Please approve my liberation, or approve my ignorance

This is a read-only part of the forum. All threads where seeing happens are stored here and come from this forum, the Facebook guiding area and various LU blogs. The complete list, sorted by guide, contains all links. The archives include threads of those that came to LU already seeing as well.
User avatar
Notone
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:33 am

Please approve my liberation, or approve my ignorance

Postby Notone » Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:34 am

LU is focused guiding for seeing there is no real, inherent 'self' - what do you understand by this?
Guides ask the seekers questions, to draw their attention to the less obvious facts about life. These easily overlooked facts silently express the truth, that there is no separate self to anything and that everything (including ourselves) exists as part of an interdependent great Whole. Nothing is separate and there is no substance, aka Emptiness.

What are you looking for at LU?
For approvement of my realization and as a result - helping others by guiding them. For this to become true, I need to discuss my practice and my understanding with a guide, so that an approvement can be given. In order to qualify as a guide on this site, I also need to learn the methods used here for guided conversations. If my understanding will not get approved, I seek guidance in order to reach liberation in the sense of "seeing there is no real, inherent self".

What do you expect from a guided conversation?
I expect to be asked questions about my practice, about my understanding of "no-self", maybe even questions that are quite personal and uncomfortable. I expect to learn some new methods for guided conversations.

What is your experience in terms of spiritual practices, seeking and inquiry?
I have practiced certain visualizations, I have done meditative practices of forcefully stopping thought-activity, concentration on the "I-am feeling" as described by Nisargadatta and finally and, imo most importantly, I have practiced Zazen. Also, I studied philosophy. I was seeking enlightenment without being aware what it is called probably since I was 5 or 6 years old. At age 28 I read about enlightenment and Zen-Buddhism and started the conscious practice of asking myself "who am I". It took around 6 months for final understanding to occur (still being 28 then). I am 31 now and nothing has changed except for my attempts to express it becoming more and more satisfactory.

On a scale from 1 to 10, how willing are you to question any currently held beliefs about 'self?: 10

User avatar
Ilona
Site Admin
Posts: 7242
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 1:57 pm
Location: Lithuania
Contact:

Re: Please approve my liberation, or approve my ignorance

Postby Ilona » Thu Mar 16, 2017 5:09 pm

Hi Notone, welcome to the forum! Thank you for expressing your willingness to guide.
First thing first, we chat to see if you see what this forum is pointing to.
So can you give me a bit of story, what happened, what changed, what was that pushed you over to seeing?
How would you describe what is the separate self/ I?

Looking forward to our conversation.

Best regards.
Truth realized will set you free.
http://ilonaciunaite.com/book

User avatar
Notone
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:33 am

Re: Please approve my liberation, or approve my ignorance

Postby Notone » Tue Mar 21, 2017 4:34 pm

What happened? I used to search or enlightenment since about age 5 or 6. But I learned the term enlightenment only at about age 28. Since then I started conscious practice. It only took about 6 months and final understanding occured.

Practice of concentrating on the "I am" feeling (as described by Nisargadatta) pushed me over to seeing. After that, I had complications. Because of other practices that I was doing before were messing me up somewhat. To get better I had to learn the correct way of practicing Zazen (as per Soto school of Zen). For that, I visited a Zen teacher who confirmed my experience and explained me how to sit Zazen.

In reality of course, nothing has changed, but my attitude towards things has changed a lot. I have lost my communication problems with people, I am not longer controlled by emotions the way I used to be. But these problems never have been a necessity anyway, only my attitude was creating them.

Separate self or ego is the illusion that we are separate entities, making decisions and influencing the world, or being influenced by the world. In reality everything is arising from the source, that which we call self, that which we call world, are two sides of the same coin and are all governed by laws of effect and cause, aka karma.

Having the illusion of separate self or ego is like looking at the ocean and thinking, that one of the waves is not the ocean, but the whole rest is the ocean. This way of thinking creates another illusion - that the separate wave is being born and dies. Then you learn about Advaita or Zen and begin falsely thinking that this one wave is the whole ocean, but the rest is not. This way of thinking creates another illusion, that this one wave has existed since the beginning of the ocean and will last until the end of the ocean. This is the same illusion turned inside out, like looking on the negative of a photo.

Not having the illusion of separate self or ego is like looking at the ocean and knowing that the ocean is the ocean and the waves are the waves. And also knowing that the waves are the ocean and the ocean is the waves. Like in the heart sutra - form is emptiness and emptiness is form. Because emptiness takes form it is the form, because the form is arising from emptiness it is the emptiness. This understanding destroys the false ideas about anything being born or dying and lets everything be as it is - call it emptiness, or unborn, or whatever.

User avatar
Ilona
Site Admin
Posts: 7242
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 1:57 pm
Location: Lithuania
Contact:

Re: Please approve my liberation, or approve my ignorance

Postby Ilona » Tue Mar 21, 2017 5:08 pm

Beautiful! Thank you very much for sharing your experience. I like the wave ocean metaphor, it's true, we are born into this default belief that we are a wave and miss the whole ocean. :)

Have you worked with people before helping them to see? If so what happens as your experience?

