Gratitude

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Maluhia
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Gratitude

Postby Maluhia » Sun Dec 25, 2016 8:31 am

What brings you to Liberation Unleashed?
A lifetime of yearning to know Truth. Intellectually, this makes sense to me and feels right, however, this is something I need to know from the deepest level of my being. At this point,
really, what else is there? I no longer believe that liberation is for only a select few 'special' ones. I have come to believe that seeing through the illusion is available to all. I actually feel I am on the verge of a major breakthrough.

What are you looking for? What do you expect from this?
I expect nothing. Intellectually I believe that all is one - I want to KNOW this. I have listened to several UL podcasts and have been deeply touched several times as I listened to Ilona gently yet firmly guide someone to simply 'take a look'
then listened as conditioning was being shed and the person began to see. No spiritual names, no mantras, no rituals.....Ilona offers a simple way to 'see.'

What is your background in terms of seeking and inquiry?
As a young child I experienced brief moments of 'blending with the cosmos.'
At some point I was able to bring this on at will. These experiences stopped when I was around 17 and in college. My Mother was my first embodied spiritual teacher and when I was very young began giving me books to read on many different areas of spirituality. She also made sure I learned about the main world religions. At the age of about 16 I suddenly realized that though I said I believed in God, I didn't feel anything when I said that or when I thought of God. Why? I couldn't believe I had never noticed this before. I needed to know do I believe in God or is it because of conditioning that I think I believe in God? Once I realized this I couldn't focus on anything else...... I had to know. It may have been a couple of weeks later, when, out of nowhere, I was suddenly terrified that I was going to die at any moment. I KNEW I was going to die and I refused to go to school because I wanted my parents to be there when I died. I was not ill and, interestingly, I completely forgot the burning question I had been so intensely focused on! Some time later, a couple of months, I think, I felt a deep and quiet knowing right in my heart area that there is God, only God was very different from what I was taught. It was probably many months after that realization that I remembered my question and connected the dots.

Though I have never been interested in belonging to any religion, I have studied with and spent time with the following traditions: Zen Buddhism, Taoism, Tibetan Buddhism and Sufism in the tradition of Hazrat Inayat Khan. My experience was always that I was visiting dear old friends, not that I was looking to join.

How ready are you to question your beliefs about who you are and see the truth no matter what? 10

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JonathanR
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Re: Gratitude

Postby JonathanR » Fri Dec 30, 2016 12:57 pm

Hello Maluhia,

Welcome to Liberation Unleashed. My name is Jon.
I no longer believe that liberation is for only a select few 'special' ones. I have come to believe that seeing through the illusion is available to all. I actually feel I am on the verge of a major breakthrough.
Perhaps I may assist you with this?
I expect nothing. Intellectually I believe that all is one - I want to KNOW this. I have listened to several UL podcasts and have been deeply touched several times as I listened to Ilona gently yet firmly guide someone to simply 'take a look'
then listened as conditioning was being shed and the person began to see. No spiritual names, no mantras, no rituals.....Ilona offers a simple way to 'see.'
Yes, she does. And it is exactly this 'looking' that is needed.

These conversations, as you have noticed, always take the form of an inquiry, where the guide asks a series of questions that all point to the realisation that there is no self (or that self is an illusion). You and I will simply have a conversation, a chat as between friends if you like? I will tend to question existing beliefs but will not give new beliefs or 'teachings'. It is for you to 'take a look'.

Could you please agree to post at least once a day/? I will do the same.

If you feel ready to start then please consider this question:

What is your current understanding of what it is that 'you' are?

Warm regards,

Jon

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Maluhia
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Re: Gratitude

Postby Maluhia » Sat Dec 31, 2016 1:08 am

Hello Jon, Thank you for offering to guide me! Yes, I will agree to post a response every day. Also,
I will do my best to share with you what I actually experience as opposed to information I have learned.
You asked me to tell you what my current understanding is of what I am. My intellectual understanding is
that I am All experiencing 'Myself' through duality. This personality, Siobhán, has made up a story about her and her life just as you, as Jon has made up a story about you and your life. Each person is a separate being, we all believe we are either in control or that we are victims. Etc,etc. As far back as I can remember I have believed that everything is vibrantly alive; this includes inanimate objects. Nothing is solid, everything is infused with the One, which enlivens everything. God permeates all. We are all One.

