deconstruction site

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Agi
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Re: deconstruction site

Postby Agi » Mon May 20, 2019 5:37 pm

Dear Vivien
Nice. “..of where I think the ‘me’ is located” – what do you believe where it is?
What do I believe? i.e not my actual experience but what my thoughts say? My immediate response is, the 'me' is in my head. But when I looked during meditation to try to find it, I realized that it was because I very closely associate ‘me’ with the eyes, with looking and seeing. That’s why for me the me is behind the eyes somewhere - the one who looks. Of course I know this is not the case, but that’s my unthinking response.
Search that spot (where you think the ‘me’ is) thoroughly. What do you find?
No ‘I’, of course.
the five-min exercise watching thoughts. Let me know how you go and what you notice.


My thoughts were almost exclusively me-related. Planning, evaluation of present situation (I enjoy relaxing here; I feel tired). This was pretty much it.
Also please share with me what was written under others.
Only one thing: an image of a street in my home town appeared at some point. All other thoughts were obviously me-related.
Then investigate the thoughts what was written under others. Are those thoughts are really about others?
Well no it wasn’t, because it’s also related to a past experience of mine.
During the day, try to observe as many thoughts as you can. Particularly try to pay attention to narrating thoughts. Thoughts that are constantly narrating and judging what’s going on from the perspective of ‘me’. Let me know what you find.
It’s the end of the day now so I’ll do this part of the exercise tomorrow and will report to you.

Thank you and have a good evening!

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Vivien
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Re: deconstruction site

Postby Vivien » Tue May 21, 2019 12:49 am

Hi Agi,
My immediate response is, the 'me' is in my head. But when I looked during meditation to try to find it, I realized that it was because I very closely associate ‘me’ with the eyes, with looking and seeing. That’s why for me the me is behind the eyes somewhere - the one who looks. Of course I know this is not the case, but that’s my unthinking response.
Very nice. The sense of self usually appears in the head, as a seer, hearer, taster, smeller, talk-er, etc. So certain sensations (like the eyes) are mistaken as the self, the ‘me’. We will investigate this later.
V: Also please share with me what was written under others.
A: Only one thing: an image of a street in my home town appeared at some point. All other thoughts were obviously me-related.
This might seem as not me related, but the image of street is in MY home town. It’s MY memory. So as you discovered, almost all, if not all thoughts are about ME! Even those ones that might seem otherwise at first glance.
V: During the day, try to observe as many thoughts as you can. Particularly try to pay attention to narrating thoughts. Thoughts that are constantly narrating and judging what’s going on from the perspective of ‘me’. Let me know what you find.
A: It’s the end of the day now so I’ll do this part of the exercise tomorrow and will report to you.
So, how did it go?

Almost every thought, if not all, is about the self. Sometimes it might not be as obvious, but when looked at it a bit more closely, it turns out that this ‘narrating mind’ is always about me (some way or another).

Actually, these narrating thoughts create the illusion of the self.
These thoughts describes ‘what I am’.
They describe my past, present and future.
They produce a story of my life.
They describe how I feel, and what I have to do.
They describe what things in the world and others mean to me and can give to me.
These thoughts define who I am and what is my relationship to the world.

Please go through the above sentences one-by-one. Look if they are really true. Let me know what comes up.

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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Agi
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Re: deconstruction site

Postby Agi » Tue May 21, 2019 6:42 pm

Dear Vivien

This is getting really interesting!
So, how did it go (watching the thoughts during the day)?
I had so many thoughts about myself, it was pretty much impossible to discover any that were about others.
Actually, these narrating thoughts create the illusion of the self.
Very true.
These thoughts describe ‘what I am’.
Yes, it’s almost like a brainwashing exercise.
They describe my past, present and future.
Yes.
They produce a story of my life.
True.
They describe how I feel, and what I have to do. They describe what things in the world and others mean to me and can give to me. These thoughts define who I am and what is my relationship to the world.
Yes
Please go through the above sentences one-by-one. Look if they are really true. Let me know what comes up.
All the statements you make seem obvious after doing the exercises.
What immediately comes up in response is a sense of rebellion: my thoughts are controlling me! I don’t want to be determined by my thoughts! I want to be in control! But then I laugh because I realize that everything I know myself to be is thanks to my thoughts. Then the question arises: what would I become if all the thoughts were gone…?

