the belief in the talking voice that is the problem. It is the talking voice taken to be real. If that voice is witnessed rather than endulged, it fades away. (witnessed = experienced in awareness)
What is that does not like the voice talking so much?
Me doesn't like the voice talking because me has a story that the voice is the problem. Me, in this case, is the story of the person seeking to be free of the thinking mind - the spiritual aspirant.
Is voice something you control or it's doing it's job on it's own, describing everything and narrating stories?
There is the illusion that me can control that voice but this is delusion. It just perpetuates itself.

.............

And now a quick update...

Much of the day has been noticing the arising of thought, or becoming aware of, quite early in the process, a chain of thoughts.

I no longer believe those stories, I can see them as the arising of self - though having said that I did become embroiled in a couple of them for a while this evening. Once I became aware of this (once the thought pattern was experienced in awareness) they faded away.

There have been many spaces between thoughts, though I noticed I feel that space in my head. I need to look at this more just sitting, as it is hard on the move, but I did have a sense that is a false boundary, when I briefly examined it.

At times, I am becoming more of a watcher, almost alien to this body which continues of itself.

Another time I felt I was experiencing sensations like I was them, fully immersed in them.

I have had less reactions today. The reaction happens in awareness, the feeling is experienced, and that is the end. But sometimes, albeit not very often now, they take hold, until they are experienced in awareness.

Alas, I still experience that sense of self.... I'm off to do some sitting to have another look...

Thank you again.....
... dancing in the ebb and flow of attention, more present than the breath, I find the origins of my illusions.... - Nirmala

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Re: Guide requet for Ilona

Postby Ilona » Thu May 01, 2014 7:35 am

Hm, not happy with your answers to the voice in the head questions. Look deeper! Actually look, don't just write the first thoughts that come up.

What is the voice talking to? Don't say me, unless you find this something that can be called that. Examine. Closer.


What is the sense of self? Find it. Where is it, when is it, what does it come up as? What is actually being sensed? Are these sensations in the way or they are too an expression of what is happening? Should these sensations no longer arise? Or it's ok for them to arise and be felt fully and noticed?


Sending love.
Truth realized will set you free.
http://ilonaciunaite.com/book

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Re: Guide request for Ilona

Postby Aragon » Thu May 01, 2014 2:44 pm

Hi Ilona, Thanks for your response. Felt a sense of self there! Yes, I can see I am answering from what I think I know, not from experience, thank you....

What is the sense of self? Find it.

It's a feeling of being hurt or attacked. Of failing. A fear of being or getting wrong. A fear of being seen as small and insignificant and unworthy. Or it can be arrogance, over confidence, egoistic behaviour, filled with my own self-importance. Sometimes it can feel like a small lonely voice, lost deep inside of me, a kind of desperate plea for help from somewhere inside.
Where is it, when is it, what does it come up as?
It comes up mainly as a reaction to something. For me, mostly it comes up in responses to what is being said or done by others. It feels like a contraction in the body, plus strong emotion in the heart area bubbling up into the head, where thoughts of despondency and/or retaliation are formed. The feelings seem to come in waves.

When I deliberately relax the contraction, I can still feel the feeling, but it is purer. In the head I switch between a pleasant sensation whilst being aware of the feeling; and the despondent/retalliation type mode which almost seems like an overlay, something I expend energy to put on. I can feel the smallness of that act of putting it on - the self-centredness, the preoccupation with myself. There seems to be a mental closing, the eyes look down and a fixed position and intent is formed.

When I ask myself 'Who is reacting, there is nothing there'. Even that small voice has gone. I'm just left with those things - a bodily contraction, which I know is sensation labeled; feelings; and this kind of overlay response which doesn't even feel like thought - it just feels like a habitual mask that I wear, though it can take various forms (retaliation, anger, jealousy etc).

But whereas I find usually it is quite easy to stay with feeling, even unpleasant feeling, once a strong reaction occurs, staying with the feeling is not enough, or it requires a significant amount of time.
What is actually being sensed?
The contraction in the body, the feelings welling up from the heart to the head, the fixed 'response' and any thoughts that accompany that.

Are these sensations in the way or they are too an expression of what is happening? Should these sensations no longer arise? Or it's ok for them to arise and be felt fully and noticed?

Well this morning I got slightly worked up with my daughter who kept waking me up when I was trying to sleep. I had a response to her, not of anger really, but strong emotion. It had the power of irritation and anger but it wasn't held like that. It was much looser, I said what needed to be said, and then I let it go. That felt right, because it arose, served its purpose and fell away.

