Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

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Selie
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Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Selie » Sat Sep 29, 2018 4:45 am

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
I understand that a guide will gently but relentlessly challenge my sense of self (I call it ‘ego’) until ‘it’ admits defeat and stops pretending to be real (see clearly through the smoke screen).

What are you looking for at LU?
I am looking for someone to challenge my intellect/programming/self-preserving instincts and help me to access a larger softer, more intuitive sense of ‘being’. I want to wake up to the reality of being human without the delusion that I am something special needing protection at every turn.

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
I expect light beams to be flashed in various directions in the dark corners of my ego-mind and thereby expose the many disguises of the impostor and its overzealous defence mechanism. I am a little scared of the impact of my ‘awakening’ on my 6 year old son so I am hoping for a gently process.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
I have been a spiritual tourist for the past 20 years, dipping my toes here and err, between psychotherapy and spirituality. Main influences are: Hubert Benoit’s ‘Supreme doctrine’, Zen Buddhism, Rupert Spira, Ramana Maharshi, Internal Family Systems (IFS)

On a scale from 1 to 10, how willing are you to question any currently held beliefs about 'self? 8

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Barb
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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Barb » Sat Oct 06, 2018 10:51 am

Hi Selie!

I would like to assist you with exploring the concept of the separate self. My role is to point by using exercises and questions. You don’t actually have to do anything other than to LOOK with your five senses at what is being pointed at. To see you are already seeing and always have been seeing what actually is. This is not about thinking about something, it is about Direct Experience... :)

This simple seeing also notices that there is no self here - there's just what is going on, that this is already going on for everyone right now. But the mind comes in and makes it complicated and says it's difficult and out of reach. My job as a guide is to help you to see that this basic awareness/seeing is always here and always has been.

Please read this links before we begin:


Disclaimer:-

http://liberationunleashed.com/disclaimer-2/

Terms & Conditions:-

https://www.liberationunleashed.com/register/terms/


“Liberation Unleashed is not …” in the FAQ’s of LU.

http://liberationunleashed.com/about/faq/#faq-1041


Please learn to use the quote function. When replying to a question, please use the quote function to highlight the question being answered. Instructions are located in the link below:

viewtopic.php?f=4&t=660

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-fAToDNh9hQ&app=desktop

Please confirm that you have read the disclaimer and the other links and we can then begin the exploration.

Best regards
immerhier

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Selie
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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Selie » Sun Oct 07, 2018 8:15 am

Hi immerhier,

Thank you for your message. I have read disclaimer and links and i am ready to start.

Best,

Selie

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Barb
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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Barb » Sun Oct 07, 2018 10:01 am

Thank you for reading the links, including the disclaimer and how to use the quote function.

Some housekeeping guidelines:-
1. Please post at least once a day, or every second day. If you need more time, or are unable to post for several days, just write a quick post on your thread to let me know. I will do it too..

2. Please answer what's true for you once you have looked to see what is being pointed at, rather than any sort of 'ideal' answer. Ideal answers may sound good but will be of no benefit to you in having you realise that there is no separate self. There is no one judging answers given, so please be 100% honest in your answers and inquiry.

3. This exploration is based on actual experience (AE) - smell, taste, sound, sensation, colour and observed thoughts. Long-winded analytical and philosophical answers are best avoided and may even hinder progress. This is not a self-improvement process. There is no ‘self’ to improve.

4. Please put aside all other teachings, philosophies, rituals, practices, books/reading and so on for the remainder of this investigation, this includes also the other threads in this forum. Really put all your effort and attention in to seeing this reality, as it is. If you have a daily meditation practice, it is fine to continue that but is not necessary for this exploration. Be here with an open and curious mind.

Technology is not perfect and sometimes there is a glitch which can wipe out your responses. It is advisable that you copy and paste questions asked into Word, answer them there and then copy and paste them to your thread. Always save a copy of what you have done in Word - it will save you time in the long run!

To begin with, so that we become aware of what your expectations are about this exploration ie what life will look and feel like and what you want/hope will change or not change ... in your own words could you please answer the following questions::


What will it feel like the moment the illusion is seeing through?
What will change, what will remain the same?
What do you expect, what do you hope?