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Re: deconstruction site

Postby Vivien » Wed May 22, 2019 2:02 am

Hi Agi,
What immediately comes up in response is a sense of rebellion: my thoughts are controlling me! I don’t want to be determined by my thoughts! I want to be in control!
Are these thoughts were done by you?
Have you made these rebelling thoughts to come up?
Are you the one who thought these thoughts?
Is there a thinker of thoughts at all?

What is it exactly that wants to be in control?
But then I laugh because I realize that everything I know myself to be is thanks to my thoughts. Then the question arises: what would I become if all the thoughts were gone…?
This question is based on the belief that there is a ‘me’, an ‘I’, and I just have to figure out what/who I am. I’ve just discovered that I’m not my thoughts, but I as a separate self exist, just I’m not my thoughts.

So what is the ‘I’ exactly that is not the thoughts?

So if there is a self, then it has to be there. So find it. Look everywhere. Look into thoughts, sensations, images, look into every corner of the body, into the feet, stomach, chest, neck, throat, the back of the head, eyes, behind the eyes, the forehead, the top of the head. Don’t leave anything out.
Where is the ‘I’ exactly?

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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Agi
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Re: deconstruction site

Postby Agi » Wed May 22, 2019 10:35 pm

Dear Vivien
Are these thoughts that were done by you?
No. It feels like that strong immediate response comes from ‘me’, but it is just another set of thoughts.
Have you made these rebelling thoughts to come up?
They arose spontaneously. I didn’t generate them.
Are you the one who thought these thoughts? Is there a thinker of thoughts at all?
No. The thoughts think themselves into existence.
What is it exactly that wants to be in control?
I don’t know. It’s an aggressive thought about ‘me’.
So what is the ‘I’ exactly that is not the thoughts?
No one thing in particular. It’s the body, and the perceptions, and the process of perceiving, all of these together.
So if there is a self, then it has to be there. So find it. Look everywhere. Look into thoughts, sensations, images, look into every corner of the body, into the feet, stomach, chest, neck, throat, the back of the head, eyes, behind the eyes, the forehead, the top of the head. Don’t leave anything out. Where is the ‘I’ exactly?
In none of these. As you said earlier, the ‘I’ is the content of a thought. The thought exists for real, but not its content.

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Re: deconstruction site

Postby Vivien » Thu May 23, 2019 12:57 am

Hi Agi,
The thoughts think themselves into existence.
Can a thought think? – please wait for a thought to arrive, and look. Always look afresh, never rely on the memory of a previous looking.
It’s an aggressive thought about ‘me’.
How the ‘aggressiveness’ of a thought is actually experience?
Is there really such thing as an aggressive thought? – look very carefully
V: So what is the ‘I’ exactly that is not the thoughts?
A: No one thing in particular. It’s the body, and the perceptions, and the process of perceiving, all of these together.
This answer is a learned knowledge. It’s not coming from looking at AE, since it’s the conceptual overlay what we talked about before. Please always LOOK. And always look afresh. Never rely on memory of a previous looking. All right?
V: So if there is a self, then it has to be there. So find it.
A: In none of these. As you said earlier, the ‘I’ is the content of a thought. The thought exists for real, but not its content
Is this clearly seen experimentally, or is it rather just an intellectual understanding?
Is this totally clear experimentally (not just intellectually) that there is NO YOU at all?
That there are only thoughts about Agi, but you/Agi as a self is not there at all?

Here is an interesting exercise.

Go and make a cup of tea or coffee. As you do this notice whether a 'self' does it. Also notice if there are many or any moments in the whole procedure of going to the kettle, switching it on, getting the cup (etc) when 'you' control the process?

How the decision is made what to make a cup of tea or coffee?
Do ‘you’ choose putting or not putting milk into the tea (or coffee)?
Is there a moment of choice or it happens automatically?
Do ‘you’ 'make the cup of tea (or coffee) happen' or it just happens?
Can a chooser be located?


