Confusion to Clarity

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Vivien
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Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Vivien » Thu May 23, 2019 12:21 am

Hi Graham,

So let’s look at emotions, what they really are. Bring up an emotion, feel it, and let’s examine what is really going on.
An appearing ‘emotion’ like ‘fear’ or ‘happiness’ has three ‘components’:

(a) a pure bodily sensation, like contraction or relaxation
(b) a mental label stuck to (layered over) the sensation, like “this is fear” or “this is contraction in the stomach” or “unpleasant” or “I am happy”
(c) and simultaneously appearing mental images (pictures) about a certain body parts, like picture about the stomach or the chest

So when an emotion is present, identify these three components, and investigate them:

Does the pure sensation suggest in any way that this is ‘sad’, ‘happy’, ‘uncomfortable’, ‘pleasant’ or ‘unpleasant’, ‘bad’ or ‘good’?
Or ‘happy’, ‘sad’, ‘good’ or ‘bad’, ‘uncomfortable’, ‘pleasant’ or ‘unpleasant’ are just mental labels on the pure sensation?
Does the pure sensation have any innate attributes, or is it totally NEUTRAL?
Is there REALLY ‘sadness’ or ‘sorrow’ or ‘suffering’, or are there only thoughts about ‘sadness’ or ‘suffering’?


So if you look very closely, you’ll see that there is neither sufferer, nor suffering. There are only thoughts ABOUT a sufferer and suffering. Can you see this?

Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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Rufus
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Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Thu May 23, 2019 11:57 am

Hi Vivien,
So let’s look at emotions, what they really are. Bring up an emotion, feel it, and let’s examine what is really going on.
An appearing ‘emotion’ like ‘fear’ or ‘happiness’ has three ‘components’:

(a) a pure bodily sensation, like contraction or relaxation
(b) a mental label stuck to (layered over) the sensation, like “this is fear” or “this is contraction in the stomach” or “unpleasant” or “I am happy”
(c) and simultaneously appearing mental images (pictures) about a certain body parts, like picture about the stomach or the chest

Does the pure sensation suggest in any way that this is ‘sad’, ‘happy’, ‘uncomfortable’, ‘pleasant’ or ‘unpleasant’, ‘bad’ or ‘good’? Or ‘happy’, ‘sad’, ‘good’ or ‘bad’, ‘uncomfortable’, ‘pleasant’ or ‘unpleasant’ are just mental labels on the pure sensation?
The pure sensation is just that- a sensation without labels/images/thoughts attached to it.
Does the pure sensation have any innate attributes, or is it totally NEUTRAL?
The sensation on it's own has no positive or negative attributes- it's just a sensation.
Is there REALLY ‘sadness’ or ‘sorrow’ or ‘suffering’, or are there only thoughts about ‘sadness’ or ‘suffering’?
As you say, thoughts/images/labels are layered over the sensation that create 'sadness ' or 'sorrow'.
So if you look very closely, you’ll see that there is neither sufferer, nor suffering. There are only thoughts ABOUT a sufferer and suffering. Can you see this?
Yes I can see how these components create a sufferer/suffering but this doesn't make suffering any less real as the mixture of these components actually happens. For instance, today there is 'anxiety' around an upcoming meeting. There is a sensation in the body arising- pure sensation- thought labels this sensation as anxiety/nervousness and images of my stomach arise as the location of this sensation. Now, I can see the sensation as a pure sensation prior to any labelling or thoughts and I can see the thoughts that label this sensation as 'anxiety' or 'nervousness' so there is the arising sensation and the arising thoughts/labels ABOUT this sensation. The fact that I can see both as they are doesn't make the 'anxiety' any less. In other words there is still suffering- there is still 'anxiety' or 'nervousness' about the meeting arising- just seeing the components doesn't mitigate suffering.