Please answer questions individually, remembering to use the quote function to highlight the question being answered.

I am a little scared of the impact of my ‘awakening’ on my 6 year old son so I am hoping for a gently process.
Don't worry, it's no big deal... You will be the same mother for your child.. If during the process strong emotions bubble up, please let me know, and let´s have a look together :)

If you do not mind, I would like to give up the greeting to get into a better flow..

I am looking forward to your answers

:)

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Selie
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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Selie » Sun Oct 07, 2018 9:18 pm

What will it feel like the moment the illusion is seeing through?


I will be experiencing life in a direct way. A purer, more authentic way. A softer, more fluid way too. I will be (in) the flow.

What will change, what will remain the same?


My experience of life will not be tainted, obscured by a self that requires constant guarding, constant regulating and protecting. My defence mechanism filter phrase ‘what does this/that say about me’ will become redundant and give room to just ‘what does this/that say?’, pure unfiltered experience.

I will be the same person but hopefully more open, softer, less guarded (because there will be no belief in a self constantly needing protecting anymore).

What do you expect, what do you hope?


I am hoping that one day there will be no self relentlessly being reflected back at me in EVERY aspect of my interactions with life, and especially with people and my own thoughts. Going through life for me is like walking round endlessly through a forest of mirrors - I cannot escape every aspect of it saying something about me, judging me, appraising me etc. I am hoping to smash all the mirrors and be left with ‘just experiencing’.

Many thanks in advance for your time, I am very grateful. 🙏🏼

Ps: i am feeling particular shy and vulnerable going through this process with you so I apologise in advance if I sometimes come across as a bit cold and matter of fact.

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Barb
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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Barb » Mon Oct 08, 2018 12:14 pm

Your expectations are not too high, some of them may go with the realization that there is no "me", but it seems that some old patterns and problems are working and they probably will not disappear right away. But it will be much easier if there is nobody to whom these patterns belong.
For the purpose of the process please put all expectations in a box and put it away... :) Expectations could be a hindrance to see clearly

Most or all expectations are mental, and what we are doing here is to see if the thoughts tell the truth and if we can influence them. So please take time for the following exercise and look closely:


1.Where do thoughts come from and where do they go? Look curiously at the next thought and look.

2. Can you predict what thought will come next? Can you stop it from appearing if you don't like it? Can you clear a thought once it's published?

3. Can you make the decision NOT to think?

4. Imagine thinking a special thought. What happens when you look closely?

5. Is the thought "I" a special kind of thought that can think other thoughts? Or does it come from the same place as the other thoughts?

6. Think of a number between 1 and 100. Do you know what number is coming before it appears?

7. Do you find someone who thinks, or does it happen all by itself, without control by a thinker?

Please anwere each question individually.

Many thanks in advance for your time, I am very grateful. ?
It's a great pleasure!

Ps: i am feeling particular shy and vulnerable going through this process with you so I apologise in advance if I sometimes come across as a bit cold and matter of fact.
No worries! There are no wrong answers or behaviors in this place, nobody here for judging „you“ :) And really, it's very helpful to be factual here...

Have fun while watching :)
Looking —> Seeing....Seeing —> Freedom

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Selie
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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Selie » Mon Oct 08, 2018 10:30 pm