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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Agi
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Re: deconstruction site

Postby Agi » Thu May 23, 2019 5:58 pm

Dear Vivien

Here are my replies. I hope they make some sense. :-)
Can a thought think? – please wait for a thought to arrive, and look. Always look afresh, never rely on the memory of a previous looking.
No, of course thoughts can’t think. What I said was a figure of speech really. What I meant was that the thoughts arise spontaneously, I don’t generate them.
How is the ‘aggressiveness’ of a thought actually experienced? Is there really such thing as an aggressive thought? – look very carefully
This wasn’t easy to answer as I wasn’t able to artificially generate an aggressive thought. But I found that an emotional response of anger was there, manifest in the body as tightening in the stomach and the throat.
This answer is a learned knowledge. It’s not coming from looking at AE, since it’s the conceptual overlay what we talked about before. Please always LOOK. And always look afresh. Never rely on memory of a previous looking. All right?
I try. But I don’t have an answer to the question of where the self is or what it is. We’ve been here several times before, and the answer is always the same - I can’t find it. Today when I tried to look again in meditation, I felt there was a little man inside my head who was shouting ‘I’m here, I’m here!’ but that’s the closest I got. Later I did get a strong sense of presence through experiencing body parts though. So what I call ‘me’ is perhaps this sensation of being in the body.
Is this clearly seen experientially, or is it rather just an intellectual understanding? Is this totally clear experientially (not just intellectually) that there is NO YOU at all? That there are only thoughts about Agi, but you/Agi as a self is not there at all?
There have been moments when I experienced this clearly and directly. But just because I’ve had this experience a few times in the last few weeks, that doesn’t mean that from now on this has become my general experience. I think that’s natural - I have 45 years of 'self' to deconstruct. So if you ask these questions, I won’t have a direct experience of my non-existence each time I reply. But I am aware that this is the case because I’ve experienced it, nevertheless this hasn't changed my overall attitude or my gut responses from one day to the next. So I don’t know how to answer these questions, except to say that this has been the case a few times, but it isn’t the case most of the time.
Go and make a cup of tea or coffee. As you do this, notice whether a 'self' does it. Also notice if there are many or any moments in the whole procedure of going to the kettle, switching it on, getting the cup (etc) when 'you' control the process? How is the decision made what to make: a cup of tea or coffee? Do ‘you’ choose putting or not putting milk into the tea (or coffee)? Is there a moment of choice or it happens automatically? Do ‘you’ 'make the cup of tea (or coffee) happen' or it just happens? Can a chooser be located?
My experience was that the process was pretty much fully automated. The decision to make a choice was somehow made, but I can’t say that ‘I’ made it. So yes there was a choice as to which kind of tea I wanted, but it wasn’t really ‘my’ choice. So no, I could not locate a chooser. I was surprised at how much the process -and this applies to other things I do during the day too - was automatic.

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Re: deconstruction site

Postby Vivien » Fri May 24, 2019 1:05 am

Hi Agi,
This wasn’t easy to answer as I wasn’t able to artificially generate an aggressive thought. But I found that an emotional response of anger was there, manifest in the body as tightening in the stomach and the throat.
Nice looking. So a thought by itself cannot be aggressive. There can be a thought about ‘aggression’, but that content doesn’t make the ‘container’ (the thought itself) aggressive. Is this clear?

And as you discovered, thoughts often accompanied with sensations, and those sensations might be labelled as ‘aggression’.
I try. But I don’t have an answer to the question of where the self is or what it is. We’ve been here several times before, and the answer is always the same - I can’t find it.
And we will come back for this again and again and again. It’s about looking and looking and looking and not finding what brings about the realization. So always look again. Never rely on memory. This has to be seen again and again and again so then something will click.
Today when I tried to look again in meditation, I felt there was a little man inside my head who was shouting ‘I’m here, I’m here!’ but that’s the closest I got.
And have you investigated this ‘felt little man inside the head shouting’?

Either way, please sit down, and try to locate this ‘felt little man inside shouting’.

How does this little man exactly felt?
What is it exactly that is being felt?