Best,
Graham

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Vivien
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Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Vivien » Fri May 24, 2019 1:41 am

Hi Graham,
Yes I can see how these components create a sufferer/suffering but this doesn't make suffering any less real as the mixture of these components actually happens.
The aim of these exercises is not to stop any emotion appearing (including suffering) but rather to see how the illusion of the sufferer and suffering is created. And it seems real since it’s the result of a life-long conditioning. But every time when a strong emotion comes up and it’s being investigate in that moment (while the emotion is present) it’s stickiness and realness get a bit weaker with each look.
For instance, today there is 'anxiety' around an upcoming meeting. There is a sensation in the body arising- pure sensation- thought labels this sensation as anxiety/nervousness and images of my stomach arise as the location of this sensation. Now, I can see the sensation as a pure sensation prior to any labelling or thoughts and I can see the thoughts that label this sensation as 'anxiety' or 'nervousness' so there is the arising sensation and the arising thoughts/labels ABOUT this sensation. The fact that I can see both as they are doesn't make the 'anxiety' any less.....
....just seeing the components doesn't mitigate suffering.
Because it's believed that the seeming anxiety is HAPPENING TO ME.

If the anxiety is not present now, then try to bring it up a memory, so you can have another look on it. Let it be there, feel it.
Look for the one who is supposedly seeing the sensations and the thoughts about suffering.

What is seeing the components of anxiety?
What is the ‘anxiety’ happening to?
What is it that is ‘anxious’?
Where is the ‘anxious me’? – locate it

So there are certain sensations present, and thoughts ‘talk’ about a me who is experiencing anxiety. But is there ANYTHING that is EXPERIENCING ‘anxiety’?


Look very closely. Repeat this exercise many times during the day.
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Fri May 24, 2019 2:11 pm

Hi Vivien,
Yes I can see how these components create a sufferer/suffering but this doesn't make suffering any less real as the mixture of these components actually happens.
The aim of these exercises is not to stop any emotion appearing (including suffering) but rather to see how the illusion of the sufferer and suffering is created. And it seems real since it’s the result of a life-long conditioning. But every time when a strong emotion comes up and it’s being investigate in that moment (while the emotion is present) it’s stickiness and realness get a bit weaker with each look.
OK
If the anxiety is not present now, then try to bring it up a memory, so you can have another look on it. Let it be there, feel it.
Look for the one who is supposedly seeing the sensations and the thoughts about suffering.

What is seeing the components of anxiety?
They are 'aware-d', seemingly by 'me' but this 'me' is just another thought/image/label which itself is aware-d or is 'thoughtawaring'.
What is the ‘anxiety’ happening to?
Again, thought says "to me" but this is just a thought which is also aware-d.
What is it that is ‘anxious’?
The same answer as above.
Where is the ‘anxious me’? – locate it
I can't locate a 'me' other than the thought of a 'me' which is just a thought.
So there are certain sensations present, and thoughts ‘talk’ about a me who is experiencing anxiety. But is there ANYTHING that is EXPERIENCING ‘anxiety’?
I don't know why this particular exercise is more difficult than the ones on a thinker/feeler/controller- that 'sense of me' seems to have been at it's stickiest while writing this and the previous post. I've re-read everything from the start of our dialogue (again!) and some areas are so clear to me- and yet when I read my answers above, even though I wrote them and they make sense and are confirmed in AE there is a certain resistance to it which I shall just note for now. There is a stronger clash between the arising sense of self and the belief in the inherent existence of a self than has been present for a while. So a sensation arises which is aware'd, it is over-layed by an arising thought (which is aware-d) "this is anxiety" and another thought "to me" (which is also aware-d). Everything I've just described is 'experience-aware-d'. I don't know if I've answered the question correctly but it's the best I can do for now.

Best,
Graham

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Vivien
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Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Vivien » Fri May 24, 2019 11:44 pm

Hi Graham,
some areas are so clear to me- and yet when I read my answers above, even though I wrote them and they make sense and are confirmed in AE there is a certain resistance to it which I shall just note for now.
Could you please tell more about this resistance? What is being resistance? And what is being resisted exactly?
I don't know why this particular exercise is more difficult than the ones on a thinker/feeler/controller-
Probably because it’s about an emotion. Emotions creates the strongest sense of self. The stronger the emotion, the stronger the sense of self. But because of this, if you can see through this illusion, it can have a stronger effect in deconditioning the appearance of the illusion. However, it needs to be seen again and again and again…

Since sensations seems to be the ‘proof’ for the separate self. Since sensations (which is labelled anxiety) is present and it’s strong, it seems the that self is present too, since this sensation is believed to be not just the anxiety but the me too. Sensations provides the reality effect for the illusion.
So a sensation arises which is aware'd, it is over-layed by an arising thought (which is aware-d) "this is anxiety" and another thought "to me" (which is also aware-d). Everything I've just described is 'experience-aware-d'. I don't know if I've answered the question correctly but it's the best I can do for now.
I’ll write a few sentences/statements here. Please go through them one-by-one and look if they are corresponding with the AE.

When there is a seeming ‘anxiety’ going on, actually there is only sensations + thought label ‘anxiety’. But neither the sensation, nor the label are the anxiety itself.

‘Anxiety’ as such cannot be found. There is ZERO experience of ‘anxiety’. Since the sensation is just a sensation. The sensation is not anxiety. The sensation is not ‘anxious’.

Also the thought label ‘anxiety’ is not anxious either. So although this label is applied to the sensation, in reality this label doesn’t point to anything.

‘Anxiety’ is just a concept, an idea. A word. Concepts cannot be felt. Ideas cannot be felt. Words cannot be felt. Thoughts cannot be felt. ONLY SENSATIONS can be FELT. But the sensation is just a pure sensation. Nothing else.

There is nothing ‘anxious’ about or IN the sensation. It’s just a sensation.

The sensation labelled ‘anxiety’ is the SAME sensation which is labelled as ‘me who is having anxiety’. So the sensation has 2 labels now, ‘anxiety’ and ‘me’.

But there is NO me INSIDE that sensation. The label ‘me’ doesn’t magically transforms the sensation into a self.

So there is NOTHING EXPERIENCING the seeming appearance of ‘anxiety’. More precisely, there is nothing experiencing the sensations. There are only sensations, without anybody or anything having it.

Sensations don’t happen to anybody or anything.

And there is no such thing as ‘anxiety’, other than a word/concept.

Let me know what comes up as you investigate these sentences.


Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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Rufus
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Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Sat May 25, 2019 11:40 pm

Hi Vivien,

I’ll reply to your latest post tomorrow.
Thanks,
Graham

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Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Sun May 26, 2019 7:31 pm

Hi Vivien,
Could you please tell more about this resistance? What is being resistance? And what is being resisted exactly?
Resistance comes in the form of thoughts- "This can't be", "There must be a me" and a 'sense of me' that seems to be more front and centre than at almost any other point in our dialogue. I know these are just thoughts and concepts but they have arisen while doing this particular exercise for some reason. I guess what is being resisted is the idea or notion of 'no self' itself. To me the illusion of self is still just a concept despite the exercises in AE we are doing.
Probably because it’s about an emotion. Emotions creates the strongest sense of self. The stronger the emotion, the stronger the sense of self. But because of this, if you can see through this illusion, it can have a stronger effect in de-conditioning the appearance of the illusion. However, it needs to be seen again and again and again…
Ok
When there is a seeming ‘anxiety’ going on, actually there is only sensations + thought label ‘anxiety’. But neither the sensation, nor the label are the anxiety itself. ‘Anxiety’ as such cannot be found. There is ZERO experience of ‘anxiety’. Since the sensation is just a sensation. The sensation is not anxiety. The sensation is not ‘anxious’.
I'm having difficulty with this. . In the example I used, a sensation arises in response to thoughts about an up-coming meeting. There is a sensation, that cannot be denied. Thought labels this sensation 'anxiety'. Whatever the sensation is labelled, it exists, it can be found- there is a physical reaction (sensation) in reaction to, in this case, an upcoming meeting.
Also the thought label ‘anxiety’ is not anxious either. So although this label is applied to the sensation, in reality this label doesn’t point to anything.
OK- In and of itself the thought label is just a label or concept. But I can't get away from the idea that it is pointing to the sensation.
‘Anxiety’ is just a concept, an idea. A word. Concepts cannot be felt. Ideas cannot be felt. Words cannot be felt. Thoughts cannot be felt. ONLY SENSATIONS can be FELT. But the sensation is just a pure sensation. Nothing else.
I can see that 'anxiety' is a concept and thought label but it seems to refer to the sensation. I can see the sensation as 'sensation' but can't get away from the fact that it arises in response to something. Whatever this sensation is called it exists as what any person would label 'anxiety'.
There is nothing ‘anxious’ about or IN the sensation. It’s just a sensation.
The sensation labelled ‘anxiety’ is the SAME sensation which is labelled as ‘me who is having anxiety’. So the sensation has 2 labels now, ‘anxiety’ and ‘me’.
I can't see this. I can see the sensation and thought labelling it 'anxiety' but not the 'me who is having anxiety' label.
But there is NO me INSIDE that sensation. The label ‘me’ doesn’t magically transforms the sensation into a self.
I can see the sensation isn't me and isn't a self. It is arising.
So there is NOTHING EXPERIENCING the seeming appearance of ‘anxiety’. More precisely, there is nothing experiencing the sensations. There are only sensations, without anybody or anything having it.
I've reached a brick wall on this one I'm afraid. Of all the sentences, this one has me reaching for the bottle! It's like someone showing me how 1+1=2 and I just can't see it despite looking at it from every angle.
Let me know what comes up as you investigate these sentences.
I've tried to tackle this response several times today and I seem to be just going around in circles. Even trying to express myself correctly in my answers has been very difficult due to a lot of confusion and frustration. I honestly thought I was making progress and this seems to have knocked me back quite a bit. I'm a beaten man! Perhaps it will be clearer tomorrow when a I go over this again but for now that's all I've got.