I also had a reaction to something my wife said. Now I've not had this over the last few days too much because I stay with the feeling and it disperses. But that feels different to my daughter above because its not as natural, I'm kind of orchestrating the non reaction. This morning, I reacted. The sensations seem pretty similar to what happened with my daughter. But the response is held on to during and after the event. And it feels personal like she is getting at me.

So I would say the sensations are fine. They are an expression of what is happening. It's okay for them to arise, be felt and truly noticed. It's something in the way they are perceived, an the way the response is therefore delivered.

There is something in that perception which deems it 'personal'. There is still a belief that there is something inside me which can get hurt from that response, which plainly can't, but it is held as a belief.

Will write more soon...

.
... dancing in the ebb and flow of attention, more present than the breath, I find the origins of my illusions.... - Nirmala

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Re: Guide request for Ilona

Postby Aragon » Thu May 01, 2014 4:16 pm

It feels like there is an effort to maintain the mood. It is volitional. It is willed. There is held tension. In the body and the face.

Underneath is emotion. Horrible sickly emotion. Emotion I don't want to feel.

Rather than seeing the emotion, the event or person that seem to trigger it is blamed.

But actually it is an aversion to the emotion.

Even after the head has cleared and the thoughts have gone, that emotion remains.

I don't want that emotion. That is the story. That story and that aversion creates the sense of reaction, the tension, the sense of self.

Even then, held in awareness, there is that sense of not wanting it. An inability to relax into it. An inability to let what is happening happen.

It seems more than just thought. It seems like a deeply ingrained view or belief.

I will write more soon...
... dancing in the ebb and flow of attention, more present than the breath, I find the origins of my illusions.... - Nirmala

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Re: Guide request for Ilona

Postby Aragon » Thu May 01, 2014 11:21 pm

Update:

I've had a bit of a crappy day today. I've been over tired, my plans to finish some work got put off due to certain circumstances, and I received some news which emotionally seemd to knock me on a level I wasn't that aware of. I think I'm also a bit worn out from seemingly going round in circles (a perception, one of many) from this search I am undertaking here.

Tonight I've been doing some delivery driving, which involves me driving alone for most of the evening.

I was so tired tonight I kind of gave up a bit. All this seeking and earnest endeavour, to find out the solution to my 'not seeing', went out of the window a bit.

Driving round in the car, I relaxed a bit. I found myself a witness to myself. I stepped back from myself. I did seem to be acting without making decisions - I could see I was not in control. [This not being in control thing is something I don't think I truly yet believe].

Also my experience was just a mixture of sights, sounds, sensations, feelings, feelings and emotions, thoughts, thought stories, recognising things, remembering things, and planning things.

There did seem to be an I who was a witness, but that I was not touched by any of these things. It seemed like that I was awareness. I think I have seen this before, but tonight I saw it again.

I talked last time about the self, but I feel another way of looking at the self is the attempt to control the environment or surrounding circumstances. Or a belief that the environment can be controlled. And when it isn't, the sense of self is strong.

Tonight, as I experienced myself as a witness, life seemed to slow down and I wasn't so aware of myself. Thought patterns did arise but they were witnessed quite early on and faded away.

Driving around in the car and leading a busy family life are two totally different experiences. In family life, I can have this experience, but there comes a time when a reaction takes place and I lose that perspective.

Becoming a witness like this feels like I am on the right tracks? But it is not a permanent position.

Interested to hear your thoughts.....
... dancing in the ebb and flow of attention, more present than the breath, I find the origins of my illusions.... - Nirmala

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Re: Guide requet for Ilona

Postby Ilona » Fri May 02, 2014 8:08 am

Thank you for reports! Keep them coming. I'm going to respond to key elements that stand out from what you write.
This not being in control thing is something I don't think I truly yet believe].
This is not about believing, it's about recognition. I'm not trying to convince you that there is no controlling what is happening, I'm pointing where to look so you recognise it in experience. Don't take this as a new belief, it is useless as belief.

So what is hat you are in control of? What is not effortless? What is not on automatic? Give me examples.

Tell me, is there a gap between witness and witnessed? Between awareness and the object of awareness? Is there a witness doing seeing?

Is there a gap between you and the seen?
And when reaction comes up, what is behind? Is there a reactor? A witness of reaction? What is behind?

Sending love
Truth realized will set you free.
http://ilonaciunaite.com/book


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