How is it known exactly that the thought “I am here, I’m here!” is the voice of a little man inside?
Later I did get a strong sense of presence through experiencing body parts though. So what I call ‘me’ is perhaps this sensation of being in the body.
Yes. The sense of self is not just created by thoughts, but also by mistaking certain sensations as me. We will look at this soon.
There have been moments when I experienced this clearly and directly. But just because I’ve had this experience a few times in the last few weeks, that doesn’t mean that from now on this has become my general experience. I think that’s natural - I have 45 years of 'self' to deconstruct. So if you ask these questions, I won’t have a direct experience of my non-existence each time I reply. But I am aware that this is the case because I’ve experienced it, nevertheless this hasn't changed my overall attitude or my gut responses from one day to the next. So I don’t know how to answer these questions, except to say that this has been the case a few times, but it isn’t the case most of the time.
All right. That’s normal. That’s why you ALWAYS have to LOOK AGAIN. ALWAYS LOOK AFRESH. Never rely on memory. I know I said this many times, and probably I will say this more :) It’s very easy to not look, but rely on a memory, which would just a belief in this moment.

Look as often during the day as you can. Not just when meditating or reply to my question, but during daily activates. The more often you look, the easier and clearer it gets.

Can we agree on that you’ll look as many times as possible during the day?
I was surprised at how much the process -and this applies to other things I do during the day too - was automatic.
Good. Let’s investigate this a bit more.

1. Place both hands on a table in front of you, palms down.
2. When you have done that, rest for a moment and then raise one hand in the air but not the other.

Don't go to thoughts, examine your direct experience. Do this as many times as you like, and each time inquire:

What is it exactly that is choosing which hand to raise?
Can you find a separate individual or anything that is doing the choosing?
What is it that is controlling the hand?
Can a ‘controller’ of any description be located?
Can anything be found that makes the hand move?
How is the decision made?
Can a decision maker be found?


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: deconstruction site

Postby Agi » Sun May 26, 2019 9:13 am

Dear Vivien

Apologies for the delay in replying. I have tried to do more looking in the last few days, though I must say I found it very difficult.
A thought by itself cannot be aggressive. There can be a thought about ‘aggression’, but that content doesn’t make the ‘container’ (the thought itself) aggressive. Is this clear?
Yes it is clear, but it’s only clear when I look closely. In the hustle and bustle of the day, when I don’t have the time to examine each thought or emotional response, this distinction is not seen or recalled.
And we will come back for this again and again and again. It’s about looking and looking and looking and not finding what brings about the realization. So always look again. Never rely on memory. This has to be seen again and again and again so then something will click.
Yes. Thank you for saying this. I have found this reminder helpful.
And have you investigated this ‘felt little man inside the head shouting’? How does this little man exactly felt? What is it exactly that is being felt? How is it known exactly that the thought “I am here, I’m here!” is the voice of a little man inside?
I did try, though I didn’t find much. It felt like looking at someone else, i.e. it didn’t feel like I was looking at myself. When I tried several times to find this voice, it always felt like ‘I’, here, am looking at something else, over there. That is to say, there was still a looker who was other than the voice I was trying to locate, so the ‘me’ that I found couldn’t have been the ‘real’ me.
Can we agree that you’ll look as many times as possible during the day?
I have tried in the last couple of days. On a normal day this is very very hard as looking requires time and effort. I can't just look as I'm doing something, I have to stop. All the business and activities of the day make it very difficult to put in that time and effort.
Don’t go to thoughts, examine your direct experience. Do this as many times as you like, and each time inquire: What is it exactly that is choosing which hand to raise? Can you find a separate individual or anything that is doing the choosing?
No I can’t. I tried many times but I can’t point at the ‘chooser’.
What is it that is controlling the hand? Can a ‘controller’ of any description be located? Can anything be found that makes the hand move? How is the decision made?
Actually what I have found was two different responses. If I gave myself the instruction and didn’t think, one hand was lifted automatically. Whichever. No decision was made by anyone, it was an automatic response to the verbal instruction. But when I started thinking and trying to make a conscious decision, I became paralysed. I couldn’t find anyone inside me to make the decision which hand to raise. If I silently said to myself, ‘lift up your right hand’, nothing happened. The verbal instruction was not obeyed by my body. Somehow for the hand to move a separate decision was made/order was given somewhere else that I don’t have access to.
Can a decision maker be found?
I couldn’t find one. What I did find was that ‘I’ was not the decision maker.

