I feel like I am taking too long.How many times can I see the same thing over and over again but still not be convinced. I thought maybe I'm missing something.
It doesn’t matter how long it takes! Not at all. We are going to do this as long as it’s necessary. When a strong sense of self arises for me, I still do looking. This is the only tool you need. And of course, well targeted questions.
You’re probably not missing anything. But the battle between those two contradictory beliefs is preventing accepting what has been seen.
I'm not expectingto find a me, I'm just trying to find a way for this to click.
All right. But still, I don’t suggest using questions like “what/who am I?” since it implies a me, it makes just things even more confusing. Can you see this?
But anyway I'll keep on looking. It's just frustrating.
That’s all right. It’s natural to have frustration. But frustration arises on behalf of the self. So every time frustration is there, investigate. Always look. And always look afresh. Never rely on the memory of previous looking. Always look again.
So, what is it exactly that is having ‘frustration’?
And what is the AE of frustration?
Can frustration be experienced at all?
You just have to look and look and look until it gets totally clear that there is nothing there that could feel frustration. And there is not even the experience of frustration. The most fruitful lookings comes when there there is a strong emotion/rection is present.
I hate to admit it but yes there are two conflicting desires, I hadn't realised my desire to not die was as strong as this I also did not realise that doing this looking would keep bringing it to the forefront. Not being able to find a seperate me or something that is not connected to what is, well it destroys all hope.
Look, it seems that the fear of death is causes big suffering. So if you want to get out of this ‘self-torture’, you have to see through this desire and fear, and the one who is having this desire and fear. Actually the desire is based on fear. Without fear, there wouldn’t be the desire or hope for an immortal self.
it's just getting past the fear, at the moment it's quite strong and it makes it more difficult to look.
This notion of fear and a fearful person needs to be deconstructed, meaning taking the illusion into its parts, and seeing that all those parts are not the fear or the fearful person at all. When this is done thoroughly, even the word ‘fear’ can become meaningless. Since it can be discovered that fear as such simply cannot be experienced. Fear cannot be felt. Only sensations can be felt. Fear is just another illusion.
The illusion of fear has the following components:
1. The word ‘fear’ itself. Which is nothing else than a human made concept. An idea.
2. Sensations, that are labelled by thoughts as ‘fear’.
3. There is also the belief that fear as such exist. That fear a such can be experienced.
4. The subject (the self, I, me), which the seeming experience of ‘fear’ is happening to.
When the sensation (1) and the label of ‘fear’ (2) (which represents the concept/belief of fear (3)), are welded together into a bundle, then it seems that a real fear experience emerges (3). As if such thing as ‘fear’ as an emotion can be experienced. And of course the self is the subject (4) of this fearful experience.
Several days ago I asked you to try to find the fear. Here is your reply:
V: Rather try to find THE ‘fear’. Feel THE ‘fear’. Not the sensation, but the fear itself. What do you find?
R: I know if I look I can't find 'fear'.
Please, don’t just say to yourself that ‘I know if a I look I can’t find fear’. If you experience fear but you say that I know there is no fear, in that moment the “I know there is no fear” is just a belief. In that moment, it’s not seen. You are just relying on the MEMORY of a previous seeing. But at moment, it feels really real.
So you have to always LOOK AFRESH. Never rely on the memory of a previous seeing. That is just taking up a new belief that there is no fear, while it still feels very real. All right?
Here is a very good exercise how to break down the elements of the illusion of the fear, and see through them one-by-one. Please do this exercise repeatedly when any fear or anxiety arises.
So let’s look at the idea of fear that seems to appear with the thoughts about death.
So bring to mind the thoughts about the death that seem to bring with them the feelings of ‘fear’. Then close your eyes and do the following:
1) Look at the label/thought ‘fear’ itself. See the label/word ‘anxiety’ as a typewritten word in the ‘mind’s eye’ across the forehead.
Does the label ‘fear’ know anything about anxiety, or is the word just a bunch of letters?
Is the label ‘fear’ itself anxious?
Can you find anyone/anything in the word itself that is fearful?
2) Then look at the sensation and ignore everything else but the sensation itself.
Inquire into the sensation and ask if the sensation itself knows anything about ‘fear’.
Look and see if the sensation itself is the fearful self. If the words ‘yes’ , or ‘yes, this is the self’ appears, go back to Step 1 and see the words across the forehead and repeat step 1.
Does the sensation itself suggest in any way that it is ‘fear’ or that it is fearful?
Can you find anyone or anything within or behind the sensation that is ‘fearful’?
If other random mental images appear during the noticing of the sensation, check to see if those images are the self who is fearful, or are they images that are simply arising and subsiding? If other ‘loud’ thoughts appear, check to see if they are the self that is fearful as you did in step 1.
3) Look at the mental image/outline labelled body.
Does the image/outline itself know anything about ‘fear’?
Can you find anyone/anything in the image/colour itself that knows anything about ‘fear’ or that can be ‘fearful’?
If other random mental images appear during the noticing of the sensation, check to see if those images are the self who is fearful, or are they images that are simply arising and subsiding? If other ‘loud’ thoughts appear, check to see if they are the self that is fearful, as you did in step 1.
4) With eyes still closed look everywhere (look where thought says your feet are, to the left and right, up above…look everywhere) and see if you can find anyone or anything that is fearful.
Did you find anyone or anything that is fearful?
When you have done this and if no one/no thing is found, then just sit with the sensation. Just breathe normally, notice the thoughts and images that appear and let them pass on by unless they seem to hang around, then do the appropriate steps above. Allow the sensation all the room it needs in the body without pushing it aside or judging it. If it becomes too intense just take a couple of deep breaths into the sensation itself, and then notice the floor under your feet, notice your backside on the chair and then notice what is in the room you are sitting in and name them out loud, while being aware of the sensation and remember to breathe normally. If the sensation does not dissipate at all or only dissipates a little, that is okay, just notice it, without doing anything with it and just go about your day.
We are not trying to get rid of the sensation labelled ‘fear’ or the arising thoughts or images. We are only LOOKING to see what is actually appearing (ie thought, sensation, colour/image) as opposed to what thought is saying ABOUT what actually IS.
Let me know how you go.
The label ‘fear’ is the AE of thought and not the AE of fear.
The sensation labelled ‘fear’ is the AE of sensation and not the AE of fear.
The colour labelled ‘me/I/body’ is the AE of colour and not the AE of fear.
The thoughts ABOUT fear are AE of thought and not AE of fear.
So, is there actual experience of ‘fear’ or what is actually appearing (AE) is label + sensation + colour/image + thoughts ABOUT fear?
Label ‘fear’ is known and thoughts about ‘fear’ are known, however, is ‘fear’ actually known?