1. Where do thoughts come from and where do they go? Look curiously at the next thought and look
.
It’s a strange place to be, watching thoughts that closely. Like being in my own mini movie theatre with my nose on the screen, I’m so close to it. They do seem to appear from nowhere and go nowhere. Their contents however seem to come from different parts of my programming (insecure, critical etc..).
2. Can you predict what thought will come next? Can you stop it from appearing if you don't like it? Can you clear a thought once it's published?
No, definitely not to all three.
3. you make the decision NOT to think?
Well, by focusing my gaze or listening to a sound intently, it feels like thinking has stopped for a short while...
4. Imagine thinking a special thought. What happens when you look closely?
I don’t understand what is meant by ‘special’ thought.
5. Is the thought "I" a special kind of thought that can think other thoughts? Or does it come from the same place as the other thoughts?
No it doesn’t feel like ‘I’ can think other thoughts as such but it does feel like it comes from a different place (like in the number exercise below). It seems there are different kinds of thoughts: random thoughts and ‘message’ thoughts (as if I am a transmitting/receiving tower triggered by signals - like in the jaw experience below).
6. Think of a number between 1 and 100. Do you know what number is coming before it appears?
At first, it appears totally random. The number seems to come up as from a puff of smoke and disappears as in a puff of smoke. Kind of fun actually, I’m enjoying playing with coming up with a series of numbers (some come up in my mother tongue, some in English, all perfectly randomly).
But then, I become aware that all the numbers are now coming up in French and another thought appears that says ‘no that’s not so much fun, I want the numbers to come up randomly again in both languages.’ It does feel like this last thought did not come from the same place as the numbers - more from a watcher/controller place than the numbers and their puffs of smoke.
7. Do you find someone who thinks, or does it happen all by itself, without control by a thinker?
Thought: ‘I’m clenching my jaw too tightly, relax’. And so my jaw relaxes.
I’d say that this thought came up from my awareness of my physical experience ‘tight jaw’. Something in me got the signal that my jaw was clenched too tight and instructed that part of my body to relax.

Question popping up:
Could it be that no-self is a posture of mind, as much as self is a posture of mind? One same mountain but looked at from 2 different vantage points? But then who is choosing to go from one posture to the other...?

🙏🏼

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Barb
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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Barb » Tue Oct 09, 2018 12:01 pm

They do seem to appear from nowhere and go nowhere.

:)
Their contents however seem to come from different parts of my programming (insecure, critical etc..).
Can you find somewhere „my programming“ in Actual Experience (AE)? Or is this just another thought?
3. you make the decision NOT to think?
Well, by focusing my gaze or listening to a sound intently, it feels like thinking has stopped for a short while...
Yes, by focusing on sensory perception thoughts disappear or become less interesting ... :)

Where does the intention to focus come from?
No it doesn’t feel like ‘I’ can think other thoughts as such but it does feel like it comes from a different place (like in the number exercise below). It seems there are different kinds of thoughts: random thoughts and ‘message’ thoughts

It does feel like this last thought did not come from the same place as the numbers - more from a watcher/controller place than the numbers and their puffs of smoke.
Sure, it seems that thoughts are from different kinds, but is this more than just a thought?
Can you find such a place in AE, or is „the watcher/controller place“ only another thought?
Thought: ‘I’m clenching my jaw too tightly, relax’. And so my jaw relaxes.
Did "you" decide to think that thought, or did it come out of the blue on its own?
Question popping up:
Could it be that no-self is a posture of mind, as much as self is a posture of mind? One same mountain but looked at from 2 different vantage points?
Absolutly right! “No-self“ is also a identification like „self“..
But then who is choosing to go from one posture to the other...?
Does it need someone to choose, or is it possible that choosing simply happens?

Tomorrow i am not able to reply.. The day after tomorrow i am online again..

:)
Looking —> Seeing....Seeing —> Freedom

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Barb
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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Barb » Tue Oct 09, 2018 12:53 pm

This is no other guide, it is only the name which changed :)
Looking —> Seeing....Seeing —> Freedom

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Selie
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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Selie » Wed Oct 10, 2018 12:01 pm

Can you find somewhere „my programming“ in Actual Experience (AE)? Or is this just another thought?
Well, yesterday it clearly felt like there was a transmitting/receiving tower, with different parts of me communicating with this central me/ego.
After spending more time looking, it feels like it’s the contents of the thoughts an ‘i’ wants to identify with (which is what is the most distracting thing from the experience of ‘just thoughts’.) The notion of ‘Just thinking’ feels perfectly right and I have just had fun replacing word-thoughts in my head with ‘blah blah blah’, while ‘just hearing sounds’ - just mental activity happening. It’s a great experience but after a short while there is still an underlying sense that ‘something’ has accessed (and is aware!) of this experience...
Where does the intention to focus come from?
I don’t know... In this context ‘from nowhere’ doesn’t feel quite right although a part of me thinks ‘just occuring’ and another part feels ‘coming from ego’. [nb: I’ve just noticed that I used the word ‘think’ for ‘just occuring’ and the word ‘feel’ for ‘coming from ego’. Hum. Is it possible that i am so desperate to live from a ‘just being’perspective, I am kidding myself when I think I can feel things ‘just happening’ - when it’s in fact just another concept after all, a deluded belief, NOT a genuine AE.... (!?)

How can I distinguish one from the other? Feeling confused and deflated.... :(

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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Barb » Thu Oct 11, 2018 12:27 pm

Well, yesterday it clearly felt like there was a transmitting/receiving tower, with different parts of me communicating with this central me/ego. 
After spending more time looking, it feels like it’s the contents of the thoughts an ‘i’ wants to identify with (which is what is the most distracting thing from the experience of ‘just thoughts’.) The notion of ‘Just thinking’ feels perfectly right and I have just had fun replacing word-thoughts in my head with ‘blah blah blah’, while ‘just hearing sounds’ - just mental activity happening. It’s a great experience but after a short while there is still an underlying sense that ‘something’ has accessed (and is aware!) of this experience...
Fine! That's a great practice. Is there something wrong with a „sense of me“? This sense will probably be always there, it's only part of the stories that are told through thought.. The question is: Is this findable in direct experience?

Where does the intention to focus come from?
I don’t know... In this context ‘from nowhere’ doesn’t feel quite right although a part of me thinks ‘just occuring’ and another part feels ‘coming from ego’. [nb: I’ve just noticed that I used the word ‘think’ for ‘just occuring’ and the word ‘feel’ for ‘coming from ego’. Hum. Is it possible that i am so desperate to live from a ‘just being’perspective, I am kidding myself when I think I can feel things ‘just happening’ - when it’s in fact just another concept after all, a deluded belief, NOT a genuine AE.... (!?)
Get out of the head! Your thoughts will always tell you much stories about how it is and how it should be and how it has to look to be true.... blah, blah, blah :) You cannot miss the direct experience, but it is so easy, so simple, that the thoughts will allways tell you, that something is wrong. Don't believe the thoughts, you cannot think through the gate!
How can I distinguish one from the other? Feeling confused and deflated.... :(
Great! Really, it's a good sign to be confused, because it is the mind which is confused, and the mind can never get it!
It's absolutley easy:

There is SEEING-HEARING-SENSING-TASING-SMELLING-THINKING (thinking is the perception of thought, not its content) That's it! That is the direct experience.. All interpretations comes after the sense perceptions and are thought-content...
To get to Direct Experience of it, you will have to step away from thinking about everything and begin to use your senses.
Note:- "I feel" is the same as "I think" in disguise.

Please observe as often as you can what you are doing and break everything down to direct experience and call it seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, sensing, thinking.

That could look like this:

To see a cup = color / shape = SEEING
Smell the coffee = SMELLING
Feel the warmth of the cup = SENSING
The clinking of the spoon in the cup while stirring = HEARING
Imagine taking a sip right now = THINKING

You can also use this in routine activities, if not your full concentration is required.

There are two types of thoughts:
1- The thought points to something that is perceptible via the senses at this moment - the thought “is labeling”.
2- The thought points to another thought, that is thought-content and the story being told.

Tell me how that went, what you noticed and give some examples.


Much fun :)

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Selie
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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Selie » Thu Oct 11, 2018 2:21 pm

🙏🏼
Is this findable in direct experience?
Not in direct experience, no. I guess what you call ‘direct experience’ is what Zen call ‘meditation’. Which means that realising ‘no-self’ can only be accessed through DE/meditation but the default human being functioning mode will always be ‘self’..? Just trying to understand where we are going here (and managing my expectations!)
Your thoughts will always tell you much stories about how it is and how it should be and how it has to look to be true.... blah, blah, blah :) You cannot miss the direct experience, but it is so easy, so simple, that the thoughts will allways tell you, that something is wrong. Don't believe the thoughts, you cannot think through the gate!
I am with you 100% on that one. A tough one to remember to practice though.
Please observe as often as you can what you are doing and break everything down to direct experience and call it seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, sensing, thinking.
Funnily enough, that is exactly what I have been practicing all morning! For example, I ate a pastry at my local coffee shop this morning and although I had it many times before I had never noticed its yummy spongy texture and strong creamy taste until now! I even closed my eyes to really focus on the tasting experience, it was... wow.
But then how do I remember to do the same thing next time? And the time after that? For the rest of my life? No matter how much one practices, surely direct experience can never become the default mode??

🙏🏼

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Barb
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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Barb » Fri Oct 12, 2018 11:45 am

Is this findable in direct experience?
Not in direct experience, no. I guess what you call ‘direct experience’ is what Zen call ‘meditation’. Which means that realising ‘no-self’ can only be accessed through DE/meditation but the default human being functioning mode will always be ‘self’..?
I have not really an idea what it is, that zen-people call meditation.. Never had much to do with zen :)... No, what we call „Direct Experience“, is only that: Direkt Experience. And it is alway available. You cannot not experience.. And there is no need to have a calm mind to see-hear-feel-taste-smell-think... We use the sense perceptions to LOOK what is really now here and to distinguish from fairytale of thought. And this exercise are only for the purpose, that you can learn to give attention to reality instead of dreamworld of thought. And often enough looked there will be seen that the „I“ is also part of illusory world...
Just trying to understand where we are going here (and managing my expectations)
I repeat again from the post of 8. October:
“For the purpose of the process please put all expectations in a box and put it away... :) Expectations could be a hindrance to see clearly.” And here is nothing to understand it's all about LOOKING!
Funnily enough, that is exactly what I have been practicing all morning! For example, I ate a pastry at my local coffee shop this morning and although I had it many times before I had never noticed its yummy spongy texture and strong creamy taste until now! I even closed my eyes to really focus on the tasting experience, it was... wow.
But then how do I remember to do the same thing next time? And the time after that? For the rest of my life? No matter how much one practices, surely direct experience can never become the default mode??
Such wow experiences comes from time to time, but that's not what we are looking for :) And they will never become the default mode! Sorry... But „Wow-Experience“ is only that: an experience. And direct experience is always there. This is already the default mode, but it has nothing to do whether with pleasure nor with pain. It's simple noting of reality, what is actually here... Absolutely ordinary..;)

So please repeat the exercise as many times throughout the day as you can. Label daily activities simply colour/image, sound, smell, taste, sensation, thought.

So for example become aware of:

a car passes = hearing
the car is red = seeing
a tension in the neck = sensing
a breath of wind = sensing
a birdsong = hearing
thought about the wheather = thinking
taste of an apple = tasting
and so on...

Simply what perception comes in mind, and then label it.. Don't search for pleasurable experience...

Just break down daily activities into these categories (which are all actual experience) and report back how you go, giving some examples please. And take time!


:)
Looking —> Seeing....Seeing —> Freedom

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Selie
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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Selie » Fri Oct 12, 2018 6:33 pm

Thank you.
So please repeat the exercise as many times throughout the day as you can. Label daily activities simply colour/image, sound, smell, taste, sensation, thought.
It will be tricky for me to do this over the weekend in a busy household so I will get onto it on Monday and get back to you at the end of the day [note that I feel a lot of resistance/anxiety at the thought of having to do this exercise for any length of time but I will give it a good go...]

Wishing you a pleasant weekend.

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Barb
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Re: Tired of being a Don Quixote fighting windmills

Postby Barb » Sat Oct 13, 2018 10:38 am

Please take it easy :)

Not with much effort, make it playfull and have fun with it...it's not possible to do it all day long :) Everytime when it comes in mind, then notice and label the sense perceptions. And if you notice that you were caught up in thought – very fine! Be happy that you've noticed it, and then go on with labeling the direct experience. During routine activities when not full concentration is required it is also very easy...
note that I feel a lot of resistance/anxiety at the thought of having to do this exercise for any length of time but I will give it a good go..
Have a very close but also relaxed look at resistance/anxiety. Where in the body can you find the feeling which is called resistance or anxiety? How is the impact on the body, and which part of this feelings are only thoughts? Be curious :)

Have also a nice weekend!

I look forward to your answers :)
Looking —> Seeing....Seeing —> Freedom


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