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Re: deconstruction site

Postby Vivien » Mon May 27, 2019 12:02 am

Hi Agi,
Yes it is clear, but it’s only clear when I look closely. In the hustle and bustle of the day, when I don’t have the time to examine each thought or emotional response, this distinction is not seen or recalled.
That’s normal. The more you look, the easier it gets. It’s just like any skill.
I did try, though I didn’t find much. It felt like looking at someone else, i.e. it didn’t feel like I was looking at myself. When I tried several times to find this voice, it always felt like ‘I’, here, am looking at something else, over there. That is to say, there was still a looker who was other than the voice I was trying to locate, so the ‘me’ that I found couldn’t have been the ‘real’ me.
All right. Please look again. But this time when the seeming looker appears, then look for the looker. What is it exactly that is looking for the ‘me’?
I have tried in the last couple of days. On a normal day this is very very hard as looking requires time and effort. I can't just look as I'm doing something, I have to stop. All the business and activities of the day make it very difficult to put in that time and effort.
The more you look, the easier it gets. And at some point it will hardly require any effort.
You can look during daily activities which don’t require too much intellectual attention. Like doing dishes, washing your teeth, showering, towelling, making the bed, walking from the carpark to the supermarket, using the elevator, washing your hands, preparing food, etc. Even just a minute of looking many times a day can make a big difference.
Somehow for the hand to move a separate decision was made/order was given somewhere else that I don’t have access to.
This is a logical conclusion, it’s an assumption. So there is a belief that there must be a decider or a decision maker, but it cannot be found in the AE. Therefore, since the belief in the decider is there, thoughts suggest a logical conclusion that “the decision was made somewhere else that I don’t have access to”. This assumption is made just to support the belief in the decider. Can you see this?

Please repeat the hand raise exercise several times.

Is there a ‘you’ somewhere realizing that the hand moves automatically? – locate it

“The decision was made/order was given somewhere else that I don’t have access to” – What does the word ‘I’ refer to in this sentence?

What is it exactly that don’t have access to that decision? – find it

Is there a ‘you’ somewhere who has no access to the process of decision making? – Where is this you?

Look for that hidden place where the SUPPOSED decision is made. Does such hidden place REALLY exist?
What I did find was that ‘I’ was not the decision maker.
This statement implies that although I am not the decision maker, but I am somewhere here, I’m just not deciding.
So where are you?

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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Agi
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Re: deconstruction site

Postby Agi » Mon May 27, 2019 6:39 pm

Hello Vivien

I have tried to do more looking today.
All right. Please look again. But this time when the seeming looker appears, then look for the looker. What is it exactly that is looking for the ‘me’?
It’s just another thought.
This assumption is made just to support the belief in the decider. Can you see this?
Yes.
Please repeat the hand raise exercise several times. Is there a ‘you’ somewhere realizing that the hand moves automatically? – locate it.
It was a thought that said ‘the hand has moved automatically’.
“The decision was made/order was given somewhere else that I don’t have access to” – What does the word ‘I’ refer to in this sentence? What is it exactly that doesn’t have access to that decision? – find it
The person you’ve asked to look ☺ No, the real answer is that it seems to be yet another thought about me looking. Separate thoughts, each with its own intention.
Is there a ‘you’ somewhere who has no access to the process of decision making? – Where is this you?
That’s what it feels like, yes, but upon looking only thoughts are found.
Look for that hidden place where the SUPPOSED decision is made. Does such hidden place REALLY exist?
I can’t find it.
This statement implies that although I am not the decision maker, but I am somewhere here, I’m just not deciding. So where are you?
As above. It feels like there’s a narrator who makes the statement ‘I am not deciding’, but when I look more closely, this narrator turns out to be just another thought.

