First day at school

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AndyKay
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Re: First day at school

Postby AndyKay » Sun Jun 23, 2019 1:40 pm

Please answer the following questions with some detail please, and answer what's true for you rather than any sort of 'ideal' answer. Also please provide examples where asked.

1) Is there a separate entity 'self', 'me' 'I', at all, anywhere, in any way, shape or form?
Was there ever?
There is no such entity and there never was.
2) Explain in detail what the illusion of separate self is, when it starts and how it works from your own experience.
The self is a part of a story told in thought-content. The story is told from the perspective of a special part in a world full of other parts. The special part taking this perspective becomes the concept of self and all other parts become its complement -- not-self, or other. Consistent with that story, it might justifiably be believed that this distinction comes to the very young infant when it first differentiates itself from its mother. Self then becomes identified with physical body. The physical body has the capacity to imagine a set of different possible future outcomes and to behave in a manner that favours some preferred outcome. This ability compounds the concept of self, adding the idea that it is also an agent of action ('doer'). The physical body also has the capacity to attend to various aspects of the world presented to it throught its sense organs (attention). This ability further compoundsthe concept of self, adding the idea that it is a subject of consciousness ('experiencer'). But this is all just thought-content. "A tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing".
Describe it fully as you see it now.
I am alive and well in thought-content. The story continues. But there is a radically different perspective in which the incessant chatter of thought-content has given way to pure experience. I wouldn't know how to describe this pure experience because any description resorts to thought-content. Any description breaks it up into categories. All attempts to speak about it lose it. Then the thought arises that "this is it, this is pure experience" and it is lost... like trying to keep a tight hold on a wet bar of soap when you're in the bath. But then there's a recognition of this happening, and another thought arises "be quiet". And then this too is recognized as arising of thought-content. This seems like a struggle to get on top of the arising of thought-content, but the idea of a 'struggler' is just more thought-content... the self re-asserting itself once again.
3) How does it feel to see this?
It feels like I have a way to go, but also that this "I" that "has a way to go" is just more thought-content, the self refusing to evaporate.
What is the difference from before you started this dialogue? Please report from the past few days.
When I started this dialogue, there was a kind of despair. Not at the thought of failure, but at the thought of living life without any enthusiasm for the future. Now I recognize this as just another manifestation of the self fighting for its continued existence.
4) What was the last bit that pushed you over; made you look?
Looking for the 'despairer'. I wouldn't say "pushed me over", but rather "picked me up" and permitted a resumption of what had stalled... the struggler-less struggle. It has been seen.
5) a) Describe decision, intention, free will, choice and control. What makes things happen? How does it work? Give examples from your own recent experiences to how things happen and how things work.
These are manifestations of the illusory self in its various guises as decider, intender, willer, chooser, and controller. The idea that some agency "makes thing happen" is part of the story told in thought-content. I have no idea how it works... to indulge in speculation about this would be to reside in thought-content. Things just happen. Experience just unfolds.
b) What are you responsible for? Give examples from your own recent experiences to how this works.
The thought "I am responsible for [this... that...]" is a way for the self to perpetuate itself.
6) Anything to add?
The wheel is still spinning. It is quite fascinating watching it spin. But then... who is watching?

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Vivien
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Re: First day at school

Postby Vivien » Sun Jun 23, 2019 11:44 pm

Hi Andy,
But then... who is watching?

Is there a watcher (subject) + the experience (object) being watched?

Is there a watcher separate from the experience?

Is there anything watching?


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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AndyKay
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Re: First day at school

Postby AndyKay » Mon Jun 24, 2019 12:01 am

But then... who is watching?
Is there a watcher (subject) + the experience (object) being watched?

Is there a watcher separate from the experience?

Is there anything watching?
No, there is no watcher and there is no watched. The question was just a continuation of the theme, the task to which I must keep returning, LOOKING.

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Vivien
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Re: First day at school

Postby Vivien » Mon Jun 24, 2019 12:04 am

Hi Andy,
No, there is no watcher and there is no watched. The question was just a continuation of the theme, the task to which I must keep returning, LOOKING.
Good, all right. Thank you for your responses. I am going to get other guides to have a look at the thread to ensure that I have covered everything and that my pointing has been clear. This may take a day or so. Sometimes, not always, the other guides may have further questions which I will bring to you.

If there are no further questions, I will let you know and you will then be invited to the LU FB groups.

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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AndyKay
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Re: First day at school

Postby AndyKay » Mon Jun 24, 2019 12:08 am

Thank you for taking the time and the trouble to help me along here Vivien. It is much appreciated.

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Vivien
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Re: First day at school

Postby Vivien » Mon Jun 24, 2019 2:36 am

Hi Andy,
Thank you for taking the time and the trouble to help me along here Vivien. It is much appreciated.
You are very welcome.