My actual experience is that I am separate, that we are all separate. Yet I don't believe it. This just doesn't make sense to me, yet I haven't yet figured out how to dissolve the veil that keeps me in separation.

There are many more words, however, this should be enough for you to see where I currently am.
I am happy to write more if you need for me to do so. I'm an open book.
Blessings, Siobhán

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JonathanR
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Re: Gratitude

Postby JonathanR » Sat Dec 31, 2016 9:31 pm

Hello Siobhán
Hello Jon, Thank you for offering to guide me! Yes, I will agree to post a response every day. Also,
I will do my best to share with you what I actually experience as opposed to information I have learned.
Thank you. Great. I want you to feel relaxed. You can't get this inquiry 'wrong' and you are not being judged.
My actual experience is that I am separate, that we are all separate. Yet I don't believe it. This just doesn't make sense to me, yet I haven't yet figured out how to dissolve the veil that keeps me in separation.
Thank you for stating your intellectual understanding. We may come to that later but let's look at your actual experience first.

Take a look at your own experience of how 'I am separate' is experienced. Is it to do with feeling that you exist inside your body, or perhaps more to do with identifying as one who thinks thoughts and therefore with being that thinker?


By the way, you'll notice I'm using quotations. You can do this too. It can be very helpful. play with the 'Quote' button when you are writing a reply. two brackets will appear wherever you have placed your cursor and it is possible to 'paste' text between these brackets and then use 'preview' (below) to check that it has worked.

thanks for your great reply today and I look forward to hearing from you.

Blessings,

Jon

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Maluhia
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Re: Gratitude

Postby Maluhia » Sun Jan 01, 2017 2:10 am

Happy New Year's Eve Jon,
In a few days I will have my computer back from the computer doctor and will be able to use the 'quote'
button. I identify a 'me' as my collection of thoughts
inside this body. As if my thoughts and ideas are all happening inside this body that I came into at birth.
I also feel that I am this body. If you would ask me to point to 'me' I would point to any part of my body and consider that to be 'me.'
Though I no longer believe this, it continues to be my experience. This morning I listened to a podcast of an LU meeting from a couple of years ago and during the meeting there were two things that Ilona said that really caught my attention and had me feeling like I almost saw it..........The first was 'the sense of aliveness doesn't go.'
The second was that 'you feel a sense of me when you feel a contraction.' That's all I have for now.
The happiest of New Year's and great Blessings to you and all those you love!
Siobhán

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JonathanR
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Re: Gratitude

Postby JonathanR » Sun Jan 01, 2017 1:13 pm

Hi Siobhán

Happy New Year :-)
'you feel a sense of me when you feel a contraction.'
Very interesting that this should resonate for you.
I identify a 'me' as my collection of thoughts
inside this body. As if my thoughts and ideas are all happening inside this body that I came into at birth.
I also feel that I am this body. If you would ask me to point to 'me' I would point to any part of my body and consider that to be 'me.'
This is very helpful to know and it forms the starting point of your inquiry.

This feeling or idea that 'I am in my body' is very common.

In everyday speech it is often said that 'I see' and it is assumed that it is 'eyes' that are the body that are doing the seeing. And an assumption that it is the body that is 'me' or 'I' that is doing the seeing.

So try the following:

The words on this screen are being seen.

What are they being seen by?

What is the actual experience?

Is the experience one of 'eyes seeing'? or of 'a body seeing'?

Can a 'self' be found, doing seeing,

or is it just seeing?


The happiest of New Year's and great Blessings to you and all those you love!
Thank you Siobhan. And to you.

Jon

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Maluhia
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Re: Gratitude

Postby Maluhia » Mon Jan 02, 2017 3:14 am

Hello again Jon, I hope you had a lovely and relaxing New Year celebration. : )
My experience is that I relate to the world as a mind/body unit through my eyes. So when I read the words on this page I am taking the information in through my eyes and understanding the words with my mind
sometimes with the feeling that my intuition is participating. I seem to have a strong identification with an individual 'me.' The seeing is being done by 'me.'
This morning after I read your message, I looked up from the screen and looked out the window, thinking about whether a self can be found doing the seeing, and I
felt that if I focus on something I feel that I am doing the seeing; however, if my eyes happen to be open and I am just looking, it seems that 'awareness ' is simply seeing.
I have looked many times during the day today yet still feel that I am separate and am the dooer. Even though I believe otherwise. Blessings, Siobhán

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JonathanR
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Re: Gratitude

Postby JonathanR » Mon Jan 02, 2017 11:40 am

Hi Siobhan,
however, if my eyes happen to be open and I am just looking, it seems that 'awareness ' is simply seeing.
Interesting. You notice something here. This kind of 'just happening' sense experience is worth looking at.