Can you talk a little about choice and fee will, what happens? What makes choices? How does it all work?

Sending love
Truth realized will set you free.
http://ilonaciunaite.com/book

User avatar
Notone
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:33 am

Re: Please approve my liberation, or approve my ignorance

Postby Notone » Tue Mar 21, 2017 5:31 pm

Yes, I have worked with people before over the Internet and in most cases they could attain at least a glimpse at the facts I was pointing out. In all the cases people thanked me for the hints on "where to look" so to speak.

My experience is, that people are grateful and thank me for helping them, also they mostly report talking with me helps them as stress relief to some extent.

Regarding free will:
In short terms:
We are always free to do what we want, unless of course something is hindering us! But we are not free to select what we will want (and believing that this would be necessary for true free will is a misunderstanding).

So in long terms:
since the person does not have any kind of control whatsoever, but instead is completely a controlled thing by itself, the person has no free will of it's own. Similar to how the knife cannot decide when I will use it to cut bread. Similar to that, I don't have a choice but to want what I want. But since it is what I want, I am not a slave to this will which is generating the wishes w/o my approval. And how could I approve? If the wish is there, it has been generated. Thinking that it is non-freedom to not be able to choose once wishes is a misunderstanding of what it means to want something. Wanting something must have reasons, otherwise no wish can occur. If there must be reasons for a wish - they cannot be entirely within the control of a person and in fact they are completely not in the persons control.

To summarize:
Because I am not a slave to this will which is very much my will on the one hand, while on the other hand I am very much the result of this will, but still not separate from it, we are back at my beginning statement: "we are always free to do what we want, unless of course something is hindering us!"

User avatar
Ilona
Site Admin
Posts: 7242
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 1:57 pm
Location: Lithuania
Contact:

Re: Please approve my liberation, or approve my ignorance

Postby Ilona » Sat Apr 01, 2017 3:23 pm

Thank you very much for answer and patience.
We usually ask some 'final questions' at the end of conversation. Just for the sake of learning LU process, can you answer them, even if it means repeating yourself.

1) Is there a separate entity 'self', 'me' 'I', at all, anywhere, in any way, shape or form? Was there ever?

2) Explain in detail what the illusion of separate self is, when it starts and how it works from your own experience. Describe it fully as you see it now.

3) How does it feel to see this? What is the difference from before you started this dialogue? Please report from the past few days.

4) What was the last bit that pushed you over, made you look?

5) Can you talk about decision, intention, free will, choice and control? What makes things happen? How does it work? What are you responsible for? Give examples from experience.

6) Anything to add?

Please answer in full as you see it

Much love.
Truth realized will set you free.
http://ilonaciunaite.com/book

User avatar
Notone
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:33 am

Re: Please approve my liberation, or approve my ignorance

Postby Notone » Sun Apr 02, 2017 10:01 am

1) Is there a separate entity 'self', 'me' 'I', at all, anywhere, in any way, shape or form? Was there ever?
No. Which does not mean, I deny my own existence of course. I deny false views about what it is that exists. One way of putting it could be: the world is within me, while I myself am within the world. Another way of putting it could be - there is no "I" and there is no "world", what there is is just "Being". It is being realized from moment to moment, right now.
2) Explain in detail what the illusion of separate self is, when it starts and how it works from your own experience. Describe it fully as you see it now.
I suppose illusion of separate self starts early during childhood, when first language skills are acquired and the parents have their first opportunity to educate the child through words. The illusion of separate self begins to grow right at that point probably.

Illusion of separate self is to strongly believe, that some thoughts actually are the other people, while some other thoughts are "their" thoughts (thoughts belong to other thoughts). All this while believing that some of the thought-activity actually constitutes what you are and as a result acknowledging some part of thought activity as being "yours" (again, thoughts belonging to thoughts). It's a somewhat funny situation: these thoughts are me, these thoughts belong to me, but these thoughts are the others (in worst case - "the enemy")! Look, the others are having their own thoughts already! What dirty thoughts they are having!

For example:
"I should not do this, I might embarrass myself! If I do this, people will think I am so-and-so!"
"He/She is an outsider, he/she does not belong to our group! I should not be with them the way I am with my close friends!"
"OMG, I'm going to a job interview! I should act exactly as the interviewer expects me to act! I know he/she expects me to be a responsible person and I know for sure he/she thinks responsible persons act so-and-so!"
"OMG, I didn't get the job! I must have made an ass out of me during the interview, this is embarrassing!"
"GTA games are educating kids to buy weapons and go to school shooting everyone!"

Same situation w/o illusion of separate self:
"I'm doing this because I want to. I want this because I feel it's good and doesn't do anyone any harm"
"He/She is someone I never met before. Who is he/she?"
"I want to get this job, because (list of reasons). I feel qualified and now I'm going to the interview!"
"I didn't get the job! This wasn't the place for me to work at, after all!"
"I never played a GTA game" / "I played GTA games. They are awesome!" / "GTA games suck!"
3) How does it feel to see this? What is the difference from before you started this dialogue? Please report from the past few days.
I feel liberated from something really heavy, that was ruining my life! I feel like I "tore down the wall", if you know what I mean.
4) What was the last bit that pushed you over, made you look?
I can point out several bits. The place in Ramana Maharshis book where he tells "is there anyone who does not know the self? Does anyone deny his own existence?" or something like that, this is not a 1:1 quote. This bit made me aware of the "I am" feeling, not attached to any quality, but just the "I am".