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Re: deconstruction site

Postby Vivien » Tue May 28, 2019 2:45 am

Hi Agi,
It feels like there’s a narrator who makes the statement ‘I am not deciding’, but when I look more closely, this narrator turns out to be just another thought.
Great looking! So every time during the day when it seems like or feels like that there is a me as a narrator, then look for the narrator (as me), try to find it, localize it. Do this again and again and again. Let me know how it goes.

Here is another exercise to help seeing through the illusion of a decision-maker.

Please put some chocolate (or something you think you shouldn’t eat or drink) in front of you. Look at it. Inspect it closely. Smell its delicious fragrance. And pay attention to emerging desire to eat it.

When the desire is there, pay close attention to the thought process.
See how thoughts list pros and cons why you should or shouldn’t eat the chocolate.
These opposing thoughts might even try to argue or convince each other what to decide.

What is it that is considering these options?


Is there anything that is listing the pros and cons, or only just thoughts appear about pros and cons? – look very carefully


Now, make a decision, but whatever you decide, don’t eat the chocolate (yet). Rather just pay very close attention when the decision is made. Particularly pay attention to thoughts, as the decision is made.

Let’s say a thought appear: “I decided to not eat the chocolate”
So the thought about the decision just appeared. What made that thought to appear?
Can you find the thing that made that decision, apart from the presence of the thought about the decision?

How exactly the decision is made?

Now, do according to the decision. (Either eat or don’t eat the chocolate.)
What is it that performed the chosen action?

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: deconstruction site

Postby Agi » Tue May 28, 2019 6:42 pm

Dear Vivien
So every time during the day when it seems like or feels like that there is a me as a narrator, then look for the narrator (as me), try to find it, localize it. Do this again and again and again. Let me know how it goes.
I have done this several times today, and it has become easier in the sense that at least I remember to look much more often than before - even though the looking itself is still very hard. Sometimes I wonder whether I’m really actually looking, or just thinking about looking. It’s very hard to look instead of thinking. I sometimes feel like my body or head is an empty vessel, and the thoughts fill it.
When the desire is there, pay close attention to the thought process. See how thoughts list pros and cons why you should or shouldn’t eat the chocolate. These opposing thoughts might even try to argue or convince each other what to decide. What is it that is considering these options?
My first impression was, it’s like the ‘parent me’ and the ‘child me’ having a conversation. Yes, it was two people arguing. I was just the onlooker.
Is there anything that is listing the pros and cons, or only just thoughts appear about pros and cons? – look very carefully
I’ve actually had this experience in earlier exercises as well - it is different thoughts with different agendas or intentions having a conversation. There doesn’t seem to be a central ‘power’ controlling this discussion process.
Let’s say a thought appears: “I decided not to eat the chocolate”. So the thought about the decision just appeared. What made that thought to appear? Can you find the thing that made that decision, apart from the presence of the thought about the decision? How exactly is the decision made?
First, there seems to be a strong pull, a desire, to take that thing. Upon closer inspection, that desire turns out to be nothing more than a thought. The stronger thought, in this case the desire to eat it, somehow wins over the other one, which said not to eat (it's still unclear how this happens). The other thought then disappears, and the thought that wants to eat remains. The stronger intention has won out.
Now, do according to the decision. (Either eat or don’t eat the chocolate.) What is it that performed the chosen action?
By the time it came to performing the action, it felt more like an automated process. Once the instruction to eat was given, the body obeyed. No more thinking took place.

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Re: deconstruction site

Postby Vivien » Wed May 29, 2019 1:05 am

Hi Agi,
Sometimes I wonder whether I’m really actually looking, or just thinking about looking. It’s very hard to look instead of thinking.
You can make it easier, if you ask a questions like:
Where is the hearer?
What is making the decision?
What is seeing this image?
Where is the ‘me’ exactly? Etc.

And then look. Then ask the same question again, and look. Look ‘inside’ the body, trying to find what you’re looking for. As if you were looking for your keys. Ask a question, then look. Question, look. Question, look. You can even comment on saying ‘not the me’ when it’s seen that for example the sensation in the chest is just a sensation. Or you can label it ‘sensation’. In this way, you can engage the thinking process too, so there will be less tendency to think only and not look.
Let me know how it goes.