But what about this that you also say?...
This morning after I read your message, I looked up from the screen and looked out the window, thinking about whether a self can be found doing the seeing, and I
felt that if I focus on something I feel that I am doing the seeing;
Here you were not only looking out of the window but also thinking about whether a self can be found doing the seeing.

And is seems that there is a 'me' 'doing' it at this stage.

If you get fed up with the seeing exercise I can suggest others but please have a few more gentle goes at this and without any special kind of effort see if it can be noticed that sometimes the seeing is happening 'all by its self' so to speak and other times there are thoughts about 'me' or 'eyes' or 'mind' 'doing the seeing'.

love

Jon

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Maluhia
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Re: Gratitude

Postby Maluhia » Tue Jan 03, 2017 3:01 am

Good evening Jon,
This morning as I was driving to work on one of my favorite types of days, grey and rainy, ( I'm not being cheeky, I truly love these beautiful rainy days----- they make me feel so happy.), I switched the phrase 'who is seeing ' to 'who is perceiving.' When I did this I had the image of 'awareness ' flowing into my arms and experiencing the way something feels as my hands touched it. I could see this and feel it! Then I switched to my vision and asked 'who is seeing out of my eyes but still felt a sense of me seeing out of my eyes. I attempted to feel a 'seamlessness during the day at work, especially in regards to a co-worker whom I find very difficult to work with, and was unable to experience anything other than my ego. Don't worry, though, I will keep at it : )
Love and Blessings, Siobhán

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JonathanR
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Re: Gratitude

Postby JonathanR » Tue Jan 03, 2017 10:25 am

Hello Siobhan,
I switched the phrase 'who is seeing ' to 'who is perceiving.' When I did this I had the image of 'awareness ' flowing into my arms and experiencing the way something feels as my hands touched it. I could see this and feel it!
Great. Lovely.

Remember, I said to notice immediate sensation and also to notice any thoughts about the sensation? You have been doing this here. The 'way something feels as my hands touched it' is just perfect. And you describe the thoughts too.

Let's go on with these exercises involving the senses. These can be experiences of 'touch', 'taste', 'hearing', 'seeing' and 'smelling'. It's best to pick on one at a time. And if you find some interest or inspiration with one in particular, look at that sense experience for a while. And you can continue to do these in a relaxed, inquisitive way. Surprisingly, this isn't about any great effort.

I notice that you bought in some phrases. You may have used these sorts of phrases before ('Who does'? or perhaps 'Who am I'?). Is this correct? However useful these may have been in the past, please drop them in relation to these exercises. In these exercises all that is required is to notice immediate feeling or sensation and notice any thoughts that happen to appear alongside.

If you feel inclined to ask 'yourself' questions at other times try using 'what' instead of 'who' ; 'what sees or perceives'? (etc).

I don't think I said this but we recommend stopping reading any spiritual, even non-dual teachings or videos for the duration our the conversation here. It's not that these are wrong or right necessarily, just that we are aiming to notice something quite subtle and specific that could be missed and many extra ideas about 'how to do it' will not help at this stage.

I haven't mentioned awareness on purpose. Almost certainly we will talk about that later but for now let me know how these exercises go?

love

Jon

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Maluhia
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Re: Gratitude

Postby Maluhia » Wed Jan 04, 2017 3:26 am

Good evening Jon,
Thank you for your thoughtful reply. This morning I was sitting at my dining table having breakfast and reading your message. As I was reading your message my attention suddenly split off as the sound of rain falling outside came to my attention, without me looking for it. All at once the reading of the message and hearing the rain falling were happening simultaneously. I realized that the sound of the rain came into my awareness without me trying to hear it.
About twenty minutes later upstairs at my bathroom mirror putting on my makeup, the sound of the honking of geese flying above my home entered my awareness. Then a thought - they were 'outside,' yet they were inside my head, awareness. Awareness is inside and outside....there is no inside or outside.
Then, a few minutes later, a thought came to me, (came to me), that clearly I didn't do anything; the noticing simply happened on it's own.
Later still, as I drove to work I realized that seeing was happening. I wasn't trying to see, my eyes were open and seeing was just happening. I can't make myself see any more than I can make my heart beat or make my digestion happen, everything just happens on it's own!
I then shifted my attention to hearing, then to touching, then to thinking and noticed the same thing.....everything just happens on it's own. I remember repeating wow, this is huge! Yet at the same time it didn't feel like that big of a deal. I didn't feel any sort of a shift or feel different in any way, yet this seemed like a huge thing to notice. My ego is still very much present and as I was leaving work this afternoon, I suddenly remembered that I had discovered something huge this morning on my way to work, but I was unable to recall what it was. When I got back into my car to drive home, I remembered what it was. That's all I have for now. Blessings, Siobhán

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Maluhia
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Re: Gratitude

Postby Maluhia » Wed Jan 04, 2017 3:36 am

One more thing Jon. I just remembered that while I was driving to work this morning and was noticing what was happening when I touched things, and, you would probably have laughed because I touched the steering wheel, then the console, then the dashboard, then my arm, all the while noticing the sensation of feeling. I saw that though I may have control over what I touch, I have absolutely no control over having a sensation of feeling when I touch something! How have I not noticed this before?
Siobhán

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JonathanR
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Re: Gratitude

Postby JonathanR » Wed Jan 04, 2017 10:21 am

Hello Siobhan,

Lovely to read your two accounts. You are having an interesting time!
as I drove to work I realized that seeing was happening. I wasn't trying to see, my eyes were open and seeing was just happening. I can't make myself see any more than I can make my heart beat or make my digestion happen, everything just happens on it's own!
I then shifted my attention to hearing, then to touching, then to thinking and noticed the same thing.....everything just happens on it's own. I remember repeating wow, this is huge! Yet at the same time it didn't feel like that big of a deal. I didn't feel any sort of a shift or feel different in any way, yet this seemed like a huge thing to notice.
Huge is good. I felt and still feel it's 'huge' but ' not a big deal' either. You put it very well.
I didn't feel any sort of a shift or feel different in any way, yet this seemed like a huge thing to notice.
Yes.
I touched the steering wheel, then the console, then the dashboard, then my arm, all the while noticing the sensation of feeling. I saw that though I may have control over what I touch, I have absolutely no control over having a sensation of feeling when I touch something! How have I not noticed this before?
Excellent! They don't sem to teach it at school.

So first it is noticed that sensations, all of them, are just appearing. And then it is noticed that there is no control over the actual appearance of sensations.

Please keep playing with these investigations.

Notice that thoughts also appear from time to time rather like sensations.

And there is the idea 'I think' .

Sensations such as bird song or feeling of steering wheel are undeniably happening and experienced, aren't they?

Likewise thoughts really are experienced as they appear.

But what about what thoughts 'say'? What of the content of thoughts?

Where is the 'I' that 'thinks thoughts'? Take a look.



love

Jon

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Maluhia
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Re: Gratitude

Postby Maluhia » Thu Jan 05, 2017 3:51 am

Dear Jon,
Today I have nothing to report. Absolutely nothing came to me today. Perhaps something tomorrow I will notice something. We will see. I would like to tell you how appreciative I am that you offered to guide me through this. You are making a huge difference in my life.
Thank you! Love, Siobhán

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JonathanR
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Re: Gratitude

Postby JonathanR » Thu Jan 05, 2017 9:26 am

Dear Siobhan,
Today I have nothing to report. Absolutely nothing came to me today. Perhaps something tomorrow I will notice something. We will see. I would like to tell you how appreciative I am that you offered to guide me through this. You are making a huge difference in my life.
You are very welcome. It's fine to be going at this pace anyway.

Just to summarize my last post,

It can be noticed that sensations are just happening. You also said this:
I have absolutely no control over having a sensation of feeling when I touch something!
So how about thoughts?

Apart for those moments when it seems 'I think' them, does it seem to you that thoughts also appear and cannot be prevented from appearing? Try preventing a thought from appearing.



love

Jon


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