Best,
Graham

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Vivien
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Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Vivien » Mon May 27, 2019 1:30 am

Hi Graham,
Resistance comes in the form of thoughts- "This can't be", "There must be a me" and a 'sense of me' that seems to be more front and centre than at almost any other point in our dialogue. I know these are just thoughts and concepts but they have arisen while doing this particular exercise for some reason. I guess what is being resisted is the idea or notion of 'no self' itself
“I know these are just thoughts” It's not enough to remind yourself what you’ve seen before. NEVER rely on the MEMORY of a previous looking! ALWAYS look AFRESH! If you rely only on memory, then in this moment no-self is just a belief, and not an experiential conviction. The constant looking looking looking and not finding what brings about the realization of no self.
Can we agree on that you will always look afresh?

When thoughts arise “This can’t be”, “There must be a me” – look on whose behalf these thoughts are talking to?
What is it exactly that is saying that ‘there must be a me’?
To me the illusion of self is still just a concept despite the exercises in AE we are doing.
How would it look like if the illusion of self wasn’t just a concept?

How would you recognise it?

And what is missing for the realization to happen?
OK- In and of itself the thought label is just a label or concept. But I can't get away from the idea that it is pointing to the sensation.
Yes, the label ‘anxiety’ is pointing to the sensation. Or more precisely, the sensation is labelled as ‘anxiety’.
So the sensation is present. The label is present.
But the sensation is just a sensation. Does the pure sensation suggest in any way that its ‘anxious’?

Does the pure sensation come with any attributes? Is there inherent anxiousness of the sensation?
Or just the label ‘anxious’ suggests that the sensation is anxious? But is the pure sensation itself anxious?

V: So there is NOTHING EXPERIENCING the seeming appearance of ‘anxiety’. More precisely, there is nothing experiencing the sensations. There are only sensations, without anybody or anything having it.
R: I've reached a brick wall on this one I'm afraid. Of all the sentences, this one has me reaching for the bottle! It's like someone showing me how 1+1=2 and I just can't see it despite looking at it from every angle.
Please bring up the memory of the event, which triggers anxiety. You don’t have to dive deeply into it, you just bring it up lightly, just enough intensity that you can observe the underlying sensations.

What is it that is experiencing the sensation labelled ‘anxiety’?
What is it that is experiencing the label ‘anxiety’ itself?

What is it that is thinking the thought story which triggers the sensation labelled ‘anxiety’?
What does the sensation label ‘anxiety’ is happening to?
What is having this experience?
Is there anything having ‘anxiety’?
If yes, what is it exactly, and where is it exactly?

I honestly thought I was making progress and this seems to have knocked me back quite a bit. I'm a beaten man!
The only way to not get this, is by giving it up. But if you stick with it as long as it takes, you cannot ‘fail’.


Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Mon May 27, 2019 1:26 pm

Hi Vivien,

“I know these are just thoughts” It's not enough to remind yourself what you’ve seen before. NEVER rely on the MEMORY of a previous looking! ALWAYS look AFRESH! If you rely only on memory, then in this moment no-self is just a belief, and not an experiential conviction. The constant looking looking looking and not finding what brings about the realization of no self.
Can we agree on that you will always look afresh?

I will always try to look afresh. I didn't think I was relying on memory but rather my experience in the moment of those thoughts arising- perhaps I've misunderstood you.
When thoughts arise “This can’t be”, “There must be a me” – look on whose behalf these thoughts are talking to?
What is it exactly that is saying that ‘there must be a me’?
My sense is these thoughts are talking to a belief in a self and in some ways trying to conform that belief. But a belief is just a concept. "There must be a me" is the AE of an arising thought. This thought is quickly followed by "I am thinking this thought" but there is no 'it' or 'me' thinking this thought- just thinking arising and being aware-d or 'thoughtaware-ing'.
To me the illusion of self is still just a concept despite the exercises in AE we are doing.
How would it look like if the illusion of self wasn’t just a concept?
How would you recognise it?
And what is missing for the realization to happen?
Please bring up the memory of the event, which triggers anxiety. You don’t have to dive deeply into it, you just bring it up lightly, just enough intensity that you can observe the underlying sensations.

What is it that is experiencing the sensation labelled ‘anxiety’?
The sensation is just 'sensation-aware-d'. A thought label says "Aware-d by me" but this is just a thought.
What is it that is experiencing the label ‘anxiety’ itself?
It is just experienced as 'label-aware-ing'. Though tries to claim this 'awaring' as "I am doing the awaring" but this is just a thought.
What is it that is thinking the thought story which triggers the sensation labelled ‘anxiety’?
No 'it'- just thinking/thoughts arising and being aware-d.
What does the sensation label ‘anxiety’ is happening to?
It is just appearing in experience. Thought says "To me" but this is just a thought.
What is having this experience?
Same as above
Is there anything having ‘anxiety’?
No. There is a sensation arising, thought labels the sensation 'anxiety' happening 'to me' but this is just a thought label- thought and labelling are also just arising.
The only way to not get this, is by giving it up. But if you stick with it as long as it takes, you cannot ‘fail’.
Trust me, I'm not going anywhere!

Graham

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Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Mon May 27, 2019 1:32 pm

Vivien,

I see I didn't reply to some Q's below:
To me the illusion of self is still just a concept despite the exercises in AE we are doing.
How would it look like if the illusion of self wasn’t just a concept?
To be honest, I'm veering into expectation on this one- the expectation of an 'aha' moment where it all 'falls into place'.
How would you recognise it?
By having total clarity.
And what is missing for the realization to happen?
I don't know- I just keep doing the exercises and keep looking, looking, looking.

Graham

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Vivien
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Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Vivien » Tue May 28, 2019 2:14 am

Hi Graham,
I will always try to look afresh. I didn't think I was relying on memory but rather my experience in the moment of those thoughts arising- perhaps I've misunderstood you.
That’s very good that you always look afresh. It’s very easy to get into the habit of not always looking afresh, so I usually ask this just to make sure that looking is constantly on :)
Trust me, I'm not going anywhere!
Great! :)
there is no 'it' or 'me' thinking this thought- just thinking arising and being aware-d or 'thoughtaware-ing'.
The sensation is just 'sensation-aware-d'. A thought label says "Aware-d by me" but this is just a thought.
It is just experienced as 'label-aware-ing'. Though tries to claim this 'awaring' as "I am doing the awaring" but this is just a thought.
No 'it'- just thinking/thoughts arising and being aware-d.
I’ve collected some of your answers. You’ve mentioned ‘aware-ing or ‘awared’ several times.
Is it possible that the belief in a separate awareness is still there?

Does it seem like that ‘I’ is the awareness or the one that is aware?

Does ‘I am awareness’ feels real?
If yes, how so? Please describe it?