Lie down onto a bed. Observer very carefully how the decision arises to get up.
Can a self be found making the body leave the bed?
Where does the "decision", the "command" to get up comes from?
What makes the body get up?
Is there a ‘you’ that commands the body?
When lying there, shout 'GET UP' internally as loudly as you can. Does that affect the outcome?


Repeat this with sitting in a chair. Describe in detail the decision of standing up.
How does the decision happen exactly?
Does a self come in and take over, weighing pros and cons, looking at possible consequences?
Or does standing up just happen, or not, without any doer?
What makes the body to stand up?


Now let’s investigate intention.
Sit in a chair and observe how the intention of standing up happens.
How is it known that there is an intention to stand up?
While sitting there, say internally several times ‘I intend to get up’. What happens?
What is it that made the intention to get up?


Now, zoom onto the intention (of getting up) very closely. Look at the intention itself directly.
Stare at the intention itself. Not the thoughts of “I intend to get up”, but THE intention itself.
Can you locate THE intention itself?
How the intention is actually experienced?


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/

User avatar
Agi
Posts: 47
Joined: Fri May 03, 2019 12:36 pm

Re: deconstruction site

Postby Agi » Thu May 30, 2019 7:31 am

Hello Vivien

This intention looking is really difficult. It again feels like staring into empty space... my answers are below.
Question, look. Question, look. You can even comment on saying ‘not the me’ when it’s seen that for example the sensation in the chest is just a sensation. Let me know how it goes.
Yes it does get easier. Nothing major happens but there is a moment of realization, a flash of awareness that 'I' am not doing this. I came to realize that these exercises are great because they create a distance between 'me' and the thoughts. Every time I do them I realize 'I' am not the thoughts, or rather, the thoughts are not 'me'. This seems very good.
Lie down onto a bed. Observe very carefully how the decision arises to get up. Can a self be found making the body leave the bed?
No, not when I look closely. If I just spontaneously get up, it feels like 'I' am doing it, but when I observe, it's not the case.
Where does the "decision", the "command" to get up comes from?
A thought arose which said ‘let’s get up’
What makes the body get up?
The truth is, I don’t know. The thought in itself didn’t make the body get up. The thought said ‘let’s get up’ but I kept lying there. If I weren’t busy looking, i.e. under normal circumstances, the body would just obey automatically. But now that I was looking, nothing happened. I find it pretty much impossible to ‘look’ and act at the same time.
Ultimately what happened was there was another thought that said ‘now you will get up’ and then I did.
Is there a ‘you’ that commands the body?
No.
When lying there, shout 'GET UP' internally as loudly as you can. Does that affect the outcome?
No. My body cringed at ‘hearing’ the shout but it didn’t move.
Repeat this with sitting in a chair. Describe in detail the decision of standing up. How does the decision happen exactly?
There’s a thought, which seems to appear out of nowhere, and which says ‘now we’ll get up’. and then the body obeys.
Does a self come in and take over, weighing pros and cons, looking at possible consequences? Or does standing up just happen, or not, without any doer?
I didn’t see a self coming in. It’s much more of an automated process.
What makes the body to stand up?
I can’t find the thing that actually makes it get up.
Now let’s investigate intention. Sit in a chair and observe how the intention of standing up happens. How is it known that there is an intention to stand up?
I read your instructions, and in response to that the thought arose ‘let’s get up’.
In another case, the thought arose ‘I want to get up’. It’s like an internal voice speaking to me.
While sitting there, say internally several times ‘I intend to get up’. What happens? What is it that made the intention to get up?
No, saying the words in itself didn’t give me the intention. The words are just a phrase and had no impact. Somehow the actual intention seems to be something separate from the words but I can't locate it.
When I first said the phrase though, the body almost obeyed and began to stand. So when I’m not looking, this process seems totally automatic and just ‘hearing’ the words is enough for the body to obey.

Now, zoom in onto the intention (of getting up) very closely. Look at the intention itself directly. Stare at the intention itself. Not the thoughts of “I intend to get up”, but THE intention itself. Can you locate THE intention itself? How is the intention actually experienced?

No. That’s exactly what I have found. I don’t know where it is, but it’s not in the words. I can’t find the intention itself.

Thank you!
Agi


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