Also, practice of concentrating on the "I am" feeling and watching it closely that Nisargadatta Maharaj suggested. That bit made me realize that I was falsely believing some thoughts to belong to me and other thoughts to belong to other people.

Also, Zazen practice helped me a lot to understand, put things into words and into action in general.
5) Can you talk about decision, intention, free will, choice and control? What makes things happen? How does it work? What are you responsible for? Give examples from experience.
We are free to do what we want, unless something is stopping us from doing so! I'm responsible for everything I do, unless there was something preventing me from acting otherwise (like physically preventing, I can't be held responsible for not spending enough time outside while being in prison for example). But we are not free to choose what we will want to do next. Because there is nothing else but this very moment, the next moment does not exist yet. You cannot influence what will happen in the next moment, because what you want to do is a given, that came to you instantly without questions and discussions. Therefore, you are not the one taking influence on something through your actions, instead you are one of the actions through which the universe influences itself. You are the instrument of this universe so to speak, or rather you are this universe unfolding right now.

Once we narrow down what we talk about to one human being - this human being is part of a bigger whole, not able to choose what to do the next moment. This view is a simplification of course, but to ask about choice and control for one human being - is already the same simplification.

The question "can I choose my actions freely, or am I determined by something outside my power completely?" is a result of a big simplification of affairs, therefore, this question lacks a meaningful application in the real world, to put it mildly! Simply put - this question is bullshit. It's like taking a train to town A and asking oneself, during the trip, "where did all the free choice go?" while ignoring the fact, that you got on this specific train to begin with! And that the train tracks have not been there previously, but instead are the expression of free will of someone who built them!

To understand that the question about free will is bullshit, we have to see the bigger picture of what could be considered a choice? And what is still considered chaotic and/or coincidence? Where is the line between a free conscious choice and pre-determined actions, in our own lives? We will find, that reasons are necessary to make the difference between choice and coincidence. Nevermind both are actually the same, but it's all about what we feel about the happening. If we feel it's a free choice - this means we must have had reasons! If not - we don't see reasons for the action. An action that would be independent of reasons therefore is coincidence, chaotic, and has nothing to do with free will, choice etc. An action based on reasons on the other hand - cannot be viewed as independent of outside determination. Determination does not destroy free will, it makes it possible in the first place... It does, however, destroy a simplified idea about the free will, which has no correlation to reality to begin with!
6) Anything to add?
I somehow enjoy writing all this :D

User avatar
Ilona
Site Admin
Posts: 7242
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 1:57 pm
Location: Lithuania
Contact:

Re: Please approve my liberation, or approve my ignorance

Postby Ilona » Sun Apr 02, 2017 8:12 pm

Thank you for answers! I enjoyed reading them and I'm glad you enjoyed answering.
One tiny question- was there a ever a separate self, did it ever exist?
What would you say to that?

Sending love
Truth realized will set you free.
http://ilonaciunaite.com/book

User avatar
Notone
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:33 am

Re: Please approve my liberation, or approve my ignorance

Postby Notone » Mon Apr 03, 2017 5:19 am

No, such a thing never existed in reality, it only seemed so. A false belief in separate self did exist, an actual separate self never existed and such a thing is not possible at all. Where would this hypothetical separate self exist? Wherever it would exist, it would depend on it's surroundings so it can remain "separate". If it is seen as separate, it must depend on it's surroundings, so that it can be seen separate from them. Therefore, when something seems separate, that's because on a deeper level it is one. Only then multiplicity can appear, when there is an underlying unity.

For example - without my family, there would be no me. Without parents - no children. So the parents are their children and the children are their parents, in a manner of speaking. All is one, because if you take one part out, you have to take the other parts too, since everything is interdependent.

Same goes for "me" and world - I am not a foreign piece of consciousness inside a big, cruel, unconscious universe. My consciousness is the result of this universe unfolding right now - this universe is the mind which is feeling "I am" inside all beings. But if a being becomes attached to this feeling and considers it separate from the rest of the world, then this is the result of a certain type of thinking (trying to understand reality while only looking at concepts about it, not reality itself) and a false belief.

User avatar
Ilona
Site Admin
Posts: 7242
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 1:57 pm
Location: Lithuania
Contact:

Re: Please approve my liberation, or approve my ignorance

Postby Ilona » Mon Apr 03, 2017 9:55 pm

Beautifully expressed! Thank you very much! And welcome to lu. Someone will send you a message shortly.
Looking forward to see you guiding!

Much love
Truth realized will set you free.
http://ilonaciunaite.com/book

User avatar
Notone
Posts: 18
Joined: Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:33 am

Re: Please approve my liberation, or approve my ignorance

Postby Notone » Tue Apr 04, 2017 8:11 am

Thank you for the heartily welcome Ilona!


Return to “ARCHIVES”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest