Thread for Hecate

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smudge
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Thread for Hecate

Postby smudge » Sun Feb 23, 2014 11:05 am

Hello Hecate,

tell me a little about your journey and what brings you here,

Best wishes
Smudge
"The bad news is you're falling, the good news is theres no ground" Trungpa

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Hecate
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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby Hecate » Mon Feb 24, 2014 8:48 am

Goodmorning Smudge,

Thank you for taking me on.

I've been thinking about where to start in telling me about my journey and what to include or not - not easy. I have been doing Buddhist meditation for 10 years or so. I always got on well with meditation but never really gave insight much thought. I went on a month long retreat last summer, where direct pointing was used - though I wasn't aware of that. I just wanted to do a month long meditation retreat. It came at a good time as the first half of the year had been quite difficult with seeing my Grandma, who I was very close to, die and breaking up a long term relationship. I pretty much cried my way through the retreat, but there was something really beautiful at work as well, as I kept turning towards all the grief and pain and allowing it to just be in my body. About two thirds in, I had quite a strong experience during a meditation one afternoon. I am still not sure what happened there, except that I stood up from it and looked down at my feet wondering how they were going to move. I noticed several things over the next days, eg. that there wasn't any craving whatsoever for a few days - yet I was still queuing for the meals!, or the evening that I was sitting in the shrine room, looking at the woman opposite me and sincerely wondering why I thought of my arms arms as mine and hers, who were positioned in exactly the same way, not as mine. I ended up feeling really upset in the days that followed, as I started to think that nobody was seeing me, until I went for a walk. I came to a fork in the road where I just bursted out in tears, allowing the fear to flow in. After I had sat sobbing on a tree trunk for a while and calmed down a bit, I started wondering whether I was so upset and believing that nobody sees me, because I wasn't seeing my self? The last week of the retreat was still very emotional but I started to experience more and more openheartedness. I did have an image of a partially uprooted tree and of standing at the gate of a new field.
Coming back, I did mention this to a few people, and people listened kindly but it wasn't mentioned after that. And then I never spoke about it any more. I had a difficult autumn, with a lot of heartache and stress at work, and a proper sense of falling apart - a dark night of the soul. I just thought I'd lost all of the experience within the midsts of samsara. Since December things have been steadier. And somebody at work, who had done LU, approached me and he became the first person I actually told the whole story. We have been meeting up every week, which has been very inspiring and supportive. And so I have been thinking about going through the process and finishing what started back in the summer and going through the gate into the new field and residing in that space.
So I hope this gives you a bit of an idea of the journey I have been on this last year.
Looking forward to hearing from you.

Best wishes,
Hecate

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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby smudge » Mon Feb 24, 2014 9:43 am

Make sure you take a read/look at the disclaimer and video on this page: http://www.liberationunleashed.com/

Good morning Hecate,

Thank you of for your full introduction, sounds like quite a time, I am glad you met someone who could resonate with your experiences.

I am delighted to guide you even though you sound well along the way, first just read below, thanks.

Before we begin can we agree:
We both agree to post at least once a day, unless we let each other know otherwise.
I will ask you questions and you will respond with upmost honesty. Responses are best from direct experience (felt senses and observed thoughts). Long-winded analytical and philosophical answers are best avoided and may even hinder progress.
Put aside all other teachings, philosophies and such for the remainder of this investigation. Really put all your effort and attention in to seeing this reality, as it is. If you have a daily and essential meditation practice, it is fine to continue that.
Lastly, Please learn to use the quote function; instructions are located in the link below this line: viewtopic.php?f=4&t=660”

Then, write me any expectations you have about what seeing through the illusion of self fully will be like.

Warm wishes
Smudge
"The bad news is you're falling, the good news is theres no ground" Trungpa

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Hecate
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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby Hecate » Mon Feb 24, 2014 11:22 am

Hi Smudge,

Yes, I agree to be in contact at least once a day, to respond with honesty and to focus on this investigation.
Could you just let me know when and how I should be using the quote function or will that become apparent?

With regards to expectations - that is a hard one! It's a bit like asking a blind person what he would expect from seeing the world. I think what I would expect it to be is something that is just much closer to life as it is, instead of being the actor and writer of the story? I guess the story will still be written as experience will be there, but there might be more of a clarity that that story isn't me, that it is not defining, nor limiting me and definitely that I am not the writer of it. I have also been thinking about emotions and how those aren't me either, they are bigger than me, more universal than me and just flowing through me rather than reprinting the story of "me". And hopefully an opening, an opening of the heart and an entering deeply into conversation with that world and its inhabitants, without fear.

Does that make any sense?

Best wishes,
Hecate

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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby smudge » Mon Feb 24, 2014 3:01 pm

Great...lets go!
It's a bit like asking a blind person what he would expect from seeing the world
Nice, this attitude of 'not knowing' will serve you well.
something that is just much closer to life as it is, instead of being the actor and writer of the story
And this is pretty close.

To quote just cut and past what you want to highlight and then highlight it and click on the quote symbol above the box.

So lets start by knowing what is meant by Direct experience (DE) as apposed to thoughts about Direct experience, so we are singing from the same hymn sheet as it were.
DO THIS and report back please: Take a sultana (or small piece of food) and look at it, now close your eyes and think about it, how 'did' it look? what do you 'think' it will taste like? How do you feel about the prospect of eating it or even about doing this exercise? Now put it in your mouth and directly experience it. Whats that like? What is the difference between thinking about, feeling and actually experiencing from this exercise?
"The bad news is you're falling, the good news is theres no ground" Trungpa

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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby Hecate » Tue Feb 25, 2014 8:43 am

Good morning Smudge,

Here's my reporting back for yesterday's exercise. It was a hazelnut, by the way ;-)
now close your eyes and think about it, how 'did' it look? what do you 'think' it will taste like?
I noticed when I closed my eyes, I was mainly thinking about previous times I'd eaten a hazelnut. Trying to think what it would taste like brought my thoughts of things with hazelnuts in eg. Nutella as if the actual hazelnut wasn't strong enough and needed to be enhanced to make me feel I was doing this exercise well.
How do you feel about the prospect of eating it or even about doing this exercise?
A bit like what happened with regards to thinking about the taste, the feeling about eating it was mainly merged with memories of having hazelnuts in other things, or with yoghurt a couple of days ago with a friend and how pleasant that was. All very little to do with the actual nut in front of me!
Now put it in your mouth and directly experience it. Whats that like?
So the nut in my mouth was surprisingly tasteless. As soon as I put it in my mouth my jaw started moving and my teeth crunching, without much interference of thoughts. The sound of that, experiencing the moisture in my mouth and the little bits of nut was stronger than the actual taste.
What is the difference between thinking about, feeling and actually experiencing from this exercise?
When I was thinking about the nut or trying to notice my feelings, it had very little to do with the nut in front of me. I think the image of the nut being processed in Nuttella or some other food kind of sums it up. It's a bit like my experience of it was processed too, with memories, ideas about it etc. and "enhanced" with judgements to make the experience stronger than it actual was.The actual experience was surprisingly simple. Just the nut in my mouth and my jaws doing what they love to do: chewing. The sensations I experienced weren't the ones that I anticipated and the taste was the least noticeable.

All the best,

Hecate

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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby smudge » Tue Feb 25, 2014 8:54 am

Thank Hecate,

The description of the thought process (the description machine) is clear. I didn't get such a sense of what the Direct experience was like, please describe the actual eating a simple piece of fruit from DE, Words can't really do the DE justice but I will be able to tune in with your attempts. DE is always much much richer that thoughts about it, spend time finding out and report back.

Warm wishes
Smudge
"The bad news is you're falling, the good news is theres no ground" Trungpa

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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby Hecate » Wed Feb 26, 2014 10:43 am

Hi Smudge,

What I was trying to put into words with regards to the DE was the simplicity of all the sensations in my mouth. There is the texture of the nut against my tongue, the "resistance" when crunching it, the sounds it makes in my mouth from being crunched and the moisture spreading. It is quite absorbing and the more I pay attention to the process of "chewing", the more I notice. Just being with all the different sensations in my mouth feels quite satisfying.

Does that give you more sense?

All the best
Hecate

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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby smudge » Wed Feb 26, 2014 10:47 am

Ok great, so we are clear what DE is :-)

So now, what comes up when you read: there is no you, no self, no controller in there, none as in Zero! And there never has been and never will be. List all feeling/thoughts.
Thanks



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"The bad news is you're falling, the good news is theres no ground" Trungpa

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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby Hecate » Thu Feb 27, 2014 11:32 am

Hi Smudge,

Here are some thoughts and feelings around no self.

My first response is one of relief. The weight of bearing the emotions, reactions, patterns etc. that are so much bigger than this human being, falling off my shoulders. There is also an opening into trust in my body. There does not need to be a controller to have my feet moving or study for my exams. My feet know what to do, my brain picks up what it needs to learn. I can safely surrender to life and life responds.

But then of course there is the fascinating process of the identification with the pain, the patterns and the ways of being which all make this familiar form in which I retreat. So there is a fear around what will be left when the illusion of that is gone?
no controller in there
Reflecting about it this morning and noticing the different sensations in my body and the process of labeling them into emotions, it did dawned upon me that it would be more natural to not assume that there is a self in control.
I guess what I am trying to say is that in my experience all there is, is sensation and yet there is somehow a process happening in nearly every single moment that comes up with the fantasy of a me. But why?
there is no you
Yes, there is no me, but with that experiencing the constructing of an I, Somehow I think that there is a me experiencing and a sense of aliveness that I contribute to an I as well. However, I do feel a strong desire to indulge in the aliveness of those sensations, in the nowness of them and in meeting life without the fantasy that there is something controlling it.

Hard to put it all into words, but I hope I managed to get across some of my thoughts?

Looking forward to hear back!

Hecate

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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby smudge » Thu Feb 27, 2014 11:44 am

Hi Hecate,

So the word's "I" and "me" are used a lot in what you write (which is fine to operate in the world) but please describe what the word's "i" and "me" and 'My" is pointing to in DE?
For example:
My first response. my body.. I can safely surrender.. I think..
So there is a fear around what will be left when the illusion of that is gone
Take a look at this illusion, what is found? Fear is doing a good job, say thank you and check with kindness and gratitude if it is necessary any more?

Warmth,
Smudge
"The bad news is you're falling, the good news is theres no ground" Trungpa

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Hecate
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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby Hecate » Fri Feb 28, 2014 5:52 pm

Hi Smudge

Sorry for a delayed reply. I (!) am struggling with describing what the I points to in my DE. I guess I just use it for the whole range of bodily sensations and thoughts arising which kind of make up this shape and this aliveness. But then this is really vague. So I really don't know! Help :-/

Hecate

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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby smudge » Fri Feb 28, 2014 7:08 pm

Thats fine,
So LOOK, does the body experience sensations and thoughts? let me know what you find.
"The bad news is you're falling, the good news is theres no ground" Trungpa

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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby Hecate » Fri Feb 28, 2014 9:35 pm

Yes, there are sensations within the body and thoughts manifesting with bodily sensations, nearly simultaneously. And somehow there is an observer or an idea of an observer or something that contains all of that. And it is that idea that I call I - the container.

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Re: Thread for Hecate

Postby smudge » Fri Feb 28, 2014 11:37 pm

Close your eyes and pinch your leg. Is the 'leg' feeling the pinch in DE or are there just sensations (maybe with a story or an image of a 'leg')? Really look afresh, drop ideas of how you think it all works and really find out afresh. Lets stay with, is there an I in the body, before we more on to 'an observer'.
"The bad news is you're falling, the good news is theres no ground" Trungpa


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