One of the guides has some questions.
Andy, could you please try to use very simple langue, as if you were trying to explain this to an 8-year old child?
the self refusing to evaporate.
What self is refusing to evaporate?
Now I recognize this as just another manifestation of the self fighting for its continued existence.
What self is fighting for its continued existence?

How do you FEEL now from when he first started the thread?
This seems like a struggle to get on top of the arising of thought-content, but the idea of a 'struggler' is just more thought-content... the self re-asserting itself once again
What self exactly is trying to reassert itself?
But there is a radically different perspective in which the incessant chatter of thought-content has given way to pure experience.
What do you mean by ‘incessant chatter of thoughts-content has given way to pure experience’? – please describe this with simple language, as if you were trying to explain this to an 8-year old.

You didn’t prove examples to the followings. Could you please do so?

a) Describe decision, intention, free will, choice and control. What makes things happen? How does it work? Give examples from your own recent experiences to how things happen and how things work.

What are you responsible for? Give examples from your own recent experiences to how this works.

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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AndyKay
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Re: First day at school

Postby AndyKay » Mon Jun 24, 2019 6:45 pm

the self refusing to evaporate.
What self is refusing to evaporate?
This was intended as metaphor. The illusion keeps reasserting itself even when it has been seen through. When shown how a simple magician's card trick works, you can't help but see the trick every time it is performed. But with the Necker Cube to which I referred in an earlier post, you can't help seeing a 3D wire-frame cube whenever you look at the 2D network of lines on paper. You know it's an illusion, but it "keeps reasserting itself", or "it refuses to evaporate". The illusion of self is more like the latter example than the former. Of course there is no wire-frame cube that is "refusing to evaporate", any more than there is a self refusing to evaporate. However, I do appreciate that the use of such metaphors might lend support to the illusion and perhaps should be avoided.
Now I recognize this as just another manifestation of the self fighting for its continued existence.
What self is fighting for its continued existence?
Again this is metaphor. Thought-content continues to be influenced by the thought of self even when this thought is known to be an illusion, like an unconscious habit that is difficult to break.
How do you FEEL now from when he first started the thread?
A little lighter or more 'open' if that makes any sense. Not in any huge way, but rather as if I'd gotten bogged down and now the brakes are off again. I know that I'm still referring to a something that "got waylaid", but the illusion persists.
This seems like a struggle to get on top of the arising of thought-content, but the idea of a 'struggler' is just more thought-content... the self re-asserting itself once again
What self exactly is trying to reassert itself?
Again this is metaphor. Knowing that the Necker Cube is 2D doesn't stop the 3D illusion forcing itself into consciousness, even though there is no 3D cube to "do" any forcing. I should avoid metaphors.
But there is a radically different perspective in which the incessant chatter of thought-content has given way to pure experience.
What do you mean by ‘incessant chatter of thoughts-content has given way to pure experience’? – please describe this with simple language, as if you were trying to explain this to an 8-year old.
Thoughts flow, one leads to another and then to another, sometimes with a continued theme and sometimes with a complete disconnect, but it seems they go on without a break. Thought-content dominates, telling stories, making up conversations, creating explanations, making plans, re-living past experiences with regret or with pride, etc. Thought-content drowns out AE, like endless flotsam and jetsam on the surface of a stream can distract from seeing the undercurrent that is carrying it.
You didn’t prove examples to the followings. Could you please do so?

a) Describe decision, intention, free will, choice and control. What makes things happen? How does it work? Give examples from your own recent experiences to how things happen and how things work.
I'm not sure how to interpret this request. All of these are aspects of thought-content, and when asked to describe them I would have to take my descriptions from thought-content. But that would be quite mundane. A decision is a judgement 'I' make at some branch-point where activity could lead to different future outcomes (I decided to get out of bed early this morning because I had a lot to pack into the morning). Free-will is the belief that 'I' am the cause of those decisions. Choice is the multiplicity of possible actions from which 'I' eventually draw the actual action (I could have stayed in bed a little longer). Control is 'my' ability to influence the behaviour of something else (I caused the boiling of the kettle because I filled it with water, I that turned on the cooker ring, and I placed the kettle on the cooker ring). What makes things happen? 'I' make things happen... as the wielder of free-will, 'I' am a causal influence on the activity of my body. How does it work? 'I' make a decision, of my own free-will, 'I' select from amongst the choices laid out before 'me', and 'I' control my body to act accordingly. BUT THIS IS ALL THE SAME OLD STORY PLAYING OUT IN THE SAME OLD WAY. All of this activity still goes on when it can be seen that there is no 'I', no 'me', no 'my', but it can be seen that the role of this 'I' in the running commentary is redundant. Intention, free-will, choice, control, all part of this illusion of 'me'. Life goes on with or without these accompaniments. The thought 'I' still arises, e.g. when driving, and it is interesting to see this happen, to watch the illusion in operation. 'I' can't stop the illusion because I AM THE ILLUSION, but this condition can be recognized as it proceeds.
What are you responsible for? Give examples from your own recent experiences to how this works.
In thought-content, in the story, I am responsible for my decisions... whether I choose to exceed the speed limit and put other road-users at risk as well as my driver's license; to have another portion of apple pie and put my health at risk; to get into a fight about some trivial issue and put my friendship at risk: but this is all the same old story playing out the same old way.

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Vivien
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Re: First day at school

Postby Vivien » Tue Jun 25, 2019 12:53 am

Hi Andy,
A little lighter or more 'open' if that makes any sense. Not in any huge way, but rather as if I'd gotten bogged down and now the brakes are off again. I know that I'm still referring to a something that "got waylaid", but the illusion persists.
To what exactly does the illusion persist?

What has changed since the start of conversation, what hasn’t?

Is searching/seeking still going on?
'I' can't stop the illusion because I AM THE ILLUSION, but this condition can be recognized as it proceeds.
I do not exist and the I does not exist are not the same thing. Andykayself is an illusion, but if ‘you’ are an illusion, then what is it that knows this sentence?

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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AndyKay
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Re: First day at school

Postby AndyKay » Tue Jun 25, 2019 10:51 am

A little lighter or more 'open' if that makes any sense. Not in any huge way, but rather as if I'd gotten bogged down and now the brakes are off again. I know that I'm still referring to a something that "got waylaid", but the illusion persists.
To what exactly does the illusion persist?
The illusion does not persist "to" anything. It just arises as thought-content, and it can be noticed when it arises, but the idea that there is something that 'notices' it arising is just more thought-content. Part of the illusion. So how does it happen that the illusion is noticed rather than overlooked as usual? I don't know, but then the 'I' that doesn't know is just more thought-content. I go around this circle until it's wound so tight that it stops. But before too long it starts up again and off we go again.
What has changed since the start of conversation, what hasn’t?
I got stuck. I recall a couple of decades ago that a friend with mutual interests insisted I meet somebody he knew, so we drove 100 miles to see this guy. He spent the whole day focused down on me trying to get me to understand this stuff, but it eluded me. We drove 100 miles home, and in my head I kept going over the stuff he spoke about. I slept. I went to work the following day still thinking about it all morning. Lunch-time came, and the canteed was a five or ten minute walk across the site, along on-site roads between high white-tiled buildings. The sun was shining and there were fluffy white clouds in the sky. And for no reason I can recall (I hadn't "worked anything out"), I understood what he had been trying to tell me. The road was still there. The buildings were still there. The fluffy white clouds were still there and the sun was still shining. But I wasn't there. I grinned like an idiot, but there was nothing grinning. It reminded me of the Cheshire Cat from Alice in Wonderland, who disappeared all but for his grin. Then somewhere along the way I got stuck. That's when the "so what?" and the "what now?" questions started appearing. I don't feel stuck any more. The illusion is now freely chasing its tail and those questions have stopped.
Is searching/seeking still going on?
To say that 'I' have "gotten anywhere" or "achieved anything" just triggers the tail-chasing, so it would be a mistake to speak about progress. There has been none, since there never was anything that could make any such progress. There is no searching/seeking for an answer, but there is the tail-chasing.
'I' can't stop the illusion because I AM THE ILLUSION, but this condition can be recognized as it proceeds.
I do not exist and the I does not exist are not the same thing. Andykayself is an illusion, but if ‘you’ are an illusion, then what is it that knows this sentence?
'Knowledge' is an idea, thought-content. It arises co-dependently upon the ideas of 'knowledge' and 'knower'. But there is no 'knower', so the bundle collapses. "This sentence" is thought-content, and the thought-container is arising in AE. "I do not exist" seems right, since there is nothing to which the label 'I' can be attached. Not even the "totality of AE". "AE is". Or even better, just "AE".

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Vivien
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Re: First day at school

Postby Vivien » Wed Jun 26, 2019 9:09 am

Hi Andy,

Thank you for your responses. Other guides have no more questions for you, so our conversation will be moved to Archive section of the forum.

Keep an eye out for an email notification notifying you of a PM (private message) from the forum inviting you to join our aftercare groups on Facebook. If you don't receive an email notification, you can access your PM's from the forum once you have logged in. The PM also details other resources available to you. Your username will change from green to blue which indicates that you have had the realisation of there being no separate self.

You can contact me at any time if you have any questions etc, via the forums PM system, or via Facebook if you decide to join our groups there.

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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AndyKay
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Re: First day at school

Postby AndyKay » Wed Jun 26, 2019 11:43 am

From my most recent message:
'Knowledge' is an idea, thought-content. It arises co-dependently upon the ideas of 'knowledge' and 'knower'. But there is no 'knower', so the bundle collapses.
Correction:
'Knowledge' ... arises co-dependently upon the ideas of 'knower' and 'known'.

Thanks for all your help Vivien.

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Vivien
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Re: First day at school

Postby Vivien » Wed Jun 26, 2019 11:52 pm

You are very welcome :)
"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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