To help with emotions, let’s examine the pure sensations without the labels. In reality, there are only 3 types of sensations. Pleasant, unpleasant and neutral. But usually the neutral ones are ignored, we hardly notice them. All the negative emotions generate unpleasant sensations, and in reality there is no difference in sensation of ‘sadness’, ‘anger’, ‘fear’, etc. There might be differences of the location and the intensity of the sensations, but the ‘feeling’ is the same. All these sensations feel contracted (actually the muscles are contracted). That’s why they are unpleasant.
The pleasant sensations are just the opposite of contraction, they feel open, expanded (because the muscles are relaxed) That’s why they feel pleasant. ‘Love’, ‘peace’, ‘calmness’, ‘gratitude’… these are all expanded sensations. The pure sensations of them are the same. There might be difference in location and intensity, but that’s all.

For the exercise you’ll have to bring up certain emotions, both pleasant and unpleasant ones. You don’t have to dive deeply into the unpleasant ones, you just bring up them lightly, just enough intensity that you can observe the underlying sensations.

So bring up the memory of ‘sadness’. When the sensation is present, don’t pay attention to the thought story, just stay with the pure sensation for a minute.
After about a minute let go of the sensation labelled ‘sadness’, and try to slightly feel ‘fear’ (just gently). Let go all thoughts, and just feel the pure sensation.
Now try to feel the sensation of ‘anger’ for a little while. Then let it go. Let your body calm down.
So, could you see that all the negative emotions felt very similar, contracted and unpleasant?
And only the labels make them seemingly different?


Now bring up the feeling of ‘love’, and pay attention only to the pure sensation. Let it be there for a while.
Then bring up the feeling of ‘peace’, observe the sensation carefully.
Now bring up the feeling of ‘gratitude’, and stay with a sensation as long as you like.
So, could you see that all the positive emotions felt very similar, expanded, pleasant?
And only the labels make them seemingly different?


And now the last step. Bring up just the feeling of an unpleasant sensation. You don’t even have to label it, just feel it. When the sensation is present observe it very carefully.
Does the pure sensation suggest in any way that it’s ‘unpleasant’?
Does the pure sensation itself is REALLY unpleasant?


Now, bring up a pleasant sensation, stay with it for a while, and observe it carefully.
Does the pure sensation suggest in any way that it’s ‘pleasant’?
Does the pure sensation itself is REALLY pleasant?


Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Tue May 28, 2019 12:31 pm

Hi Vivien,
I’ve collected some of your answers. You’ve mentioned ‘aware-ing or ‘awared’ several times.
Is it possible that the belief in a separate awareness is still there?
I don't think so- I've seen through the 'I am awareness' trap that everything appears 'in' or 'to' awareness. When I say 'awared' or 'aware-ing' I fully see that there is no separate awareness there waiting for an object to appear. I fully see that awareness and the object of awareness are not two separate things but as you described before, one unit ie 'thoughtawaring' or 'imageawaring'. Thought/image does not exist without the aware-ing of it. There is no border or separation between the two. In fact when I say "I fully see" this is for language purposes only- there is no 'I' seeing- just seeing.
Does it seem like that ‘I’ is the awareness or the one that is aware?
It can SEEM like this at times but the reality is that the 'I' does not exist except as thought content. There is no 'one' that is aware- there is just awareness happening
Does ‘I am awareness’ feels real?
If yes, how so? Please describe it?
It can do at times if I forget that but I can see that this 'I' is just a mixture os sensations, labels and thought content that creates an 'I'. The sensations, labels and thoughts are themselves 'senastionawaring', 'labelawaring' and 'thoughtawaring'- they are happening without an 'I' as awareness.
To help with emotions, let’s examine the pure sensations without the labels. In reality, there are only 3 types of sensations. Pleasant, unpleasant and neutral. But usually the neutral ones are ignored, we hardly notice them. All the negative emotions generate unpleasant sensations, and in reality there is no difference in sensation of ‘sadness’, ‘anger’, ‘fear’, etc. There might be differences of the location and the intensity of the sensations, but the ‘feeling’ is the same. All these sensations feel contracted (actually the muscles are contracted). That’s why they are unpleasant.
The pleasant sensations are just the opposite of contraction, they feel open, expanded (because the muscles are relaxed) That’s why they feel pleasant. ‘Love’, ‘peace’, ‘calmness’, ‘gratitude’… these are all expanded sensations. The pure sensations of them are the same. There might be difference in location and intensity, but that’s all.
Yes- and I see that even the the labels 'pleasant', 'unpleasant' and 'neutral' are used here for explanatory purposes- there is just sensation(s) happening.
So bring up the memory of ‘sadness’. When the sensation is present, don’t pay attention to the thought story, just stay with the pure sensation for a minute.
After about a minute let go of the sensation labelled ‘sadness’, and try to slightly feel ‘fear’ (just gently). Let go all thoughts, and just feel the pure sensation.
Now try to feel the sensation of ‘anger’ for a little while. Then let it go. Let your body calm down.
So, could you see that all the negative emotions felt very similar, contracted and unpleasant?
And only the labels make them seemingly different?
Yes- 'contracted', 'dense' and 'unpleasant' but on their own without the labels 'sadness' or 'fear' just sensation (being 'sensationaware-d'!!)
Now bring up the feeling of ‘love’, and pay attention only to the pure sensation. Let it be there for a while.
Then bring up the feeling of ‘peace’, observe the sensation carefully.
Now bring up the feeling of ‘gratitude’, and stay with a sensation as long as you like.
So, could you see that all the positive emotions felt very similar, expanded, pleasant?
And only the labels make them seemingly different?
Yes- the sensation might have different characteristics but is still just a sensation.
And now the last step. Bring up just the feeling of an unpleasant sensation. You don’t even have to label it, just feel it. When the sensation is present observe it very carefully.
Does the pure sensation suggest in any way that it’s ‘unpleasant’?
Does the pure sensation itself is REALLY unpleasant?
No- as I suggested above, the sensation is not in and of itself 'unpleasant'- this is a label applied to the sensation. The sensation is just a sensation.
Now, bring up a pleasant sensation, stay with it for a while, and observe it carefully.
Does the pure sensation suggest in any way that it’s ‘pleasant’?
Does the pure sensation itself is REALLY pleasant?
No- the sensation is just a sensation- 'pleasant' is yet another label.

Best,
Graham

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Vivien
Posts: 2725
Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:07 am
Location: Australia

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Vivien » Wed May 29, 2019 12:54 am

Hi Graham,
I don't think so- I've seen through the 'I am awareness' trap that everything appears 'in' or 'to' awareness. When I say 'awared' or 'aware-ing' I fully see that there is no separate awareness there waiting for an object to appear. I fully see that awareness and the object of awareness are not two separate things but as you described before, one unit ie 'thoughtawaring' or 'imageawaring'. Thought/image does not exist without the aware-ing of it. There is no border or separation between the two. In fact when I say "I fully see" this is for language purposes only- there is no 'I' seeing- just seeing.
Very good.
It can do at times if I forget that but I can see that this 'I' is just a mixture os sensations, labels and thought content that creates an 'I'. The sensations, labels and thoughts are themselves 'senastionawaring', 'labelawaring' and 'thoughtawaring'- they are happening without an 'I' as awareness.
So, is there a you?

Has there ever been a you?


Find somewhere quiet to sit. Rest for a moment and listen to the sounds in the room where you are, or sounds from outside. Whatever it is, I'll just refer to it as 'what can be heard'.

In 'hearing' can anything be found other than 'what can be heard'?
Can what is doing the hearing be found? Or is there only 'what can be heard'?
An 'I'? a 'body'? a 'person'? a brain? A pair of ears? Can these be found doing the hearing? Or is there just 'what can be heard'?
What do you find?

Can an INHERENT HEARER be found? Would anything that is suggested as the hearer, be anything other than a concept/idea/thought?


Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/

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Rufus
Posts: 80
Joined: Tue Apr 09, 2019 11:29 pm

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Rufus » Wed May 29, 2019 11:20 am

Hi Vivien,
So, is there a you?
Has there ever been a you?
Ok- a bit of long winded answer here but bear with me.

The other day I read the quotes on the Liberation Unleashed app (I hope that's OK!!)I had a subtle shift from having a belief that the 'illusion of self' was an illusion itself- "it can't be", "there must be a me"- to the acceptance that 'no self' is a possibility if not a probability. This might not seem radical but it definitely shifted my perspective. I'm now answering from that possibility/probability. Now, I can see this as just another 'belief', but I am coming to the dialoguing from a different direction so to speak. Rather than trying to disprove the 'illusion of self' I've shifted to an acceptance of the 'illusion of self'. This does not mean that I don't have doubts or want to continue exploring- just that I come to that exploration from a different perspective so to speak. I hope that makes sense! "So, is there a you?' There are only thoughts about a 'me' and thoughts are just thoughts. There is a 'sense of me' which is just a combination of sensations, labels, images and thoughts. The possibility/probability that this is the case means there has never been a 'me', nor never will.

Btw, one of the quotes really caught my attention in that it speaks to some of the doubts that do come up:

"Every time there is a story about a future, it may trigger depression: "Things will stay the same, "I might have no job/no money/no assets/relationships, "I might get sick", or "I don't want to die destitute and alone". The core feeling behind all the other feelings is fear- fear of change, fear of people in general. The fear is derived from very early childhood and being attacked. It is just deep conditioning that has stayed in the body and mind".

Without trying to influence the direction of our dialogue, perhaps we could explore this at some point.

Find somewhere quiet to sit. Rest for a moment and listen to the sounds in the room where you are, or sounds from outside. Whatever it is, I'll just refer to it as 'what can be heard'.

In 'hearing' can anything be found other than 'what can be heard'?
No
Can what is doing the hearing be found? Or is there only 'what can be heard'?
There is only what can be heard. Thought says "I am hearing" but this is just a thought creating a 'me' which cannot be found.
An 'I'? a 'body'? a 'person'? a brain? A pair of ears? Can these be found doing the hearing? Or is there just 'what can be heard'?
What do you find?
There is just what can be heard which thought appropriates as 'heard by me'
Can an INHERENT HEARER be found? Would anything that is suggested as the hearer, be anything other than a concept/idea/thought?
No inherent hearer can be found outside of a thought/concept/idea.

Best,
Graham

User avatar
Vivien
Posts: 2725
Joined: Sat Jun 07, 2014 3:07 am
Location: Australia

Re: Confusion to Clarity

Postby Vivien » Thu May 30, 2019 1:58 am

Hi Graham,
There are only thoughts about a 'me' and thoughts are just thoughts. There is a 'sense of me' which is just a combination of sensations, labels, images and thoughts. The possibility/probability that this is the case means there has never been a 'me', nor never will
.
It it’s seen that the ‘me’ are just thoughts, and sense of me just the combination of sensations labels, images and thoughts, then what is missing to accept this?

What else needs to happen to see this as a fact and not just as a possibility?
Is there anything missing at all, or rather just certain thoughts/beliefs prevent this to be accepted?


I mean there is a clear seeing that the self cannot be found. However, this experiential seeing is in contradiction of the belief that ‘there must be a me”, so another thought comes with a conclusion that although the self cannot be found, it’s still there (since it’s believed to be there) so it has to be there. But just because a thought ‘say’ so, does it make it so?
Btw, one of the quotes really caught my attention in that it speaks to some of the doubts that do come up:
"Every time there is a story about a future, it may trigger depression: "Things will stay the same, "I might have no job/no money/no assets/relationships, "I might get sick", or "I don't want to die destitute and alone". The core feeling behind all the other feelings is fear- fear of change, fear of people in general. The fear is derived from very early childhood and being attacked. It is just deep conditioning that has stayed in the body and mind".
And how does this quote support the doubts in no-self?
Could you please explain it a bit more?
Without trying to influence the direction of our dialogue, perhaps we could explore this at some point.
What do you want to explore exactly? The existence or realness of fear? Or the one who is afraid? Or do you mean a psychological exploration?

Vivien
"In the seen, there is only the seen. In the heard, there is only the heard. In the sensed, there is only the sensed. You are located neither in this, nor in that, nor in any place between the two." - Buddha
http://fadingveiling.com/


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